Friday, April 18, 2014

Our Savior's Resurrection Should Teach Us That.

Such a beautiful spring day! We love it!

First and foremost, Happy Easter everyone. The sunshine at Temple Square, the blooming and budding flowers, the aged hands that hold to one another while entering the temple, the hands with new dazzling rings held in the air in joy on the temple stairs, the children playing in the fountain, all reminds me that life will always be beautiful and life will always begin again.  Each of these things remind me of our Savior, our eternal Elder brother whose love and desire for our happiness is infinite.  Nothing can stop Him from always having His arms outstretched...we should each learn that from His resurrection and the way He overcame death. Nothing will stop Him from progressing and from changing the world, from changing us, for this is what He lives to do.

It is the way our Savior overcame death that strengthens me the most.  Think about it brothers and sisters.  Even He, the divine son of God bled from every pore and asked if there wasn't a less excruciating way, yet He pressed onward. He then was taken before a mob, convicted, arrested, and made to carry not just a wooden cross on His shoulders, but the sins of the world, the pains and heartaches of you and me.  He literally had the nails pounded into His hands, His wrists, His feet and flinched from pain but never from doubt; He knew who He was.

He endured this pain and pressed onward in the spirit world.  He taught our brothers and sisters there who had just seen Him suffer in such a close and personal way, and then once more, 3 days later, He returned.  When we look at the resurrection of our Savior, we must know with all our heart that He is the Only Begotten of the Father, that He is truly our Savior, our Redeemer. I support and sustain Elder D. Todd Christofferson as one of His living, modern day witnesses and Apostles. I love his talk from this last General Conference titled, "The Resurrection of Jesus Christ," and invite each of you to read it this Sunday to hold in reverence what this day means for all mankind.

"No mere mortal has the power in himself to come to life again after dying. Because He was resurrected, Jesus cannot have been only a carpenter, a teacher, a rabbi, or a prophet. Because He was resurrected, Jesus had to have been a God, even the Only Begotten Son of the Father," said Elder Christofferson.
I testify boldly as a representative of this divine Son of God, that for anything to truly be the gospel of Jesus Christ, for anything to bear witness of Christ's name, it's gospel, it's teachings, it's truth must have this same divine power. Nothing so boldly testifies of the truthfulness of the reality of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints being the true church of Christ on the earth again today, then does the reality of the resurrection.  As Christ and was resurrected, so too must His gospel and His teachings.  They were taken, and now through this same power they are here.  Brothers and Sisters, we must open our eyes and see that Jesus Christ has restored His teachings to the earth again today.

Just as nothing could or can ever stop our Savior from progressing, so too will nothing stop His true and eternal gospel, founded on heavenly laws and divine principles.  This should be evident in each of our hearts and minds as an added witness that Christ Himself directs this church.

Joseph Smith echoed this very testimony in what is now referred to today as The Standard of Truth.
"The Standard of Truth has been erected; no unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing; persecution may rage, mobs may combine, armies may assemble, calumny may defame, but the truth of God will go forth boldly, nobly, and independent, till it has penetrated every continent, visited every clime, swept every country, and sounded in every ear, till the purposes of God shall be accomplished, and the Great Jehovah shall say the work is done."

I stand as a witness alongside our Savior, alongside the Apostles and President Thomas S. Monson, that nothing, absolutely nothing will stop or even hinder this work from progressing. Our Savior's resurrection should teach us that.

 I adore my wonderful companion Sister Gearheart! She teaches us all so much! Our investigators are SO blessed to have her!
This week, Jeanine taught me that too.
On my birthday we took an amazing group of army reserves around temple square.  One man was especially prepared to receive the gospel.  He told me he had always been looking for a prophet, always hoping God would call one again.  He left with a Book of Mormon and we set up a return time to call him again. 
Yesterday was the day we had set up to call this man, yet when the phone rang, a woman's voice came through the line.  This man had given us the wrong number.  For a moment as I spoke with her I felt confused, I felt a little sad and almost apologized to the woman and hung up the phone, yet there came the voice..."do you think I had nothing to do with this?"

I stayed on that phone determined to find the reason for our Father's intervention this way.  Her name is Jeanine.  She is 23 years old, a recent graduate from a culinary art school in Texas, and a pastry chef.  Yet after our miracle conversation with her, and the power of God evident to overcome any setback, she is now preparing herself to be baptized by the Priesthood authority of God on May 17 and is anxiously awaiting a call from the local missionaries and her own copy of The Book of Mormon.

The heavens opened for us on that phone call.  The spirit was the teacher, Sister Gearheart and I were simply instruments that marveled at the way our Heavenly Father works so closely and intimately among His children.  Every question Jeanine has ever had was answered as we taught her about the Restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ.  The most powerful spirit she has ever felt was impressed upon her as we testified of the reality of our Savior, our Father in Heaven and of our living.  The most profound silence I have ever heard was filled with the voice of God as Jeanine heard her Father in Heaven say, "Jeanine, I do answer prayers."

Brothers and Sisters, let us not overlook the powerful lessons we have to learn in the Resurrection of our Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ.  As He overcame death, so too will His gospel.  As nothing could stop Him, nothing will ever, ever, ever stop this work.  This, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints contains the Priesthood power of God, the fullness of Christ's gospel and has pressed onward through even the most thwarting of times, just as it's official and Divine head has.  This is the gospel of Jesus Christ, our Savior's resurrection should teach us that.

I say these things humbly and with a heart completely full of gratitude, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Please, visit and watch the "Because of Him" video. Don't do it because I asked you, but do it because of Him.

Sincerely, Sister Briggs

SHOUTOUTS: Mom & Dad, Robert Donakey, Donakey family, Clarissa Ann, Brigham Facer (congrats to you and your beautiful wife!), Sister Lelle, The Daines family (those missionary clothes are adorable, you're so sweet!), Kate Thornock (your letter made me cry...I love and miss you and hope all is well!), Grandfather & Grandma Jeanie and Grandmother.

1 comment:

  1. This literally could be a talk in conference. an inspiration to all Sister Briggs!!!!!!