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Insight Archive

Friday, November 1, 2013

Speak Concerning Hope

I have shared previously a small amount of my life. I would like to expound on one part of my life which made me who I am today. There are many who have had worse lives than I had, but the majority of people had better childhoods. One of the reasons for their bad childhood is the abuse of the parents. President Dieter F. Uchtdorf noted in April this year a similar story "The people who should have protected her were those who tortured her or allowed the abuse to continue." Anyone who has a bad childhood can look back and see that the parents' attitude has a lot to do with it. The parents are who the child(ren) look to for guidance and support. When they do not get that it is difficult for the child to progress. When I was a child I was told that I would "grow up and never be (insert unpleasant four-letter word beginning with "sh-" and rhyming with "bit" here)."  It hurts when a child is told he will amount to nothing.
They will often accept it and, as President Uchtdorf taught, accept the darkness which surrounds them. It is easy to sit in the darkness, especially, when those around you are telling you, "you will never get out of it." Many people, who are raised is this situation, are more prone to make the same mistakes as their parents, and live in darkness. They are more prone to be involved in criminal activities than others. They believe there is not an ounce of hope for them. I know because I have seen it happen. Every once in a while you will see a miracle, and see one who grows from his (or her) trials as a child. The question then comes is, "How?" Don't get me wrong, it isn't easy, but may be done. President Uchdorf shared, "Jane discovered The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The joy and hope of the restored gospel penetrated her heart, and she accepted the invitation to be baptized. For the first time, light entered her life, and she saw a bright path before her. She left the darkness of her world and decided to attend school a great distance away from her abuser. At last she felt liberated from an environment of darkness and evil—free to enjoy the Savior’s sweet peace and miraculous healing." (emphasis added)
Moroni wrote, "And again, my beloved brethren, I would speak unto you concerning hope. How is it that ye can attain unto faith, save ye shall have hope? And what is it that ye shall hope for? Behold I say unto you that ye shall have hope through the atonement of Christ and the power of his resurrection, to be raised unto life eternal, and this because of your faith in him according to the promise. Wherefore, if a man have faith he must needs have hope; for without faith there cannot be any hope." (Moroni 7: 40-42) Hope is looking forward to the good in the future. President Uchtdorf said this October, "There may be times in our lives when rising up and continuing on may seem beyond our own ability... Even when we think we cannot rise up, there is still hope." Hope is NEVER lost! Even when someone tells us we cannot do it. When I was told that as a child, I told myself, "I am going to prove them wrong." I had to create my own hope. Hope is always there. It doesn't matter what people think or say about you. God, Our Divine Dad, will support us, even when our earthly parents will not. "Sometimes we just need someone to look us in the eyes, take our hand, and say, 'You can do it now!'" We are children of God, and what man says will never change the fact that He Loves us. We, also, have a Divine Destiny. President Uchdorf observed, "One of the adversary’s methods to prevent us from progressing is to confuse us about who we really are and what we really desire. We want to spend time with our children, but we also want to engage in our favorite manly hobbies. We want to lose weight, but we also want to enjoy the foods we crave. We want to become Christlike, but we also want to give the guy who cuts us off in traffic a piece of our mind. Satan’s purpose is to tempt us to exchange the priceless pearls of true happiness and eternal values for a fake plastic trinket that is merely an illusion and counterfeit of happiness and joy. Another method the adversary uses to discourage us from rising up is to make us see the commandments as things that have been forced upon us.
I suppose it is human nature to resist anything that does not appear to be our own idea in the first place. If we see healthy eating and exercise as something only our doctor expects of us, we will likely fail. If we see these choices as who we are and who we want to become, we have a greater chance of staying the course and succeeding." (emphasis added) God's laws are who we are. This is what gives us hope. President Uchdorf said, "We acknowledge that your path will at times be difficult. But I give you this promise in the name of the Lord: rise up and follow in the footsteps of our Redeemer and Savior, and one day you will look back and be filled with eternal gratitude that you chose to trust the Atonement and its power to lift you up and give you strength." Even though people are pushing you down, trust in the Savior and follow in the paths of safety.
"No matter how many times you have slipped or fallen (or have been pushed down), rise up! Your destiny is a glorious one! Stand tall and walk in the light of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ! You are stronger than you realize. You are more capable than you can imagine. You can do it now! Of this I testify in the sacred name of our Master and Redeemer, Jesus Christ, amen." (emphasis and parentheses added)

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