Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Gaining Joy: My Birthday Lesson

Gaining Joy : My Birthday Lesson

At two months I experienced some days of clarity with days of discouragement still to come.  The clarity came as the result of my STUDY and attitude of GRATITUDE.  Here are some of the things I wrote...

Jan 2, 1013

My birthday today... by the way I'm only 38 even though I was born in '74. Next year I will be 38 too! I figure if my husband isn't getting older then I shouldn't have too either! Just one of the perks of being a young widow, maybe the only perk. Had a good day with my parents, brother, sisters and my kids. Many thanks to their husbands for lending them to me for the day. I feel so blessed to have so many friends and family who think of me and check on me! 
Here is more of what I wrote that I was learning at that time...

There is a scripture from the Book of Mormon that comes to my mind tonight.
"Adam fell that men might be, and men are,
that they might have joy." 2 Nephi 2:25.
This tells me that God's plan for us on this earth and after is to have JOY
Not just temporary happiness or fleeting pleasure,
 but lasting eternal joy

Joy that comes from serving others,
from developing lasting relationships, 
from the peace and assurance that we are doing what is right
 and trying our best to become more like Him. 

The world tries to counterfeit that joy with pleasure... 
Telling us we will be happy if we have more 'me' time,
 if we party harder,
 if we buy and have more things,
 if we use people for our own gain. 

None of those bring the lasting joy that the Savior can.
 "My peace I give unto you, not as the world giveth, give I into you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." John 14:27 
That peace has sustained me and helped me make it through the last 2 months and it continues to help me get out of bed every morning and carry on. It comforts me when I am discouraged, it gives me hope for the future, and the sweet assurance that I will not be alone.
 "Surely he hath bourne our griefs, and carried our sorrows." Isaiah 53:4. 

The miracle of the Savior's grace is 
that it is for more than just our sins. 

It is to help us through all of our sorrows.
"Yea, The Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of The Lord." Mosiah 24:15 (Book of Mormon). 
That's the hard part, submitting cheerfully and with patience to the will of The Lord - especially when his will isn't my plan, and I can't see what is ahead. 
I believe we all have our refiner's fire- those experiences that have the potential to change us and purify us. It's what we do in those moments that make all the difference. 

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