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The Love Inside- You Take It With You!

TheDiscipleMD

Several years ago my wife and I  attended the funeral viewing of a man who was the father of a friend. Upon returning we viewed on TV an interview of the actor Patrick Swayze by Barbara Walters. Mr Swayze had been diagnosed with pancreas cancer and has since died.  The next morning  I taught a lesson  on Lazarus being raised from the dead by the Savior. So, within a twelve-hour period, my thoughts were centered on the concept of death, but also life.

“I love you, Molly! I´ve always loved you… Its amazing, Molly. The love inside – you take it with you. See you. See you. Bye.”

Those are the closing lines to the movie “Ghost” starring Mr Swayze. During Mr Swayze  interview two things he said caught my attention.  One) He said he thought his wife, (married for 33 years), and he had a special connection. “Destiny”,  was how he described it. He implied that their spirits were connected before this life.  And two) That he believed that there has to be something after this life. The above line from the movie, “Ghost”, about love living beyond the grave, was quoted by Barbara Walters. It was clear that Mr Swayze knew he was dying. But, as he stated, “Everyone is dying!” So true!

I am sure that, ” the purpose of life” has become something of which Mr Swayze often pondered since his diagnosis. While his subsequent death is tragic, it is no less tragic than the impending demise of us all. We too are under a “death” sentence and there is nothing we can do to change it. Even Lazarus, who was raised from the dead by the Savior, just starved off the inevitable. The scriptures are silent as to the life of Lazarus after his miraculous healing. But one thing is for sure: later, he died!

I wanted to say to Mr. Swayze that night,  “There is life after this one. There was a life before this one. There is hope! The apostle Paul said it best:

” Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?… But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.” (1 Corinthians: 15: 51-55, 57-58)

I’m sure Mr. Swayze found out, as soon as he took his last breath, that the love inside, you do take it with you! And the reality of sharing that love is only made possible through the atonement of the Savior of the world, even Jesus Christ! What a wonderful and hopeful thought!  May we live our lives such that the atonement, in all its glory, takes full measure on our souls.

 

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Rings And Roses

TheDiscipleMD

A man I have great respect for shared with me these thoughts from the early days of his marriage.  (1951)

“In spite of our financial difficulties, my wife was always encouraging and had faith in my ability to do the things I wanted to do.  I resigned my job with the government because I wanted to be a college professor but I needed to get my PhD. I tried to do this but there was neither the time nor the money to make a living and go to school.  My wife supported me in this. When I realized that I couldn’t make the money I needed working construction and still go to school I decided to finish law school.  I went back to working nights while going to school during the day and graduated.  My wife worked part-time on occasion to help keep food on the table.  No complaints!  We were happy and it was a good life because she was with me and we loved each other.  I know from experience that any couple can experience a happy life, even with financial stress or other problems, if they love and trust each other.  As I look back on those years of long hours and work and financial stress, they were happy and wonderful years because of my wife.  Whenever I arrived home, there was always that wonderful smile and warm embrace waiting for me.”

All of us will experience obstacles in this life.  Recently when trials entered the life of someone I know, they were heard to say, “I never expected my life to turn out this way!”  While that statement might fit the majority of our lives, it is the attitude we take when unexpected turns occur in life that are the true test of our character.  Life is truly not just a bed of roses.

My father, the author of the above story, always wanted to be a professor but it didn’t happen.  Instead of lamenting about it, he went forward and became successful in life by doing other things of great value and worth. He and my mother accepted what life gave them and went forward with faith. Would that all of our dreams would come true, but if they don’t, may we have the courage to tackle whatever the Lord has given us and do so with joy.

When, as a couple, we decide to move forward in faith, with love towards each other, miracles can happen.  Sometimes, those miracles don’t come directly from the Lord, but are generated by the intense fire that radiates from two hearts that burn with love unfeigned towards the other!

 




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Our Love Is A Whirlwind On The Rise!

TheDiscipleMD

I never felt I would ever love someone like I do her! I just couldn’t imagine that kind of love! Sometimes I look over at her, and when she flashes a smile back at me, I know she can see right through me. She sees the ‘raw’ material of who I am. That used to scare me, but with time I have taken great comfort in knowing I am not alone in my being. She has become my best friend and the most constant star in the ever-changing constellation of my life. For others she is a shooting star that passes through their life, but, just for me, she is the stationary sun who lightens my life, brightens my day, and is the lifeblood to my every dream. She is the only one who is privy to my most intimate thoughts, desires and ambitions. She found her way into my head where even angels fear to tread.

The beauty of her illusion is that even though I know that my partnership with her is not perfect, and we certainly have a long way to go to become ‘one,’ I am still loving the view from the starship called marriage! And really, how can a woman get more gorgeous with each passing year? It defies the law of nature!

And it seems as the years go by that together, we have spent time on all the clouds starting with number one! And at times, with her by my side, I feel I have reached cloud number nine! It is a place I so desire, because I know that is where she will permanently reside. A paradise where we will find the ‘unspeakable’ joy and happiness that will both teach and inspire! (2 Corinthians 12:4) So with her hand firmly in mine, and the Savior’s grace to provide, our love is a whirlwind on the rise!

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A Marriage Baked In The ‘Son’

When we walked together, hand in hand, out the temple doors as man and wife on that Thursday afternoon, I’m not sure I really “got it!” After all, I was only twenty-two years old, what did I know about eternity. Together, she and I entered into the great unknown abyss called life. I say “abyss” because no matter how prepared you think you are to tackle it, life is too profound and unfathomable to understand at such a young age, or perhaps, any age.

During these many years my wife and I have scaled mountains together and we have descended into dark valleys. The sun has been shinning most of the time but there have been a few terrible storms we have weathered together. Sometimes it feels like there has been a constant drizzle coming down, yet all the while the warmth of the sun’s rays have been present. While that statement might seem inconsistent, it really isn’t. In life, there always seems to be something “out of order.” Nothing is ever perfect about life, or marriage for that matter. Both ebb and flow, rise and fall, pitch and catch. So in some ways life and marriage are in a never-ending state of “drizzle.”However, what does make a “huge” difference in life and marriage, is the person you choose to travel it with. What also makes a huge difference is if you decide to travel through it with the warmth of the spirit of God on your shoulders, or alone, as a couple. It is “drizzling” most of the time in life, and if you don’t partner up with the Lord, you’ll never find out the paradox of having dark clouds above, but feeling the full warmth of the “Son’s” rays that comes with faith in His love.
The scriptures record the words of Jesus regarding all of God’s children.
“…for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust”. (Matthew 5:45)

The words of the Savior should bring us comfort in knowing that when times get tough, it is not necessarily a reflection of who we are, but rather, that we are all children of a Father in Heaven. So, each of us must travel the road of life. It is the companions we choose that determine if the rocky road will be made easier, or harder.

My hope is that we will serve as a strength to our mates as we continue on our journey together, and that as couples we will ‘bake’ our marriages by the heat of His ‘Rays!’

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