Monday, November 24, 2014

Mormon Monday: When Things Fall Apart

The other night, my husband and I were talking about our respective novels. I was telling him about how things were looking really great for my characters and then a colossal disaster happens and things were looking pretty bad.

He made the comment, "There's nothing like disaster to make a hero really shine."

I then mentioned that I noticed the same things in a lot of real stories too. One in particular is the story of Christ. Christ had an incredible entrance into Jerusalem. He came in riding a donkey and the people threw palm leaves in front of him. He was hailed as a prophet, and to the disciples, things must have been looking pretty good.

However, this grand entrance was just the prelude to tragedy. Shortly thereafter, Christ was betrayed, tortured, and crucified. This high point was followed by fear, anger, and disaster. The disciples must have felt that there was no hope. Darkness covered the face of the earth (literally), and things probably seemed like they would never get better.

This period of darkness probably seemed to last forever, but it was only three days later that the Savior rose from the dead and brought hope back into the world. The light was made all the more powerful because of the preceding darkness.
After I had shown this comparison, I said, "Maybe I shouldn't talk about the Savior's life like it is a story."

Jacob's response made me feel a lot better. He shook his head and said, "In some ways, it is THE story."

I've thought about that conversation over the weekend. The more I've thought about it, the more I've realized that this isn't only a common plot in stories, but it can give us hope in life.

Sometimes, it seems like things are going pretty well. We are being blessed and we have more than we need. It is often after these periods of happiness that something devastating can happen. Things simply seem to fall apart. If we allow these moment to, they can destroy us. We can lose our faith and hope in the Savior and we can decide that nothing good will ever happen again. We can choose to allow those moments of darkness to make us doubt and wonder if God ever existed and if He really loved us.

However, the moments of darkness rarely last. If we turn to our Heavenly Father, and retain our hope in Christ, we will soon find the blessings that follow will seem all the brighter because of the darkness the preceded it.

I know I'm always more grateful for my health after I've been sick. I'm always more grateful for my job (or my husband's job) when we've been unemployed and struggling financially.

With Thanksgiving coming this week (and Kevin's birthday), I'm going to do a gratitude week again. I did one last year, and I would like to again express my gratitude for all the blessings that we have. Thanksgiving doesn't really mean anything unless we take the time to remember why we're grateful, and who we are grateful to.

Today, I'm grateful that light always follows darkness and that light is stronger than darkness. Like everyone else, I have had difficult times in my life, but when I look back on them, the struggles have made me stronger and increased my faith in the Lord. I am grateful for my challenges and those moments when things fall apart.

After all, it is only with the Savior's help that we can put them back together again.

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