Posted by: 2thdocbob | 20 May 2018

Finding Peace in A Troubled World

I was privileged to speak in the Rancho San Bernardino Ward this morning. I feel a wonderful connection with my Spanish-speaking brothers and sisters there. I am especially grateful to Freddie Peterson for translating for me. He did a great job. As is my habit, I did bear my testimony is Spanish at the end.


Brothers and sisters, I am thankful to be here, to worship with you, and to feel of your spirit this morning.

I bring you love and greetings from President Garvin. You have felt that love as you have met with him.

—————————————-

We live a troubled world. There are difficulties all around us. The world is full of confusion and chaos. Satan is trying to shake our faith. He will do everything he can to pull us away from the gospel of Jesus Christ.

How do we find hope in such a troubled world? How can we remove ourselves from the problems of this world and find peace?

Helaman taught his sons: “Remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall” (Hel. 5:12).

That is the key. That is the simple answer to our problem. But how do we build on that rock?

It begins with faith.

First, we must have faith in God.

I am a child of God. We love this song. We sing it, but do we believe it? Are the words written on our hearts? Do we feel something special when we hear it? Do you know that you are a child of God? Do you know that he is your Father, and that he loves you with a perfect love?

This is where peace begins.

Second, do you have faith in Jesus Christ?

In Alma, Chapter 5, Alma asked some significant questions that we should ask ourselves.

“Do ye exercise faith in the redemption of him who created you? Do you look forward with an eye of faith, and view this mortal body raised in immortality, and this corruption raised in incorruption, to stand before God to be judged according to the deeds which have been done in the mortal body?
“I say unto you, can you imagine to yourselves that ye hear the voice of the Lord, saying unto you, in that day: Come unto me ye blessed, for behold, your works have been the works of righteousness upon the face of the earth?” (Al. 5:15, 16).

In other words, do we have faith in the Atonement of Jesus Christ? Do we have faith in the plan of salvation?

If I know that Jesus Christ is my Savior (and I do!) then I can feel peace, knowing that he has atoned for my sins and weaknesses, and all my problems, and that he will help me to bear them.

The Atonement of Jesus Christ will help each of us to bear our burdens in life. He may not make them go away, but if we ask, he will make our burdens lighter, just like he did for the people of Alma: “And now it came to pass that the burdens which were laid upon Alma and his brethren were made light; yea, the Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord” (Mosiah 24:15).

Just as with the people of Alma, the Lord will help us to bear our burdens if we ask in faith.

Third, can you recognize the voice of the Holy Ghost? Can you understand his voice?

The language of the Spirit is not our mother tongue – we must learn to understand it – but we can learn it by paying attention to our feelings. It is a great blessing to each one of us that the Holy Ghost can communicate in any language. English, Spanish, Dutch, Chinese, it doesn’t matter. The Holy Ghost can teach us and guide us in our own language.

In Doctrine and Covenants, Section 1, the Lord testifies to us: “Behold, I am God and have spoken it; these commandments are of me, and were given unto my servants in their weakness, after the manner of their language, that they might come to understanding” (D&C 1:24).

But it takes practice to hear the Spirit whisper to us amid all the shouting in the world. And it takes practice to know what the Spirit is telling us.

Most important, the Spirit will whisper peace to our souls during difficult times in our lives. This is why he is called “the Comforter.”

I testify that he does indeed comfort our hearts. I have experienced it many times in my life.

Fourth, do you follow the living prophet?

Do you have a testimony that President Russell M. Nelson is the living prophet of God today? Are you willing to receive his words in faith, and obey them?

When I hear President Nelson speak, I know that he is a prophet. I feel his authority from God, and feel his love for me, and for each of you. And I feel peace and happiness.

We have been promised that if we follow the prophet, we will have safety and peace.

Fifth, do we hold to the rod?

What does that mean?

In Nephi’s vision, he explained “And it came to pass that I beheld that the rod of iron, which my father had seen, was the word of God, which led to the fountain of living waters, or to the tree of life; which waters are a representation of the love of God; and I also beheld that the tree of life was a representation of the love of God.” (1 Nephi 11:25).

What is it that leads us to the tree of life, to the love of God? It is the iron rod, which represents the scriptures: the word of God.

If we study the scriptures every day, if we stay close to the Savior, and if we don’t let go of the rod, we will have peace, even if the people in the great and spacious building, which represents the world, are mocking us. We must have the faith and the strength to ignore them.

Another important part of holding to the rod is observing the Sabbath.

Heavenly Father gave us the Sabbath day to help us to escape from the world. The Sabbath is a day to remember the Lord and his blessings to us.

The Sabbath is a day to renew our covenants with the Lord by partaking of the sacrament. When we say “amen” to the sacrament prayers, we promise to “always remember him and keep his commandments…” and we are promised that we “may always have his Spirit to be with [us]” (D&C 20:75-77).

In this crazy world, it isn’t easy to always remember the Savior, as we promise each week, but if we do our best to remember him, we will feel the peace of the Spirit. What a wonderful blessing!

Sacrament meeting and our other meetings give us an opportunity to refocus on what is truly important.

The Sabbath is a good day to minister to our brothers and sisters, to study the gospel, to be with family, to do family history, and to remember the Savior and all he has done for us. Remember that Christ “went about doing good” (Acts 11:38). We should try to do the same.

For many of us, the Sabbath is a chance to rest from our labors. Personally, I try not to think about work on Sunday. I don’t look at my work email, I don’t watch sports, and I try to listen to music that brings me closer to Christ. To me, that means church music and gentle classical music. I want to feel the Spirit of sacrament meeting all day long.

Remember that the Sabbath day doesn’t end when our block of meetings ends. I feel that my life is blessed by honoring the Lord’s day.

To summarize, we can feel peace through:

  1. Faith in God;
  2. Faith in Jesus Christ;
  3. Recognizing the voice of the Holy Ghost;
  4. Following the living prophet;
  5. Holding on to the iron rod;
  6. Keeping the Sabbath day holy.

Hermanos y hermanas, yo testifico que ésta es la iglesia verdadera de Jesúcristo. Yo sé que José Smith era un profeta de dios. Russell M. Nelson es nuestro profeta viviente hoy. Él habla con dios.

Yo sé que El Libro de Mormón es la palabra de dios. Contiene el evangelio de Jesúcristo.

Yo testifico que Díos vive. Él nos ama. Jesucristo es nuestro Salvador y redentor.

Hermanos y hermanas, les amo a ustedes. Doy gracias por la oportunidad de visitar con ustedes.

De eso les testifico, en el nombre sagrado de Jesucristo, amen.

 

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