Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Always Remember Him

In Remembrance of Me by Greg Olsen 

I had the amazing opportunity to speak in Sacrament in Church last Sunday. It is sure to be one I will always remember. I had a few people ask to read my talk because they could not attend so I figured I would just share with all of you. The beauty of this talk is not matter your religion, as long as you believe in Christ, this talk can apply to you. We all can use ways to remember our Great Redeemer, Jesus Christ. While some beliefs may differ, our love for HIM is the same. 
We apologize for our two heavy posts right in a row, but this blog is our lives as we live it, and these are the things that apply to the now. 

-Always Remember Him-
By: Sheena LaRose

One of the perks of being neighbors with the bishop is he will always know whether or not you will be in town to speak on Sunday's. 
No, in all honesty I owe a sincere thank you to whomever was inspired to have me speak on this day, on this topic. I didn't realize how much I needed it until someone acted upon a prompting to tell me. 
This seems to be the case often in my life. 
It was a Sunday, I was sitting by the Canovas and sacrament was being passed. I leaned over to mention something to Cassidy and Susan was quick to hush us. "Don't talk during Sacrament she said". If my daughter is like a little sister to you, that makes me like a Mother.” I love you Suz! I wouldn't wish you any other way! 
I know that Sacrament is a time of reverence but I didn't know that while the bread and water were being administered it is a time of silence. Or did I? 

As I ponder my days of a new member I believe I did know this. My first year as a new member I would spend those moments while waiting for the bread and water, praying to my Heavenly Father. I would give thanks for my weekly blessings and also ask for forgiveness for any wrongdoings that may have occurred. For the record, I have never been taught or told that taking that time to think of him or to pray was custom. I believe I was in a more humble state than I am now, that is apparent to me now and in preparing this talk and coming to that realization was somewhat of a hard pill to swallow. I am reminded of how I truly should spend that time in waiting. 
Granted I was a 20 year old with no one to bother me during sacrament but a sweet old man that sat next to me every Sunday. If I am being realistic here, children make it a little more difficult to spend that time the way I prefer, but I know my Heavenly Father will still hear my prayers and humility whether I am 100% reverently praying or praying with one eye open and one arm folded while the other keeps a child from running up and down the isles or bothering his or her siblings... Or the people in a 10 ft radius of us for that matter. I'm just being honest here. 

A little bit ago you heard me mention being a new member. This December marked my 9 year anniversary of my baptism. It wasn't until this week that I had the realization that I am not a new member anymore. I'm am not simply, but most complexly, a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I realized that up until now I have been playing the new member card as a crutch. An excuse for my lack of knowledge. As a scape goat if I got something wrong. It's unfortunate that it took so long for me to come to this realization, but also an accomplishment that I did. I have the same credibility as any other member, as long as I am studying and growing. It's a wonderful and scary realization. For with that confidence comes accountability. Instead of asking questions all the time to other members, I can do the research myself and go straight to the source. My Heavenly Father and the scriptures. That way it becomes my interpretation and in turn strengthens not only my knowledge but my testimony as the truth that is manifested unto me. 

Picture if you will a scene. On screen you see the most beautiful of images and a voice that we recognize well speaks:
"The hours that lay immediately ahead would change the meaning of all human history. It would be the crowning moment of eternity, the most miraculous of all the miracles. It would be the supreme contribution to a plan designed from before the foundation of the world for the happiness of every man, woman, and child who would ever live in it. The hour of atoning sacrifice had come. God’s own Son, his Only Begotten Son in the flesh, was about to become the Savior of the world.
“This Do in Remembrance of Me” 
Elder holland of the 1995 October general conference 
I was given this conference talk as a reference and it, like all conference talks, has wonderful content. You will here me refer to bits and pieces of this talk throughout mine. 

The setting is Jerusalem. A feast is to be had 
What would become Jesus' last Passover. Where he sat among his most loyal and broke bread to symbolize his body. A bruised and Beaten body. A broken heart. “This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me” (Luke 22:19)
and drank to symbolize his blood. Sweat that was like blood from every pore. Blood of a paid debt for all mankind. 
"This cup is the New Testament in my blood, which is shed for you." (Luke 22:20)

We can remember him in many ways. Not just by thinking of HIM, but also of those who heavily impacted his mortal life. 

The talk that Sister Wallace gave on Christmas about his mother Mary. What it must have been like for her. A woman who was probably in the age range of you girls in Young Women. Can you imagine being so young and holding that type of responsibility? Granted she did not know at the time, but can you imagine what she felt the moment she realized not only who but what her son was?

We could remember his magnificent but virtually unknown foster father, a humble carpenter by trade who taught us, among other things, that quiet, plain, unpretentious people have moved this majestic work forward from the very beginning, and still do so today. If you are serving almost anonymously, please know that so, too, did one of the best men who has ever lived on this earth.

We could remember that Christ called his disciples friends. Judas undoubtedly forsakes him and how did he respond to such a betrayal? But Christ knew of a bigger plan. Rather than feeling sorrow for his own life, he probably felt for Judas and the guilt he would feel that would prove to be too much and ultimately end his life. We would do good to remember that in our daily encounters . What does it mean when we say to be Christlike? Speaking of our dealings with friends and acquaintances. Sure we should be kind, compassionate, loving, all of those Christlike attributes we most commonly refer to, but what type of friend was Jesus really? Let us think back again to HIS last Passover while he broke bread and drank with his disciples whom he called friends all knowingly that some would betray and deny him. Nevertheless, he loved them so and prayed for them. Atoned for them. 

In our daily dealings when we are speaking with people we need to think to ourselves know it's one thing to be Christlike, but being literal in the sense. Do you think that when that day comes when we finally meet our Savior he's going to set us down and say to us my child I have had the worst time waiting up here I mean I had to give my life, I've been fighting this never-ending battle with you know who and I've done it all with headache. The answer to that brothers and sisters is no. I believe wholeheartedly that he will open his arms, embrace us and say my child how art thou? I love thee, I've missed thee. Sometimes we need to listen and be still. We should remember this in times like visiting and home teachings. 

Picture yourself sitting among Christs disciples as they await in the garden of Gethsemane. Christ asks you to wait and watch while he prays. A miracle is about to take place. Christ will atone for all sins and it will be undoubtedly one of the most spiritual experiences you will witness. Christ goes to pray but stays in close proximity, he comes back and finds you asleep. Christ asks you with Indignation, 'What, could Ye not watch with me one hour?" 
Peter speaks up with complete exhaustion and says" The spirit indeed is wiling, but the flesh is weak". (Matthew 26:40-41)

Because you could not stay awake for just one hour you just missed one of the greatest miracles to take place. 
How's that for a slice of humble pie? I too have felt similar to Peter's words this past year. My spirit wiling to go to church, but because I was just too tired to wake up early enough to have my family ready and on time, I was weak and most definitely missed out on miracles, or blessings if you will. In fact those of you who know me have probably heard me express my excitement for 1 o'clock church. I have been missing the point. I believe he asks that again of us, to stay with him, to watch, every Sabbath day when the emblems of his life are broken and blessed and passed. While we renew the beautiful covenants that we made on our day of Baptism. It is a miracle that we have this ability week after week.

In all there is to remember of Christ there is simply not enough time to remember everything about the man we call Savior in one hour. It's a good thing that there is always going to be sacrament given on Sunday, in this building, in every Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, even in hospitals, and that gives us at least one chance a week to always remember him. 
I believe it is important that we treat each sacrament sacred and a security of redemption. For, unlike Christ, We do not know when our last Passover will be.

In closing, although I focused on remembering him during Sacrament, these thoughts of our Savior should be implemented daily. Our lives will be richly blessed as we think of him often. I testify that this is true. As I studied our Savior every day since I received word of the topic of my talk. I feel closer to Christ more than ever because I know him better. Simply because I chose to remember him. I studied him and not just stories of him. I pondered him. I thought of what it would be like if I were present. Just like in any book, if you allow yourself, you can live as they live it. This too is so with the scriptures. You can feel as if you were right there along with them. With HIM.  I propose a challenge that if it not already a part of your daily routine, that you take the time to get to know our Savior. As you always remember him, his spirit will be with you. I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.


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