Saturday, June 1, 2013

First of all, I better preface that I am not a writer.
in fact, you will indeed find many gramatical errors.
But hope that won't deteriorate from the message itself.

We took a little trip to The Museum of Art at BYU last month. 

Kent had a few things to take care of for work so we looked around for a bit. 

I couldn't keep my eyes off  this Brian Kershisnik painting called, Nativity.

The more I looked at it and studied it the more I understood. 
The way he decided to depict this sacred event really touched my heart.


I love the rawness and realism of this painting. It depicts the sacrifice made and how spiritual and important this moment was.

Things that stuck out to me:

The Angels surrounding them. Not wanting to miss anything. Some are looking up in praise. Perhaps they are giving thanks to God for this extraordinary event.

Joseph's exhausted state. Maybe it is all starting to sink in and he is realizing what he has covenanted to do. 

Mary breastfeeding her baby. I cannot think of a better situation for her to show her nurturing motherly instincts. The Lord of all who will save them from the chains of death must first find sustenance from his loving mother. I absolutely love this! For Brian to show Mary like this means more to me than you will ever know. Courage is what comes to mind.

The Handmaids washing their bloody hands. Wow. In a simple way it shows the pain, strengthen, and courage it took for the Savior to be born. 

The scriptures, for obvious reasons, don't go into detail of the birth. But now that I am a mother, I try to place myself in her shoes. She was a teenager. A young bride. Having a baby in a manger?!! I mean, that would have freaked me out! Joseph must have been a tremendous help to her. Neither one knowing exactly how things would pan out. All they knew was that they would have a baby and that he was important. 

The Atonement.  A friend of mine recently went through something that you never wish any women would ever go through: a miscarriage. She wrote the most beautiful essay about it on her blog. I  knew I wanted to console her but I didn't know how to. So I pondered and prayed. And then it hit me. I learned something. Something that never before had I even thought of. It was at that moment that everything made sense. 

In the scriptures we learn that in the beginning The Lord and Michael created the world. They were a team. They covenanted to fulfill all that our Father had asked. They knew what their roles were. 

NOW, let's look at a young married couple. Both know what their roles are, but neither one has the experience. They have covenanted to do what the Father has asked. Sometimes they have to go through experiences that are hard, but those experiences refine us. They exalt us. They strengthen our conviction.

While The Lord was in the garden of Gethsemanehe knew he had to go through with an important step in the Father's plan. He knew that he was the only one able to do it. Had he done this before? No! In fact, at the most pivotal moment where he could no longer take the pain he humbly asks;

Saying, Father, if thou be willing, aremove this cup from me: nevertheless not my bwill, but thine, be done.  - Luke 22:42

At that moment where he suffered for our sins, afflictions, and pains, Heavenly Father does something extraordinary for his Son. He sends comfort.

And there appeared an aangel unto him from heaven, strengthening him. - Luke 22:43

We know from modern revelation that the angel was Michael, and that Michael is Adam. They were a "team" since the beginning. He was there to help the Savior and encourage him. Assuring Him that He can do this hard thing.

I thought of my friend and what she was going through. She and her husband both know what their roles are, but neither one has had the experience. They have covenanted to do what the Father has asked. Sometimes we all have to go through experiences that are hard, but those experiences refine us. They exalt us. They strengthen our conviction.

It is no secret that we learn to be more like Adam and Eve. We are taught to model our lives from theirs and to also be more like the Savior. 

I think of my dear friend going through that painful experience of losing her baby and she was the only one that could do it. But her young husband did what he could do AND what is most important; He stood by her side and comforted her. He gave her strength and encouragement and He reminded her that they are a team. They are part of a plan. They are  strong. 
And just like that, we all experience our own degree of Gethsemane. We then learn to appreciate and partake of the Atonement. 
For that I am grateful.

This knowledge has brought much more light into my life and in my marriage. 
We are part of something great and extraordinary.

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