Sunday, March 25, 2012

A Time for Courage

I have been very humbled and blessed the past week. A couple weeks ago I was able to spend a wonderful spring break with my boyfriend Todd. It was such an amazing week filled with the spirit. We were able to attend the Salt Lake temple together, hike, and feel the spirit so strongly. It was such a blessing in my life to grow closer together as well as to grow closer to my Heavenly Father and the Spirit. I came back to Logan to start school the following and it seemed as though I was hit with a wall of adversity. I had just had one of the most amazing weeks of my life and I felt like I was then faced with a mountain to climb and no means to do it. I spoke with my Mom on the phone and was greatly comforted by her words. I had a lonely Sunday night but tried to find refuge in my scriptures and the spirit. Sometimes it seems so easy to feel the spirit, especially when Todd is around but sometimes on my own I feel so lonely and seem to have a harder time recognizing the Spirit even though I know it is there. I started school the next day and it seemed to go okay but throughout the day I started having major problems with my foot and my ankle. I felt as though I was falling and I couldn't rise back up. I was scared, scared because of my previous medical problems, scared to be on my own once again. I prayed to Heavenly Father and the words of Joseph Smith rang true in my heart, "O God, where art thou? And where is the pavillion that covereth thy hiding place? How lolng shall thy hand be stayed.." As soon as those words entered into my mind the Lord's reply calmed my heart.  "My Son, peace be unto thy soul thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment". I know that Heavenly Father heard my prayers and answered them. He guided me and led me to peace. Throughout the rest of this week my thoughts have turned toward him. I have had days that have not been easy, I have been faced with affliction but through my Savior and my Heavenly Father I have been strengthened and blessed with the courage to face my afflictions head on standing together with my Savior. I know that we all have trials in our life, but we must remember all the wonderful things in this world and face the not so good days with the courage to look up toward a brighter one. I know that we have afflictions to guide us and strengthen us but I also have a knowledge that afflictions are also there so that when the good times come they are all the more sweet. I am so blessed to have a family that loves me and watches over me, a loving Savior and Heavenly Father that do everything in their power to help me succeed as well as a wonderful man here on this Earth that strengthens me through his example. Let us not fear the unknown, let us go forth with a bright shining hope, relying on those around us and our savior and face our blattles with the courage to prevail. Arise and shine for this is a time for courage.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

An Elect Lady

Many children grow up haveing hero's in their life, some like Superman and others like Spiderman but for me the one person I have always admired and considered as a hero is Emma Hale Smith. She is a woman of faith, and elect lady, and a person that I continually hope to be like. Emma withstood so many trials and hardships through out her life. It is said of Emma,“I have never seen a woman in my life, who would endure every species of fatigue and hardship, from month to month, and from year to year, with that unflinching courage, zeal, and patience, which she has ever done; for I know that which she has had to endure—she has been tossed upon the ocean of uncertainty—she has breasted the storms of persecution, and buffeted the rage of men and devils, which would have borne down almost any other woman.” I know that Emma truly knew what was right in her heart, if she did not she could not have endured with the patience and faith that she had. I have often spent hours pondering upon her life desiring to understand her and her faith. Lately I felt as though I too have been tossed upon the ocean of uncertainty. It has been an interesting time in my life, one of great change and great learning. I have found that often times those around you do not understand your feelings and the motivations behind your actions. They do not understand, not because they are bad people, but because they simply are not in your place. Never in my life have I felt the spirit so strongly confirm my actions while the world and those around me discourage them. I know what the spirit of the Lord has told me and I know without a doubt that no matter the opinions of those around you, the only opinion that matters is the Lord's. I have learned that sometimes you know things with your heart that you don't know with your head.
    I imagine that Emma often found her self doing things that the world would see as "stupid" or "impracticle", but I believe that she found strength through her God and through the love of her life, Joseph. I know that Emma endured trials beyond the extent that any other woman should have been able to endure. I know that she knew her place in the kingdom of God and did all in her power to follow the Lord's plan. Thanks to Emma's example and the gospel in my life I too know that the spirit speaks to our hearts. I know that the Lord knows me and has a great plan for me. I know that everyday in my life I have the choice to feel the spirit and be guided to become an instrument in the Hands of God. I know this gospel is true and I cannot express my gratitude for Emma and her life and the strength it gives me to continue day by day. I am immensly grateful for my Savior, Jesus Christ and his atoning sacrifice that allows me to one day return to my Father in Heaven. I know that the day I will cross the veil to the otherside I will see my Savior, my family, and Emma and Joseph. I know one day I will be able to thank her in person for the blessing and example that she has been in my life. She truly is an Elect Lady.