05 December 2012

To live with gratitude ever in our hearts, is to touch heaven. President Monson

Lately, my heart has been overflowing with gratitude, and I truly feel like I'm going to burst at the seams. There are moments I wonder why trials are so difficult, and why things can feel so terribly hopeless, but then I'll have this one moment... this divine, sacred moment, where the spirit is just so thick in the air I can't catch my breath. I feel so much happiness and the only way I know how to express those feelings is through tears of gratitude. Why is it that difficult times are the most precious times of our lives? Because the Lord is so very near. I could thank my Heavenly Father and Savior every moment of every day and it would never be enough.

There are difficulties in life, lots of them. Everyone has a story, everyone is struggling, and everyone needs a friend. We are all children of God, brothers and sisters, and this is what our experience on earth entailed. We also have an all-knowing Savior who places people in our path when we are living righteously, who bless us, and guide us, and teach us, and who truly are, angels on earth. There are moments I just smile, and think, oh Heavenly Father, you do know what you are doing. My feelings of gratitude seem to choke me at times, and I am so in awe at the goodness of our Father in heaven. He loves me, and he loves you, more than we will ever be able to understand. I have moments where, I imagine, is what is referred to as 'celestial homesickness.' At times, my yearning to go home weighs so heavily on my heart, and I can't help but close my eyes and imagine what kind of sweet reunion it could be, if I live worthily of that. And even that sweet, sweet reunion I think of, I know, will not compare in any way, with what I really could have waiting for me.

There are moments, and I don't have them all that often, (yet), but I am so grateful for these past five months. There are moments I feel like I'm standing towards the end of it, and I can look back, and my heart is so full. My Father and His Son have carried me through, every step of the way. They have strengthened me, their child, to overcome one more hiccup in my mortal journey. My Heavenly Father, my Savior, and the sweet gift of the Holy Ghost have become my rock and my foundation. My favorite hymn, recently, has been I Need Thee Every Hour, and those words have just come to life for me. There has not been a moment I have questioned whether the Lord is sustaining me. There have been very dark moments, when my heart has felt past the point of mending, but I know the Lord is stretching out His hand, waiting for me to hold on, and let Him guide me through. I have taken hold of His hand, and I have not let go.

Oh, mortality, what a tricky thing you are. You can be so unkind, and then there are moments you take my breath away. The lessons I have learned, the sweet spirits I have met, the priceless moments you have given me... this, I presume, was what the Lord intended mortality to be. Oh mortality, with my Heavenly Father and Savior on my side, how surprisingly sweet you can be.