Friday, November 20, 2015

Jesus Saves Us All

I have been thinking a lot about the Atonement lately.

I am grateful for the gift of resurrection that is given to all of Heavenly Father’s children that chose to come to Earth.  I love my body and am grateful that I will get to have it for eternity.  I’m especially grateful that my resurrected body will not be subject to pain.  What a relief that will be.
The Atonement overcomes the obstacle of physical death, but more importantly, of sin.  Grace and mercy from God make it possible to return to their presence after physical death if I exercise faith and endure to the end.
Jesus submitted to God’s will and suffered so much pain so that I can overcome sin, so that I can be forgiven if I am repentant.  
How do I know if I am repentant?  
If I have turned back toward God.  If I have abolished the sin.  If I have taken action in my faith and focus on making righteous choices.  If I have done everything in my power to correct the mistakes I have made.
The atonement can fill me with joy, peace, and consolation.  
I must have a broken heart and a contrite spirit, which means to be overcome with guilt and sorrow for what I have done.  I have definitely had my moments of complete despair, and I feel that God has been carrying me to prevent these deeply painful emotions from breaking me.  Alma 7:12 speaks of Jesus being able to succor his people according to their infirmities, and I believe this is what is happening with me right now.  I am being succored.  God is helping me figure out how to love myself, how to see myself the way he sees me so as to not let me fall into depression as a result of the guilt and shame associated with my grievous sins.  He has taken upon Him the sins I have committed and done all I know how to forsake.
All of us are hardened, lost, fallen.  Human.  Jesus took upon himself our sins, our illnesses, our trials, our temptations so that He would know what it was like for us.  He suffered with us.  He know’s what it’s like for me to feel the way I do, to suffer within my own mind because of who I believe I am.  He loves me enough to have taken that on and suffered through it.
He did this that we may be spared if we believe on His name.  
D&C 45:5 - If we walk in the light, the blood of Jesus will cleanse us from all sin.

The Atonement is a redeeming power.  It’s there for us to become one with God once again after separating ourselves from Him through our own sin.  When we are ready and willing to come back to God, repent, and be at one with Him, the mercy and grace of the Atonement makes that possible.  

Monday, November 16, 2015

This. Is. Necessary

The leaves of the ivy that surrounds my possessions are starting to turn.  
Some leaves are red, some yellow, and some still a deep green.  
This reminds me of me.  
I am changing.  
One leaf at a time.  
Some leaves are changed and bright red and beautiful.  
Some are crusty and need to let go.  
Some are still green and hanging on to nature’s way.  
We are meant to change.  
We are meant to grow and change colors and grow new leaves after a period of dormancy 
and waiting 
and (apparently) suffering.