Post #19 – Hope in a Sunrise

This morning’s sunrise was a brilliant blue!  It slowly changed from a deep, midnight blue to this gorgeous sky blue in just a matter of minutes.  As I sat in my car, reading my scriptures, I felt a sweet feeling of peace and comfort wash over me, telling me that “This is right Wendi.”

I just happened to be studying the Book of Enos today.  His words not only encouraged me but comforted me that if we will just keep holding on, giving ALL that we have for the Lord, we will gain a reward that I can not even comprehend.

But “just” holding on tends to be so much more difficult to do than we seem to realize.

Just now, I was having a coughing attack.  No matter how hard I try to cough this cough out of me, it still remains.  I have asked several people how long this cough usually lasts and I have been told around 4-6 weeks.  WHAT?!?!  I am only on day 13.  Instead of being vigilant and continuing to care for myself, I resigned to my illness and stopped taking the medication that helps the cold move along faster.

Why do we do this?  Why do I do this?  (Maybe the rest of you are more mature and don’t quit treatment, just because you are sick and tired of doing it.)

I realized that REGARDLESS of how long this road of coughing is ahead of me, I NEED to do EVERYTHING I can to help my body out while it is still battling this nasty cough.  I also need to be a good example to Curly Cook, this virus’ next victim.  Poor kid.  She got the fever too.  I pray she has extra strong fairy dust inside of her and that her immune system is able to squash this virus quickly!

Thankfully, my Visiting Teachers came over this morning.  I wasn’t really in the mood to visit but I love this program SO MUCH, I put my attitude in check and embraced the moment.  I am grateful I did because this month’s message was something I really needed to hear.  Ironically, it reminded me of this morning’s sunrise.

The message was on Living a Consecrated Life.  I especially loved this part of the message:

“To consecrate is to set apart or dedicate something as sacred, devoted to holy purposes,” said Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. “True success in this life comes in consecrating our lives—that is, our time and choices—to God’s purposes.”1

Elder Neal A. Maxwell (1926–2004) of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said: “We tend to think of consecration only as yielding up, when divinely directed, our material possessions. But ultimate consecration is the yielding up of oneself to God.”2

As we consecrate ourselves to the purposes of God, our faith in Jesus Christ and in His Atonement will increase. As we live a consecrated life, we can be made holy through those actions.

It brought peace to my heart to again realize that Heavenly Father was hearing the pangs of my heart.  He understands my worries, concerns and needs better than I do . . . He is reaching out and trying to share with me THE WAY I can find peace while we go through this time in our lives.  He is helping me to embrace something that I could easily cast aside, something that I have been able to develop while being sick these past 2 years.  Something HE WANTED me to learn and add to my life.

What is this change I am talking about?

It is simply HOW I make my choices and HOW I choose to spend my time each day.

Although my body is feeling SO MUCH better, that does not mean that I give up what I have learned and just go back to how I used to spend my days.  I need not be ashamed of how I am living my life now.  I feel I am being told to embrace it, love it, celebrate it and share it with those who are also looking for the opportunity to come closer to their Father in Heaven and His Son, Jesus Christ and actually feel the presence of the Holy Ghost in their DAILY lives.

I have come to embrace and make living the gospel the most important part of my life.  I love putting it first, as my top priority, and then seeing what else gets added to our day.  I love the way I feel FULLY SATISFIED at the end of the day, because I put first things first.  I also LOVE that I can look back on my day and see what worked and what didn’t work, just by seeing what I chose to do first in my day.  I can easily see if I am off balance and by making some simple changes, I can get my balance back.  This brings bounteous joy and hope for my next day, so I am not so afraid to wake up each morning like I used to be.

Learning to live the gospel is like watching a sunrise chase away the night and change it into day.  It happens gradually, but it DOES HAPPEN!

I have realized that living the gospel has added many new gifts and talents to my life.  I am so MUCH MORE patient than I have ever been in my entire life.  I am learning that progress TAKES TIME and that I need to keep practicing the same steps over and over again, until they become a part of me.  Like learning to read sheet music.  It is always a temptation to just memorize a song so you can play it, rather than learning to read the notes, one by one.  But learning to read sheet music gives me confidence that I can one day play anything I am given, rather than being limited to only knowing how to play a few songs . . . if I can still remember how to play them.

This all takes FAITH.  Without faith that this is worth my time, I would have given up a long time ago. Thankfully, I saw this video series by Elder Bednar and it really encouraged me to hold onto my faith and not give up.

If we will choose to practice faith, doing our best to learn what it is and how to use it more each day, we will be given ALL the light that we will ever need . . . just like the start of a new day!  For Enos shares in verse 8 “And he said unto me: Because of thy faith in Christ, whom thou hast never before heard nor seen. And many years pass away before he shall manifest himself in the flesh; wherefore, go to, thy faith hath made thee whole.”  

And if we choose to use this faith in Christ, Enos shares in verse 27 what we are promised, “And I soon go to the place of my rest, which is with my Redeemer; for I know that in him I shall rest. And I rejoice in the day when my mortal shall put on immortality, and shall stand before him; then shall I see his face with pleasure, and he will say unto me: Come unto me, ye blessed, there is a place prepared for you in the mansions of my Father. Amen.”

If we hold on, we WILL come to know Him.  If we will DO as He commands us to do, one day at a time, we will come to trust Him and find joy with Him.  For He truly has become my best friend.  I thought that having positive self esteem was the goal . . . but it isn’t.  It is having faith in our Savior that encourages us to “take the medicine that we need, especially when we don’t want to.”  He knows us, He loves us, He believes in who we TRULY are.   May we do our part today to come that much closer to knowing Him, is my humble prayer, like Enos.

In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

 

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