Sunday, April 12, 2009

"I will not leave you comfortless"

Easter is a little bit hard for me sometimes.

I love my Savior. I think of Him throughout my day, nearly every day. I try to follow His example.

When Easter comes, I want to commemorate His Atonement in a way that is memorable, meaningful, and respectful. I'm grateful that Easter is not commercialized to the extent that Christmas is, and yet, possibly because Easter is a little less "on the radar" so to speak, some years I let the holiday sneak past me, without really pondering the significance of all that it commemorates.

This morning I was determined not to do that. I woke up, resolved to have a good day, a spiritual day, a day of love and joy and peace.

Unfortunately, I didn't confer with Heather before I made that resolution.

I'm not sure what was going on with Her Little Highness, but this morning turned out to be a tough one. Generally pretty easy-going, Heather was not so much today. Actually, she was downright needy, crotchety, grouchy, and demanding. I eventually responded with impatience, frustration, and despair.

By about 9:15 a.m., we were both in tears.

At 9:30, I put the princess down for her morning nap, and went in to style my hair and re-apply the make-up that I'd cried off. As I mourned the loss of my spiritual Easter (because really, how could I salvage the day after I'd had a morning like that?), I decided to go to my Church website and see if I could find a talk or something else that I could listen to that might help me feel better.

This is what I found. It's four and a half minutes long, and it has made all the difference for me today.

"Brothers and sisters, one of the great consolations of this Easter season is that because Jesus walked such a long, lonely path utterly alone, we do not have to do so. His solitary journey brought great company for our little version of that path—the merciful care of our Father in Heaven, the unfailing companionship of this Beloved Son, the consummate gift of the Holy Ghost, angels in heaven, family members on both sides of the veil, prophets and apostles, teachers, leaders, friends. . . Trumpeted from the summit of Calvary is the truth that we will never be left alone nor unaided, even if sometimes we may feel that we are. Truly the Redeemer of us all said, 'I will not leave you comfortless. [My Father and] I will come to you [and abide with you].'

My . . .plea at Easter time is that these scenes of Christ’s lonely sacrifice, laced with moments of denial and abandonment and, at least once, outright betrayal, must never be reenacted by us. He has walked alone once. Now, may I ask that never again will He have to confront sin without our aid and assistance, that never again will He find only unresponsive onlookers when He sees you and me along His Via Dolorosa in our present day. As we approach this holy week—Passover Thursday with its Paschal Lamb, atoning Friday with its cross, Resurrection Sunday with its empty tomb—may we declare ourselves to be more fully disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ, not in word only and not only in the flush of comfortable times but in deed and in courage and in faith, including when the path is lonely and when our cross is difficult to bear. This Easter week and always, may we stand by Jesus Christ 'at all times and in all things, and in all places that [we] may be in, even until death,' for surely that is how He stood by us when it was unto death and when He had to stand entirely and utterly alone. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen. "
--Elder Jeffrey R. Holland

Happy Easter to you all.



Bamamoma said...

You just described my Sunday every week. I want to go and feel the Spirit and turn my thoughts to Christ and learn things from the lessons. Instead I wrestle with Little Miss throughout Sacrament meeting, spend Sunday school trying to overcome the negative feelings I have, and mourn my failure during YWs. It is not a good cycle and one I've got to work through. It isn't even that she is THAT bad week after week. It is just hard for me to focus on things when I'm constantly preventing her from running up on the stand to visit daddy or when I'm shushing her from saying hi to Trey - clear across the room. Ugh, I've got to find a way to make Sundays better....

sorry for the rampage, clearly I had some things to get off my chest...

Harmony said...

For Bamamoma and whomever else the shoe fits:

My mother-in-law tells a story that has given me some good perspective as I've dealt with the frustrations of going to church with small children. She was the mother of five children under the age of ten when my father-in-law was called as a bishop. One Sunday after wrestling the kids through Sacrament meeting by herself, an elderly lady in the ward came up to her and said, "Going to church with kids is like going to the river to get water with a basket. You don't get much water, but at least your basket gets clean." It helped her, and it's helped me. It's still frustrating at times to not feel like I'm getting much out of church, but renewing my covenants through the sacrament is what matters most. I just have to find other ways and times to quench my spiritual thirst.

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