Anyone who knows me probably can't imagine I would write a title like that on a day like today. Back in January when I was getting daily radiation therapy, I had to drive about 45 minutes each way. I became addicted to talk radio (we have a great FM station here). It was the beginning of the election frenzy and I was on board. Since then I have listened to and read everything I could get my hands on. I mourned when Romney had to bow out. I cheered when Sarah Palin and her big family and conservative values joined Mccain. I think I began to scare people a little with my obsession. I teared up as I voted yesterday and prayed hard for Mccain. I was angry with Obama and his supporters. Angry that abortion was fine with them. Angry that we didn't know what he was up to or what he really was going to do. Angry that that was ok with so many Americans. I love America. I didn't want "change" for change's sake. I love freedom of Religion. I want to be able to say that I am pro-life and that I believe marriage is between a man and a woman without being told I'm a bigot or that I didn't care about women. I love capitalism. I was sad that we had gone through 13 years of really hard times to get Jaymee into a practice only to have it taken away. I love that we are the most generous country on earth. I didn't like being told we weren't. But I have to stop right there. I've gotten off course and forgotten what I learned today. My point is that I was passionate about this election.
Last night when I saw that Obama had won I cried and cried. Unfortunately, Jaym was in a benadryl coma because he lost a battle with poison ivy making us a huge fire pit in the back yard so I was all alone in my grief. I came upstairs and began to pray. I prayed that my sadness could be replaced with peace. I prayed to know that this was indeed the will of the Lord. I don't like being angry. I don't like those dark feelings. I begged Heavenly Father to grant me understanding and then I went to sleep. It was a restless night. I tossed and turned and wrote a scathing blog in my mind about how it's the end of the world and it stinks. Also, every time I woke up, however, the phrase "perilous times must come" came to my thoughts. Over and over all night long.
This morning when I woke up, I went straight to my computer and typed in the phrase in to the search on lds.org. A talk by President Hinckley came up called "the Dawning of a Brighter Day". It says that "peril is not a new condition for the human family." It mentions the war in heaven, Noah's day and other times in the Old Testament, the wars in the Book of Mormon and about poor Moroni wandering alone without a people because they had all been killed off. It talks about the apostasy and the plague where 50 million people died and those who were left worried whether humanity had a future at all.
But then came the Renaissance. Light, science, healing, art. The Restoration of the gospel through the Prophet Joseph Smith. It didn't mean evil was gone - evil manifested itself as persecution and hatred. Charles Dickens was quoted saying,"It was the best of times and the worst of times... it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.”
We are in a great time. The work of the Lord is moving across the earth. Knowledge increases every day. People can be cured of cancer. The world is more educated than ever. President Hinckley said,"Man’s ingenuity knows no end when the God of heaven inspires and pours out light and knowledge."
These are also perilous times. It would seem as if many people are choosing evil over good. Or choosing not to care. The end of his talk was the part I was supposed to read the most. I'm just going to paste it here because I can't say it any better: (italics added because they are pretty)
"Do we really comprehend, do we understand the tremendous significance of that which we have? This is the summation of the generations of man, the concluding chapter in the entire panorama of the human experience.
But this does not put us in a position of superiority. Rather, it should humble us. It places upon us an unforgiving responsibility to reach out with concern for all others in the Spirit of the Master, who taught, “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Matt. 19:19). We must cast out self-righteousness and rise above petty self-interest.
We must do all that is required in moving forward the work of the Lord in building His kingdom in the earth. We can never compromise the doctrine which has come through revelation, but we can live and work with others, respecting their beliefs and admiring their virtues, joining hands in opposition to the sophistries, the quarrels, the hatred—those perils which have been with man from the beginning.
Without surrendering any element of our doctrine, we can be neighborly, we can be helpful, we can be kind and generous.
We of this generation are the end harvest of all that has gone before. It is not enough to simply be known as a member of this Church. A solemn obligation rests upon us. Let us face it and work at it.
We must live as true followers of the Christ, with charity toward all, returning good for evil, teaching by example the ways of the Lord, and accomplishing the vast service He has outlined for us.
May we live worthy of the glorious endowment of light and understanding and eternal truth which has come to us through all the perils of the past. Somehow, among all who have walked the earth, we have been brought forth in this unique and remarkable season. Be grateful, and above all be faithful. This is my humble prayer, as I bear witness of the truth of this work, in the sacred name of Jesus Christ, amen."
I am humbled today that even though I don't always do my part, the Lord reaches out and answers my prayers. He lead me to this talk and I do feel peace. I feel like getting over my feelings about the election and showing a greater love to all of the people around me. That's all I have power over. Our country and its fate is and always has been in the hands of the Lord. We need to do our best and be grateful to live in such an amazing time.
Sorry this is so long. I had to share.