Thursday, March 13, 2014

Life Lessons & Light


In 1977 I went to a singles conference. One of the motivational speakers, Lucile Johnson was an exciting, upbeat, vibrant speaker. As I read her books and listen to her tapes, they take me back to that turbulent time in my life. In her book, Sunny Side Up, she tells of an event in Robert Louis Stevenson’s book, “Records of a Family of Engineers.”

In the story a ship is caught in a raging storm. “The passengers were terrified. They went below for safety as the boat pitched and tossed. But they were convinced they would all drown. A seaman had lashed himself to the wheel to keep from being washed overboard. One desperate passenger crawled on his hands and knees to the Pilot’s Station to talk to the captain. When he finally arrived, and looked up at the seaman. The seaman seamed to smile at him. The passenger, no longer terrified, crawled back to the rest of the passengers shouting with joy. “We will not drown, we are going to be safe. The captain is smiling.”

Lucille Johnson goes on to say, “So it is with our lives. Storms have their place, but they always pass. The buffeting of storms in our lives can bring about personal integrity if we weather the storm with courage and optimism. We could not easily develop courage and integrity if there were only blue skies and sunshine in our lives. But the secret of happy living in the midst of the storm is to hold fast to our belief that the sunshine will return. That makes the dark skies bearable.”

“As we come to understand that Jesus Christ is the Light of the World, we will increase our faith in Him and become a light to others. Christ testified of His role as “the true light that lighteth every man [and woman] that cometh into the world” and asked that we “hold up His light that it may shine unto the world” (March 2014 Ensign Magazine)

I know without a doubt that faith in my Heavenly Father has helped me through the deaths of a spouse, parents, and a child. It has helped me cope with a painful lingering chronic illness. Opportunities to serve others have taught me many different talents to enrich my life and the lives of others.

Mrs. Johnson continues, “ I believe that life is a demanding school. We spend a brief time in this school. There are necessary lessons that only this earth school can teach. It is foolish to attend such a specialized university, to pay the high tuition that is required, and then skip out on the classes, burn the textbooks, or flunk the tests on purpose because we don’t like the weather.”

Spring is coming. Go celebrate!

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