He is Risen

As Easter soon approaches, we remember our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. While Christmas is a time more focused upon His birth, Easter brings attention to His Atonement and Resurrection. In the Book of Mormon we read,

And behold, he shall be born of Mary, at Jerusalem which is the land of our forefathers, she being a virgin, a precious and chosen vessel, who shall be overshadowed and conceiveby the power of the Holy Ghost, and bring forth a son, yea, even the Son of God.

And he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people.

And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities. (Alma 7:10-12)

In the Garden of Gethsemane, Christ prayed to the Father and, in a manner incomprehensible to man, took upon Himself the sins of the world. Every pain and sorrow, every sin, and every affliction of every kind was heaped upon His shoulders. The pain was so great that He bled from every pore.

He was soon betrayed and brought before Pilate and others. Though Pilate found no fault in Him, the people cried out, “Crucify him!” He was stripped of His clothing, whipped, humuliated with a crown of thorns and mockery, and made to carry His own cross until His mortal body would no longer allow it. After the scourging, He was crucified on Golgotha. The One sent to redeem the world was betrayed and killed by His own people.

But then, Sunday morning came…

In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre.

And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it.

His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow:

And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men.

And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.

He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.

And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and, behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: lo, I have told you.

And they departed quickly from the sepulchre with fear and great joy; and did run to bring his disciples word. (Matthew 28:1-8)

The Lord Jesus Christ had risen and broken the bands of death. I bear testimony that Jesus Christ lives, and that He will forever live as our King. Yes, He died for us. But more importantly, death could not contain Him. He lives for us. Jesus Christ, our Savior and Redeemer, lives.

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The Poetic Corner: Descend and Comprehend

I was searching through some of my old poems this morning and came across this one. I wrote it last March. It’s not terribly clever, but I like a couple of the rhymes. 🙂

Of My Own Design

tension strains, wings beat

but my feet won’t pull free

of the weeds.

 

when i break

You take me in

hold me tight, tell me it’s alright

despite my sin.

 

when i lose my way

You call my name

too many times i ignore Your voice

a selfish choice, pride i should swallow

but the echoes remain for me to follow.

 

i’ve tended only so much

and spent too much time at rest

does this labor speak

for the burning in my chest?

 

when I fall on my face

You hold out Your hand

bring me up to my knees

so i can prepare to stand again

 

The message I wanted to get across is obvious. Jesus Christ is and will always be there for us. In revelation given by the Lord through the prophet Joseph Smith, we read in Doctrine and Covenants Section 88 verse 6,

He that ascended up on high, as also he descended below all things, in that he comprehended all things, that he might be in all and through all things, the light of truth

Through His Atonement, Jesus Christ descended below all things. He felt all pain, all sin, and all sorrow that accompanies them. He comprehends all things. For myself, this has made all the difference in my life, knowing my Savior has understood my heartaches every step of the way. He understands yours as well, and His hand is always outstretched to pull us back up when we fall.

I Know That My Redeemer Lives

Growing up, I never sang the hymns during church services. One reason was because I just didn’t like to sing. The other was simply to be rebellious. After I graduated high school, I decided to attend an LDS congregation for young, single adults. Sitting with my friends or by myself, I decided I should probably start participating in the hymns. And as a missionary, I’m always singing them.

Through these steps I’ve been able to gain a great appreciation for hymns, both the words and music, and I’d like to share my favorite hymn with you…

I Know That My Redeemer Lives

by Samuel Medley

I know that my Redeemer lives.
What comfort this sweet sentence gives!
He lives, He lives, who once was dead.
He lives, my ever-living Head.
He lives to bless me with His love.
He lives to plead for me above.
He lives my hungry soul to feed.
He lives to bless in time of need.
 
He lives to grant me rich supply.
He lives to guide me with his eye.
He lives to comfort me when faint.
He lives to hear my soul’s complaint.
He lives to silence all my fears.
He lives to wipe away my tears.
He lives to calm my troubled heart.
He lives all blessings to impart.
 
He lives, my kind, wise heavenly Friend.
He lives and loves me to the end.
He lives, and while He lives I’ll sing.
He lives, my Prophet, Priest, and King.
He lives and grants me daily breath.
He lives, and I shall conquer death.
He lives my mansion to prepare.
He lives to bring me safely there.
He lives! All glory to His name!
He lives, my Savior, still the same.
Oh, sweet the joy this sentence gives:
“I know that my Redeemer lives.”
He lives! All glory to His name!
He lives, my Savior, still the same.
Oh, sweet the joy this sentence gives:
“I know that my Redeemer lives!”
 
It pretty much sums up everything I can possibly say about the Savior. He is the center of my life. He is and does everything for me. As we begin this Easter season, let us reflect on the role Christ plays in our everyday lives. He did indeed die for us, but perhaps more importantly, He was resurrected on the third day. Jesus Christ is my Redeemer, and I too know that my Redeemer lives.

We Had A Hard Time

I’m going to be a little lazy today and just post a video. 🙂 It’s a good one though. If you’re unfamiliar with these videos, I strongly encourage you to visit the MormonMessages channel on youtube and watch some of the videos. This is one of my favorites.

Just as Elder Cook says, this life isn’t always easy. More often than not, it’s pretty difficult. But it’s supposed to be. It’s a test after all, so why should it be a free ride? This is why we have the Savior Jesus Christ. In every situation, He suffered the greater burden. Our sins, sorrows, and pains have been placed on His shoulders. All He asks is that we do our best to carry what we can, and He’ll carry the rest.

I know that Jesus Christ is my Savior and Redeemer. I’m grateful to know that through Him my burdens can be made light. I’m grateful to know that through every trial I face, there is One who understands the feeling completely.

I know that I can do a better job of putting the Savior first in my life. I invite you to do the same. Take His yoke upon you, learn of Him, and share His love with others. We will find peace. We will find comfort. We will find rest.