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that your joy might be full

 

I had the most wonderful experience last weekend.

We went to a family reunion to see some extended family members that we haven’t seen in years.  And some that we haven’t seen in months.

20150619_152112

 

 

There was just something wonderful about being with people who share the same genetics, and a lot of the same stories from over the years.
20150619_152002We could talk about Grandma who passed a few years ago and we all instantly understand.

At the same time, life has not been easy for any of us. We have all had trials. Some that have ended, and some that keep on coming (even during the reunion.)

The beauty of being with people you love, is the joy that comes from sharing what we have learned and how far we have come.  It’s funny how time can bring things into perspective.

Dad's siblings

 

I know that to my Grandma the people in this picture were the most important people in her world.  That’s how it is as a mom.  And I also believe that to her personally, the Savior is the source of a full and complete life.

It can be so easy to let the bad stuff in life get to you.  But that isn’t a part of Christ’s plan.  He said

These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.

 

What I came to understand through this weekend is that even though there are many trials, and the world may be full of many evils, Christ is on our side, and He wants us to —

  1. Keep his commandments so that we can have joy. John 15:10 “If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love.” In a world full of challenges, true peace can only be found in Him.
  2. He expects us to watch out for each other.  John 15: 12-13 “This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you. Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” Although we will most likely not be required to give up our lives for a friend, we should be willing to live our lives in such a way that we can help those that are struggling and to share our testimonies of Christ’s love, so that we can ease the burdens of those who are suffering.   “These things I command you, that ye love one another.”

The greatest joy in life is found through love. It can also bring heartache when those we love are suffering, but to know that Christ expects us to help each other, sometime by just being there with them, can help to ease the suffering. We should be doing all that we can to help bring joy to life, and by doing so, Christ will make up the difference and everything can eventually work out.

John 15:16:

ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.”

Blessing will come as we put forth righteous efforts and joy can be found in Christ.

Like this reflecting pool only shows a clear reflection as long as the water is calm and undisturbed, I realize that the only way I can reflect the love of Christ to others is if I can feel his peace in me.  temple reflection pool

By paying attention to the needs of others (even if it’s just by listening), by keeping His spirit close to me through regular study and prayer, and by working hard to keep the commandments, I will not only be able to feel more joy in my life, but I may be able to reflect joy to the people who I care about.

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