So first off today was the day of changes (transfers) and I´m staying in my place of birth for at least one more change (4th in sector). Which is going to be super awesome because I´ll get to pass my 6 month and Christmas here in the valleys. So me and daddy (Elder) Robbins are pretty stoked for that. One thing we´re not stoked for is summer though. I´m telling you one of the weirdest things is having it be November and 39c outside (that’s 100 F). The Christmas decorations don´t help (even though some of them have been up since I got here in July, they don´t take them down here). Not a lot of good stories for this week, it kinda just flew by so sorry about that…
But one thing I was thinking of was that RM’s have lot’s of experiences and lessons to share. So I was thinking (specifically Blake, Corey and Dad) that you guys or other RM’s that want to share could give a one sentence council of something they learned on their missions.
As I was reading an old Liahona I found on the last page a question “¡Como puedo encontrar gozo cuando la vida es difícil?” or “how can I find joy when life is difficult?” Then just below the answer: “Tantas cosas en la vida dependen de nuestra actitud. La forma en que escogemos ver las cosas y respondemos a los demás marca toda la diferencia. El poner nuestro mejor empeño y luego decidir ser felices en nuestra circunstancias, sean cuales sean, nos trae paz y satisfacción.” or “So many things in life depend in our attitude. The form that we choose to see and respond to them makes all the difference. To put in our best intention and decide to be happy in our circumstances, whatever they are, brings us peace and satisfactions.” This quote lead me to have a deep spiritual conversation with myself (some people call that meditation). A lot of it was about the atonement and what Elder Oaks had said in the last general conference. It says in Alma 7 the Lord suffered all things so that he could know how to perfectly succor his people (for those that don´t know succor means to give relief). Essentially, he suffered all things we did, do or will to know exactly how we felt, feel or will feel in order to give us relief in our infirmities, sorrows, temptations, afflictions and all other things. We learn from the apostles of old that we can “cast our cares upon him, for he careth for us” (1 peter 5:7) and also Christ himself said “come unto me all ye that are heavy laden and I will give you rest” (matthew 11:28). So we can see that part of the atoning sacrifice is to give us relief, but if this is the case why is it that we still pass through trials and have problems? In John 16:33 it says “In the world you will have tribulation. But be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”
So yes, trials and problems are supposed to happen for various reasons, and while we can turn to the atonement for relief we cannot just ditch all of our problems on it and come away with nothing. Sometimes like in the case of Alma (the older) the Lord “strengthens them that they may bear their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord.” The relief that we receive sometimes is not to just wipe away the pain of trial, but it is strength to have patience to bear trials.
So back to the scripture in Matthew 11:28, the following two scriptures say the following: “take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30) for my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
So the yoke referred to isn’t an actual yoke, but it is to take upon yourself the name of Christ. And it is easy to take up (see alma 37:44-47) To take heed to the word of Christ which leads us to a better land of promise if we do not get lazy in the easiness of the way.
The burden is light, but it is light like light from the sun not light as in light in weight. When we take upon the name of Christ (baptism) we receive the spirit and the truth of all things of the everlasting gospel of Jesus Christ.
And how does this relate?
Well if we take the yoke (his name) upon us and receive the light (his spirit and light of gospel knowledge) and humble ourselves we can find rest unto our souls. Basically we have to actively live in harmony with his teachings, laws and ordinances to receive the full effects and blessings of the atonement.
So “how can I find joy when life is hard?” Yes the answer is clearly to have a positive mental attitude about all things that you confront. But also it is to change your view and perspective of all problems as something that Christ already suffered for you and that he knows how to overcome them. And if you truly seek his help he will give relief perfectly in the way you need it. And if you can see things like that you will have the peace and satisfaction poured out unto your soul.
Elder Rusick (Big and Sexy)