Our Savior Knows our Pains

I belong to a special Facebook group for mothers of adopted and foster children. The children of these mothers come from traumatized backgrounds. As a result, these mothers experience more than their fair share of pain and agony – it very difficult to raise angry, traumatized children. On an almost daily basis, they seek to deliberately hurt (both physically and emotionally) their mothers or primary caregivers. One of these mother’s, in an attempt to help those in our group, shared this recently. It is a quote by Chieko N. Okazaki and it is profound! We all have our burdens to bear and our difficulties to endure. I hope it will provide you with comfort as it has me!:

“It’s our faith that He experienced everything- absolutely everything. Sometimes we don’t think through the implications of that belief. We talk in great generalities about the sins of all humankind, about the suffering of the entire human family. But we don’t experience pain in generalities. We experience it individually.

That means He knows what it felt like when your mother died of cancer — how it was for your mother, how it still is for you. He knows what it felt like to lose the student body election. He knows that moment when the brakes locked and the car started to skid. He experienced the slave ship sailing from Ghana toward Virginia. He experienced the gas chambers at Dachau. He experienced Napalm in Vietnam. He knows about drug addiction and alcoholism.

Let me go further. There is nothing you have experienced … that He does not also know and recognize. He understands about rape and infertility and abortion. His last recorded words to his disciples were, “And, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.” He understands your mother-pain when your five-year-old leaves for kindergarten when a bully picks on your fifth-grader when your daughter calls to say that the new baby has Down Syndrome. He knows your mother-rage when a trusted babysitter sexually abuses your two-year-old when someone gives your thirteen-year-old drugs when someone seduces your seventeen-year-old. He knows the pain you live with when you come home to a quiet apartment where the only children are visitors when you hear that your former husband and his new wife were sealed in the temple last week when your fiftieth wedding anniversary rolls around and your husband has been dead for two years. He knows all that. He’s been there. He’s been lower than all that. He’s not waiting for us to be perfect. Perfect people don’t need a Savior. He came to save his people in their imperfections. He is the Lord of the living, and the living make mistakes. He’s not embarrassed by us, angry at us, or shocked. He wants us in our brokenness, in our unhappiness, in our guilt and our grief.” Chieko N. Okazaki

Today’s image was shared from the gospel library of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. (lds.org)

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Happy Easter! May Your Life Be Filled with Sonshine!

Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:. John 11:25I am grateful for the gift of Easter and for the sacrifice made by Jesus Christ for all mankind. His gift to each of us is of inestimable worth. I am grateful for his love and his continuing efforts to teach each of us and to mentor all mankind. Continue reading

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And Now, After the Many Testimonies Which Have Been Given of Him…

And now, after the many testimonies which have been given of him, this is the  testimony, last of all,  which we give of him: That He Lives!  D&C 76:22May this Easter Season be a wonderful time of reflection and gratitude for the gift of our Living Savior!

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He is Not Here, For He Has Risen…Matthew 28:6

He is Not Here, For He Has Risen   Matthew 28:6

Because the Savior rose the third day, we can rise each new day and know that we can make a fresh new start.

A special gift was given to each of us that Easter long, long ago.

We can learn, improve, overcome and choose a better way – even if we have made a mistake, committed sin, or forgotten something important. The number of times we have failed does not matter. The number of times we pick ourselves up and try again and make a true and sincere effort does.

Life is a precious gift and we have the opportunity to make something glorious of it!

I hope you enjoy today’s story!:

The Easter Miracle

A True Story by Debbie Orrico

Grandma Lily was a very special woman with a fierce streak of independence
that showed itself at an early age.  When she was just 16 years old, she
eloped with a 28 year old man.  Although her family placed bets that this
union would not last, she proved herself by becoming a loving wife, and a
mother to 8 children.

That is, until her world was turned upside down. Grandpa John passed away
right before the depression, leaving Grandma Lily alone with 8 young
children to raise.  It was a tremendous struggle.  The family was dirt poor.
The children had to sleep 3 to a bed.  The good clothes were worn by the
first ones up in the morning.  The rest had to make due with the patched
hand-me downs that were left behind.  Some clothing was even made from flour
sacks.  During the cold Connecticut winters, none of the children had boots,
so if the ground was wet or snow-covered, Grandma Lily would line her
children’s shoes with newspapers and canvas to keep their feet warm and dry.
Meals were meager, with meat served only once or twice a month.

Throughout the years, Grandma Lily longed for Grandpa John, often spending
hours at the cemetery, planting flowers at his graveside and remembering
their good times together.  Some fifty odd years after Grandpa John passed
away, as Grandma Lily returned from the cemetery, she noticed that her
wedding band was missing.  She was frantic!  It was the only tangible thing
she had left to remember her husband.  It was a symbol of their eternal
love.  She quickly went back to the cemetery, but the ring was no where to
be found.  Her children also made several of the searches of the area in
vain.  The ring was gone — vanished into thin air!  Grandma Lily was
absolutely heartbroken.

The next Mother’s Day, her children gifted her with a new wedding band.
Although Grandma Lily was touched by the thought that went into the gift, it
made her sad to realize her original wedding band was gone forever.

The following Easter, Grandma Lily went to the cemetery accompanied by her
daughter Grace.  They stood side by side, silently saying their prayers for
Grandpa John.  They admired the flowers, especially the Easter Lilies that
were standing tall and proud, sending their fragrance out for all to enjoy.
Out of the corner of her eye, Grace noticed a glint of something shiny, and
pointed it out to Grandma Lily.  Since she was the closest to the plant,
Grandma Lily bent over, and examined the leaves of the lily plant.  She
could not believe her eyes when she saw what it was.  There, brilliantly
glowing in the sunlight was her original wedding band!  The one that she had
lost the previous year…the symbol of eternal love…the one that her
husband had given her more that fifty years before!

The Easter season is known as a time of miracles, and of resurrection.  For
Grandma Lily, the miracle WAS a resurrection…her wedding band,
resurrected on a lily plant.  The fact that my Grandma’s name was Lily makes
this story even more special!

Grandma Lily passed away a few years later.  We made sure that we buried her
with her original wedding band, and kept her second wedding band as a family
keepsake.

Story shared from the following website: http://www.inspire21.com/stories/holidaystories/TheEasterMiracle

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For God So Loved the World…John 3:16

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have everlasting life. John 3:16

I have made a few sacrifices in my life but nothing that I can brag was significant.

Even with my near-death experience, I am in awe of God’s ability to sacrifice his only begotten son. I cannot fathom how a being who is mortal or immortal could stand by and watch while the greatest eternal sacrifice was taking place.

I am so very thankful for the gift of everlasting life. It is one of my goals to never take it for granted. I hope that not only at Easter time, but every day that I live, that I find some way of expressing my gratitude for the incredible gift that has been given to me through Jesus Christ.

Today’s story reminds me a little of my experience with my granddaughter while she remained in PICU and under heavy sedation. I hope everyone will forgive me providing a story that pulled at my personal heart strings! Enjoy!:

An Easter Sunday Miracle

Sometimes a miracle doesn’t come in the form that we expect it to. Instead of a burning bush, we experience a gentle nudge. Or a quiet voice. Or, in the case of Ken Trush, a poke.

Back in 1997, Ken’s 12-year-old son, Daniel, suddenly collapsed on-court at a basketball game in his school’s gym. Doctors discovered five aneurysms in his brain, one of which had burst. He was in a coma for more than 30 days. Every night, Ken kept watch by Daniel’s bed at the hospital, hoping and praying for a miracle–some sign that he would wake up. But weeks passed and nothing happened. The doctors prepared Ken and his wife, Nancy, for the worst: Daniel might never come back.

Though all appeared hopeless, Ken refused to give up. And on Easter Sunday, he finally got the sign he’d so desperately prayed for…

Danny was still not showing any signs of life. It was coming up to Easter. I just had this feeling that Easter was going to be special. I kept thinking, This is the holiest of holy days. This is what our faith revolves around. What better day than Easter Sunday to see something? Any kind of sign.

I left the hospital for 9 o’clock Easter mass. I didn’t tell anyone my hopes. It felt like it was just between me and God. Nobody else knew. I went back to the hospital after church hoping to find a miracle. I was waiting, looking for a sign. But there was no sign.

Everyone in our family was going to celebrate Easter at the hospital with us. I was sitting in the chair with Nancy next to Danny’s bed. My brother-in-law Steve and sister-in-law Debbie came to visit. We didn’t have enough chairs in the room, so I sat at the foot of the bed by Danny. At that point, no miracle had happened and I was starting to feel like nothing would.

And then, all of a sudden, I got this little poke… from Danny. I turned around, looked at him and said something a little outrageous for me: “Did you just kick me in the butt?” Danny gave the faintest of smiles. Everyone saw it. Nancy, Debbie and Steve. We all saw it.

Danny has always had a really good sense of humor. He was still in a coma, but that little poke was a sign that Danny was still in there. The doctors said it was impossible, that the smile was just reflexes. That Danny was too deep in a coma. But I knew my prayers were answered. I knew what I saw. And I knew that smile–a reassuring, “I’m here.”

It was the most beautiful Easter. And two weeks later, against all the doctors’ predictions, Danny woke up.

Story shared from the following website: https://www.guideposts.org/better-living/health-and-wellness/healing/an-easter-sunday-miracle

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