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Strengthened by the hand of the Lord   Leave a comment

 With The First Presidency Messages From Both January (That Being Hold On A Little Longer ) and this month, February On Being Spiritually Prepared  in combination with a return to basics; Gospel Principles in Relief Society & Priesthood, and Old Testament in Sunday School…. how appropriate the comments and the talk given hereafter by Sister Rosemary Thackeray : Its nearly all about the basics!

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Difficulties in life serve at least two purposes, Rosemary Thackeraysaid during the campus devotional on Tuesday, Feb. 2, in the MarriottCenter at BYU. “They help us come to the Lord and rely on His strength andthey also help to refine us.”

Photo courtesy of BYU
Rosemary Thackeray

Comparing the refining process to that of gold and silver, SisterThackeray, an associate professor of public health at BYU’s College of LifeSciences, spoke of the high temperatures and necessary process in removingimpurities and becoming more and more refined.

“In life, the trials, challenges, heartache, disappointment and so forth… are a part of the mortal refinement process. Though as painful anddifficult as these experiences may be, if endured well, they will lead toour growth and development.”

Talking about enduring trials is a lot easier than actually doing itand, at times, one might feel like giving up, Sister Thackeray said. But,she added, those are the times one must continue on.

“To endure well and not give up amidst the challenges in our journeywill require us to have strength beyond our own,” she said. “We cannot doit alone, but with the Lord’s help, our success is assured.”

Using examples from her own life, the scriptures and Church history,Sister Thackeray spoke of the deliverance found with the help of the Lord.

“In our life, it may seem that the opposition is as numerous as thesands upon the seashore,” she said. “We may be encumbered by spiritualbondage and sin, discouragement, disappointment and weaknesses that hinderour progression, or with responsibilities and burdens that are beyond ourown ability to manage.”
But, just as the Nephites were strengthened by the hand of the Lord anddelivered from their enemies, each individual can and will receive similarstrength to pull their load, Sister Thackeray said.

Sharing personal experiences of being strengthened by the hand of theLord, Sister Thackeray gave four suggestions that help individuals toqualify for help from the Lord.

“These suggestions are not just for the really hard, difficult trials,but for everyday life,” she said. “Each day we have an opportunity to bestrengthened by the hand of the Lord.”

First, have faith and believe that the Lord can and will strengthen eachperson.

“We must learn to more effectively control our fears and feelings ofdiscouragement,” she said. “Then we must trust God and wait for Him.”

Second, pray and ask the Lord for strength.

“The Lord already knows what we need before we ask,” she said. “However,I believe the Lord wants us to acknowledge Him and express ourunderstanding that strength and other blessings come as a gift from Hishand.”

Third, become immersed in daily scripture study.

“A study of the scriptures will deepen our understanding of andrelationship with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. It is this personaltestimony and perspective that will carry us through and strengthen us intimes of need.”

Fourth, individuals should take a piece of the temple with then eachtime they attend.

“Perhaps the early Saints who waited from early morning until late atnight to receive their temple endowment in the Nauvoo Temple knew somethingabout the power of temple covenants and the Lord’s ability to bless andstrengthen them through their covenants,” she said.

In order to receive strength from the Lord, one must consistently do thethings that will qualify one for help from the Savior. As individuals doso, they are able to draw upon His help in times of need.
“Being strengthened by the Lord is an individual experience,” she said.”We qualify for it individually; and individually we receivestrength.”