Gratitude Day 7: My Redeemer

I wanted to finish this week by talking about one thing I’m especially grateful for. Though I may not always remember to thank Him for it, truly everything I have is from God. I want to focus on one aspect of that, and #GiveThanks for my Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ, and all that He has done for me.

I thought a very applicable passage to use in a poem on expressing gratitude to the Savior is Micah 6:6-8, one of my favorite Old Testament passages.

My Redeemer

How can I thank the Man,
Who, stooping with my heavy cross,
Ascended to the hill
Where He died?

How can I thank the Man
Who suffered every pain I know,
Every broken bone, every wounded heart,
All my hurt inside?

How can I thank the Man
Who lived to teach me how to live,
Setting an example, often lonely,
So I could have a stalwart guide?

How can I thank the Man
Who drunk the bitterest of cups,
Who has mourned when I have wept,
And comforted when I’ve cried.

How can I thank the Man?
Ten thousand rams are not enough,
Nor ten thousand rivers of oil,
However deep, however wide.

How can I thank the Man?
I’ll do justly, I’ll love mercy,
I’ll walk humbly with Him,
And forever with Him abide.

Gratitude Day 6: The Scriptures

I apologize for not posting this yesterday, I had a rough night:

One thing that has consistently been a source of strength and light in my life is the scriptures. If I turn to them with a willing and open heart, I am very often able to receive answers to the questions I have, even if they may not be the answers I want. I want to #GiveThanks for the scriptures.

Scriptures

Whatever you are feeling,
Whatever’s in your heart,
Someone else has felt it too,
And recorded it, in part.

Have you ever just felt lonely?
Moroni knows how that is.
His family dead, his life in danger,
You can read how he lived.

And what about discouraged?
Alma and Amulek have this addressed:
Read of how they carried on
When in prison, with seemingly no success.

When you feel like everyone’s against you,
Nephi’s got your back.
His brothers murmured and even beat him,
But read how his kindness never lacked.

And any feeling you’ve ever felt
Has been felt by our Savior, dear.
Read how He died so you can live,
When you need Him, He’ll be near.

These heroes of the pages
Really lived, and really felt
The emotions that I’ve gone through,
I can read, and look to them for help.

Gratitude Day 5: The Plan of Salvation

One of my favorite verses in the Book of Mormon, as well as one we are studying this week for Come Follow Me, is Ether 12:4. In that verse, Moroni teaches that “whoso believeth in God might with surety hope for a better world, yea, even a place at the right hand of God, which hope cometh of faith, maketh an anchor to the souls of men, which would make them sure and steadfast, always abounding in good works, being led to glorify God.” In short, our faith in God leads us to hope for and seek something better, His plan is for us to become like and return to Him. I want to #GiveThanks for the Plan of Salvation and it’s impact on my life.

This poem is kind of based off of one of my favorite poems, Choose Something Like a Star, by Robert Frost; and one of my favorite quotes, which I first heard from President Thomas S. Monson, in his devotional Decisions Determine Destiny: “Ideals are like stars; you will not succeed in touching them with your hands. But . . . you choose them as your guides, and following them you will reach your destiny.”

The Plan of Salvation

I walk along life’s paths,
with many blind corners,
many unknowns ahead,
and few road signs —
I often get lost.

The only things constant are
the world changing around me,
and the ever unchanging stars.

Some travelers I’ve met on my journey
have told me that the stars should be guides —
“You can’t walk far enough to reach them,
but they’ll always lead you true.”

Others say — “Stars are useless,
all that matters is the path.”
Though if you don’t know where you’re going,
there are so many paths to take,
and I don’t know where to go.

I try to follow the stars.
They remind me that, in the chaos of the universe,
something is eternally true,
eternally pointing
to a final destination
where God knows I belong.

Gratitude Day 3: Repentance

I know how much I mess up, and I want to #GiveThanks for the divine gift of repentance.

Repentance

For every stumble, there’s a helping hand,
Every wrong road has a way back.
For ever closed door, there’s an open one,
Every small light keeps off the black

For every missed chance, there’s a second one,
Every friend lost could return.
For every test failed, another’s given,
Every mistake is a fact learned.

For every pain, there’s a relief,
Every prayer has an answer.
For every sin there’s a solace,
Every debt has a Savior.

Gratitude Day 2: Revelation

I got to give an Elder’s quorum lesson Sunday morning on the talk Ask, Seek, and Knock, by Milton Camargo. He discusses in that talk how revelation is something he is grateful for, and I agree. I don’t know where I would be without the “guiding, directing, comforting, and constant influence of the Holy Ghost”, as President Nelson put it, and so I want to #GiveThanks for the divine gift of revelation.

Revelation

Have you ever been walking,
and tried to see how far you could walk
with your eyes closed?

I can’t walk very long —
a few seconds at most —
before anxiety and fear
force my eyes open,
even if just for a moment,
to see a snapshot of the path ahead
before I take one more step.

I wonder how I could possibly live
if I always walked like that,
with my eyes usually closed
to the path ahead of me.

Afterwards, I’m more grateful
for the gift of sight,
the sun’s guiding light,
the trees and path alike,
that I missed with my eyes held shut.

And then I think how often,
I go hours or even days,
without opening my eyes
in prayer to the Lord
and His wonderful light
that guides my eternal path.

Gratitude Day 1: Friends

In following the Prophet’s advice, I wanted to post a poem every day this week, instead of just on Sunday as I usually do, listing things I am grateful for. Today I wanted to #GiveThanks for the many friends I have, and the times they help me in my life.

Friends

Friends who let me talk to them 
When I just need to talk,
And get it all out in the air,

Friends who sit there while I cry,
When I feel like crying is all I can do,
To let my emotions out.

Friends who accept my cookies and hugs
When that’s all I can give,
Though they need so much more. 

Friends who make me feel like I belong,
When loneliness is heavy on my mind
And belonging makes it better. 

Friends make life a better place,
So thank you, God, for all my friends,
And please, help me be a good friend, too.