This week was so much fun. I LOVE this ward with my whole heart. We were fed almost every night this week too 🏼. We love getting to know the members here. They're so great & down to earth.
A couple highlights of this week included: Being able to prepare two lessons, two nights in a row, that each family really needed. It was humbling to see the Spirit take over and help us know what the sweet families in our ward needed. And what We needed!
This week I watched the Bible Video where Jesus Christ heals the lame man on the Sabbath. I hadn't watched it since I've been in the city. (So, like 3 & 1/2 months now.) But when I watched it, something really startled me.
In the city there are lots and lots of homeless people. We pass by them every day. And in the video, the people sitting around the pool of Bethesda reminded me so strongly of the individuals we see all the time. I saw the video and this story in a new light:
Christ was not bothered by their smell, their appearance, their story, their condition...anything! He loved them, healed them, and lifted them up.
So last night when we were walking home, we passed by a couple individuals who were sitting alongside tall Chicago buildings and stores. And we felt prompted to go back and testify that we knew God loved them. We handed out some pass-along cards, and each of them accepted them and our words with appreciation and kindness. We promised them that we'd pray for them.
Sometimes it's really hard to see people living this way and not be able to do more for them. But I'm so grateful for the opportunity we have to be the Lord's hands and seek to lighten the burdens of others. I am grateful that He's teaching me that His love has no boundaries, and neither should ours.
It reminded me of a quote by elder Holland:
"Perhaps some have created their own difficulties, but don’t the rest of us do exactly the same thing? Isn’t that why this compassionate ruler asks, “Are we not all beggars?” Don’t we all cry out for help and hope and answers to prayers? Don’t we all beg for forgiveness for mistakes we have made and troubles we have caused? Don’t we all implore that grace will compensate for our weaknesses, that mercy will triumph over justice at least in our case? Little wonder that King Benjamin says we obtain a remission of our sins by pleading to God, who compassionately responds, but we retain a remission of our sins by compassionately responding to the poor who plead to us." (October 2014, "Are We Not All Beggars?)
I know that God lives and that we are His hands. I'm so honored & grateful for the opportunity we have here to learn how to be more compassionate, submissive, meek, and more like the Savior. Even though it's hard.
I hope we can all seek to lift up and bring help to those around us this week!
1. Selfie after District Meeting
2. Selfie during nightly planning. Ignore the awkward placement of my hand.