Saturday, February 20, 2010

Repent . . . That I May Heal You

This entry is part of my general conference application series.

“Repent . . . That I May Heal You”, by Elder Neil L. Andersen
Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

A bathtime disagreement led to sobs and tears. My little girl lost the coin-toss and didn't get the first bath. After hearing the report of this, my wife told me, "she needs big hugs." With a heart full of compassion, I came to my daughter with open arms, only to be pushed aside, empty, alone.

In referring to the many ways the scriptures speak of the Lord's arms, Elder Andersen reminded me of this situation I had earlier in the evening. He spoke of "being wrapped in His arms" as "an invitation to repent."

In my attempt at comforting my little girl, I knew what she needed—hugs—but she wasn't ready yet. This made me wonder how often I'm in need of comfort (perhaps through the repentance process), but choose to be alone, instead.

Elder Andersen reminds that the Lord's "arm is lengthened out all the day long" (2 Ne. 28:32), and testifies that "the Savior is able and eager to forgive our sins."

This shouldn't come as a big surprise:

We have each felt to some extent these spiritual arms around us. We have felt His forgiveness, His love and comfort. The Lord has said, “I am he [who] comforteth you.”

The next time I need comfort, I hope I can remember this and "turn to the Lord" (see Mosiah 7:33), finding those open arms, mighty arms, holy arms, arms of mercy, arms of safety, and arms of love there to wrap me in a warm embrace.

I love hugs, especially surprisingly big hugs from little ones.

The comparison of the spiritual comfort—the heavenly hugs—that comes through repentance is spot-on. Elder Andersen's words provide yet another motivation to repent: hugs.

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