Editor’s note: Lita Little Giddins is our guest writer today. Lita currently serves as a stake leader for young women in her area. She is passionate about the gospel of Jesus Christ, about family, about music and theater, about womanhood, and about truth. Lita is a convert to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This post is a talk that Lita gave at a recent stake conference meeting in her area.
“Wherefore, stand ye in holy places…”
“Wherefore, stand ye in holy places, and be not moved, until the day of the Lord come; for behold, it cometh quickly, saith the Lord.”
My husband Kevin and I have not lived near family members throughout our entire married life.
So it is such a wonderful blessing to be in a a stake, in an area where we can feel a sense of family. We are very grateful for that.
The scripture that I read, found in the Doctrine & Covenants 87:8 is the theme for our youth in this upcoming year.
I was excited when we found out that this wonderful verse was going to be the theme! But as we have discussed it as a presidency [stake young women leadership] (and I have to say how much of a “gift” it is to work with those women), and as we have discussed the theme with our amazing youth in youth committee meetings, I have come to really love this scripture. It’s for all of us.
I’m going to speak as one family member to another as I talk about this theme because that is what you are to me—a part of my family.
And I am going to divide the scripture into three different parts:
- “Wherefore, stand ye in holy places…”
- “…and be not moved until the day of the Lord come;”
- “…for behold, it cometh quickly saith the Lord.”
When I was asked to speak today, and to talk about this theme I began to think about the Giddins family and where we were this time last year.
A year ago circumstances in our lives were very uncertain. [Her husband had lost his job and much difficulty ensued.]
I personally know that it was the same for many of you as well.
Last year things were said and done that left Kevin and I, me especially, uncertain about a lot of things:
Like would we have a job? Or would we not have a job?
Do we stay here to live? Or do we move somewhere else?
Whom do we trust? Whom do we not trust?
At what point did life begin to go so wrong?
What were we suppose to do? What were we suppose to learn?
What was the will of our Father in Heaven?
The first part of the scripture reads: “Wherefore, stand ye in holy places…”
I testify to you that when there are times when there does not seem to be any answers to your questions, it is because sometimes I believe we are called to stand in the holy place of uncertainty.
I was talking with our youngest son a couple of weeks ago about a question he had from the Book of Mormon. He posed a hypothetical question that went sort of along these lines:
“So what if these particular people in the scriptures had not made the right choice? What do you think Heavenly Father would have done? Would he have stepped in then?”
I told our son that we couldn’t know the answer to that question. We can only know what is.
Kevin and I posed hypothetical questions of our own throughout the course of what we encountered last year:
Questions such as, “What could we have done differently?” “What would have happened if we had chosen to take advantage of another option?” “Was there another option?”
There were no answers to those questions and we felt devastated.
However, I am learning that when we are weakened by the trials of life’s uncertainties, which I was, when we are disheartened, which I was, we can find strength in the power of knowing what is.
And that leads to the second part: “…and be not moved until the day of the Lord come.”
I have been blessed with the reminder that when our place of uncertainty leads to confusion and we are unable to see things clearly,
…we can STAND SURE AND NOT BE MOVED knowing that God is in control.
I will never forget the day when I was sitting on the floor next to our bed pleading for Heavenly Father to forgive me because I was just so angry about what was happening in our lives.
It wasn’t my “normal” anger I was feeling. It was a type of anger I wasn’t used to.
I was angry because I could not see the Lord winning in that particular, unbelievable circumstance we were going through, and that was not okay with me. It just didn’t make sense.
Now, put that up against the backdrop of what we were experiencing in our family;
Up against the backdrop of what I knew some of you were experiencing in your own lives;
Then put those things up against the backdrop of what I would feel as a result of things that were going on in the world.
Well, it became really difficult for me to get up off the floor.
However, I was able to stand up after that prayer, assured that Heavenly Father heard me. I was able to walk out of our bedroom door still uncertain, but hopeful. I am so grateful to my Heavenly Father for giving me the help that I needed to not be angry anymore.
I am grateful that He helped me to remember that our Savior sees ALL things clearly;
That through His eyes ALL things make perfect sense;
That He always wins;
That He has overcome the world.
In the third book of Nephi, chapter 27, verse 21 in the Book of Mormon, the Lord commanded the Nephites, “…that which ye have seem me do even that shall ye do.”
Because our Savior has overcome the world, I am learning that we, too, can overcome the challenging uncertainties in our own individual worlds.
The third and final part of this powerful verse reads:
“…for it cometh quickly saith the Lord.”
We all might have the tendency to think that “the Lord coming quickly” refers to the Second Coming.
I am learning more and more that it is a holy place to stand in uncertainty because the Lord can come to us TODAY.
We can be blessed to feel the power of the Holy Ghost working in our lives on a daily basis. And it is important that we do feel that power.
He has promised us that He will not leave us comfortless.
The Lord continually invites us to:
Ask and we shall receive,
Seek and ye shall find,
and to knock.
I was reminded throughout this past year that when we stand in that sacred, holy place of uncertainty with faith and trust in the asking, seeking and knocking, the door would, eventually, be opened, and there are a few examples I would like to share with you that teach this truth.
- From the Book of Mormon, I have a testimony that Lehi stood in his holy place of uncertainty when he was commanded to leave Jerusalem. He and his family wandered in the wilderness for years until the way to the promise land was opened unto him.
- I have a testimony that Joseph Smith stood in his holy place of uncertainty when he went into the Sacred Grove to pray because he was not sure which church to join. But the heavens opened up unto him. He saw God and his son, Jesus Christ, face to face. He went into the Grove a mere boy, and came out a prophet of God, and nothing would or could ever be the same.
- I have a testimony that our Lord and Savior stood in His holy place of Gethsemane and asked Heavenly Father, in a moment of uncertainty, “Why hast thou forsaken me?” But because He would “not be moved” from that place, he finished His mission. Through our Savior’s atoning sacrifice He opened up the way to eternal life for all of us and reassures us with this promise:
In Doctrine & Covenants 68: 6, the Lord Jesus Christ says:
Wherefore, be of good acheer, and do not bfear, for I the Lord am with you, and will stand by you; and ye shall bear record of me, even Jesus Christ, that I am the Son of the living God, that I cwas, that I am, and that I am to come.
So what is the Lord telling us in this verse?
In essence, He is saying to “fear not,” when we find ourselves uncertain throughout various times of our lives, because He is “I AM.”
“I AM” sure! “I AM” certain!
As we focus on this theme, I am sure that it, too, will be filled with uncertainties. But during those times, We can stand and not be moved with confidence, gratitude, and humility that the Lord will stand with us!
He is our Advocate. He pleads our cause before the Father.
So what does this help each and every one of us to know?
It helps us to know that because of His Infinite Atonement and great love, not only will He stand with us; He will stand for us!
I stand before you and bear record of the truthfulness of all these things, and of the power of this theme that will help us become more certain in the our challenges. This theme for our youth is for all of us. And this is my testimony in the holy name of Jesus Christ.
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