Monthly Archives: November 2013

Love in Trials

As a senior in college I had to learn a lesson that was very hard for me to learn. That is, Heavenly Father loves and he has given us the bodies that we have as a blessing. As a senior in college, I was diagnosed with hip dysplasia. This is where I have bone on bone rubbing in my hip. It is very painful and it hurts me. I don’t like have any weaknesses at all, so I have never been fully happy with it. I have a hard time understanding the fact that my Heavenly Father really knows who am I and that he really loves me. He took my passion way, running. To me, running is my everything. It is how I relieve my stress, it is how I get through the tough times, it is how I unwind, and it how I get through each day. When I finally was told that I could never compete again, I realized that God still loved me. Looking back, I can see why God has given me this problem and that God was a part of all of this. For example, the day that I was diagnosed, the very first thing that I remember is the song Safe and Sound by Taylor Swift was played on the radio. When I actually took the time to listen to the lyrics, I realized that God was reaching out to me. He was telling me that I was going to be safe and that everything would work out. I have learned so much from this trial that I would have never realized that I could. As grateful as I am with it, I still don’t want it. I still struggle from time to time to see the benefit of it. I tell myself that life would be better if I just didn’t have it. For a while now, I haven’t been seeing the good things out of it. It has been giving me pain and I have been fighting through it. It gets me down from time to time. However, Heavenly Father has helped me once again. I read a conference talk from Elder Russel M. Nelson, of the 12, in titled Decisions for Eternity. This talk talks about how God has given us our bodies as a blessing. How each are unique in their own and even though they are not perfect that God is apart of blessing. Trials are given to us a way to draw us closer to our Heavenly Father. They they try our faith and allow us to see the Love that our Father has for us. That even though I am not perfect, God has given me his greatest blessing. I know that I will always struggle with this problem. I know that it will never fully be healed but my Heavenly Father knows who I am and he loves me. I know that he will always help me and even though I can’t do everything that I want to that my faith will grow and I will be blessed for this trial in ways that I don’t even know of it. I am grateful that we have a loving Heavenly Father.  So for now, I will just keep on doing what I do best, serving him, praying, and finding my balance of getting to run to different beat.

God’s Greatest Creation can be seen on this video that talks about Elder Russel M. Nelson

 

 

 

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Plays of Life

Life is chaotic, messy, and full of ups and downs. Its never how we want it to work out. It always seems that when we have reached the top of our A Game, a curve ball is thrown to us that is too hard to hit. Next thing you know, we are striking out and don’t get to make it to the first base. We never seem to be where we really need to be at. Usually at these times though, that is when it is easy to just throw the towel in and say “I’m Done!” However, we can’t do that in life. We just can’t call it quits in the middle of the half time of our life. Instead, that is when we need to turn to our Coach and Manger, God and Jesus Christ. Through out are life, we need to be turning to the Lord to get those new plays or guidance that we need to allow for us to make those game winning decisions. Every day we have to go to prayer to see what the Lord needs us to hear for the direction that we need in our day to day life. Life can get hard and stressful. It can seem that there is no direction for us at all and at those times we need to relay on the Lord for those “plays” that put us back on the top of our game.

 

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Farewell To Preston….. Goodbye Buddy

On mission, I opened a package and there laid a funeral program for my friend Preston in June. I read it and I insistently began crying. It was hard for me because on a mission, I can’t have any contact with family and friends except via email and letters. So I didn’t even know that he had died till he did. I didn’t have the chance to go to his funeral or even say goodbye. Preston was 22 years old and died in a bad car accident. I have been struggling with letting and go and I feel that writing this blog for him will help me. As a missionary, we are to be strong and go to work. I love being a missionary and I love the work I am doing but it has been hard for me to just let it go. So instead of showing how his passing is progressing him the Plan of Salvation is benefiting, I want to use this post to say goodbye and show who Preston was to me. Preston and I were good friends in High School. He was always funny and I never saw him angry. He was patient and took the time to do things that he wanted. Preston was someone that I admired and looked up to. Preston always marched to a different drum and did things his own way. Preston was a good friend of mine. I could always count on him for a smile on those rough days. I could count on him for some witty funny remark. I was blessed to get him see him almost everyday when I moved back home. Preston worked at the local cookie bakery in Prosser. So I got the joy of buying cookies from him almost everyday. That was the perfect job for him. I think about Preston now more than I should. I know that this message that I share helps with dealing with a lost loved one. As of right now, I just want to say goodbye to my dear friend. I love you Preston, Thank you for every thing that you have done for me and thank you for being my friend. You will forever be in my heart. Image


How I know He Loves me (Guest Blogger Alana Peters)

Nobody’s perfect. But I wish I was. But I’m human.

There’s one mistake I made in particular, that I wish I could redo. A part of myself I hate exists. I always felt uncomfortable when the topic about trying to do better in this area came up. I suffered through the lessons and talks on it. I knew what was “right”, but “right” was literally impossible. It was something I just couldn’t do. I tried to be content and move on, living with my imperfection. I was just going to have to live life being imperfect. But man, that stinks.

But I discovered something wonderful today. So, as I tell my story, I hope you can think of something you don’t like about yourself- a mistake you made- something that makes you feel uncomfortable. Thinking of that will make this story better for you.

For the women’s meeting at my church, they invited us a week ahead of time to read an article to prepare for the next weeks’ lesson. It was on- you guessed it- my least favorite topic. For some reason I read the article anyway. I felt so uncomfortable the entire time. Reading it was torture. I thought to myself, “I hate living like this. Why can’t I just make this go away?”

And, for some reason, all of a sudden I remembered something- God knows me. Everything about me. He knows how I’m good and how I’m weak. But, if He knows – why should I talk to Him and tell Him what he already knows?

Yet- somehow, there I was, praying. Opening my mouth and being honest. He already knew- so I might as well speak the obvious. I opened my mouth- and beautiful words came out. Words I didn’t plan on. But I was being me- being Alana- being totally honest. Talking to God as if He were my friend. There were lots of long pauses between all my sentences:

“God, I did something wrong….

And I know it was wrong…..

And I’m sorry.

I am so so so so sorry.

I’m so sorry.

I’m just so sorry.”

Long pause. Lots of crying. I could clearly imagine God in a white robe, sitting on a chair, listening, while I knelt at his feet and let my tears wash his feet.

And then, the feeling was different. I could imagine God in a white robe, sitting on a chair, with Christ beside him, in a white robe, sitting on a chair, with me crying in His Christ’s lap, while He held me close, and stroked my back. I could almost feel my back get wet, because I know He was crying with me too. He knows how much it hurts. He loves me so much. I can feel it.

“You know me, Lord. You know I’m a good person. You know about all those times I tried so hard to be good. All those times I did the right thing when I was all alone- when it was awkward and unnatural. You know how much I want to be good.

But with this, God, you know that I try, but I just can’t do it. It’s too hard for me. I mess up. I’m so so so sorry.”

More long pauses. More tears. More stroking my back.

“God, I hate this part of myself. I don’t want it. I don’t want it anymore……

I don’t want it anymore……

I don’t want it anymore……

I don’t want it anymore…….”

Another long pause.

And then, the key words came out of my mouth.

“….. Can you help me? Can you take it away?”

And I felt Him say, “Of course, my Alana. I love you. I was waiting for you to ask me. I want you to be happy and free.”

And, just like that- I was new. I felt new. I felt stronger. Like- somehow, suddenly, I was strong enough to resist making that mistake ever again. Because suddenly, there was nothing appealing about it anymore. It wasn’t even tempting.

Then, I started to get ideas. Good ideas. About how I can be strong the next time a situation arises where it’s hard for me. New ways I’ll think. New ways I’ll act. This will be ten times easier now, because my desire for sin is gone. Christ took it away. Hallelujah.

When we prepare to take the bread and water at church, I usually sing the song and sit quietly. This time, I was amazed. I kept flipping through the sacrament hymns about Jesus Christ in the hymnbook. Every word of the song wasn’t just a nice poem- it was the truth. Why hadn’t I noticed it before? Oh my goodness. This was actually true. This was right. This was liberating.

““Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30).

 

 

“How Gentle God’s command.

How kind His precepts are.

Come cast your burdens on the Lord

and trust His constant care.”

I’ll drop my burden at his feet.

Our church lesson on the topic proceeded as planned, and I wasn’t uncomfortable at all. I felt so good. There was nothing for me to be ashamed of. It wasn’t a part of me anymore. It was gone, and I was new, and I was good. I love being good. When the teacher talked about making mistakes, I couldn’t connect with the mistake makers, because I didn’t have that desire anymore. I thought, “That’s not me.”

No guilt. No shame.

Only peace. I feel so clean. I feel so alive. I feel so able. I feel so strong. I feel so free.

I feel sanctified.

 

 

Amazing grace, how sweet the sound

that saved a wretch like me.

I once was lost, but now am found.

Blind, but now I see.

What is the worth of a soul to the Father?

What is the cost of one sheep?

The price that was paid, for my soul to save

causes my heart to weep.

Being imperfect is an important part of God’s plan. We can become stronger through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. He loves us. I know that’s true.

So, with whatever thing you thought of that you are uncomfortable with- a topic you avoid, a part of you you don’t think you can ever change-

Talk to your friend in the heavens. He’s a very good listener. He already knows. But sometimes when it comes out of your own mouth, it feels good to know He knows.

He’ll take it from there.