Tuesday, September 6, 2011


"For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things. If not so, my first-born in the wilderness, righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad. Wherefore, all things must needs be a compound in one; wherefore, if it should be one body it must needs remain as dead, having no life neither death, nor corruption nor incorruption, happiness nor misery, neither sense nor insensibility."  2 Nephi 2:13 (emphasis added)

This weekend was a prime example of this particular doctrine.  There were many wonderful things about my weekend, particularly my chance to spend time with my family on Labor Day.  However, some things happened that made part of the weekend very hard, and I didn't understand at first why it had to be that way.  I cried all the way back to Provo after I left my family, wondering what on earth I was doing and why I didn't just go home and leave all my cares and worries behind.  Of course, the rational part of me knew that going home wouldn't solve anything, but after about 8:00 at night, my emotional side has free reign over my thought patterns.

Once I arrived in Provo and began the methodical process of unpacking and organizing my stuff back into my apartment, I had a chance to ponder a little bit on the weekend, and here's what I realized.  I started reflecting more on what has happened this whole week, and I discovered a connection I hadn't made at first.  Let's start with last Sunday.  I had a wonderful block of church meetings, I met some great people who are new in the ward, I got to know my roommates a little better, I listened to the ward choir flourish, I got set apart for my new calling, and I felt the Spirit all day long.  Throughout the week I've been able to become re-acquainted with my friends from my major and get excited for my new classes.  On Wednesday I attended institute, met some new people, heard a great lesson, and received several distinct insights of personal revelation.  This week I wrote the lyrics and arranged the music for a song that centers around Christ and turning toward Him.  This weekend I pulled out my cello for the first time in months, played the piano, spent time with my roommates and friends, enjoyed another wonderful Sunday (Music and the Spoken Word, ward choir, an incredible testimony meeting, and two other extremely spiritual church meetings), played with my siblings, talked to my mother about school and other stuff just for the sake of talking and connecting, watched a movie with my family, and came back to Provo to continue my education and my mental, emotional, personal, and spiritual growth.

Do you see where I'm going with this?  How could Satan allow a week full of such incredible growth and spiritual experiences to go by without opposing it?  So, what did he do?  He attacked me where he knew I was weak, forcing my false beliefs to the forefront of my mind.  He attacked my whole family when it was late and we were stressed and we were more vulnerable to his influence.  He attacked me as I was driving home, planting thoughts like, "What in the world am I doing?" and "Why can't I just go home?" in the forefront of my mind.  He tried to make me think that the things that I had done this week and weekend weren't worth the trouble.  But they ARE!  They are worth every ounce of trouble that Satan and the world can throw at me!  And you know what?  Rather than weakening my resolve, I think Satan's onslaught has made it stronger.  Because I know that he would only oppose what I'm doing if it were good and right and true.  If I'm getting that much opposition, I know I must be doing the right thing, and that has only served to tighten my resolve to keep going and do the best I can.  Sure, it'll be hard, but I have a wonderful family, my Heavenly Father, my Savior, and "numberless concourses of angels" standing behind me, in front of me, and all around me, and I know that things will be all right.

I'm grateful that the Spirit allowed these thoughts to enter my mind so I could understand my feelings and better know how to handle them.  I'm grateful that He sent my dear friend Toni to me when I needed someone to talk to and a shoulder to cry on.  And I'm grateful that I had the chance to spend some time with my family this weekend.  We may not always get along, and we have our own set of challenges, but I love them with all my heart, and I'm so grateful that, if we all live worthily, we will be able to live together for eternity.

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