Thursday, July 17, 2014

Rise and Shine

Dear Family and Friends,

Well, I asked President Senior was I should write about this week, and he suggested that I write and say that I was, "resigned to my hungarian-child crib with illness." .... Thank you President. Inspiring.

But it's true, I was.
I got way sick, and that got really depressing after a while of seeing little change.

But then I decided to get up.

I decided that I was done feeling sorry for myself. My days were up to me, and I didn't have to be 'resigned' to anything, especially feeling sad.

I want to talk today to anyone who feels that they are doomed to what "destiny" has in line for them. Because of the gospel of Jesus Christ, anybody, regardless of circumstance, can be changed, lifted, and set running again.

My friends, we all fall down.
We all get scrapes. Heck, some of us break spiritual arms, so to speak.

But the beauty of the gospel is that broken things can be mended. "Broken minds can be mended as easy as broken bones." -Elder Holland. If you remember back to the Bible story of Christ healing the man with palsy, you'll note that He did it to show that he could heal physically as well as spiritually. For, as He said, "Which is easier?"

Now let me ask you a question. Which is easier, a quick mend or a transformation? A band-aid on a cut, or a shape-shift to a new creature?

But even better than this, even better than a mend, is a transform.
Better than broken pots glued together is a collection of the pieces thrown in a furnace, reheated as clay, and reformed as a new being.

The atonement both has the power and ability to both heal us, and enable us.

Anyone who has ever used it knows what that power entails. It's not just for sinners, it's for anyone who wants to know the truth.

My friends, the atonement has the power to convert you.

When you feel sad, that is never the moment to give up on your righteous desires. That is never the moment to stop going to church, or seminary, or institute. When you are sick, you go see a doctor.

Our spiritual doctor is the Lord Jesus Christ, and his atonement is the medicine and remedy for any infirmity.

This last week I got to see the peak of what would become one of my most precious mission stories. The last couple of months, I watched a brother who was convinced he was going to go inactive on his return home from his trip. He came to Thailand on a vacation with his mom and sister "kicking and screaming".

He slowly opened up to some activities with the branch, and then began helping the missionaries teach. He started finding his own investigators with them on the street. Before we knew it, he had a planner, a bike, and was riding with the Elders everywhere. Yesterday he baptized a man he taught.

I saw the change in this young 17-year old. And better yet, he saw the change in himself. He began to call the mother he once fought with, "แม่ที่รัก" (or my beloved mom) in her native language, which brought her to tears of joy.

Watching the atonement heal investigators was the faith-instilled medicine for him. 'If it could happen for them, why not me?'

I know that the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the true and living church of the Savior.

He is our Savior because His atonement is real. You could say, "I believe it because I've seen it." Not with my eyes, but with a discerning heart. I've seen it happen to others. I saw it with this sweet brother. And even more than that, I've seen it happen to me.

It can happen for you.

So all who feel bedridden, whether spiritually or otherwise;

...rise and shine.

Sister Painter

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