Sunday, October 25, 2015

His Plan > Mine

This time last year, I looked at the year I had ahead of me and saw so many things. I had a whole plan for my life and I was set on it. It was absolutely perfect and I was determined to chase after it. Then, everything fell apart. That plan didn't work out and I spent many months picking myself back up and rebuilding a new me.

The same thing happened about 4 months ago, I decided what my future looked like and I mapped it all out. I had such a perfect image and plan for what the coming years of my life were going to look like. I was at a point in my life where I didn't think I had anything to worry about. I was comfortable and safe and my future was set. Then, everything fell apart. That plan didn't work out and I've spent the last 2 months picking myself back up and rebuilding a new me.

It's not easy to go through something like that. It's really not easy feeling like you've finally got it all figured out and then have it all come shattering down on you. But, this life isn't easy and it's not supposed to be. Here I am, after everything I've been through, not even close to where I thought I'd be at this time in my life. This "perfect plan" I'd made for my life has been left behind and a new path has revealed itself. And that path, is the path to Heavenly Father's plan for me. I am so thankful that I have a Heavenly Father who knows what I need and watches out for me; a Heavenly Father who loves me endlessly. I'm thankful that He took away things and people that I loved in order to put me on a better path. I'm beginning to realize that my "perfect plan" is never going to be better than the plan that Heavenly Father has for me. He has a map of my life and if I follow Him and keep His commandments, I know that I will be put on His path and I know that His path will be the path full of the most happiness this life has to offer. From the trials in my life, I know that if we just put our full trust in Him and His plan and live the fullness of the gospel, our lives will be filled with eternal and everlasting happiness. And I know that He has a plan for all of us and I have learned that His plan is always better than the one I have in mind.

So, many times in the last few months I have asked myself, "Where do I go now?" And each time I am reminded of Hymn 270 and the line in the chorus that says,
"I'll go where you want me to go, dear Lord,
Over mountain or plain or sea;
I'll say what you want me to say , dear Lord,
I'll be what you want me to be."

So, where do I go now? The answer to that is up to the Lord. I have decided to let my Father in Heaven completely lead and guide my life. I will go where He wants me to and do what He wants me to. And I know that by doing this, I will find out what His plan is for me.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

The Truth Is

The truth is, I'm not as strong as everyone seems to think I am. In the midst of all my trails over the last couple of months, I have been told that I am so tough and that I have such a positive outlook on life. But honestly, I am not all that strong. 2 months ago, I had my whole life flipped upside down, inside out, and backwards. Everything that I had planned for my future was gone and I had to start from scratch. And to be quite honest, I had no idea how to. I spent the next few weeks feeling nothing but darkness. I felt lost, alone, crushed, sad, and honestly scared that I couldn't go on. There aren't really words to describe the feeling I had in the pit of my stomach. I didn't know where to turn because here in Cedar City I was all alone. I came here for one reason, and now that that reason was gone, I didn't have one person that I could turn to. So, I turned to the only person I could, my Heavenly Father. I started praying 5-6 times a day, reading endless chapters in the Book of Mormon, and writing pages in my journal each night. I relied solely on Him for my strength and to just get me through each day. Without Him, I would not be standing where I stand today. Without Him, I would not have the testimony I have about trials. Because through this, I have learned that God sometimes takes people out of your life, not because there is something wrong with you, but because that person cannot go where you are going next. God removes them because they have already served their purpose in your life and greater things are in store for you. So when so many people tell me that I am so strong, and I am so tough, and that I have such a positive outlook, I shake my head and say it's not me, it's God. He makes me strong, He makes me tough, He is my positivity. He has literally picked me up and carried me through this trial. When I've prayed for peace, He's calmed my heart. When I prayed for comfort, He wrapped His loving arms around me.

I know, without a shadow of a doubt, that Heavenly Father knows you and He knows exactly what you need. I know that sometimes what we think is best for us, isn't, so He will shake things up in our lives. And even though that tends to cause heartache and pain, it will ultimately be the best thing for us. I know that through the Atonement, I am able to have someone who has felt exactly what I've felt and has experienced exactly what I've been through and who can relate to me perfectly. I am so thankful for my Savior Jesus Christ and for all that He does for me daily. I am so thankful for the comfort and peace that comes from this gospel and the happiness that comes from keeping the commandments. I am so blessed. And because of this gospel, and my Savior, and my Father in Heaven, I am okay. I am strong. And I am happy.

So the truth is, alone I am weak. But with Him, I have been made strong. He has given me the strength to accomplish everything in my life.
The truth is, without Him, this trial would've been too much for me. This has been the hardest thing I have ever had to go through.
The truth is, when I brought my broken heart to Christ, He stitched it back together. And that is something I never would've been able to do myself.
The truth is, I have never struggled more in my entire life than I have over the last 2 months, but I also have never felt closer to my Father in Heaven and my Savior Jesus Christ. And for that, I am thankful for this trial.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

It Will All Work Out

My experiences in the last month have been far from easy. There have been times that I have had trouble seeing the light at the end of the tunnel and I couldn't accept the fact that the things that were happening in my life were actually happening. I have been eagerly awaiting this October's General Conference because I needed the advice and counsel from the Lord and his prophets now more than ever. I went into General Conference having pleaded with Heavenly Father to give me an answer or a sign to help me know that he was aware of me and that things in my life were going to be okay. There aren't words for how strongly I felt the spirit as I listened to each of the speakers this weekend because in every single talk I received personal revelation and answers to every single thing I needed. As I sat back after all 4 sessions of conference and reflected on the talks, I honestly felt like conference had been written specifically for me and my life. I was brought to tears by the sudden realization that my Heavenly Father is so aware of me and he knows exactly what I need. Conference is always amazing but this weekend was absolutely life changing. 

Even though in every talk I was able to feel the comfort and love from my Father in Heaven and Savior Jesus Christ, there was one talk that stuck out from the rest- Yielding Our Hearts to God by Neill F. Marriott. Sister Marriott stated that her family picked the motto "It will all work out" when the family faced a devastating loss. Sister Marriott stated, "Faith in our Redeemer and His Resurrection, faith in His priesthood power, and faith in eternal sealings let us state our motto with conviction." Thinking about the circumstances in my life, I tried to apply the same motto, "it will all work out." As her talk continued, Sister Marriott said that her family made sure that they did not say that things would all work out NOW. And that's when things really clicked in my brain. In hard times, suffering and pain are sometimes required in order for us to learn the things that we need to learn. Sometimes things have to get worse before they get better and just because things haven't worked out yet doesn't mean they won't. Because they really will! Through hope, faith, and our Savior, anything that we go through in this life will always work out. 

When Sister Marriott began talking about the Lords plan and timing, I began to cry. Throughout the past month I have really struggled trying to figure out why things are happening and why Heavenly Father would do this to me. I could not figure out what the Lord's plan was for me. I tried to rebel against his plan and just do things my way. I thought that my plan was better because if I did what I wanted to do I would have happiness now. But after listening to Sister Marriott's words, I now have a more full understanding that true and everlasting happiness only comes from fully yielding to God's plan and timing. The only way to find true happiness in your life is by understanding that our Father in Heaven has a plan for you and that his plan for you is not always going to be what you want for yourself. You have to completely trust the Lord in order to find happiness. 

But out of everything that Sister Marriott talked about, nothing made me more emotional or feel the love of my savior more than when she said, "When we offer a broken heart to Jesus Christ, he excepts are offering. He takes us back. No matter what losses, wounds, and rejection we may have suffered, His grace and healing our mightier than all. Truly, yoked to the Savior, we can say with confidence, 'It will all work out.'" I have never experienced heart break quite like I'm experiencing now. And to be honest, I have not really known how to feel okay again, but Sister Marriott made me remember that Jesus Christ can heal my heart and He has felt exactly what I am feeling right now in this moment. This talk helped me to remember that no matter what I go through, and even with what I'm experiencing now, it WILL all work out. Jesus Christ died for me so that I could feel comfort and love. Jesus Christ died for me so that my broken heart could be healed. I know that if we trust in the Lord's plan and bring our pain and sorrow's onto him that Jesus Christ will heal us.

I am so thankful to have a Father in Heaven who cares enough about me to inspire the speakers in General Conference to give answers and guidance that I need in my life. This General Conference has changed my life and has been a real wake-up call for me. There aren't words to describe how spiritually replenished I feel after this weekend. I love this church and I'm so thankful for this gospel.

Is it April yet?