#Atonement, #Charity, #JesusChrist, #LDS, #love, #ShareGoodness

What Jesus Did for Me

Alma 5:13-14

And behold, he preached the word unto your fathers, and a mighty change was also wrought in their hearts, and they humbled themselves and put their trust in the true and living God. And behold, they were faithful until the end; therefore they were saved.

And now behold, I ask of you, my brethren of the church, have ye spiritually been born of God? Have ye received his image in your countenances? Have ye experienced this mighty change in your hearts?

When I first heard the gospel, I was very excited. I gave away all my sins to become a member of the lord’s Church, and yet, as soon as I was offended I walked away. While I knew God loved me, and the Lord was my Saviour, I did not believe in His Church. I left the only group of people who would have understood and it was about 10 years later that I came to really know His people and understand how to forgive and allow what they had to teach me into my mind and heart.

Once I understood why Jesus Christ did what He did, it was easy to live the Gospel. I continue to grow in knowledge of the Lord and how to have compassion on others. I began to understand that “Charity” is not just giving money. Jesus had charity towards all of those who walked on the earth when He did. He set the perfect example for us.

It is not easy to have compassion and show charity towards all mankind, especially those who are different than you are. Not easy indeed, yet in my heart, I have learned how to have compassion and charity as the Lord did. Jesus was very lenient towards mankind. He did not judge harshly, but rather showed love towards all of humankind.

He asks of us, to love one another, as He has loved us. God said, “If ye love me, keep my commandments.” When you walk one step and then take another, holding onto the Lord’s hand, you have the light of The Christ to go before you. It is most bright and warm and welcoming. Not like the world at all. When asked what the greatest commandment was, Jesus replied, “Thou shalt love the Lord, thy God, with all thy heart, might, mind and strength. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love they neighbor as thyself.”

Growing up, I had never really loved myself, thus, even though I thought I loved my neighbor, I did not know how to love. Jesus was talking about real love. With the Lord’s help, I have been finding out how to love with all my heart, might, mind and strength. Early on, I learned hate and disrespect. I first hated myself, then others. Learning how to love was not so easy, as I had never seen it. That is, until I was about 11 years old and met Miss Ingram and others who did not disrespect me with what I thought was love, but rather showed me what the word “Love” really was. Hollygrove Home for Children was a wake up call for me.I found music within my soul. I was shown how to smile, I learned how to speak to others. I learned I was not what others had lead me to believe I was. I found that life can contain happiness.

In the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day-saints there are all kinds of people. Each moving at their own speed and in their own time. There are those who have left the Church, only they tend to keep picking it apart and can’t seem to leave it alone. There are those who find it too hard, yet they refuse to remove their names from it’s rolls, thinking just their name will save them. They do not realize it would be better to have never known Him then to do this. There are many who love the followers of Jesus Christ with all our hearts and strive to do all that Jesus Christ has asked us to do. We are those who still make mistakes, yet know that at least we are trying our best to do what is right. These are those who move forward with faith in Christ Jesus along the path that leads to eternal life.

Compared to the rest of the world, we might be few, but we are those whom can bless the rest of the world. Elijah has returned and the Lord is coming back as well. At the end of the Old Testament in the Holy Bible it says:

1 For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the Lord of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.

2 ¶But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall.

3 And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith the Lord of hosts.

4 ¶Remember ye the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb for all Israel, with the statutes and judgments.

5 ¶Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord:

6 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse. Malachi 4: 1-6

The Atonement

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#Atonement, #ElderCook, #Hope, #JesusChrist, #LDS, #love, #ShareGoodness

Be As A Sunflower

“One of the remarkable characteristics of young wild sunflowers, in addition to growing in soil that is not hospitable, is how the young flower bud follows the sun across the sky. In doing so, it receives life-sustaining energy before bursting forth in its glorious yellow color.”

“Like the young sunflower, when we follow the Savior of the world, the Son of God, we flourish and become glorious despite the many terrible circumstances that surround us. He truly is our light and life.”

By Elder Quentin L. Cook
Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

Elder Cook continued: “If the grim realities you are facing at this time seem dark and heavy and almost unbearable, remember that in the soul-wrenching darkness of Gethsemane and the incomprehensible torture and pain of Calvary, the Savior accomplished the Atonement, which resolves the most terrible burdens that can occur in this life. He did it for you, and He did it for me. He did it because He loves us and because He obeys and loves His Father. We will be rescued from death—even from the depths of the sea.”

While I was in hiding from my last husband and my family, I had been afraid to tell anyone about them. However, my ex showed up and once again began to make himself a pest. He cut the brakes on my car, he broke into my home and left me a dirty little message. He made me fear for my life, again. When the police suggested I leave town, I contacted my bishop. He was most understanding, and reached out to help. It was the first time I had really had anyone believe in me, stand up for me and really help me. The men and women of the particular ward cared about me and stood beside me to help me become the best I could be, in spite of my youth and growing up years.

When we know that Jesus Christ is on our side, then we can do all things. This is a proven fact. Over the years I have never found so many who wanted me to succeed. I have found the Lord’s Church, even the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day-saints wants all of us to succeed. This is not a race thing, nor a culture thing. It is the real thing.

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#Adversity, #Faith, #Hope, #LDS, #loss, #love, #ShareGoodness

Reactions to Adversity

“Choose carefully each day that which you will do and that which you will not do, and the Lord will bless you to accomplish the important things that have eternal consequences.” Marjorie Pay Hinckley

There have been times when I have messed up. I reacted poorly to that which was happening to me. When I was young, I had no clue who I really was, thus, I became what my family taught me. I became a liar and a thief. I stole to feed myself and my little girl. I lied so no one would know truth about my family. I believed I was a murderer, as my mother had died because of me, thus I deserved all those horrible things I had gone through. I had burned down my uncle’s house, therefore I believed I was an arsonist. The reality was, my mother survived until I was 3.6 years old, and the fire was an accident, but I knew that not until I was older. For too many years the case was, I had been taught wrong principles, however, when I was almost 30 years old, I heard that I am really a child of God who lived with my Heavenly Parents before I came to my mortal parents.

In Proverbs 22:6 it reads:

“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”

A child of God is what I had yearned to be, even before I knew how old I was; way back, when I was living in my father’s back yard. I had heard about a God who protected His children from the old black book my sister found, which had belonged to my mother. I had wanted to have a father like the one who protected Shadrach, Meshach and Aded-nego (Daniel 3), and low and behold, here I was being assured that I do, in fact, have a Father who does loves me.

I am grateful to my second step-mother for sending me to a parochial school for a few months so that I could learn who Jesus Christ was. Little did I know back then, that He not only was the son of God, but He is still alive and He loves me, personally.

Learning line upon line, step upon step, I have found true happiness. Over the course of many years I have learned so much. Truth is, I still have problems, but now I can handle each one that comes into my life. I must share with you one situation, that is very frustrating to me. That is the way the elderly are treated. Because of my early youth, I have been locked up many times, as I am different than a “normal” person. Some feel I should never be allowed to be on my own.

There was a local hospital, where the “doctor” believed I should be drugged, and since I refused to partake, he kept trying to trick me into taking the drugs. He ordered others to do certain things which would cause me to lose my temper. However, he was not aware that I had been tricked when I was young, so I knew what was being done. Only once were they able to restrain me and drug me. I was able to obtain some scriptures, so each morning and evening, I read words that gave me comfort. Even when they grabbed me and caused great pain to my body, I continued to pray for them. Yes, a few times, I did lose my cool and yell, however, I repented afterwards, and finally, the time came when others working there called those who could help me and they were forced to take me to court. They had to prove I was insane and did not deserve to return to my home. The Lawyer and the Judge were on my side, which irritated those whom wanted me locked up. Nonetheless, they had to release me.

While I was locked up, I was able to comfort others, and teach some of those who did not know Jesus Christ and how much He loved them. I invited many to pray and they did. I was blessed in that there was one male nurse who has showed up each time I have been locked up. He is of my same faith, and while others did things to cause me pain and then stood about mocking and laughing, he came into my room and helped me many times. After I was released, I asked that he be given a certificate of appreciation, and a pay raise. This last time, I learned that he was moving and going to open his own clinic. He was training many others in how to treat the elderly and be of help rather than harm. I am so proud of him.

While my life is not over yet, I have found there are those who validate me, and are helping me to be the best I can be. God truly does watch over His children, even in times of trial. He knows His children, and when we choose to do what is right, He has great joy. As a loving Father, I am sure that when we chose to not do what is right, it gives Him great sorrow. I l pray that I may endure well whatever comes, so that I can be with Him and Heavenly Mother for all eternity. I want to personally thank my Lord for all He did and is doing for me. I am a child of God.

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#Abuse, #Atonement, #Blessing, #Faith, #God, #Healing, #Hope, #JesusChrist, #love, #Prophets, #ShareGoodness

A New Way

“Remember that our Savior, Jesus Christ, always builds us up and never tears us down.” Dallan H. Oaks, Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ, and member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day-saints, as well as an Attorney at Law.

As I am finding others who are not afraid to speak up, I find hope and help for me to heal as well. Coming from a generation where children were to be seen but not heard did not help children of abuse. It may be true that my life is different than yours, yet, we are still all children of parents. I pray yours loved you, but even if they did not, you can still heal. If you have made mistakes in your life, you can repent of them and be healed. If others made mistakes that caused you pain, you can be healed of that pain.

Perhaps it is because I had to endure so much, prior to joining the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day-saints that I was able to recognize the great love that Jesus had for me during those times. I can see how the Lord blessed me while living in my father’s back yard. I can see how the Lord comforted me when I was being abused. I can feel the love that Jesus has for me as He continues to rescue me when others only feel I need to be “locked up for my own good” or “drugged” to keep me quiet.

Knowing that I can lean on the Lord when times are hard, helps me to withstand whatever comes my way. Father hears my prayers and Jesus walks beside me to help me not fall. The Holy Spirit whispers truth in my ears since I was just a little girl, and has never lied to me. I am looking forward to my future now rather than wanting to escape life. I can enjoy life now, by looking forward to the future.

One of the things that has blessed my life was in learning that Jesus Christ was and is my personal Saviour. He came to earth for me. He came for all us sinners as well as for those of us who were sinned against. I want you to know that He also came for you. As I was helped to be forgiven by Jesus Christ, I was blessed to forgive others, at the request of Jesus Christ.

Here is a talk by another Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ who says it much better than I can. His name is Jeffrey R Holland. For his work in improving understanding between Christians and Jews, he was awarded the “Torch of Liberty” award by the Anti-Defamation league of B’Nai B’rith. He was a profession for many years and is also a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-days-saints.

Today, 7 May 2015, I am witnessing as newspapers are asking people to pray. This is the first time since 11 August 2001- I have seen so many people praying. I for one have never stopped praying. I am so grateful that Father in Heaven hears our prayers.

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#Blessings, #Children, #Comfort, #Jesus Christ, #LDS, #love, #PresEyring, #ShareGoodness, #Truth

Children

“When you choose whether to make or keep a covenant with God, you choose whether you will leave an inheritance of hope to those who might follow your example.” Henry B Eyring, Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ.

The day my eldest child was born, I felt such deep joy. I felt she was the reason I had been born and allowed to live. This precious little gift straight from God to earth. And I had the honor to usher her into this life. I had prayed that I would be blessed with a family and now I was blessed to see the reality. I held her in my arms, and she just snuggled right in.

It was my joy to feed her and teach her to talk, allow her to walk, and play and enjoy the air and sunshine. Until November 1965, she was mine to love. She was born 23 August 1964 in Bellflower, Los Angeles, California.

When my son, Phillip LeRoy was born, my husband felt deep joy. It matched my own, as now I had two sweet little ones to love. He was born 3 November 1965 in Norwalk, Los Angeles, California. Until Thanksgiving night of 1965 they were both my angels to feed and love and hold.

In 1982 I received a telephone call from an attorney. He told me that my son was in a foster home, and they wanted to adopt him. They needed me to sign the papers to allow that to happen. I let him know that I wanted to at least see my son before I would sign anything. Up until that point, I did not even know if he was alive or dead. He said that was not allowed. I told him I would never sign anything until I had the opportunity to see my son. Then I hung up.

He called back at a later time and let me know the address of the foster home. I made the arrangements and went. As I saw this young man leaning against the door, I could see in him his father, thus I knew it was really my baby in a young man’s body. Slowly, I got out of the car and as I approached him, his foster mother came out the door. She invited us into the house, and I kept staring at Phillip.

Some time later the three of us went to a little coffee shop. I was sitting next to my son and she was telling me all they could give him. My heart was breaking. They could give him all those things I had wanted him to have. I had nothing to give him. Only my love, and he did not know how I felt. He had never really even met me before. After listening, I asked my son if that is what he wanted. He said, “yes”. I told her I needed a little bit of time, but I would sign.

I must admit, I never did sign that paper. As I was standing out back by the corral, crying on the neck of a horse, I heard my son say, “Lets run away together.”  I turned and said, “Let me go tell your foster parents you are coming with me.” He begged me to say nothing, just run. I told him that if I did that, I would go to prison and then we could never be together. He ran away and the foster parents let me know I needed to leave.

In 1986 I was blessed to go the House of the Lord, the Los Angeles Temple and learn who I really am, and that families were meant to be together for all eternity. I made certain covenants while there, and I treasure those promises made unto me.

The next time I saw my children was in Colorado. The year was 1989, and my babies were all grown up. I was only allowed to stay for very short visit, yet I saw what they looked like. No longer did I see my little girl as a wee one. No longer did I mourn over what might have been, but rather, I learned that when we are obedient to our covenants, Father does bless us with our hearts desires. I was reunited with my children and that means more to me than what happened.

I would like to share with you more words spoken by a man of God:

“After all we can do in faith, the Lord will justify our hopes for greater blessings for our families than we can imagine. He wants the best for them and for us, as His children.

“We are all children of a living God. Jesus of Nazareth is His Beloved Son and our resurrected Savior. This is His Church. In it are the keys of the priesthood, and so families can be forever. This is our priceless heritage of hope. I testify that it is true in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, amen.” By President Henry B. Eyring, First Counselor in the First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day-saints.”

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#Christian, #Compassion, #Family, #Fathers, #Forgiveness, #God, #LDS, #love, #ShareGoodness

Honor thy Father and thy Mother

Today I have been trying to find a way to honor my father. This is not an easy thing, as my father claimed to be a Christian, yet his actions proved him otherwise. Nonetheless, the Lord God gave us the 5th commandment and because I want to be obedient to God, I have struggled for years with this commandment:

“Honour thy father and thy mother, as the Lord thy God hath commanded thee; that thy days may be prolonged, and that it may go well with thee, in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.” Deuteronomy 5:16

It is easy to honor my mother, she did a very noble thing by giving me birth. While striving to find an answer to my problem regarding my father, I went to the scriptures. I came across this verse given by the Apostle Neal A Maxwell:

“The fifth commandment’s laudable emphasis upon honoring parents, unless checked by the first commandment, could result in unconditional loyalty to errant parents rather than to God.” “Behold the Enemy is Combined”, April 1993.

I am so grateful for prophets to help us find truth. My goodness, most of us who grew up in homes where abuse was the norm, find it very difficult to keep that particular commandment, because they never saw anyone honoring them. Clean love is so important for children, don’t you agree?

Alexander Pope cautioned:

“Vice is a monster of so frightful mien,

As, to the hated, needs but to be seen;

Yet seen too oft, familiar with her face,

We first endure, then pity, then embrace.”

Another thing that made so much sense to me, again from Elder Maxwell:

“Abortion, which has increased enormously, causes one to ask, “Have we strayed so far from God’s second great commandment—love thy neighbor—that a baby in a womb no longer qualifies to be loved—at least as a mother’s neighbor?” Even so, violence to an unborn child does not justify other violence!”

My father wanted me dead before I was born, yet mother would not do it. After I was gang raped and became pregnant, everyone kept trying to get me to abort. yet I would not do it. An innocent baby is not to fault for what it’s parents do. My goodness, it is so hard for me to comprehend what people are thinking.

Never forget what Elder Dallin H. Oaks said:

“Agency – the power to choose is fundamental to Heavenly Father’s plan, even when the consequences of some person’s choice may create an unwanted result. Agency is necessary, for if God intervened to forestall the consequences of a person’s choice, He would destroy His plan for eternal progress.”

Here is something else he said:

“The love of God does not supersede His laws and His commandments, and the effect of God’s laws and commandments does not diminish the purpose and effect of His love. The same should be true of parental love and rules.”

I do so love the blessings we receive from those whom we follow. I have felt the hand of God when I hear them speak or read their words. I know the Lord lives and loves each and every one of us. I know that Joseph Smith Jr. was a prophet and the Book of Mormon was translated by him as a means to help us in our time to understand what God has in store for us. I know that within the pages of that book are the wisdom of the ages, told to us from the lips of those who lived here on the American Continent. I know that when we follow the teachings of the prophets, both living and dead, we and our families are the ones who are blessed. When we chose to disobey and go our own ways, then we reap the whirlwinds.

To my brothers and sisters who believe that women should marry women and men should marry men, I beg you to ask God. In the days of Noah, they believed this way also. If you care to read the story of Noah’s time, get out your bibles.

Go to Genesis 6:5

“And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.”

Drop down to verses 11-13 and ask yourself, is this really worth it?

11 The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence.

12 And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth.

13 And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth.

God gave us the rainbow to let us know that never again will He use a flood to destroy mankind. The next time it shall be by fire.

Isaiah 29:6

“Thou shalt be visited of the Lord of hosts with thunder, and with earthquake, and great noise, with storm and tempest, and the flame of devouring fire.”

Look around you my brothers and sisters. Look around. Then, look up.

I know that by honoring God, I am keeping the 5th commandment. This is the answer to my question on this beautiful May afternoon. I pray that these things I have shared with you, can bring peace to someone you know who is struggling with this same issue. The Lord is the final judge. If we will continue to do what is right, then even those who abused us will find that the Atonement of Jesus Christ is just and merciful. Hugs from a distance.

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#BeCauseHeLives, #Blessing, #Children, #Compassion, #God, #JesusChrist, #love, #Prophets, #ShareGoodness, #VictimsOfAbuse

One Mercy from God

I love what Elder Oaks once said in regard to us who have suffered at the poor choices others made:

“While God will not prevent those choices, He will bless us to endure the consequences of other’s choices. And those whose mortal opportunities are cut short or reduced by the choices of others eventually have every blessing and opportunity offered through the Mercy and Atonement of Jesus Christ.”  Elder Dallin H. Oaks, Apostle of Jesus Christ. A member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day-saints. He is also a well known speaker and an attorney.

I personally know that the gift of Agency was not free. We all pay a price and Jesus Christ, the Son of the Most High God paid the highest price. He took upon himself our pain. Not just the sins of the world, but our pain. Yes, He knows about pain, suffering at the hands of others. He knows how we felt when beaten, starved, abused in horrendous ways, that we feel no one else understands. Yet He understands.

Many times, I have felt his tender mercy as I have felt His loving influence sweep over me. Many times I have felt lifted from off this horrible planet where others only saw beauty. Many times I have wanted to die rather than suffer more torture at the hands of evil men and women. Yet, through it all, Father was watching and weeping. The Lord paid a very high price for us, all because He loves us. I had never felt that dept of love that He has shown me.

I’m sorry if many of you do not know Him. I am sorry if this bothers you, but I just want you to know that I know God lives. I do pray this will not be deleted, but if it is, I have said my piece. Thank you for caring about me. It means a lot to me, as a feral child, to have others hear me.

I love this song. It speak volumes of love. When I hear the sweet voices of children in song it send chills down my spine. I hope you all have a great day. Hugs from a distance.

Photograph by Steve Gills.

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