I'm going to start today with a quote from my mom's email to me (she's so cute :) )
Quote for the day - "The Atonement is an enabling power. As we turn to the Lord in prayer, He will make our weakness our strengths. We can trust in the Lord. You can trust the Lord with all your heart, and your faith will give you the power beyond your own."
I love that! We really don't realize how much we can go through and come out okay until we do. I look back on times in my life--and my mission--where I felt completely without the ability to even want to do more let alone the ability to do it. It's just SO hard. And it still is sometimes. But I've found that as I reach out to the Lord and ask for help he always answers me. Every single time. There has never been a cry so pained or helpless that he hasn't heard, Sometimes those answers are slow to come and experience makes them clear, but always I feel him close. Always when I ask for help I know he IS helping. This season we celebrate the birth of the Savior of the world--but also the Savior of YOU. Sometimes we forget that. Sometimes we don't comprehend that he saved us each INDIVIDUALLY. He not only saved us from being sinful, but he saved us FOR something. He helps us BE something. HE ENABLES US. He is there to keep us going when we don't know how we can possibly go any more.
Now, if ANYONE out there doesn't know this for themselves yet, or wants to know more (whatever faith you are--including LDS) then ASK. Ask God. He WILL tell you. You need to know.
I have an experience from this week about asking. There is a man we are teaching who I met for the first time this last week--he had dropped off the map and hadn't been taught for a long while. We ran into him at a community dinner. He started telling us about all the things that were going on in his life (very hard, overwhelming, painful things). He was really struggling. So we talked a bit and offered to help in the way that helps us. He agreed. So, we went and sat outside and talked. We were prompted to have him say a prayer telling God what was going on. Then we asked him to just open a Book of Mormon up and start reading. We got a few verses in and he wanted to show us the thing in the scriptures that had been on his mind--he went off talking about it. Throughout this all I just kept getting the prompting that he needed to keep reading--he had given up too early. So I asked him to keep reading in the Book of Mormon as I looked up the topic he had been talking about. As he read my companion and I both prayed in our minds that he would get that answer he was looking for. We could feel the still that came as he began to actually receive those answers he was looking for. It got very still, and then he started laughing! He told us how simple it was--that it was written right there! The joy we saw in his face as he received the answer to the questions of his heart was wonderful. I know that God will answer our prayers. I know that as we diligently seek those answers we gain a witness in our own heart. I know God will lead us.
I hope each of you took up my challenge from last week. It is an opportunity to ask and receive that will strengthen your faith. Remember I want to hear about them! :)