Saturday, November 6, 2010

An Observation, and a Witness for Christ

Thursday was a pretty rough day for me. I went to bed feeling like Heavenly Father had been ignoring me in terms of helping me with my weaknesses, and I prayed that tomorrow would be a better day. Well, it was! My boyfriend gave me a wake-up call, and my mom texted me to see if I was up, which got me off to a good start. I had fun dancing and socializing in each of my classes, I registered to compete in a third event at dance competition, and I even went to see a TA and did some homework on campus. Working on and developing something I love - dance - felt fantastic again. The day concluded with dinner and a date with my boyfriend. I was fairly giddy most of Friday, and felt utterly sparkly with happiness (which did progress to just a calm, happy feeling). I felt a lot better than I have in a while; it felt like Heavenly Father was giving me a second chance.

I've been taught that we learn and feel by having opposition and contrasts: it can be hard to understand and define "dark" and "shadow" if you don't understand "light" and "bright". If you've been living with a half-burnt light bulb, the contrast can be astonishing when you put in a new bulb and see how much brighter the room is and think "wow, it was pretty dim before". So it is with pain and happiness. In order to fully appreciate, understand and value our truest happiness, we experience real pain and privation and learn from the opposites. Through the process of maturing and growing up, the extremes and depth of these emotions grow fuller and deeper; we experience more exquisite agonies and more glorious times of peace and joy. It is a two-edged sword, and sometimes I don't want to pay the price of such happiness, but like I've said before... Somehow, the passage of time (and simply becoming busy with other things) has softened and dulled the pains of past months and years until I hardly think about them. I can remember them if I try, but I don't relive them - it doesn't really bother me anymore (why would I want to go through the same thing twice?). On the other hand, there are a few moments that I can remember very, very well - moments of seeming perfection, moments of profundity, intimate moments with dear friends - that I really cherish. "Good" is a more powerful force in memories and in changing people than "sorrow" or "fear". So, I know that even if both suffering and happiness come hand-in-hand, the happiness will triumph. And that happiness is worth the cost.

There's an event on facebook for November 6th that I decided to participate in, and basically, all it asks is for people to bear their testimonies of Jesus Christ and the other things that are appendages to that.

I'm still learning. Even though I was born and raised in the Mormon faith, there's still a lot for me to learn from others and through personal study (and all from the Holy Spirit) as I try to gain a deeper understanding of life, how God works, and who He is. Even though I don't have all the answers right now, I have enough to keep going. When everything else seems to be going wrong, I know that Heavenly Father loves me. I know that He loved me enough to sacrifice His perfect Son in order that I may return to live with Him again. I know that He manifests this love by helping and providing for me day to day. I know that because He loves me, God has created an individualized plan for my life to give me the greatest happiness; He has arranged the perfect circumstances that will help me most to grow and gain the most joy. I need to do my part - to do the simple things He's asked of me - in order to obtain the promised blessings contingent on my obedience. I know that listening to and following modern prophets will help me to stay on track, because God has authorized them to be his spokespeople on earth; I trust Him, so I know I can trust them. Everything that is good comes of Christ, leads me to Him, and inspires me to become more like Him; anything that doesn't do those things is stuff I need to stay away from and constantly purge from my life. It's an ongoing process and will be the master project of a lifetime, but it'll be worth it, because it will help me *make happiness* now and lead me to even more later. I say these things truthfully and faithfully in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

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