28 March 2010

"Blind" Faith

There is no such thing as blind faith--not for any Latter-day Saint serious about his Christianity anyway. Faith, in its truest vigilance and heartfelt form, looks honestly on Christ and knows that He lives because the evidence of that fact is sufficient and provided for by the Holy Ghost.

But Paradox, you've never seen God. How can you say that?


Because I've heard Him speak to me and I've felt His love for me. I've spoken to Him, I've trusted Him, and I've been trusted by Him. I've been taught and strengthened by Him. I've been protected and sanctified by Him. I have followed Him, walked beside Him, gotten myself lost and been found by Him. I've been in His holy House and stood in His presence. In short, I have had experiences--because I love Him--that allow me to do everything short of seeing Him. And honestly, those experiences have been so precious to me, I would feel presumptuous to ask for more in my weak and mortal state. Truly it has been said, and truly I feel of myself that "the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak." (Matthew 26: 41) To see Him in the flesh is a greater blessing than I can ask for now.

But I believe, because I have seen His hand in my life, that I will see Him again if I do my part to be obedient to His commandments and rely upon His grace and mercy. In Acts, we read that the disciples asked Christ when He would return to the earth. According to that record, He said, "It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power. But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth." (Acts 1: 7-8)

I have faith that the experiences I have had with Jesus Christ--the healing I've obtained, the strength I've received, the goodness that has edified me--have been real. They are real because He lives. No faith in Him is ever blind--for even fleeting glimpses of even the smallest trace of goodness require sight. I testify that as we yield to that sight, our ability to know of Christ increases, until at last we reach that day when we shall stand before our Lord at the Judgment Bar, knowing the full extent of our goodness and guilt.

That we will seek for our Savior always, wherever we may stand, is my prayer in the name of Jesus Christ.
AMEN

16 March 2010

The Blessing Jar

I've begun a blessings jar. Seeing as it's made of a pickle jar, you can appreciate why one of the first blessings I put into it was "pickles."

And even though I've already lined the bottom of it with the motley assortment of blessings ranging from the standard gospel answers to the littlest things that mean so much to me personally, I'm looking forward to all of the repeats I'm surely going to have. Suffice it to say, I'm beginning to see that I can never be too thankful for all of the glorious privileges I've been given as a daughter of my Heavenly Father's covenant.

Just to share a few:

  • Naps on the couch
  • Bishops
  • Sleeping in
  • Three piece suits (on good looking men)
  • hot showers
  • the Priesthood
  • I Love Lucy
  • my roommates
  • Indoor plumbing
  • back massages
  • Jesus Christ
  • Debussy music
  • Lillies
  • Mercy
  • Trees
  • Poetry
  • Isaiah
  • Bubble wrap
Blessings are an interesting aspect of the gospel of Jesus Christ because the manner in which they're given is something that many of us do not understand. They are not always given to the righteous, nor are they always withheld from the unrighteous. They are not products of what we do. They are not only given to members of a certain church.

Blessings are given to us because of who we are. We are children of our Heavenly Father, who loves us and desires for us to be happy. He gives us blessings as our parent, desiring for our greatest good by helping us and guiding us to paths and people that will bring love and joy into our lives. Just as a loving parent desires to do nice things for their children, so does our Father in Heaven desire to bless us with peace, comfort, and wholeness despite our many trials and struggles.

However, a willing and obedient heart makes these blessings easier to see. We are then able to see that the red light that made us late for work is not nearly as important as the car that didn't hit us because of it. Blessings help us to change our perspective to one of humility and gratitude, a realization of the great need we will always have in the flesh for our Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ.

I testify that blessings enrich our lives when we are willing to receive them as they are given, and that our fullest happiness as sons and daughters of God is attached to receiving the blessings of the Kingdom in the name of Jesus Christ.
AMEN

04 March 2010

Inspiration

Pray.

Pray as if your soul depended on it,
as if the world would cease to move
if your heart continued to lay
silent in your chest.

In time, the world will cease--
not because it stands still,
but because you do.

In the heaviness of stillness
to the heart that desires nothing more than God,
He speaks not of fire and brimstone,
but of peace.

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