- Most of us have experienced times in our lives when our testimony burns brightly. We also may have experienced times when our Heavenly Father seems distant. There are times when we treasure the things of the Spirit with all our hearts. There may also be times when they appear less precious or of diminished significance.
He speaks about spiritual darkness in our lives and the negative effects it can have on our spirits, our outlook on life, and the pain that can come from being away from the light for a period a time.
- Sometimes spiritual illness comes as a result of sin or emotional wounds. Sometimes spiritual breakdowns come so gradually that we can scarcely tell what is happening. Like layers of sedimentary rock, spiritual pain and grief can build over time, weighing upon our spirits until it is almost too heavy to bear.
He talks about the healing power of the Savior. Miracles that the Savior did in His time are possible in our time. The Savior can heal us just as He did in the times He was on the earth.
- The Savior’s healing touch can transform lives in our day just as it did in His. If we will but have faith, He can take our hands, fill our souls with heavenly light and healing, and speak to us the blessed words, “Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.”
All of our spiritual problems all boil down to this simple truth, we do not have enough light in our lives.
- Whatever causes our spiritual ailments, they all have one thing in common: the absence of divine light.
President Uchtdorf talks about the difference between light and darkness in our lives.
- Darkness reduces our ability to see clearly. It dims our vision of that which was at one time plain and clear. When we are in darkness, we are more likely to make poor choices because we cannot see dangers in our path. When we are in darkness, we are more likely to lose hope because we cannot see the peace and joy that await us if we just keep pressing forward.
- Light, on the other hand, allows us to see things as they really are. It allows us to discern between truth and error, between the vital and the trivial. When we are in the light, we can make righteous choices based on true principles. When we are in the light, we have “a perfect brightness of hope” because we can see our mortal trials from an eternal perspective.
- We will find spiritual healing as we step away from the shadows of the world and into the everlasting Light of Christ.
The Savior is the ultimate source of light in our lives. He overcomes darkness and warms us with His light when the darkness leaves us cold and lost.
- He who humbly follows Jesus Christ will experience and share in His light. And that light will grow until it eventually dispels even the most profound darkness.
- There is a power, a strong influence, that emanates from the Savior.
But God requires that we come to the light to find hope and healing in the Savior.
- God will not force us to embrace His light.
- If we become comfortable with darkness, it is unlikely that our hearts will change.
- For change to take place, we need to actively let the light in.
He speaks about the recent solar eclipse and how people purposfully moved within the shadow of darkness to observe the eclipse. Sometimes in our lives, we move into a shadow of darkness that dims the light around us.
- Darkness is not an indication that there is no light. Most often, it simply means we’re not in the right place to receive the light.
He shares that darkness is the absence of light. But the light of the sun and the light of Christ are more powerful than the darkness. They are greater than the darkness and are often only seen with the passage of time. It is up to us to place ourselves where we can find the greatest light and to leave places that encourage the shadow of darkness.
- It is up to us to be in the right place to see the divine light and truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Even when night has fallen and the world seems dark, we can choose to walk in Christ’s light, keep His commandments, and courageously testify of His reality and His greatness.
Finally, President Uchtdorf talks about our obligation as priesthood holders to share the light of the gospel with others. We are responsible for sharing the light of Christ with others to remove the darkness and shadow that they live in.
- You are instruments in the hands of the Lord with the purpose of bringing light and healing to the souls of Heavenly Father’s children. Perhaps you do not feel qualified to heal those who are spiritually ill. Maybe you face spiritual challenges of your own. Nevertheless, the Lord has called you. He has given you authority and responsibility to reach out to those in need. He has endowed you with His sacred priesthood power to bring light into the darkness and uplift and bless God’s children. God has restored His Church and His precious gospel, “which healeth the wounded soul.” He has prepared the path to spiritual wellness, to find healing from stagnation and move toward vibrant spiritual health.
He gives us some simple tasks that we can do to help the light in our lives increase.
- Every time you turn your hearts to God in humble prayer, you experience His light. Every time you seek His word and will in the scriptures, the light grows in brightness. Every time you notice someone in need and sacrifice your own comfort to reach out in love, the light expands and swells. Every time you reject temptation and choose purity, every time you seek or extend forgiveness, every time you courageously testify of truth, the light chases away darkness and attracts others who are also seeking light and truth.
He encourages us to share the light we have found with others and to share with others how we have found more light in our lives. He specifically asks us to share how we find light in our lives with the youth of the church. He says they need to learn from us where the source of light in our lives comes from.
- Think about your own personal experiences, moments of service to God and fellowmen when divine light has shined in your life—in the holy temple, at the sacrament table, in a quiet moment of prayerful pondering, in your family gatherings, or during an act of priesthood service. Share those moments with family, friends, and especially with our youth, who are seeking light. They need to hear from you that with this light come hope and healing, even in a world full of darkness.
If you follow my blog, you know that I love the topic of light and darkness. It is such a perfect analogy of how our lives change in such a short period of time. We can have days of happiness and joy, followed by periods of sadness and depression. But through all of the changes in our lives, there is only one source of true peace, light and joy in our lives. The Savior is the only one that has the power to dispel the spiritual darkness in our lives. Sometimes our lives are so dark, that we don't even recognize that there are any glimpses of light in our future. We have an obligation as priesthood holders and children of God, to help others through these periods of darkness and to bring them the glimpse of the Savior's light that we know how to find. When we bring a little of God's light into the life of someone else, we will be blessed beyond measure. People will recognize that we have something special in our lives and want to have that same light of the Savior in their lives. Today, I challenge you to reach out to someone that needs some light in their lives and bring to their attention how blessed they are to be a child of God.