Sunday, June 30, 2013

For Times of Trouble

Once again it's Sunday! How in the heck did that happen so fast!? Life just keeps on keeping on I guess! So today I will confess something to you! I have a favorite apostle for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Yep, I play favorites! I love them all and take all of their words to heart but every time Elder Jeffrey R. Holland steps up to the podium I feel like this...

One of the most epically cool moments of my entire life was when I got to eat lunch with Elder Holland and his wife Pat! I often reflect back on that day and think how amazing my life is that I even got to do that! It was in no way intimidating or scary...HAHAHAHAHA! No, they really are lovely people who care about everybody and love wholeheartedly!

Everything he says just makes sense to me! My spiritual ears are on high fine tune in or something! So naturally I love his books! I guarantee you this won't be the last post I do about him because I've almost read all of his books! But today I want to talk about just one- For Times of Trouble.

Our Father in Heaven wants us to be happy. And yet, we all have times of trouble. As Elder Jeffrey R. Holland writes, "One of the unfailing facts of mortal life is the recurring presence of trouble...When these difficult days (and nights!) come—and they will—it will help us to remember that 'it must needs be,' that in the grand councils of heaven before the world was, we agreed to such a time of challenge and refinement. We were taught then that facing, resolving, and enduring troublesome times was the price we would pay for progress. And we were committed to progress eternally."

A large percentage of the psalms that appear in the Bible were written for such times of trouble. In this tender book, Elder Holland explores dozens of scriptural passages from the psalms, offering personal ideas and insights and sharing his testimony that “no matter what the trouble and trial of the day may be, we start and finish with the eternal truth that God is for us.” 

This book is fantastic. We all have our struggles and trials in life. This is for the soul looking for some spiritual inspiration to get through or even just endure and wait out the adversity that has been set upon us all as human beings. O hey did I mention that it comes with a two hour DVD of Elder Holland giving EXTRA insight on the subject of spiritual solace in times of trial? Because it does! Elder Holland has given you a cookie and then BONUS poured you a glass of milk to go with it! And it is a heartwarming and eye opening seminar that should not be missed. Are you just dying to know all my favorite parts?! Good cuz I'm totally going to write them down! But first here's a little taste of the DVD! It wouldn't let me post the clip so click the link below-Elder Holland allowed audience members to ask him questions and this was his response to this red headed lady in the audience (just incase you're wondering why he seems to be only talking to her!)

Click HERE!!!!! for the clip!

My favorite quotey quotes!

Art by David Bowman
"My convictions and my feelings for the Savior of the world have been born in the most desperate hours of my life. When I wondered whether the sun would ever come up again. It seemed to come up for other people, it seemed to come up every morning for everybody else I could see, but not for me. Now it's not always like that, and it's not supposed to always be like that and we're a little self-pitying if we act like it's always like that. But some parts of the discipleship require that walk. Basically His walk. But to some degree that love for Him, and that feeling for Him, and the majesty that He is, cannot come, except, in anguish. It's being in a place where you say, "Is there any other cup I could drink but this one? Is there any other way but this?" and God says to you what He says to the Savior and which is, "Nope. Not this time." But He always gives strength, always help. It's not fatal. Nobody's going to die and it isn't really crucifixion. It's just anguish and sorrow and...pleading. That's how it works.

Worlds Without End by Greg Olsen my most favorite picture ever!

"For me personally, no view in mortality is more awe-inspiring than standing alone on a night completely void of earthly light and seeing the star-filled heavens fully appear. To me it is the most overwhelming view in nature. Of course, what we see with the naked eye is only a small part of one-our own-tiny little galaxy. Aided by the magnificent lenses of space telescopes and galactic photography, we can see more of other "worlds without number." Truly "night [after] night sheweth knowledge," the knowledge of God. And there is no country or culture on this entire planet over which the stars are not constantly shining, constantly testifying of His omniscience and omnipotence. Neither is there any limit to space, any spot in the universe where the majesty of God's creation is not unfolding. All these things are "the work of [God's] fingers." And yet the greatest of all His works is a man, a woman, a child, any "ordinary" being who walks among us. Some of those people are in trouble, some have had great misfortune, some have had difficulties through no fault of their own, and some have had burdens that were in great measure of their own making. But whatever condition they may be in, the greatest of God's creations are His children-us. In all of those heavenly creations that are so stunning to see on a clear, starry night, we are the ones that are just "a little lower than the angels," which in Hebrew is rendered "a little lower than Elohim [the Gods]." As such, we are crowned with glory and honor here and with the promise of glory and honor there. C.S. Lewis once said that if we could recognize who we were, we would realize that we are walking with "possible gods and goddesses" whom, if we could see them in all their eternal dignity and glory, we would be tempted to fall down and worship. Because this is true, we need to think more highly of ourselves and we need to think more highly of each other....We need to honor the divinity that is within all humankind. In doing so, we will be returning to God at least some of that glory and honor with which He has crowned us. In a world-or should we say, in a universe-of large troubles and small, a world of physical, financial, political, and social forces seemingly beyond our control, there can be moments when we also wonder, "Do I matter in all of this? Can my small and sometimes painful place in the great scheme of things amount to much? Can God know me or have time for me or hear my prayers? With all that needs divine attention in the world-famines, wars, pestilence, sin-can my heart be known, understood, and seen as important in the grand expanse of the universe?" On difficult, discouraging days almost everyone asks such questions. But the eternal truth, the timeless declaration is "yes" to all of the questions above and more. The great eternal truth is that this entire plan of life, the plan for our salvation, is an outline for each man and woman, each boy and girl, individually. By name, place, and personal circumstance God knows us and our needs. He knows our hopes and dreams and He knows our fears and frustrations. Above all, He knows who we really are and what we can become through faith in Him. If we will be faithful-literally "full of faith"-especially in times of trouble, then we can hear that truth whispered to us as we gaze into the star-filled night.
I wander through the still of night,
When solitude is ev'rywhere-
Alone, beneath the starry light,
And yet I know that God is there.
I kneel upon the grass and pray;
An answer comes without a voice.
It takes my burden all away
And makes my aching heart rejoice."


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