Well, I hope everyone's gearing up for Easter! :D I love Easter time so much! I think it's come to mean more to me than even Christmas. I love celebrating Easter because this is the day set apart in the year to focus on and celebrate the Resurrection of my Savior. :D Obviously, we should be celebrating it year-round, just like Christmas, but unfortunately, we get busy. We get so caught up in day-to-day things that we lose our focus on Christ, and the many glorious things he's done for us. I'm glad we have days like Christmas and Easter where we can stop for a second, and refocus ourselves on what really matters. (Honestly, I wish we could have a day once a month to celebrate these things! That would be awesome!) :)
Today, I would've liked to make this post rather short, but I also wanted to share something that I know to be true. It may come off rather preachy, but what the hey, I'm a missionary for a reason. :) I want to share with each of you why I celebrate Easter, and why it's become so meaningful to me. Easter, as many of us know, is when we celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ after He was in the tomb for three days. As a member of the LDS church, I'm asked every once in a while why I don't wear a cross around my neck, and I answer them that for me, the cross is a symbol of the dying Christ, while I preach and believe in the importance of the Living Christ. I don't deny the horrible price that Jesus Christ paid for this entire world, and I don't think I could EVER forget it. However, I then ponder on the Sunday of His Resurrection. Many prophets have declared the Resurrection to be one of, if not the greatest miracle this world has ever seen. So, I focus on the Living Christ, of which the empty tomb was an incredible witness. I'd like to direct everyone to, and quote from, a document called "The Living Christ" that was given to the world by the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles on 1 January 2000.
Within this document, it says, "None other (speaking of Christ) has had so profound an influence upon all who have lived and will yet live upon the earth. He was the Great Jehovah of the Old Testament, the Messiah of the New. Under the direction of His Father, He was the creator of the earth. ... He was arrested and condemned on spurious charges, convicted to satisfy a mob, and sentenced to die on Calvary's cross. He gave His life to atone for the sins of all mankind. ... We testify that he will someday return to earth. "And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together" (Isaiah 40:5). He will rule as King of Kings and reign as Lord of Lords, and every knee shall bend and every tongue shall speak in worship before Him. ... We bear testimony, as His duly ordained Apostles- that Jesus is the Living Christ, the immortal Son of God. He is the great King Immanuel, who stands today on the right hand of His Father. He is the light, the life, and the hope of the world. His way is the path that leads to happiness in this life and eternal lie in the world to come. God be thanked for the matchless gift of His divine Son." This document is signed by the (then) president-prophet of the Church, his two counselors, and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. This document remains in force as a testimony of the divinity of the Living Christ.
I echo their testimony, and I testify that Jesus Christ is the hope of the world. I've witnessed the power of His gift of the Atonement, and I've felt it in my life, and more recently, this week. I've felt that grace of Christ help lift me, help change me, and help me understand different things that I have to go through. I know, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ love ME, Elder Conrad Hamilton. They want me to SUCCEED, not to fail. I have, and everyone in this world has such divine potential. We have to be willing to look inside ourselves, see that potential, and then rise to what is within us. This week, I'd like to leave an invitation. I'd like everyone who reads to the end of this post (good job, all of you, for making it this far! :D) to go to LDS.org, and in the search bar, type "The Living Christ". I'd love for you to read the document yourselves, and then this week, make a bigger effort to think about the sacrifice of the Savior, and what He means to you. :)
I love y'all! Have a great week!
Elder Conrad Hamilton