This blog is not an official website of
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, nor is Lindsay their official spokesperson.

Friday, July 13, 2012

We All Believe The Same Thing

Dear Readers,

I've thoroughly been enjoying my time these past few months.  I apologize for anyone who has missed my posting.  I truly feel sorry if you came expecting to read something and there wasn't anything new.

Over the past few months I've traveled a little bit and also just sat around lazily enjoying sunny days at the beach with my family.  Can I get a "Yay" for family?  And a double "Yay" for true relaxation!!!

I don't want anyone to think that I stopped posting because I ran out of ideas, or that I was wavering in my faith and commitment to the gospel of Christ.  That is simply NOT true.  This is also why I feel it is important to post today and let you know that,

I DO have a testimony of my Savior, Jesus Christ, that He atoned for me.  I love Him and He KNOWS and loves me.

My devotion to Him has not wavered at all this summer, though my presence here might be interpreted as such.  If anything my relationship with Him has been strengthened and my understanding of Him has been deepened in ways that I never thought possible.

Recently there was a period of 5 Sundays in a row where I attended a different congregation (all LDS) each Sunday.  There were circumstances that dictated this occurrence as this obviously isn't normal.  Between my other travelling this summer, I have attended 2 additional congregations to the ones previously listed and another stake's Stake Conference.  I attended wards that were so big it looked like Stake Conference as the chapel and gym were filled.  I attended wards that were so small they met in a teeny meetinghouse where the chapel and the gym were the same room (so no pews, just chairs they could remove to play basketball after partitioning off the rostrum).  In some areas members traveled 30 minutes to get to church.  In other places, members traveled 3 minutes to get to church.  Some wards were loud and filled with children fidgeting.  Others were silent with nary a sound.  I attended wards where the language spoken was English.  I attended congregations where the language spoken was Spanish.  I heard choirs sing some places, but not others.  I heard visiting general authorities, visiting teaching conferences, firesides, Relief Society activity nights, testimony meetings, and regular Sunday sacrament meetings.  I talked to many missionaries asking about the work in their location.  Sometimes I was meeting old friends.  Sometimes I was making new friends.  All of this was spread out between 5 different states and thousands of miles.

Guess what?

We all believe the same thing!  Sunday schools everywhere were studying The Book of Mormon.  The sacrament was administered in the same fashion in each locale.  The proper priesthood authority presided over meetings everywhere I went.  Testimonies about Christ and God's love were freely shared and given everywhere I went.

It has been a wonderful summer to be surrounded by so many other people who believe the same thing.  You might say that we are just a large group of people dedicated to their church.  We are loyal and faithful and that's why we go...because of the church as an institution.  I would say that we go to these meetinghouses because we love the Savior and his Doctrine and know that Heavenly Father has a plan for us that necessitates us being a member of the one church that has the proper authority and truthfulness here on the Earth.  And to know that there are people who share this same belief located all around the world is quite thrilling.  It strengthens me.  I know that I have only witnessed a small taste as I didn't even leave the United States this summer.

People always say that the Church is the same everywhere and that's true.  The administration and programs are standardized.  Even more amazing to me is the faith, devotion, and testimonies of the believers and members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  People are praying everywhere for peace, love, and hope from the atonement.  People are feeling joy from keeping the commandments in every nation around the world.

I wish every person in the world could share this joy and feel such hope.  It motivates me to open my mouth and share.  I am teaching Chapter 13: Doing Our Part to Share the Gospel this Sunday and so I will be sharing some these same thoughts with my class.

Ever yours,
Lindsay

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