Monday, April 21, 2014

Week 36 - Another Week In Paradise

Aloha everyone!
So with Easter being this past sunday, I wanted to talk a little bit about the significance of our Savior's crucifixion and resurrection. I feel like we talk about these a lot in the church, but don't take the time to reflect on the importance of these events and how they relate to us.
One of my favorite stories to relate to the atonement is the story of the bicycle. I'm sure it's one that most of us have heard, or at least heard a variation of it. In the story it talks about a little girl who approached her dad saying that she wanted to buy a bike. Her father told her that if she saved up as much money as she could for a month, that he would cover the rest and they would go out and buy a bike together. So the girl saved and saved the whole month and at the end of the month went to her dad ready to buy a bike. When her dad asked her how much money she had saved, she proudly held out 41 cents. Her dad told her that he would keep his promise and together they went to the store to buy the bike.
The small amount she had worked to hard to save up wasn't even close to being able to buy the bike, but with her dad's willingness to cover the gap, to fill in at those places where she fell short, she was able to attain the bike.
Most times I've heard this story in relation to the church people relate it to how we do all we can, and then we're saved by the Savior's grace. Although this is true, along the lines of this story I like to think of it as the Savior already bought the bike, and the money He has us work for is to help us value the bike.
An important thing to remember is that the Atonement isn't something the Savior wanted to do, rather it was something he was willing to do. In the Garden of Gethsemane he cried out to His father "let this cup pass" or in other words, isn't there another way that this can be accomplished without me having to go through with this? But Christ says "Nevertheless, glory be to the Father, and I partook". The Atonement was the hardest thing any person on this earth has ever gone through, and I'm just grateful that Christ loves us enough to go through what He did.
In addition to paying the price for our sins, the Savior also broke the bands of death for us.
By being resurrected on that Easter morning, he allowed for each of us to be resurrected. He gave that free gift to all of us, the ability to live again. Giving us hope.
Whenever we teach the plan of salvation to investigators we emphasize that Christ is the key to it all. He is central to the plan and without him, there would be no plan. And even greater than what he did for us, is what he does for us. He lives! And continues to help us, comfort us, guide us so that we can all become glorified and return to live with Him and our Heavenly Father. I'm so grateful for my Savior and for what he did for me. He truly loves us and I hope all of you feel of, and know of that love.
Elder Merrill

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