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  • alcarraway

"That's Just Who I Am"

Today is my 6 year baptism anniversary AND my 2 year wedding anniversary. These are my thoughts on change. Don’t feel like reading? Click HERE to listen to my voice recording of this post & even Download the MP3 for free.

I used to think that religion was something that people turned to when things were going wrong in their life as some sort of mental comfort for them. I didn’t need that because I was happy. I always have been. I loved who I was and what I was doing. I didn’t need help from any one or anything, definitely not religion.

My intentions for meeting with the missionaries was to prove them wrong. But the only way I could do that was to completely live what they were teaching me, and to live it long enough to allow contrast to happen, and show them that nothing would happen.

At first I started to change unconsciously because of the simple things of the gospel. I was praying what I knew to be the worst prayers Heavenly Father has ever heard because I had no idea how to say a prayer. And I was reading who knows what out of the Book of Mormon because it made no sense to me at first. But it’s a promise to us if we do those things, if we just try, we become better.

It wasn’t until I acted and it wasn’t until I finally and fully and consciously just tried, I found myself overcoming. I found myself conquering. Overcoming and conquering things I never thought I could overcome and conquer. Things I thought I would be stuck with or struggle with for the rest of my life—things that just made me “who I was.”

And I changed. Not because someone told me I had to, that’s not why, that wouldn’t have worked with me. So how?

That’s what happens when Christ becomes a reality to you, you change because then you want to and because then you can. Change is more difficult when we aren’t fully committed or fully know why we should change. Love and understanding of Christ can fix that.

The more you learn about the gospel, the stronger you make your testimony and relationship with yourfather in Heaven and Christ and see who they are in your life, then your desire to change will increase. And once you want to change the easier it will be for you to let Him change you.

Our lack of efforts or lack of knowledge should never lead to anger or doubts towards Gods existence. Don’t stop living the gospel to find out if it’s completely true. But live it more fully to more fully know.

Know that you can change—because you can. I hate the phrase, “that’s just who I am.” When you think that you deny the power of Christ and you hold yourself back. That’s frustrating everything that the atonement stands for and is. The power of change is very real and is always available to every single one of us. Help is always there. Comfort and healing is always there, because Christ is always there.

With Him we can overcome and conquer absolutely everything—every feeling of loneliness, doubt, temptation, addiction, depression…everything. With Him do we overcome and conquer the world in fact! But He can’t if we don’t let Him. He can’t if we don’t talk to Him.

Prayers are the most important conversations of your day. And honest and raw prayers are crucial. Holding back in prayers not only prevents answers and full conversion, but it also prevents an intimate, trustworthy, and real relationship with our Father in Heaven, and real is most definitely what He is.

Blessings and help will always be there for us even if we feel like we don’t deserve them. He wants you to succeed. He wants you back. He wants you to be happy right now. Because He loves you at every stage of your life. If we think Heavenly Father will do anything to stop us from overcoming and conquering and being happy, we’re wrong.

Now is not the time for God to judge us, but the time to love and help us. Take advantage of that. Use and be honest with the atonement. No matter how painful or hard it is, no matter how “bad” you think you are, no matter how “far gone” you think you are, or however many bad habits you think you have, you will always be worthy of your God’s love it can still be felt in the most confusing or darkest of times. No matter how long you have traveled in the wrong direction, you can always turn around.

Don’t wish for it, work for it. If you want a new tomorrow, then make new choices today. Set goals. Say prayers. Work hard. It’s not what we do once in a while that shapes our lives, but what we do consistently.

We are blessed from our efforts of trying, not perfection. It’s in the acting that our efforts are blessed, even if we do slip up. He smiles at our efforts even if we aren’t there yet. Heavenly Father is proud of the steps you take closer to Him even if they seem small or insignificant.

God will never look at you like you’re a waste of time.

You are not alone. Help is there because Christ is always there. Next to you. And He doesn’t just stand there with you, He feels with you. Turn to Him for help and forgiveness, and when you receive it, make sure you forgive yourself as quickly as God forgives you.

You are far more than your mistake you’ve made. Forgive yourself and move on. God has. “He who has repented of his sins, the same is forgiven, and I, the Lord, remember them no more” (D&C 58:42).

I received a priesthood blessing a while ago and God told me that, “You are clean in front of Him. When He sees me He does not see my past or what’s on my body. They are gone. And He personally weeps with me when I don’t see that in myself.”

Today is my 6-year baptism anniversary! Though I may have thought I was happy before, I can say now with confidence I was not. Today, right now, even in trials, I am happy. A real happiness. A lasting and physical happiness.

I know what life without the gospel is like— I went 21 years without it. There is nothing to really offer to me. Happiness is fake and fleeting without it. I am weak and not myself without it. The contrast is huge. The difference is real.

This is it. This is my life. Christ is my life. Being embarrassed to living the gospel is literally the silliest thing to ever happen. I promise you can live the commandments and still be cool. It’s like a thing, it happens all the time. I am happy because of them. Following God never goes out of style.

Lovin’ this life of mine, not because it’s easy or perfect, ‘cause it’s not, but because it’s hand picked by God. Life is too short to not love the journey God has for you.

God already has the way to the best ever created. It’s already there. I want that. I choose God. I choose His ways. I choose His rewards and blessings. Refuse to be idle. Refuse to have these quickly passing days without substance and meaning and progress. Refuse to have these quickly passing days without God. Refuse to deny yourself the best things simply from putting off talking to Him and reading scriptures.

To choose happiness is to choose God. And once you choose God anything is possible. Do not lose sight of the simpleness of the gospel, it’s beautiful. Be better than who you were yesterday. Always exercise your change of heart muscle. Keep going. Keep growing. Believe in Christ + believe Christ.

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