Sometimes life hands me a reminder that I don’t have things as difficult as I may sometimes feel. Last night I got almost NO SLEEP, due to a combination of reasons, the main one being allergies and not being able to breathe comfortably. Finally, at about 5:30 this morning I fell asleep and slept until noon. And then had a three hour nap after church.
But here was my wake-up call. A woman in my neighborhood (and church congregation) was up all night as well. Her husband and an exchange student from China didn’t come home from their hike when they were supposed to. A search was mounted with helicopters because the terrain in the area is so treacherous and steep. The sheriff’s office called her early this morning to tell her that her husband and the student had fallen to their deaths while climbing near a waterfall and that their bodies had been located and recovered.
I am praying for this woman and her family, as well as the family of the 14 year-old Chinese boy, that they can have the comfort and peace of God upon them as they now face a future without their loved one. I am grateful to know that God has a plan for each of us, and that this life is not all there is. There is a spirit world after this life, where we can still learn of God’s plan of salvation, if we could not do so in this life. We can accept Christ’s atonement whether we learn of it now, or later. If we do so, when we are resurrected as Jesus was, we can live with our loved ones and God again.
(Read and Follow the Directions)
In my reading today, the Lamanites are angry at the determination of the Nephites to keep the commandments of God and to offer safe harbor to all people who choose to follow Christ. They come and attack the Nephites, but Moroni, the Nephite army captain, has prepared his people with armor, shields, helments, and weapons. Additionally he asked the prophet, Alma, which way the Lamanites would come to attack. Thus, when the Lamanite army met up with the Nephite army, they trembled with fear at the level of preparation of the Nephites.
I think it’s important to realize how much being prepared physically and spiritually can give us confidence to face difficult things. Not that the nature of the thing changes, but that we are changed, and can act in faith rather than fear.
19 And when the armies of the Lamanites saw that the people of Nephi, or that Moroni, had prepared his people with breastplates and with arm-shields, yea, and also shields to defend their heads, and also they were dressed with thick clothing—
20 Now the army of Zerahemnah was not prepared with any such thing; they had only their swords and their cimeters, their bows and their arrows, their stones and their slings; and they were naked, save it were a skin which was girded about their loins; yea, all were naked, save it were the Zoramites and the Amalekites;
21 But they were not armed with breastplates, nor shields—therefore, they were exceedingly afraid of the armies of the Nephites because of their armor, notwithstanding their number being so much greater than the Nephites.