Sunday, January 15, 2012

Elder Jepsen Goes to Sonderborg

Esbjerg is located to the far West. Copenhagen (København) is in the far East, showing the entire width of Denmark, if you don't count The Faroe Islands and Greenland. Sonderborg (Sønderborg) is in the lower left quarter of the map.
Regrettably, we don't have a weekly note from Elder Jepsen to share with you this week. 

A mission is a labor of love, faith and service to God and we are grateful to once again have a son on a mission. We appreciate when we hear from him and continue to remain grateful, even on the days when we don't hear from him. 

According to a reliable source, Elder Jepsen will be been transferred to Sonderborg (see the above map) as of January 17th. But, soon the US visa will be processed and another transfer is coming up.

Please, look for future updates to be posted on the blog. We'll pass them on as soon as we receive them.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Feeling the Holy Ghost: Power of the Holy Spirit

Treasure in Heaven: The John Tanner Story

Elder Neal A. Maxwell once said "Consecration is the only sacrifice which is also a victory." The following two videos on that very subject tells of an example worthy to be shared:

Sunday, January 1, 2012

The Atonement Covers All Pain

In the words of Elder Kent F. Richards "None of us are immune to experiencing pain." Our pains don't go unnoticed. God lives and He knows our pain. Like you, I too have experienced pain: Years ago, when sitting in my car with my foot on the brake, stopped for the red light in an intersection, my car was impacted from the back with enough force to total the car and push it out into the intersection. I actually didn't notice any physical consequences until later when my right arm began to tingle and hurt. Soon my life was focused around the daily intake of painkillers. After surgery, the pain continued and still does continue. I often wonder what I could have done different but the situation remains because I like everyone else am subjected to the limitations of mortality. Through the years of hoping, praying and waiting for relief, I have found comfort in my faith in God. I have also at times found an escape and relief in God from the seemingly impossible levels of physical and emotional pain, while at the same time learning a great many things about my mortal state.

Physical and emotional pain takes many forms. Besides physical pain, I have experienced despair, hopelessness, depression, anxiety, surrender, apathy, self-disgust and a heart attack. Through the fog of heavy doses of morphine and other heavy medications it was difficult to feel anything at all. Yet, in the brief moments of clarity I felt the presence of God in my life, guiding and holding me by the hand, helping me survive a time when I had no desire left to live--I wanted to die. Through it all, God was there for me and when I myself felt spiritually numb, others listened to the whisperings of God for me and I felt the compassion of others, reaching out in loving understanding in spite of my then altered perceptions, imposed by so many medications.

After many years in pain and I still can't go through a day without seeking some relief in medicines but my pains have decreased enough that I now occasionally can drive a motorcycle (cars are too dangerous and maybe I'll be a smaller target for those driving cars, when I am on a motorcycle). But, all joking aside. Throughout all of this, my love for our Lord has grown in ways I had never imagined before in my life--and my understanding of God's ways has increased and deepened. God was there for me when I needed Him and He is still there for me, not in the way I might ever have expected but better in the long run.

God understands my situation and although He probably would prefer that I did more with my time, I have felt the love of our Savior in my life and feel closer to Him than ever before. God understands all our situations, He knows our suffering, disappointment and pain.

God is always there for us, waiting for us to draw near to Him. He's patiently waiting, sometimes for a very long time before we finally are ready to come to Him, sufficiently humble, honest and sincere to seek Him and listen for the whisperings of the Spirit in our lives. Our Savior Jesus Christ suffered that we may have His atonement available for us when we are ready:

The Book of Mormon, Alma, Chapter 7, verse 13:
13 Now the Spirit knoweth all things; nevertheless the Son of God suffereth according to the flesh that he might take upon him the sins of his people, that he might blot out their transgressions according to the power of his deliverance; and now behold, this is the testimony which is in me.

Jesus Christ our Savior, knows about pain and suffering. He could have known about and understood our pains simply through revelation but He chose to learn through His own personal experience. Jesus Christ actually chose to suffer pain and afflictions to better understand us:

The Book of Mormon, Alma, Chapter 7, verses 11 and 12:
11 And he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people.
12 And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities.

Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, is indeed the best friend any of us will ever have and we can trust that He will understand, as we through Him address our Heavenly Father in our hour of need.

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