Wherefore, I am in your midst, and I am the good shepherd, and the stone of Israel. He that buildeth upon this rock shall never fallDoctrine and Covenants 51:44
Recently, Russell M. Nelson, the prophet and president of the Church, remarked that “adversity is a great teacher” and asked “What have you learned in the past two years that you always want to remember?
The pandemic certainly has been a very different experience to the ‘normal’ that so many seem keen to rush back to. As a parent, self-employed musician, personal trainer, classroom teacher, church leader, gym enthusiast and human being with the average dose of foibles it has been a haphazard ride that took an unexpected toll over the months. Both sleep and the sense of well-being diminished and there was a level of challenge not anticipated.
The children in the church love the song about the wise man and the foolish man, based on the teachings of the Saviour found in Matthew –
“Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.Matthew 7:24-27
One of the things that I have learned during the pandemic and the particular difficulties that I found in coping with it, was the wonderful help that comes through faith in Christ. While all around and – to large degree – inside was in commotion, His teachings, His strength and His love remained a constant influence. I have learned that parts of the ‘house’ I had built in life so far were susceptible to ‘storm damage’ but that He, as the Master Builder, knows how to repair, renovate, replace where necessary, all the while secure upon His foundation. I am grateful for the love of God, His presence within my life and the security He offers.
To repeat the prophet’s invitation “What have you learned in the past two years that you always want to remember?’
B. Batt, May 2021