One of the uncomfortable things about this eventual departure is that none of us know exactly when that will be. For those of us who have issues with control, it is often easiest to simply not think about the unthinkable. But for some reason, today, as I found myself drowsy from lack of a good night's sleep, and beginning to nod off while at my computer, as I laid my head back for a brief rest these thoughts crept into my mind. What if...
It's an interesting thought, really. I found myself initially drawn to my Christmas responsibilities, odd as that may seem. I pictured the pile of Amazon boxes piled up next to the front door. (You do know Santa wears a brown suit, right?) I wondered, would my husband be able to figure out which presents I had selected went to which grandchild? I then realized how silly and temporal a thought that was and tried to turn to what was really important -- even though many other little undone things were unsettling. I then counted my temple recommend as current and noted that I had partaken of the Sacrament on Sunday -- both immediately giving me assurance of my standing before the Lord. Check. I then reflected on the love that I have for my family and what each one of them mean to me. I felt a comfort for the time I spend spending time with my family. They are the center of my life here and I trust that those relationships will be eternal. Heaven could not possibly be heaven without them. Finally, I had peace knowing that I had applied the Savior's Atonement in my life, and to each of these relationships, to the best of my ability -- although not perfectly. And that, for me, was the clincher.
That clarity of mind brought me out of my drowsy condition, back to my computer and to wanting to write this post . A sense of gratitude has filled my soul that I feel a need to express. Life is not perfect. Relationships are not perfect. We don't have all the answers. Our lives aren't perfectly organized the way we would like them to be. Some things cannot be forced. Agency rules.
No doubt that the day I depart, I will, for a fleeting moment, feel that I have left important things undone and likely have momentary distress for what those left behind will need to manage without me. I can't say that I envy anyone that has to go through my things after I'm gone. I'm going to work on that after the first of the year. I promise. You heard it here!
There are a multitude of things in our lives that could cause us to have regrets about our time here in mortality. However, if we have utilized the Atonement to the best of our ability we can be at peace each and every day of our lives, and when the times does comes to depart, and we are required to leave the people we love behind, we can be assured that through Jesus Christ all those we love, and even those things that seemed important at the time, will be managed.
This understanding should give us reason to rejoice even amidst the challenges and trials that we face on a daily basis and help to keep us from being weighed down by things we may very well have to leave tomorrow -- unchanged. Today, we will allow the Atonement to work its miracle -- which is that because of Jesus Christ we are assured that all things will work together for good -- or in God's way and time.
I needed that understanding today. It has helped me to put life with its many challenges into better perspective. It has caused me to be more grateful for that precious infant whose life we celebrate this Christmas Season -- Jesus Christ, and His Peace given to all who trust in Him.
Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
Without CHRIST There Would Be NO Christmas!
Like Mary, the Mother of Jesus
Mormon Beliefs About Heaven: Before and After Life
Of Regrets and Resolutions: Dieter F. Uchtdorf (This talk came to mind)