Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Best Blessing

This video always chokes me up a little at the end, I don't know why. 

This year has probably been the best year of my life. So, when asked the question,
"What are you thankful for,"
 I'm almost paralyzed for a second because so many things come to mind. My perspective of the world has been broadened beyond so many horizons, making me grateful for things that never even occurred to me last Thanksgiving. My testimony has been strengthened, tried, and relied upon to make me more grateful for the gospel than ever before. 

Yes, I am grateful for the opportunities I had to walk where Christ walked, to live with 80 other students who became great friends, to learn from inspired professors, to see the pyramids and swim in the sea Jesus walked on and snorkel in the waters Moses parted. I'm grateful to have met sweet people of Tanzania and learn from them and see how they live, to sing "Count your many Blessings" at church every Sunday with those who had so much less than I, to see wild animals and play pick-up games of soccer with barefoot boys as the sun set behind the banana trees. I'm grateful for the protection I literally felt around me when I was in dangerous situations. 
And, of course, these experiences have made me grateful for reliable electricity, malaria-free mosquitoes, running water, toilets above the ground, good health, and the United States of America. 
I'm grateful to go to school at BYU and to live, work, and study in such an uplifting environment. I'm grateful to have a job at the MTC. I'm grateful for my roommates and the spirit they bring to my apartment. I'm grateful for the experiences and lessons I've learned this semester, even if learning them was a little painful.
I'm grateful for my wise parents to whom I will always be indebted to for all they have taught and given me.
I'm grateful to be in Sedona for Thanksgiving with all 16 members of my family, including the six cutest nieces and nephews ever.

I'm so very thankful for these things, although they be just the tip of the iceberg. My heart is full to the brim.

But mostly, what it all comes down to, what puts my cup of joy at max capacity, what I am MOST grateful for; is our Savior, Jesus Christ. He is what provides hope for all of us, even when we know we'll never measure up enough. I'm grateful for His gospel that provides guidance and peace unlike anything else. If I didn't have all the blessings I listed above, I could still be happy if I had the gospel in my life.

I know I'm a daughter of God. I know Jesus Christ lives. I know the Book of Mormon and Bible are true. I know that living the commandments is what brings true happiness in life.

I know God answers prayers.

I know who I am. 

I know what the purpose of life is.

This knowledge is the most influential blessing I've ever been given. Happiness or peace based on income, relationships, popularity, grades, or anything else will fluctuate as those things change. But happiness based on trust in the Lord ensures a constant steadiness since the Lord never changes and His love and involvement in our life never will, either. An understanding of Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ is truly the blessing of all blessings.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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