Sunday, April 24, 2011

I Know That My Redeemer Lives

I know I apologize constantly about not blogging sooner, especially when I have so much to post. I have had a horrible case of food poisoning the last 2.5 days and have literally been in bed or the bathroom. I have never been this sick. It makes me empathetic to my sweet little boy. It is no coincidence, I feel, that I have been able to feel the pains of my son, during this time of celebration of the Resurrection. I could not let this day pass without expressing my testimony of gratitude and sanctity to my Savior Jesus Christ. There are a few things that I have come across this day or that I have been thinking about that will best describe my testimony. First, one of my most favorite scriptures has always been Isaiah 53:3-5

He is adespised and rejected of men; a man of bsorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we cesteemed him not.

4¶Surely he hath aborne our bgriefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.

5But he was awounded for our btransgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his cstripes we are dhealed. I don't know if you realize that when the bruised him with leather it was not just a normal "Indiana Jones" type of whip. They were big thick piece of leather, lots of them, laced with bone. They ripped his back open. He did not speak an unkind word. He did not complain. With his stripes we are healed.

Here is a talk I came across by Joseph B. Wirthlin title SUNDAY WILL COME. I have taken bits and pieces of it for you to read. It is a little long but worth your time.

"In the lonely hours I have spent a great deal of time thinking about eternal things. I have contemplated the comforting doctrines of eternal life. We know what the Resurrection is—the reuniting of the spirit and body in its perfect form. Spencer W. Kimball amplified this when he said, “I am sure that if we can imagine ourselves at our very best, physically, mentally, spiritually, that is the way we will come back.”

When we are resurrected, “this mortal body is raised to an immortal body. … [We] can die no more.”

Can you imagine that? Life at our prime? Never sick, never in pain, never burdened by the ills that so often beset us in mortality?

The Resurrection is at the core of our beliefs as Christians. Without it, our faith is meaningless. The Apostle Paul said, “If Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and [our] faith is also vain.”

In all the history of the world there have been many great and wise souls, many of whom claimed special knowledge of God. But when the Savior rose from the tomb, He did something no one had ever done. He did something no one else could do. He broke the bonds of death, not only for Himself but for all who have ever lived—the just and the unjust. 6

When Christ rose from the grave, becoming the firstfruits of the Resurrection, He made that gift available to all. And with that sublime act, He softened the devastating, consuming sorrow that gnaws at the souls of those who have lost precious loved ones.

I think of how dark that Friday was when Christ was lifted up on the cross.

On that terrible Friday the earth shook and grew dark. Frightful storms lashed at the earth.

Those evil men who sought His life rejoiced. Now that Jesus was no more, surely those who followed Him would disperse. On that day they stood triumphant.

On that day the veil of the temple was rent in twain.

Mary Magdalene and Mary, the mother of Jesus, were both overcome with grief and despair. The superb man they had loved and honored hung lifeless upon the cross.

On that Friday the Apostles were devastated. Jesus, their Savior—the man who had walked on water and raised the dead—was Himself at the mercy of wicked men. They watched helplessly as He was overcome by His enemies.

On that Friday the Savior of mankind was humiliated and bruised, abused and reviled.

It was a Friday filled with devastating, consuming sorrow that gnawed at the souls of those who loved and honored the Son of God.

I think that of all the days since the beginning of this world’s history, that Friday was the darkest.

But the doom of that day did not endure.

The despair did not linger because on Sunday, the resurrected Lord burst the bonds of death. He ascended from the grave and appeared gloriously triumphant as the Savior of all mankind.

And in an instant the eyes that had been filled with ever-flowing tears dried. The lips that had whispered prayers of distress and grief now filled the air with wondrous praise, for Jesus the Christ, the Son of the living God, stood before them as the firstfruits of the Resurrection, the proof that death is merely the beginning of a new and wondrous existence.

Each of us will have our own Fridays—those days when the universe itself seems shattered and the shards of our world lie littered about us in pieces. We all will experience those broken times when it seems we can never be put together again. We will all have our Fridays.

But I testify to you in the name of the One who conquered death—Sunday will come. In the darkness of our sorrow, Sunday will come.

No matter our desperation, no matter our grief, Sunday will come. In this life or the next, Sunday will come.

I testify to you that the Resurrection is not a fable. We have the personal testimonies of those who saw Him. Thousands in the Old and New Worlds witnessed the risen Savior. They felt the wounds in His hands, feet, and side. They shed tears of unrestrained joy as they embraced Him.

After the Resurrection, the disciples became renewed. They traveled throughout the world proclaiming the glorious news of the gospel.

Had they chosen, they could have disappeared and returned to their former lives and occupations. In time, their association with Him would have been forgotten.

They could have denied the divinity of Christ. Yet they did not. In the face of danger, ridicule, and threat of death, they entered palaces, temples, and synagogues boldly proclaiming Jesus the Christ, the resurrected Son of the living God.

Many of them offered as a final testimony their own precious lives. They died as martyrs, the testimony of the risen Christ on their lips as they perished.

The Resurrection transformed the lives of those who witnessed it. Should it not transform ours?

We will all rise from the grave. And on that day my father will embrace my mother. On that day I will once again hold in my arms my beloved Elisa.

Because of the life and eternal sacrifice of the Savior of the world, we will be reunited with those we have cherished.

On that day we will know the love of our Heavenly Father. On that day we will rejoice that the Messiah overcame all that we could live forever.

It is my solemn testimony that death is not the end of existence. “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.” Because of the risen Christ, “death is swallowed up in victory.”

Because of our beloved Redeemer, we can lift up our voices, even in the midst of our darkest Fridays, and proclaim, “O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?” 9

May we understand and live in thanksgiving for the priceless gifts that come to us as sons and daughters of a loving Heavenly Father and for the promise of that bright day when we shall all rise triumphant from the grave.

That we may always know that no matter how dark our Friday, Sunday will come is my prayer, in the name of Jesus Christ, amen."

I know I have shared the lyrics with I know That My Redeemer Lives once before but the words speak to me. The power in the song is how I feel about my Savior.

I Know That My Redeemer Lives Hymn

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 help in time of need.

He lives triumphant from the grave,
He lives eternally to save,
He lives all glorious in the sky,
He lives exalted there on high.

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 Jesus, still the same.
Oh, the sweet joy this sentence gives,
I know that my Redeemer lives!

I am so thankful for my Savior and for his sacrifice and love for me. I am thankful that I am never alone. The Savior bore my pains, my sorrows, my sins. Through my times of darkness, and grief I know because of Jesus Christ Sunday WILL come.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you Holly! I feel the impact of the atonement more deeply because of the trials I've experienced. It's more meaningful and I'm learning better how to apply it to my life and enjoy the blessings from it. Thank you for sharing your testimony!