11.14.2012

boldly declare.

I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

I know Joseph Smith saw and spoke with God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ, in the Sacred Grove in Palmyra, New York one beautiful Spring morning in 1820. He had unceasing, unshakable faith and he was a humble man. I know he was able to restore this church to the Earth through the Priesthood Keys he received from Peter, James, and John and I know he is the prophet of the restoration.

Without a doubt, The Book of Mormon is the most correct, spirit-filled book on this Earth today and through it, I have come to know of God and Jesus Christ. I know of their infinite love for us, because they gave us the scriptures--they are written for our day, for each of us individually. If we study them, we will be blessed. I can't even begin to put into words the feelings of love, joy, and peace I have had and continually have while reading The Book of Mormon. I know its words are true; I am grateful for the huge blessing and important tool the scriptures have been in my life.

I believe in modern revelation--that we receive guidance from God for our church through our prophet today, Thomas S. Monson, and his counselors and apostles. I know that by heeding, pondering, and applying his words in our lives, we are being obedient to God's words.

I believe in personal revelation. As we pray and draw close to the Lord, we can be directed in our lives and be given glimpses of Heavenly Father's plan for each of us. He knows us and His greatest desire is for us to draw close to Him in prayer. I am grateful to know there is a two-way communication system when I pray. The fact that He listens to my thoughts, hopes, and fears and in turn, I can listen for guidance from Him through the Holy Ghost...it's just awesome. Prayer is such a powerful part of my life. I know that as long as I do what's right and keep the Spirit with me at all times, God will look out for me. He has proven time and time again that He makes my life so much better and richer than anything I ever could have ever imagined for myself. You just have to keep holding on. Things do work out for our good as long as we do what is right, pray continually, and have faith in God’s timing and plan for us.

I am grateful for the Temple. It has such an important place in my life. I have felt the Spirit there and I know it is truly the House of the Lord. Temples are the happiest places on Earth! The most peaceful places on Earth. And the fact that we have 140 of these sacred edifices (and counting) is such a huge testament of the Gospel moving forward and the love God has for us. Family is my everything and I'm grateful to know I can be with my family forever, because of my parents' decision to be married and sealed in the Temple. One day, I will be sealed to my future husband in the Temple, for time and all eternity, so that we can be together forever and our future family can be together forever.

I am grateful for the Priesthood and being able to have Priesthood blessings. The power to act for God on Earth is such an awe-inspiring privilege and  responsibility. I know that it is through the power of the Priesthood that miracles can occur; they do occur every single day. I am so incredibly grateful for the worthy Priesthood holders in my life.

I believe in Christ. I know that He is our Savior, Redeemer, and King. He showed us the way to live our lives so that we may return to our Heavenly Father. I know that God is our Heavenly Father. He loves us immensely. He listens to our prayers, He cries when we cry, and He rejoices in the things we find joy in. He knows us personally and He has a plan for each of us. We are His spirit sons and daughters. He sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to show us a more excellent way and to atone for our sins. Because of this Atonement, I know that the Savior is my ultimate best friend. He knows exactly what I'm experiencing when I feel grief and sorrow. He knows how what it is like to stray away. He knows how you feel trying to come back and repent. He knows how it feels to do poorly on a test. He knows what it feels like to have a broken heart. He knows how it feels to lose a loved one. He knows what it feels like to be alone or misunderstood. We are never left alone. In those alone, sad, grief-filled times, I have felt the encircling love of the Savior (D&C 6:20).  He also knows joy and incandescent moments we experience. He reminds us to find joy in Him and I do find ultimate joy in Him. Through Him, I know I can be cleansed my sins and made whole. He is the ultimate healer and the healing, enabling power of the Atonement is one that I need in my life every single day. He takes our burdens and He gives us rest. It is the ultimate, most wonderful principle of the Gospel. We can't constantly worry about all of the little things and focus on the things that we may have messed up. We only need to focus on what we are individually doing each day to keep and renew our covenants, to allow the Atonement and our Savior to heal us, to draw closer to God, and bring people unto Him.

Something I have thought about a lot lately is how the Gospel is SO not a forced thing. Heavenly Father does not force us to go to church, to read the scriptures and pray, to keep the commandments. The Savior does not force the Atonement upon us and He does not force us to become like Him. We honestly are not forced to do anything, but we are asked to do these things and in return, The Savior is pleased with our efforts and makes up the difference. As we consciously and consistently prove our love, obedience, faith in Him, He uses us to bless the lives of those around us. The Gospel is something that every individual has to come unto "with full purpose of heart, acting no hypocrisy and no deception before God, but with real intent" (2 Nephi 31:13). It is something that you must work at continually and you have to work hard at strengthening your testimony and keeping it strong, but it is beyond worth it and the Gospel is the truest, most real, most powerful, wonderful force in my life. Living the Gospel and enduring to the end is not the easy path in life, but I know Heavenly Father and the Savior only ask us to do these things and in return, we receive blessings without measure and we receive a place in His Kingdom, which is the greatest gift and blessing of all.

The sure knowledge of the Gospel and all that it offers is what has brought me the most happiness in my life.  I know that living the principles of the Gospel has shaped my life immensely. I know living this way leads to lasting happiness and to becoming a better person, little by little. With all my heart, I know that God lives and loves us. He knows what is best for us and He only wants us to find joy from the experiences in this life. He makes more of our lives than we can on our own. I know that the Savior lives and loves us. I know that it is through Christ that I am strengthened and able to do all things. I love the fourth verse of the hymn "I Believe In Christ": "I believe in Christ; he stands supreme! From Him, I'll gain my fondest dream; And while I strive through grief and pain, His voice is heard: 'Ye shall obtain.' I believe in Christ, so come what may. With Him, I'll stand in that great day when on this Earth He comes again to rule among the sons of men." His atoning sacrifice for us is the most ultimate and encompassing example of love. I hope that one day, I may have lived my life to be worthy to be in His presence and weep at His feet and thank him for all He has done for me. Come what may, I want to do all I can to live a life that my Heavenly Father is pleased with, a life that my Savior can be an advocate for to the Father, a life that used the enabling power of His sacrifice for me as much as possible, and a life that will always allow me to be in the House of the Lord with my family and my future companion and our family, a life that will allow us to all be together forever. I don't know how else I can continue to convey it, but I hope you know that I have an incredible and deep love for this Gospel, my Savior, and my Heavenly Father and I will boldy declare it all of my days.

3 comments:

  1. Sometimes, I swear the Lord takes my prayers and sends them to you as inspiration because this is exactly what I needed to hear today. I know I did mention some things to you previously but there were things in here that I chose to keep to myself and even those were answered in this post. I am so grateful to have friends with such amazing testimonies of the Gospel :) I really lucked out in that area.

    Love you!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love the ability to share such a bold testimony through the technology that we have. AMAZING! Love you, Allie

    ReplyDelete

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