Words of Comfort……. August 4, 2014

(Mom was very late posting this….. a lot has happened over the last few weeks. Things got away with her)
The joy of this new week has been overshadowed by the news that I received recently of a friend who passed away.  Kelly O’Neill has been a friend of the family since we moved into the ward.  The news of his passing is saddening.  I hope my few words this week can remind all of us that we truly are blessed to have the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.
Durring his time in Liberty Jail, the Prophet Joseph Smith received these words:

“And if thou shouldst be cast into the pit, or into the hands of murderers, and the sentence of death passed upon thee; if thou be cast into the deep; if the billowing surge conspire against thee; if fierce winds become thine enemy; if the heavens gather blackness, and all the elements combine to hedge up the way; and above all, if the very jaws of hell shall gape open the mouth wide after thee, know thou, my son, that all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good.” (D&C 122:7)

I have applied this verse various times with members and investigators while on my mission, but it is all the more personal in these moments.  While at this time, the O’Neill family is probably feeling something quite different from the  persecution that the saints faced in this time, the principle is the same.  Our Father in Heaven knows us and never abandons us.  Further more, the Prophet Alma also shared with us this truth:
“And then shall it come to pass, that the spirits of those who are righteous are received into a state of happiness, which is called paradise, a state of rest, a state of peace, where they shall rest from all their troubles and from all care, and sorrow.” (Alma 40:12)
Thus, we know that the step from this life to the next is one which brings peace and rest.  This is a truth that helps us know that death is not the end, but a beginning.
May the O’Neill family know that friends are behind them and prayers are with them.
Elder Tyler Gardner
PS:  All goes well here and I am doing fine.  Things are moving forward in our area.

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