All is Well
I'm sure many of you, like me, have tried to imagine the pain and suffering the early saints went through. Some people are lucky enough to have records of their experiences passed through family where they can feel closer to their ancestors by better understanding them. I love stories of the pioneers. Their sacrifices brought about great change. What's so cool about it is that they still bring about great change! They have left a legacy of faith and strength unlike many other groups of people on this earth. They pressed forward, giving up things of this world for eternal blessings. Their stories change hearts! Was it hard? Of course! Do you think they regretted it? Maybe some days. They were human. I'm sure they longed for the comforts of life many others had. I'm sure some of them felt silly walking away from temporal things for what they hoped would be greater just like those that held to the iron rod and felt embarrassed by the people mocking from the great and spacious building. But do you think, after all they went through, they really regretted it? What did they experience on their trek out west? Did they see angels? Some of them did. Did they feel strength from the Lord as their own failed them? Did they feel the warmth of the Savior as their feet froze in the snow? Did they have purpose? Was the Lord pleased with them? The early saints grew a relationship with the Savior that few will ever understand. Those days were hard, but they were sustained. They were protected. They were loved. Did they regret it? I hope not. If they could see the legacy they left, the stories that have resonated with the saints today, and the testimonies they've strengthened, I hope they'd be proud of their efforts. I have no doubt they continue their work on the other side of the veil, watching over their posterity and the rest of God's children as they pioneer their own way through this life. I love Elder Holland's quote, "Heaven is cheering you on today, tomorrow, and forever." I know we have a loving Heavenly Father who cheers us on, but also have no doubt that our ancestors are pushing us along, too, just like I'm sure theirs helped push them along the trails and mountains. When we have a better sense of the eternal scope of things, it's easy to see how the pioneers could say "All is well!". The entirety of the song Come, Come Ye Saints is a beautiful anthem for the pioneers and for saints who strive to continue on despite the hardships of life. I hope you can feel the Lord's strength when yours fails. I hope you can feel His warmth when the world gets cold. I hope you can feel heaven cheering you on. Here are the full lyrics to the song Come, Come Ye Saints, and the photo above is available for a digital download at the link below (it's 8 inches by 8 inches).