I've been thinking all week about some deep topics, and perspectives that really influence me in who I am and what I do. The phrase "you only live once" resounds in my head as I meditate such things as life, death, the future, the past.
I firmly believe, I'd say to the point that I know, that we don't and won´t only live once. We lived before we were born and we will live again after we die.
The decisions we make in this life have and will have an enormous impact on what kind of life we have after we die. There are absolute truths in the universe, and thus there are absolute consequences. We're not here to just 'live it up.' For every good decision we make, there will follow good consequences, and for every bad decision we make, there will follow bad consequences.
Now, I don't really understand why the consequences come when they do. It really isn't fair sometimes. But I believe in God, and I trust that His timing is better than ours.
One of my favorite scriptures is found in the Bible - Matt. 6:19-20
I feel so strongly that if we choose to serve others, and do good, and be obedient to God's commandments, even if we don't fully understand why, that we will build for ourselves a heavenly home in the life to come, brick by brick, beam by beam. This is what I hope to say motivates every decision I make. Will doing this or that help someone else? Will it make me and my family happy? Is it worth my time, or is there something better I can do right now?
This week, I got to work in splits with a few close friends. Elder Edwards, one of my past comps, Elder Hymas, and Elder Gerber. While I'm sure I'll be able to see and be with Edwards and Hymas after my mission, I don't know if I'll ever see Elder Gerber again in this life. He's from Brazil. But I do know that if we both continue to strive to serve others and obey God, we'll see each other again on the other side. This same feeling motivates me to serve and love the people of Argentina. I don't know if I'll ever see these people again in this life, but I do know that if we're faithful, we'll see each other again on the other side.
There will come a point in the life of every person in this world when the natural consequences of life in this world will corner them in darkness. They will fill their mind with questions that don't seem to have answers. I've been there, and I know people who have been there too.
I believe that in such a moment, the only way out is through prayer. Communication with God. He's the one who sent us here, and He's the one who hopes we make it home after parting this life. He has the answers. He loves us more than we can imagine. And he's prepared a way that makes it possible for us to be sure that the good consequences relinquish the bad ones.
Jesus Christ is the way.
If we reach out to Him, He will comfort us.
If we learn of Him, our questions will become answers, security.
I know with profound security that He suffered and died for us. He gave His life for our sins, on the condition that we humble ourselves and repent, and overcame death so that we may do so also. If we repent and dedicate ourselves to serving and helping others so that they may do the same, we will assure for ourselves eternal happiness and security. We don't only live once.
Let us enjoy this life; every day, every hour, every minute that we have to better ourselves and those around us. Let us not waste away our time in things that belong to this earth, for we surely will not be able to take them with us. I love you guys so much. I'm gonna keep working and enjoying this precious time I have to really lose myself in the lives of others.
Love, Elder Blake