Tuesday, April 26, 2016

The Defining Moments of Our Eternal Character

Sometimes we find ourselves in unexpected places. En route to a destination that is unknown to the traveler and guided by one far wiser than we can know. Sometimes we find ourselves wondering what happened and how we ended up right where we are. We look back and wonder if everything we did was something God intended for us, or if by chance we messed up…we took the wrong turn…we led ourselves to a path that was not originally meant for us to walk. Yet, here we stand.
We doubt our choices and we doubt the God who created us. We doubt because we feel uncertain. We feel lost and in the dark. We try to make sense of something that we cannot comprehend, not because it is impossible, but because we don’t have all the information available to us at this time. We cannot make sense of something we don’t understand. We don’t see our lives the way our Heavenly Father does. We see them through a lens that is weak and faulty. We simply don’t see everything. We don’t understand why we lost in love, or why we failed in business, or why we weren’t able to have children. We wonder if we are being punished and if we somehow deserve the misfortunes placed before us… “Was I not righteous enough? Was I lacking in faith? Was I not paying close enough attention to inspiration from the Lord and therefore I did not head his advice? Was it something I did or did not do?”
If I have learned anything from these past few months it would be that we have a Heavenly Father who loves us more than we will ever fully know. He is merciful and kind and forgiving. He leads us forward and He takes what we give Him and enhances it. He never removes His outstretched hand. Our Heavenly Father and our Saviour will do all within their power to help us return to them. There is nothing they want more. They are fully invested in our lives. They are invested in our day-to-day activities. They are invested in our thoughts and our actions, our emotions and our feelings. They know the life-changing lessons we will learn as we overcome our current trials. They know that growth doesn’t occur without the struggle. So the trial isn’t always immediately removed when asked of them, however, they remain a constant. They send us the people, the scriptures, the experiences we need that will strengthen us and encourage us to keep moving forward. They help to lighten the burden as we turn to them in our time of need. They know it isn’t easy. They understand and they are reaching out to us.
Those moments when we doubt our path, when we doubt the way our life has turned out, we can trust that they know what they are doing. We can place our trust in them and know that one day it will all make sense. One day we will see how each experience was an opportunity to learn and grow and helped us to better reach our potential. We will one day see that those hard times were the defining moments of our eternal character. They were the times we were surrounded by angels from the other side. They were times that we were loved and carried.
When we are striving to do what is right, we will always be on the right path. We will always be lead by the Lord. We never need to doubt our path as we put the Lord first. We can know when things are dark and uncertain that there is a light ahead. The Lord is that light and He is beckoning us to Him. As we turn to Him we will always find that light. At first it may appear small compared to our burden, but as we continue to turn to Him, that light will continue to become brighter. Until one day we will realize the burden has been swallowed up in Christ. It no longer remains, in its place is a deeper testimony, a stronger conviction, and an ever-increasing love for the Lord and His Gospel.

So for those of you who may be having doubt or feel as if you are sinking… look to the Lord. Find that light. Cling to the hope that He offers. Believe that He knows all and that one day you will find yourself grateful for your current experience. Keep turning to Him. Grab His hand and let Him lead you through your hard times. Let Him fill your soul with eternal peace. He is there and He will lift your burdens. He knows you, He loves you, and He is guiding your path back to Him!