Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Strengthening of My Testimony

First, I want to thank Bridget for inviting me to contribute to this blog. My sister Catherine is already an author, and I think that it will be fun. My name is Amy. I am a mother of three small children. My spiritual strength goes in waves. I have good times, and hard times. Sometimes, when so inspired, I will share something spiritual that I feel strongly about. Which takes me to my first post. It focuses on testimony. I recently posted this on my personal blog, and thought I would share it with you too.

Ya know, I have given this a lot of thought. I made the following post and then wondered whether or not I wanted to post this talk and share my testimony. I went to youtube to see if it was on there.. and all I found it a segment of it, that had cut out a great deal. Then to look over the comments... it broke my heart. There were people saying he was a devil... that we, "Mormons," are delusional and have vivid imaginations. People commenting on things they misunderstand or know nothing about. If there is a question you have, I would love to answer it. If there is something that you would like to understand I will do all in my power to find those answers. I have searched out answers myself.... still do. People don't think that you can base a belief on how you feel. But then I think... personally, that that is how the Spirit communicates with me. I get good feelings... bad feelings.. feelings of warning. Sure it is not physical proof. It is not the worlds way of proving that something is true. But once you feel that burn in your heart... and your whole self feels warm... when in my most difficult times in my life... I pray, and feel the comfort like a warm blanket. Like the Savior's arms are holding me up. Those kinds of feelings one cannot deny. When I draw close to my Savior... that is when I am the happiest. It is a happiness so deep within, that only He could bring. I am not delusional. I have had doubts... questions. I always want answers, to make sure that this is truly right. BUt when I have doubts... when I just want to give it all up, there is one testimony that I cannot deny. That is the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon. If I know that is true, then I know that Joseph Smith is a prophet of God. Since I know that I cannot deny any of it. No matter what anyone tells me to try to sway my beliefs, no matter how much our church is pounded on... it doesn't matter... because I have felt it... and I know that it is true. It would be wrong for me to deny it. I wish that the world knew how much peace and comfort can come to you. The church isn't about a whole bunch of rules and regulations. It is about our Father in Heaven giving to His children guidelines that will make them the most happy. He knows us better than anyone, even ourselves. He knows what we need. I trust that. That is how I have lived my life. I leave this testimony with you, in the name of my Savior Jesus Christ, Amen.

I wish more than anything that I could find a way to post this video on my blog. All I have is a link that will take you to it. This testimony of the Apostle Jeffrey R. Holland is so touching, so beautifully spoken, with so much power and authority, that it brought tears to my eyes and pierced my very soul. In these hard times, it can be difficult to hold fast to our testimonies and our faith. The world around us is in such turmoil, that it is hard to feel that inner peace and calm. Please, please, take the time to listen to this. If you are a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, it is a great reminder of what we believe and why. If you are not a member, this will give you insight on the power of testimony, I promise, you cannot listen to this and not feel your soul and heart stir. It is special. It brings to light the Book of Mormon. Why we believe in it. What it means to us. I add to Elder Holland's testimony, that I know this book will change your life. I know that it is true. I could not and would not deny the feeling within my heart when I testify of it.

To watch it or listen to it, follow this link, scroll down the the talk titled
Safety for the Soul, by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland. It is in the Sunday afternoon session.


It is worth it.

Thursday, October 15, 2009


I love that General Conference always leaves me thinking. From past conferences, I have been reminded to improve things like my scripture study, prayers, or temple attendance. But, this time I came away with the feeling that I need to not only teach my children about the importance of meaningful service, but I need to find ways that I can reach out to others as well. President Monson's talk about service summarized these ideas for me and I loved the adorable Primary idea of creating a collection of their "warm fuzzies" that they obtained from serving others. As we come into a season where a lot of us look for opportunities to serve in our community, how can we find ways to truly teach our children about the responsibility we have to help others? How do we instill in them and ourselves the desire to lighten another's burden? I would love to hear ways that you have taught children about this important principle or have incorporated service into your own busy lives.

Other than Conference, two blog posts I've read lately that have kept me thinking about this topic were here and here.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Answered Prayers

Over the past few months I've been going through some rather hard trials mostly due to health issues. While I know it is temporary, I have been struggling with a lot of emotions while I've been sick as well. Mostly I've been feeling guilt over not fulfilling my family responsibilities which include caring for my two children, keeping with our tradition of family dinners and keeping our home tidy. I've felt worthless.

My prayers have been focused on begging Heavenly Father to help me feel better so that I can start functioning again. One particular night I finished a similar prayer and seemed to get even sicker. Sadly, I remember thinking "Why did He not answer my prayer?!"

The following morning a dear friend called. She said she was going to come over to help me around my house. I'm just not good at accepting service so I told her over and over not to worry about it...that we would be fine.

And then she said something that really struck me. She said, "You don't get to decide how Heavenly Father is going to answer your prayers."

And I knew she was right. My mind flipped back to my prayer the night before and I realized she was the answer that Heavenly Father was giving me. I am grateful He answered my prayer. He doesn't always answer our prayers in the ways we intend or in our time frame but I know he always answers our prayers- even in ways that we can't imagine at times.