Thursday, January 20, 2011

You Decide Your Future

So many people are afraid of the future in these latter days, but there is no reason to be afraid. If you are afraid, it is because you do not have faith in yourself. You, and only you, decide what will happen in the future. We have been given the great gift of agency, this is what allows people to make their own choices. They may choose to harm you or someone you know in any way, but only you choose how you will react and what you will take and learn from that experience. So, in all actuality, you decide your future. An article in the January 2011 Ensign titled "Make Yours A Great Life" by Elder Paul V. Johnson couldn't explain this topic any better. "Your future is not determined by the conditions around you. It is determined by your faith, your choices, and your efforts. Yes, you live in challenging times, but so did Mary, Moroni, and Joseph Smith. You don’t have to be carried along in the current of the times. The Lord can and will help you set your own course. The challenges you face will serve to strengthen you as you move forward with your life. Each of you has a bright future, a future you cannot now fully comprehend....People who go to work with faith, knowing the Lord will bless them if they do what’s right, are the ones with a bright future. The title of the last conference address given by Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin of the Quorum of the Twelve, (1917–2008) explained how these people handle challenges: “Come What May, and Love It.” Elder Wirthlin said: “If we approach adversities wisely, our hardest times can be times of greatest growth, which in turn can lead toward times of greatest happiness.”

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Love your trials

Thanksgiving '09 I heard someone bear a testimony that will stick with me forever. This individual said, "I am so grateful for my trials and tribulations." This statement startled me and caught me off guard to say the least. I had never heard someone say that they loved trials. Why on earth would you say that? Sure, I know we have to have them and everything, but that doesn't mean I like them. I thought about what he said. I know there are many people that are a lot worse off than I am or have been, but I have been through a lot. Granted, most of it was all self inflicted, I put myself through a lot of grief and pain. I came to realize why this person said they loved trials when I came across this scripture today in Romans 5:3-4, "...but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope:". Because of the things that I've experienced in my life, I am able to have hope. Hope in a better tomorrow. Hope that someone is there to listen to my problems and succor me. That someone is our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  The world is not over when a life changing event happens, or when our chips are down.  Look at it as an opportunity to learn something. God is teaching us something, and it's up to us if we are going to figure out what it is.  I love the ability to grow and learn, no matter how it may come about.