Sunday, March 8, 2015

What I Learned in Church Today

I follow I'm  not sure what you would call it I guess it would be like a daily posting where this person posts uplifting messages each and every day.  I enjoy reading her messages and the pictures she places the messages on.  One day she posted this, "What I learned in Church Today."  I remember reading her thoughts and thinkin that was cool and that was the end of that at least I thought but here I am today with excitement and love and now find myself with this immense desire to share,

"What I Learned in Church Today!"

I didn't attend my home ward this Sabbath I went with a friend to my beloved Jackpot Branch which is located in Jackpot Nevada.
I have a very special friend who teaches the second Sunday of the month and I promised her a year ago that I would be there to support here each time she taught.

Her Relief Society lesson was spot on.  She is the most humble person and her lessons come from the heart.  She inspires each and every lesson.
Today as we were beginning Sunday School our Branch Counselor stood up and informed us that we had no Sunday School teacher and asked if anyone had read the lesson and would be willing to teach the class.
I never read the lessons until the day of so I was not even going to attempt that one.  But lo and behold me friend raised her hand and said, "I read the lesson, I can teach the class."
And teach us she did.
It was an AMAZING lesson!!!

The lesson was on the Sermon on the Mount or as we Latter-Day Saints also call the "Be Attitiudes."  She started with each person in the class reading one verse:

1.  "Blessed are the poor in Spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of Heaven."

We would then have a discussion on what it meant to be "poor in spirit."
While the class was discussing I found myself flipping to 3 Nephi
where once again the Savior taught the "Be Attitudes."

1.  "Yea, blessed are the poor in spirit who come unto me, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."

2.  "Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted."

She then had us go to John to find the answer on how we would be comforted,
"Peace I leave unto you, my peace, not the worlds....you have nothing to fear."

2.  "And again, blessed are all they that mourn, for they shall be comforted."

3.  "Blessed are the meek:  for they shall inherit the earth."

3.  "And blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth."

4.  "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness for they shall be filled."

4.  "And blessed are all they who do hunger and thirst after righteousness for they shall be filled with the Holy Ghost."

5.  "Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy."

5.  "And blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy."

6.  "Blessed are the pure in heart:  for they shall see God."

6.  "And blessed are all the pure in heart, for they shall see God."

7.  "Blessed are the peacemakers:  for they shall be called the children of God."

We than had a discussion about who and what made a peacemaker,
my husband popped in to my mind.

7.  "And blessed are all the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God."

8.  "Blessed  are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake:  
for theirs is the Kingdom heaven.
Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.  Rejoice, and be exceeding glad:  for great is your reward in heaven:  for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you."

A talk given by Elder Neil A Maxwell started playing out in my mind and then as I read the piece in 3rd Nephi a personal experience came into my mind.

8.  "And blessed are all they who are persecuted for my name's sake, 
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  And blessed are ye when men shall revile against you 
and persecute, and say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my names sake; 
for ye shall have great joy and be exceedingly glad, 
for great shall be your reward in heaven; for so persecuted they the prophets before you."
(verses can be found in Matthew 5:2-12 & 3 Nephi 12:3-12)

During one of our discussions concerning the "mourning" I shared with the class some of the hurtful things which were shared during church meetings that easily wounded an already wounded heart and would make the wounded one feel like they were mourning alone.

It was then time for our last meeting which today was a Fast and Testimony meeting where you are invited to stand and share with the congregation all that you were thankful for due to the hand of the Lord and His great blessing which He graciously gave to you.

I was dumbfounded when the counselor stood and calling me by name talked about what I had shared in Sunday school and how it got him to thinkin about "offenses and how offenses could be caused by ignorance."  He shared some stories and then apologized if he had "anyway or anyhow offended someone by his ignorance,"

I then stood and shared with the class the back story of his testimony and shared with them the personal pain that I had endured and the resentment and anger I had carried with me but thanks to a "defining moment" that pain, anger and resentment was gone."
I then shared with them a major defining moment that included them.
I shared with them my personal struggles and how I would always run from a problem as to face it but during my time spent with them I had hung up my running shoes and I was now able to go to my home branch without having a "chip" on my shoulder.

I shared with them my great love for them and how grateful I was to them for loving me.
It is truly a unique Branch and I am so much the better because of them.

Then a brother stood and shared his Testimony and shared that he too had "attended my home branch and that there were people you clicked with and some you didn't but it didn't really matter because we were all children of a loving Heavenly Father and we shared the same Gospel principles and that no matter where you go the Church and its teachings are the same."
I was totally amazed because he had confirmed to me something that I had shared in an previous blog post about all of us having our own unique talents and gifts and no two people were alike but when we come together to bear witness and testimony of our Lord and Savior, we were one.
I got the opportunity after the meeting to share that insight with me.

As I said earlier it was an amazing meeting!!!
A group of us came together to not only learn about our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ but we also
one by one bore our witness of His Divinity and our great love for Him.

Today was the first time I truly felt our hearts were knit together as one!!!
We were no more strangers!
We were Brothers and Sisters in this great gospel plan!!

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