My brother is engaged!

Last Sunday my brother met his sweet girlfriend after they had been dating for almost a year. They are planning to marry in the Manhattan temple on May 10th, which is also on my son’s birthday. The Lord is very good to us!

Mirna is from Equator and has lived here for two years now. She’s one of the sweetest people I have ever met.

He is Risen

I am one of the Sunday school teachers in my church for the 13 and 14 year old teens. Yesterday I taught about the importance of celebrating Easter.

ComeUntoChrist.org

I didn’t sleep well on Saturday night, so I asked my Jim to help me teach my class. I was so exhausted that I had trouble formulating my thoughts. I LOVE videos about Jesus and His apostles and disciples, and found a wonderful one on the LDS.org website that shows a powerful witness of one of my favorite apostles, John, the Beloved. The Apostle that Jesus loved so much that he trusted him to care for His beloved mother, Mary. I believe that they truly felt like brothers to each other, much like I feel about two of my closest friends.

I love watching John’s reactions to the Savior’s teachings, miracles, death, and His resurrection. I can’t imagine how confusing it must have been for these Apostles to witness the power that Jesus had performing numerous miracles and yet not one attempt to save himself from torture and a humiliating death.

We then explained to the class who the Elders were, along with the Pharisee and Sadducee leaders, to help them understand the politics and social norms of those ancient times. We read a small portion of the scriptures and then ran out of time. I was surprised when one of the teenage girls who asked if she could attend my class and then talked to a girl who is often chatty, thanked us for teaching the lesson. I welcome any teenager into my class because my goal is for them to feel the Spirit testify of the truthfulness of the Lord’s Resurrection. And to trust Him who suffered for us in Gethsemane and redeemed us if we will learn of Him, and give Him our hearts and our will. Because that’s really the only thing we can give Him. I’m grateful for this knowledge, to know that the Lord knows me, loves me, and trusts me enough to allow me to make mistakes. He allows me to fall and trusts me to pick myself up with His help. Because of Him I can repent of my sins, and come unto Him.

Always.

Here is the beautiful video:

Life with chronic pain…

churchofjesuschrist.org

I’ve been bad about writing on my blog between family stress and my chronic pain due to the storms. I am used to having good days where I believe my body is getting better and am dismayed when I wake up sometimes in pain like I did this morning.

I often thought about writing my next blog post, but am only getting around to it now. I spent the day today watching General Conference and feeling personal revelation that my Heavenly Father wanted me to know, especially how he is aware of my pain, stress in my family life, and my overall frustration in life.

Writing this post has reminded me why I started this blog: to remember that Jesus Christ is my Savior. He knows me. He’s already felt my pain in Gethsemane when He atoned for my sins, and signed up to succor me through my life. And He will do this for you, too!

The Twelve Apostles

Jesus Ordaining the Twelve Apostles

I have been reading about Jesus giving His twelve apostles the Priesthood power to act in His name and bless the people who had faith in Him in St. Matthew chapters 10-12. I love how the Lord commands His Apostles to preach the gospel to the “lost sheep of the house of Israel” (Matthew 10:6).

Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

In His restored Church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, we have a living prophet. President Russell M. Nelson has two counselors, President Dallin H. Oaks, and President Henry B. Eyring make up the First Presidency. The present day Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are witnesses of Christ just as the original Twelve. Last Sunday President Nelson dedicated the new Rome, Italy temple. The above picture brings a lot of peace and gratitude that I have the gift of the Restored Gospel in my life, that my Savior loves me enough to offer me the gift of eternal life with Him and Heavenly Father. I know that Jesus Christ is the head of His church and that He loves me. He knows me, and wants to bless me.

And bless you. All we need to do is ask.

The Sacrament

My mom and brother have been sick for several weeks now, and haven’t been able to attend church and take the weekly Sacrament. As members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, two Aaronic Priesthood holders bless the bread as they say this prayer:

“O God, the Eternal Father, we ask thee in the name of thy Son, Jesus Christ, to bless and sanctify this bread to the souls of all those who partake of it; that they may eat in remembrance of the body of thy Son, and witness unto thee, O God, the Eternal Father, that they are willing to take upon them the name of thy Son, and always remember him, and keep his commandments which he hath given them, that they may always have his Spirit to be with them. Amen.”

When we have all partaken of the bread, they bless the water (instead of wine) with this prayer:

“O God, the Eternal Father, we ask thee, in the name of thy Son, Jesus Christ, to bless and sanctify this wine to the souls of all those who drink of it, that they may do it in remembrance of the blood of thy Son, which was shed for them; that they may witness unto thee, O God, the Eternal Father, that they do always remember him, that they may have his Spirit to be with them. Amen.”

Each Sunday in our church building, known as a Meetinghouse, where we take bread and water (instead of wine) and renew our covenants that we made when we were baptized. I try each week to repent of my sins and general mistakes and remember to take His name upon me. Because my mother and brother have been too sick to go, we asked the Bishop (similar to a local priest or pastor) of our ward (congregation) if someone could come to our house and bless the Sacrament for them. A short time later two teenage boys knocked on our door, and I was kind of excited to see them. Last year they were in my Sunday School class and are good kids. Although this may seem like a small act of kindness, it means a lot to people who aren’t able to attend church themselves.

Whenever we help someone, even in a small way, we become the Savior’s Hands. One of the best ways to feel better about yourself and your life to get on your knees and pray, and then stand up and get to work serving someone.

Anyone. Especially people online who may need a kind word, because we all have unseen trials. We can all use a friend.

Challenging Week

Our younger son has autism but is considered high functioning. He has had problems controlling his anger, which both the doctors and therapists warned us would happen as our son navigates through his teenage years. He loves to play video games and hasn’t worked on his school projects, so I took away his game privileges, computer, and his phone.

He did NOT take it well and repeatedly hit my husband while I drove my son to work. My son has been at a local behavioral hospital where the doctor added some more meds to what he takes already. I have also set a goal to really research autism and how it effects the brain, new research findings, etc. and what essential oils I can add to help with any anxiety, frustration or anger that may seemingly strike him at random times.

The nurse called me today to tell me that my son and his room mate got into a physical fight, though they don’t know who started it since there were no witnesses. I’m worried about his future and will continue to pray that the Lord watches over my son and guides him, especially since deep down he has a sweet spirit.

Gosh, this is tough. So very tough.

But I refuse to give up on him. Heavenly Father gave me this sweet spirit to raise and He trusts me to do my best. And the Lord ALWAYS helps those who believe in Him. Tomorrow my husband, brother and I are going to the temple to work on our family names and pray about how we can help my son and focus more of our energy serving the Lord by praying more often and learning more about Him.

BYU-Pathway Program

Last fall I took two classes with BYU-Idaho’s Pathway Program because I knew it was time for me to refocus my life on the Savior and His Gospel. I have about sixty college credits from various schools, but I hungered for spiritual knowledge. I have been raising my two sons who are now teenagers, and I missed learning.

This program is inspired, and I LOVED the combination of spiritual and secular learning. It was mostly online, except for our Thursday Gatherings, where we met at a local church building and taught each other the lesson plan for that particular week. It is an active learning where we need to study the material. We discuss how to apply principles, such as developing deeper faith in Christ, and trusting Him to guide us throughout our life.

Due to my chronic pain, I had to withdraw from the winter semester. The math class required a ton of writing with my bad arm. I might have a torn rotator cuff. Ugh. As a result, I created this blog as a way to continue building on my increased faith.