Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Hope Through the Atonement

"There was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak [it humbles me and I rely upon Christ's Atonement], then am I strong." 2Corinthians 12: 7-10

This scripture is on my mind today because I haven't been too patient with my husband or children lately... basicly, I've been a little snot to live with. I've also found myself focusing on the "mote" in my neighbor's eye rather than looking for the good. Like Paul, I too have a thorn in my side, a really big thorn, a constant reminder that I am a sinner and that I need the Savior.

I also recall the words of Ammon in the Book of Mormon, "Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things." Alma 26:12

I pray for the Lord to help me overcome the tendency to judge or assume another's intentions or efforts. Instead, I pray that my first reaction will be one that seeks understanding, compassion and forgiveness. I have alot of pride....and don't respond well to criticism. I pray for the strength to let my pride go. It's pride that comes before the I pray for humility, to be teachable, to be willing to hear another's point of view, and to patiently listen.

I want the gift of Charity, to not be so "easily provoked," to be "slow to wrath." I am so miserable when I focus on the "mote" in my brother's eye because I am blinded by this huge "beam" in my own eye.

And when other's intentionally offend me... I pray for the spirit of forgiveness to rest in my heart.

How grateful I am for my Savior who has paid the price of my sin. I find comfort in knowing that He forgives me. As I apply the Atonement, I can also forgive myself. I don't have to be depressed because of the dumb things I do... in fact despair is not of God... it's of the enemy. But, humility is of God. Even though I am weak, I can have hope and confidently walk with my head high.

Like Nephi, I say, "O then, if I have seen so great things, if the Lord in his condescension unto the children of men hath visited men in so much mercy, why should my heart weep and my soul linger in the valley of sorrow, and my flesh waste away, and my strength slacken, because of mine afflictions?
And why should I yield to sin, because of my flesh? Yea, why should I give way to temptations, that the evil one have place in my heart to destroy my peace and afflict my soul? Why am I angry because of mine enemy?
Awake, my soul! No longer droop in sin. Rejoice, O my heart, and give place no more for the enemy of my soul.

Do not anger again because of mine enemies. Do not slacken my strength because of mine afflictions.
Rejoice, O my heart, and cry unto the Lord, and say: O Lord, I will praise thee forever; yea, my soul will rejoice in thee, my God, and the rock of my salvation." 2 Nephi 4:26-30

God Bless You!

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