Tuesday, April 21, 2009

"Jerusalem, if I forget you"

My testimony has been strengthened greatly since being here. However, it did not come in one big "ah-ha" experience as I thought it would, but rather it has come by small and simple things. Things such as learning a fact in religion class, something someone mentions when passing me down the stairs, a quote from a General Authority sent from my mom, an email of support from a friend, or standing in a sacred site singing a hymn. All of these combined made this experience incredible. I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to come to Jerusalem. I know that great sacrifices were made by many of you and I thank you!
There is a special feeling to this place, a feeling of being home. I don't know if that feeling comes because it has been my home the last four months, or if it is because I am part of the tribe of Abraham and therefore the land is partially promised to me, or if it is because I am in the right place, at the right moment, doing the right thing that the Lord wants me to.
"If these walls could talk"what stories would they tell. What secrets do they know? What heartache have they felt? Would it be about the Last Supper meal? Or Mary weeping against the Garden Tomb? Would it be the arch viewing the Saviors struggle to carry the cross out of the city walls up to Calvary? Would it be the story of the trees in the Garden in Gethsemane? Or would it be the waters of Galilee telling about Peter? Would it be the Mill teaching about the giant stone crushing a tiny olive?
I often feel as though time stops among the busyness and that I am taken back in time imagining what it would have been like during the time of the Savior or our Old Testament Fathers.
I have learned so many things while being here. If I had all night and wasn't so tired I would tell you but here are a few short glimpses:
  • These are holy people who first live their religion and then their life
  • There are two sides to every story. No one is ever fully right or wrong
  • The people don't fight over doctrine, just territory
  • Life is about serving others
  • If we "build walls" around others no good will ever come of it
  • Be kinder, more gentle, more caring, more considerate
  • Stop and ponder
  • I love nature
  • Walk with God
  • Learn from other religions and take away positive things that I can improve upon
  • NEVER take the temple for granted
  • Pray with all the energy of heart, soul and body
  • Time is relative
  • Wear your legs off in the service of the Lord
  • Peace can be felt amidst a war
  • Don't be worried about the future...replace fear with faith
  • Remember Lots wife
  • Strive daily to become more Christlike

*Isaiah 53: 3-5 He was despised and rejected

Don't allow yourself in your own life to take lightly the Atonement. He has been alone once and doesn't need to suffer it again.

I do know that my Redeemer lives. He is risen. He will abide with me throughout my troubles and my joys. The spirit of God warms my soul. I cannot doubt His magnitude, divinity, grandeur or Messiahship.

You don't have to see the Holy Land to stare at a pile of dirt to receive a testimony of Christ, but rather a testimony comes through prayer and obedience to His will.


  1. I can't believe that your time there is over! What an experience for you that you will remember forever! Welcome home and I look forward to seeing you this summer when I come to visit! Love you Emi!

  2. Hey emilie!!! just wanted to say hi and see how everything is going for you.