Monday, December 16, 2013

Ransom Captive Israel

Yesterday I drove 45 minutes to a different ward to speak in their Sacrament Meeting. It was a beautiful, cold Sunday morning. I played a new Vocal Point Christmas music video on my phone. (Rest assured, I was driving and was obviously just listening, not watching or being distracted by their handsome bundled-up faces.)

The first line caused a gush of gratitude for the Savior. I felt the Spirit from my head down to my foot on the gas pedal.  "O Come, O Come Emmanuel. And ransom captive Israel."

What a perfect line! We, as a people, are Israel. And we are captive because of sin. Yet the ransom has been paid! We can be free from the captivity of our sins.

I thought of my new friend Nicholas. Earlier this year he was a  blonde-ponytailed, hippie-type young man who tended to smoke, drink, and do drugs and roller blade all around Sedona.  The sister missionaries contacted him on the street. I met him when he was investigating the church when I got home from my mission in October. And yesterday, I was driving to the chapel where I would see him be confirmed after being baptized on Saturday. Watching this amazing young man has brought all who know him so much happiness. He is now clean-cut and converted. He is more active than the average member. He went to a mission prep class the same day he became a member. And he says he's never been as happy as he has been as he's lived the gospel of Jesus Christ. He says he knows he is doing the right thing. "A step in the light is right," is one of his personal statements. And oh what a step into the light he has made.

Nicholas accepted the ransom that Jesus Christ has paid.

 I thought of what I learned about the Light of Christ on my mission (I've been thinking about light a lot lately). I wrote once, "Truly.... every good thing, all light, all life, everything uplifting and ennobling and joyful and beautiful and all influence for good comes because of Jesus Christ. There is no joy without the Light of Christ (Alma 28:14). I think of all the happy moments I`ve experienced--the list could go on with cherished memories from playing in the treehouse with Hope to the day I got my mission call, from fun FHE`s and Sunday walks to the joy of a good cross country race to the beauty of a sunrise on an African safari or the sunset on the Holy City from my Jerusalem balcony--and I realize that every little detail is in my life because of the Savior. "I am the light and the life of the world" has a whole new meaning for me.....I am so thankful for every happy moment our dear Savior has allowed me to enjoy. And I am so thankful to be aware of the many happy moments that are being created through missionary work all across the face of the earth. "

 "The light of Christ will lead the honest soul who 'hearkeneth to the voice' to find the true gospel and the true Church and thereby receive the Holy Ghost." (Bible Dictionary) And that is exactly what happened to Nicholas.  Mis felicidades mas profundas, amigo. :)

The world is chock-full of the light of Christ, whether we realize it or not. It is leading the honest in heart to take the steps necessary to become un-captivated, thanks to the Ransom paid.

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