I choose to believe because I see the hand of God in my life constantly. I have suffered a stroke and a hemorrhaged brain tumor over the past 4 years. As I struggled through these trials I was given Priesthood blessings to comfort and heal me. I have no residual effects from either health issue. I know My Savior has a plan for me! I am still here among the mortals. I should really not still be alive. I have the most incredible 3 sons. When their dad and I divorced I felt incredibly broken! I am the person I am because God needs me to be their mom. I was lead by my Father in Heaven to a wonderful man, Drew Matthews is my best friend and he helps me see the best in myself! When I was having my children I had a set of twin girls. They lived for only a few minutes! I was crushed beyond words. My Savior put his arms around me and carried me through some of the most painful moments in my life! I know he is by my side in good times and in rough times. I love Him, He loves me! That is all the reason I need to choose to believe!
This past year has brought many changes to our family. Another mission call. Covid. An engagement. No mission. A wedding. Changes in callings. Changes in weight. Changes in school situations. Another wedding. And other personal struggles that just come as part of life.
Elder Holland said, “The FUTURE of this world has long been DECLARED; the final outcome between GOOD and evil is already KNOWN. There is absolutely no question as to who WINS because the VICTORY has already been posted on the SCOREBOARD. The only really strange thing in all of this is that we are still down here on the FIELD trying to decide which TEAM’S JERSEY we want to wear!”
"No pain that I suffer, no trial that I experience is wasted. It ministers to my education, to the development of such qualities, faith, fortitude and humility. All that I suffer and all that I endure, especially when I endure it patiently, builds up my character, purifies my heart, expands my soul, and makes me more tender and charitable, more worthy to be called a child of God... and it is through sorrow and suffering, toil and tribulation, that I gain the education that I came here to acquire and which will make me more like my Father and Mother in heaven."
Orson F. Whitney
My trials have been no different than yours. I hope and pray that through your difficult times, you too have been blessed with the Saviors hand in your life, and that your hearts are turned to Him for strength and guidance. And always know that our Savior loves you.
I choose to believe because I have had many experiences where I know the Lord is there with me. Our 22-year-old son, Alec, just passed away a couple weeks ago. I truly believe that the other hard experiences I went through a few years ago, and the comfort that the Lord gave me during those times, helped me with this most recent loss. Life isn’t always easy, but the Lord is mindful of us and he will give us the comfort and strength to make it through any trial. During those hardest times is when I feel the closest to the Lord. I have heard his voice reminding me to “Be still." Having the knowledge of God’s plan brings peace to my soul. This mortal life is but a short time in that plan.
I am thankful for my membership in and testimony of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I am grateful for parents who daily taught me about what is right and what is wrong and how I should live my life. My dad taught us and reminded us all often that if we put God first everything else will work out.
Why do I choose to believe? Thinking about this question it all comes back to one answer...PEACE. Believing in Him is the one true path to peace in this life and in our eternal life to come. This knowledge brings so much comfort, relief, and help as we face challenges everyday. With each new day the world around us is changing - nothing is constant, nothing is stable. We have all been a witness to this and have all experienced it first hand in one way or another. Health, economy, careers, illness, death, struggling children or loved ones, finances - the list goes on and on. The one thing that is never changing is the love of our Savior and His eternal plan. Knowing that the Lord is in charge and is aware of us gives me so much peace and hope as we face our struggles, trials, fears, and heartaches.
I choose to believe because I have a testimony of our Heavenly Father's Plan, which is a plan of happiness. I know that no matter how difficult life may be, that as we look for the good things in life that good will come back to us. I recently read a talk by Elder Uchtdorf in which he talked about how sooner or later all of us experience times when the very fabric of our world tears at the seams, leaving us feeling alone, frustrated, and adrift. However, there is one thing we can do to make life sweeter and more joyful, and that is to be grateful. When life is difficult, it can be hard to be grateful, but if we focus on being grateful, despite our circumstances, whatever they may be, we can experience peace in the midst of tribulation. He asks, "How much of life do we miss by waiting to see the rainbow before thanking God for the rain?"
To be honest, as I was scrolling through this Facebook page I felt so inadequate to be putting my simple thoughts on a page filled with beautifully written words, by some amazingly inspired and strong women. Then I remembered why I “Choose to Believe.” I Choose to believe because I know that no matter how small or inadequate I feel, Heavenly Father still loves me. Just the way I am. He can hear my simple prayers pleading for help throughout the day. He sends me angels here on earth, many in the form of you wonderful sisters, helping me with my kids, being great friends and examples to me. I choose to believe because I know that this simple mother of 5, here in Layton Utah is loved by her Heavenly Father. I know that He answers our prayers, and I know that if we choose to find the good in the world, we will always see His hand it.
I choose to believe because I love Heavenly Father and His son, my Savior Jesus Christ. My love for them binds me to them. I have felt Their love for me in real, tangible ways - my own spiritual experiences with God. Elder Neil L. Anderson spoke about these experiences in his talk “Spiritually Defining Memories” from the April 2020 General Conference.
I was recently thinking about what I was doing a year ago at this time. The kids were all in school. I was trying my hand at some home canning and thinking about Halloween decorations. Fast forward a year and canning is about the only thing that is familiar. We’re now a good six months or so into a once in a hundred year pandemic and it has put its mark on just about everything- church, work, school, and social lives. Meanwhile, our country is in an extremely divided time politically. There is civil unrest and protests around the nation as we try to work out our issues with race. There are wildfires that are consuming large swaths of the West. Even locally, there are contentions about school schedules, and wearing masks, etc. IT CAN BE A LOT.
I look around and I feel like today’s world is the world foretold about in the scriptures of the last days. There is uncertainty and fear all around us. When I see this and the doubt that is overcoming so many, I find myself being thankful to my parents for teaching me the gospel. Because they taught me, I am afforded the ability to choose to believe or not. I choose to believe for so many reasons. However, the biggest reason I choose to believe, and act on that belief, is so I can give my children the same choice I was given. It is my greatest desire to be with my family for all eternity. I choose to believe for them.
I choose to believe because I know that when I have trusted in Him he has led me through life’s ups, and perhaps more importantly life’s downs!
“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)
When life gets difficult, I remember this scripture, I repeat it often, and I draw closer to Him. There are times I’ve found a quiet spot and prayed...literally opened my heart to him, and He has brought comfort and peace to my soul! Other times I’ve opened my scriptures and found guidance and direction applicable to me and the situation I’m facing!!
I have been pondering this question for a few days now, “Why do I choose to believe” and the answer that I keep thinking is that it is scary to think of what the alternative is. The Gospel brings me peace and hope. My daughter is serving a mission in Newport Beach California. When people ask me how she is doing I can’t help but smile. She brings light into my life; I can see the light of Christ in her eyes and I can feel the spirit (she calls them spirit chills) when she shares her experiences with us and all the tender mercies she is experiencing even in a Pandemic. People are looking for this same peace and hope that we already have and she gets to share the Good News of the Gospel with them. I feel so blessed each day that I know that God knows me, that he hears and answers my prayers. I am so grateful for the tender mercies in my life and my children’s that strengthen my testimony and remind me that God Is there, that he is in the details.
In this unpredictable world that we are experiencing, it has been easy for me to feel anxious and frustrated. I have learned to pray with more intent and I have searched the scriptures more diligently . I believe, because doing these things brings me calm and peace and I feel His love for me. One thing that has never changed is the need to love others more. The guidance that the Holy Ghost has whispered to me as I teach beautiful children at school is to just love them more. Show more kindness and understanding. Speak softer. As I strive to do these things I have felt happiness in the storm of this life.