Saturday, October 24, 2015

2 Nephi 10

Anytime I come across a description about the promised land in the Book of Mormon, I have to stop to ponder and to give a silent gratitude prayer to my Father in Heaven.  I have always taken this moment of silence to do this, as I truly am grateful to live in this great nation and to experience the many freedoms we enjoy today: freedom of speech/freedom of religion.

10 But behold, this land, said God, shall be a land of thine inheritance, and the Gentiles shall be blessed upon the land.
11 And this land shall be a land of liberty unto the Gentiles, and there shall be no kings upon the land, who shall raise up unto the Gentiles.
12 And I will fortify this land against all other nations.
13 And he that fighteth against Zion shall perish, saith God
14 For he that raisieth up a king against me shall perish, for I, the Lord, the king of heaven, will be their kings and I will be a light unto them forever, that hear my words.

There is such power in these versus! Who wouldn't want to live in this land?

I know we have all asked the question "Why am I here?" I go a little bit deeper into the rabbit hole than that as I flip the question to a state a fact "I am here" and the question immediately turns into a sincere prayer of gratitude whenever I read any scripture(s) focusing on this great land of inheritance.  Out of 196 countries in the world, I live in the one nation that is FREE, that has been protected and has been given to the covenant people of the Lord.  I live in a nation where the king of heaven is my king... How can I not go into an immediate silent prayer of gratitude?

When I reflect upon this great nation, here are some of my moments of  awe that come to mind instantly:

I have been reserved to come to this dispensation of time
I was born into the church/under the covenant
I was able to choose my husband for time and all eternity and to have my two children
freedom of speech
freedom of religion
Christopher Columbus
Lehi and his family coming over in the boat
brother of Jared

What do all of these have in common? GOD Without God, we wouldn't have this great land of inheritance and all the freedoms we enjoy.  I challenge you to ponder what this grand nation, USA means to you and as you come across a scripture that gives reference, stop to give a silent payer!

Friday, October 9, 2015

Laman, Lemuel or Nephi?

We all know how Laman and Lemuel murmured in the Book of Mormon. Over and over again, they complained against their younger brother and leader, Nephi and the Lord.  In 1 Nephi 17:17, they murmured as Nephi was about to build a ship. I can relate. While the Lord was about to build a new me, I murmured. I've never been one to complain, but the past three years, I did murmur as I experienced excruciating pain as my back deteriorated to the point of incapacitating me to being homebound and in bed 24/7. The physical and emotional pain was almost too much to handle.  I didn't understand why I couldn't go out and serve and do the Lord's bidding as I've done my whole life.

In 1 Nephi 16:36, Laman and Lemuel murmured  and wanted to go back to Jerusalem. I, too, wanted to go back to my old life back. My heart became hard, just as Laman and Lemuel's hearts were hardened.  I lost major pieces of myself over time. What good was I to my family and to others during this time?  In 1 Nephi 16: 37, Laman and Lemuel wanted to take Nephi's  and their father Lehi's life. Several times, I was tempted to take my own life. As the Lord protected their lives, He too, protected my life.

Laman and Lemuel experienced times when they were humbled by the Lord and did repent of their murmurings and walk in righteousness ( 1 Nephi 16:5)  I, too, humbled myself and had some wonderful spiritual experiences during this period of time. But with the horrid pain, I went back to murmuring within my heart as I waited on the Lord to give me instruction as to what to do. I'm sure I prolonged my surgery as I murmured, just as it took Nephi's family eight years to get to the promise land.

Ten months after the removal of my intrathecal morphine pain pump and my double lumbar fusion, I began to heal and feel human again. I've began to experience what Nephi did in 1 Nephi 17:7, as he was instructed to go to the mountain to converse with the Lord.

Looking back, I see clearly the Lord was watching over me. I know now that He truly does compensate for what is lost. I'm stronger now than I ever have been. I've learned many lessons during this time that are for my gain. I feel I have reached my promise land!

I do not want to be like Laman and Lemuel and murmur against the Lord.  I want to be like Nephi.  In 1 Nephi 18:3,  Nephi went to the mountain often to pray to the Lord and was shown great things.  My mountain is my bedroom. I pray to my Father in Heaven often for the strength to endure my trials and to soften the edges around my heart. I'm so grateful that I'm physically able to go and do the Lord's bidding again. Pieces of me are back in full force as I'm able to serve others and my family. I've asked for forgiveness for my murmurings and I pray I will continue to follow Nephi's of trusting in the Lord forever.

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