Tag Archives: Faith

Why is it ye are so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith?

Last week toward the end of our lesson at church this scripture was shared with the class. While the others moved on, I continued to plunge more deeply into these words we have all heard many times.

I don’t know why, but I have always read these words as a rebuke. I could feel the exasperation and frustration in the verses at why, after all this time and all that I have learned, could I still lack faith and be afraid.

But last week, something changed.

Let me paint the backdrop for you, so you can taste a bit of my journey in discovering what His message truly is to me.

For the month of January we have been given the assignment to provide Sacrament Meeting at a memory-care assisted living center here in town.

service3I’ve been trying to play the piano for the meetings each week.

I’ve not been succeeding very well.

Regardless, it is a privilege and a blessing for me to just be there. It is a pretty sacred experience to watch family members or CNA’s tenderly take the bread and water from the trays and place it to the lips of one who has long ago forgotten how to do it themselves.

But they haven’t forgotten what it means.

Continue reading Why is it ye are so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith?

Is happiness a good indicator of genuine faith?

(All images in this post are from LDS media)

This past year my attention has been drawn to the quick glimpses we catch during conferences of our prophets and apostles. Not necessarily the images we are meant to see, but those that are semi-private moments between genuine brothers.

As seers, prophets, and revelators, I can’t even begin to know the depths of what they know.

Or see what they see.

But I see them.

And they are happy.

first presidencyI can’t get the images of President Eyring laughing with President Monson, or President Uchtdorf’s eyes sparkling at something he witnesses.

Our new apostles literally have had the weight of the world placed on their shoulders.

They must realize that there is more to be done than they can ever do; they are overwhelmed, to say the least.

And still they laugh and are happy.

christmas2

Not just in the public moments as they stand as witnesses, but also in the relaxed and private ones.

I think it’s actually in these unscripted, unprepared moments of happiness that their greatest witness is borne.

Those with the greatest capacity to see, to know, and to understand just exactly how frightening things really are out there – aren’t afraid.

Instead, they smile and laugh.

And love.

We’ve been told that laughter is the best medicine for what ails us.

It’s true.

But it only works if it is real.

Forced, sarcastic, and bitter imitations have no healing power.

christmas3How do we find the strength, and even the courage, to laugh when things are – frankly – incredibly hard?

We believe.

It sounds simplistic, I know.

There are so many things out there that can make us afraid.

But only if that is all we see.

Believing in those things we cannot see brings light to illuminate what we need to see – what we must see if we no longer want to be afraid.

If we want to be happy.

I’ve watched a lot of people through the years. I think I’m getting pretty good at discerning those of deep and abiding faith in our Savior Jesus Christ.

They are burdened, they are tired, they are in pain.

Christmas4And they are happy.

Just look at the Special Witnesses we have been given.

This season of remembrance is a special opportunity for us to also stand up and witness to others what we believe.

Even if they can’t see it.

Yet.

And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

ChristmasIs it really possible to be unafraid in terror-filled surroundings, to be peaceful in the midst of turmoil and uncertainty, to be happy while in pain and suffering?

And not the forced, bitter, or sarcastic imitations of happiness, but the real thing?

It is, if we will but just believe.

Be happy this season dear friends.

Be happy.

 

Is exercising faith a matter of being “all in”?

For almost two years now I’ve been sharing bits of our journey with you. I would imagine that some parts have made you roll your eyes and others have produced a spontaneous chuckle here and there.

My hope is that some of them have made you stop and think, even if for just a moment, and then ask yourself pertinent questions.

I like to refer to it as ponder and wonder.

One of my favorite ponder and wonder topics is faith. I know that it is the first principle of the gospel and that by 48 I should probably have it down by now, but we all know that I’m just a bit simplistic.

It takes me a while for it all to sink in.

Hence, the pondering and wondering.

jesus christ 4I have a firm testimony that whatever my Heavenly Father’s will and direction is for my life is ALWAYS better than what I could scrape together on my own. It always has been, and always will be.

Our Savior’s example in the Garden of Eden of submission to the will of His Father at a point when He would have the bitter cup pass has been one I have spent a lot of time trying to emulate.

At least in my own silly, mortal way.

Continue reading Is exercising faith a matter of being “all in”?

Gain faith, grant forgiveness and then go forward

(All images in this post are from the LDS Media Library)

I remember a conversation I had with my dad several years ago. We were in his office at work and I was in meltdown mode.

So what’s new, right?

But I was stumbling over inadequate words trying to communicate the incredible fear that would grip me, paralyzing me inside and sending me into frantic pacing on the outside.

I wasn’t afraid of anything in particular; I was just full of fear of everything.

And nothing.

Suffice it to say that it was pretty maddening.

I’m pretty sure it wasn’t a picnic for Ann and the kids either.

Lately I’ve been able to make clear contrasts between then and now.

Jesus embracing

The entombing fear is gone; I know in my head and my heart and my spirit that I have nothing to fear.

Why?

Continue reading Gain faith, grant forgiveness and then go forward

Is part of the gift of faith about forgetting?

President Kimball once taught that the most important word in the English language was

REMEMBER

I agree.

We are all given those incredible moments where what was fuzzy becomes crystal clear, and we understand.

Even if we can’t put words to adequately describe it, it makes sense to us and is, at once, both miraculous and simple.

busy peopleBut then tomorrow comes, along with all the headaches of the hectic lives we run to keep up with, and soon the vast amount of what we don’t understand overpowers that brief moment of clarity.

It becomes pretty easy to forget if we don’t actively work to remember.

Hence, the critical importance in this one word and its need for permanence in our lives.

Continue reading Is part of the gift of faith about forgetting?