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Sunday, January 29, 2012

To Raise or Not to Raise

Have you ever been in church and the person leading the class or meeting asks "Will someone be willing to give the opening or closing pray?" What happens then? There is usually a lull with the hope that someone else will eventually give in raise their hand and say it so we aren't asked to.

As I read the Sunday School lesson for today, I thought about the Man that raised His hands for us. A plan was presented that we all agreed on and shouted for joy over because it would give us the chance to become like our Heavenly Father and to return to His presence. We were all there and maybe many of us could have raised our hands when the question was asked "Whom shall I send?" Did we all sit around with our heads down and hope that someone else would raise their hand?

Have you ever had the feeling when you were at church that you were going to be asked so say a prayer? It's just something you knew so when you were asked it wasn't a suprise. I've had that feeling many times. I am grateful to be asked to talk to Father in behalf of those present. I am grateful that Father knew I had something to say, even in a prayer, that others and myself needed to hear.

I think that is what it was like when "the question" was asked. I think Jesus knew that he would be choosen even though there was another that wanted to be asked. Jesus knew what accepting the call would mean, pain, sorrow, and even death. Those things he knew were only temporary. What mattered most was that we would have our agency to choose good or evil, happiness or sorrow, light or darkness, vurtue or vise. He accepted the call because He loves us. It was all about LOVE.

So the next time the question is asked, whatever the question may be, be the one to raise your hand and say “Here am I...".

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

My Word!

On the day that I arrived in Germany I was assigned a room in a army barracks where I would make my home for two months until Lynsie came to join me. Before I could move in and rest my weary body from the long plane flight and from the time difference of eight hours,
a civilian worker for the military had to come and inventory and inspect the room. This was done so when it came time for me to move out if anything was broken or missing I would have to pay for it. After her quick inspection, (thank you civilian military worker lady) I signed a couple of papers indicating that all that was in the room would stay in the room and that I would pay for anything that might get broken or damaged.

Two months later Lynsie showed up with our dog Woody, and we moved into our own apartment "on the economy". That is what it is called when you don't live in Army housing on a base. We didn't really have a choice, we had to live off base which was okay with us because we wanted to have a European experience in Europe and not an American experience in Europe like all of those that live in Army housing do.

I was told of an hotel that rented apartments without deposit and without contracts so I took a drive one beautiful sunny day and found it. I told the owners daughter what I was looking for and she drove me to the apartment building where apartments were available. She showed me one, the one we are living in now. I thought it was rather small but it would serve it purpose until we were able to move into a bigger place. When I told the lady that I would take it she just said "Okay". I asked if I needed to put any money down as a deposit and she said no. I thought "Sweet!"
Just over a week later, the day before Lynsie arrived, I picked up the key for what would be our new home for the remaining time we were in Germany. I again asked if I needed to put down some money. I was told no again. I was quite surprised that they were going to allow us to move in without signing a contract and without giving them any money. This was a new experience for me! Do these people really just allow anyone to move in and expect to get paid every month just because the gave their word? YES! Aren't they concerned that someone give their word and will live there for a short time, steal everything then move out without paying? NO! All they needed was my word and the deal was done. We shook hands and that was it.

I have since learned that your word is your bond here in Germany. When you say you will do something, when you say you will give something, when you say you will be somewhere, it is given that you will. As I pondered this I my mind was drawn to the day I committed my life to JESUS.

I didn't sign any papers, I just said to Him that I am willing "to be called his people, and (I'm) willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light; Yea, and (I'm) willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort, and to stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that (I) may be in, even until death, that (I) may be redeemed of God, and be numbered with those of the first resurrection, that (I) may have eternal life—" (Mosiah 18:8-9).

I am sorry to say that I haven't kept those commitments as well as I would have liked. Many times I have wondered how much longer will it be before He evicts me for not living up to the commitments that I made. I have just passed the 25 year mark since I made those commitments and if He hasn't evicted me by now I don't think He ever will. Here is one thing I KNOW. He will NEVER break His promises to me. He will ALWAYS be there for me even when I'm not there for Him. He LOVES me unconditionally. There is NOTHING I can do or say that would give Him reason to not love me. He doesn't know how not to love.