One night, we were in a more busy part of our area for a proselyting activity. As we were talking to people, one lady came up to us and started asking us lots of questions about our church.
She was a Christian herself and was very active in her church. One of the questions she asked was “Why don’t you have crosses on your church?” The companion I was with at the time very simply and boldly replied “well, how would you like it if after you die, people only thought about your grave whenever they remembered you?”
If you are a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I’m sure you have wondered the same question before. In Korea, if you look outside at night you are almost blinded by all of the bright crosses flashing on top of churches, but you won’t be able to find any crosses on top of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints buildings.
As a missionary, I get asked this question all the time so I’ve been able to ponder and study about it – and I hope I can explain the why with you today.
Before I get into it, let me start with a brief overview of our lives. Before we were born on the earth, we lived with our loving Heavenly Father. As spirit children of God, we wanted to become like Him. But without a physical body and mortal life experience, there was no way we could be like Him or receive all the blessings He has in store for us. So in order for each of us to be able to receive the greatest gift of all – eternal life – he gave us a special plan called the Plan of Salvation. As we learn about God’s plan for us and apply it in our lives, we will receive happiness and peace so it’s often also called the ‘Plan of Happiness’.
Through this plan, we have the opportunity to experience, learn and grow on the earth. All of the hardships and good experiences help us to progress and become like our Heavenly Father. But He knew that we were very imperfect and that we couldn’t return to live with Him without any help. So He sent His son, Jesus Christ to the earth. Jesus Christ is the center of God’s Plan of Salvation. He suffered ‘pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind’ for us and eventually was crucified on the cross. When he passed away on the cross, his spirit and body were separated. Then after three days, he was resurrected – he overcame death and his spirit and body were reunited, never to be separated again.
During this Easter Season, I hope we can all find joy in the fact that Jesus was resurrected. He lives. He loves us. He leads and guides The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and He can lead us in our path back to our Heavenly Father and Savior if we allow his spirit of be with us. We don’t need to dwell on his death – but show our gratitude for his sacrifices by following his gospel. As we continue to grow our faith in the Lord, Jesus Christ and repent daily, we can remember him and his wonderful life.
Because of his resurrection, we will all receive the gift of resurrection and have a hope for an eternal life. Thanks to our Savior, we can find peace and hope in the fact that our lives don’t end after death, but that we will be with our families again. In the Book of Mormon, we can learn more about how we will be resurrected in perfect form – no more pain, no more disability.
44Now, this restoration shall come to all, both old and young, both bond and free, both male and female, both the wicked and the righteous; and even there shall not so much as a hair of their heads be lost; but every thing shall be restored to its perfect frame, as it is now, or in the body, and shall be brought and be arraigned before the bar of Christ the Son, and God the Father, and the Holy Spirit, which is one Eternal God, to be judged according to their works, whether they be good or whether they be evil.
Last week, we were privileged to hear from our loving Prophet President Thomas S Monson at general conference. Because of his health, he could only speak to us for a brief moment – but I could feel that with all the energy he could find, he shared with us what we needed to hear the most, and what was most important to us at this time
“We live in a time of great trouble and wickedness. What will protect us from the sin and evil so prevalent in the world today? I maintain that a strong testimony of our Savior, Jesus Christ, and of His gospel will help see us through to safety. If you are not reading the Book of Mormon each day, please do so. If you will read it prayerfully and with a sincere desire to know the truth, the Holy Ghost will manifest its truth to you. If it is true—and I solemnly testify that it is—then Joseph Smith was a prophet who saw God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ.”
I too bear my testimony of the Book of Mormon. It is the word of God. I’ve found so many answers and so much comfort from reading the Book of Mormon every day. My testimony of our Saviour is strengthened everyday as I read and ponder the things I read from the Book of Mormon. I invited all of you to find hope, peace and light through our Saviour today by studying the Book of Mormon. Savior lives and loves us. I am so grateful for the Atonement of Jesus Christ and through him we can all live again.
I leave my testimony with you in the name of Jesus Christ Amen.