For the past couple of months, our mission has been focusing on the Atonement. We’ve talked about it, trained on it, studied it, and pondered on it as we strive each week to intentionally prepare to be worthy of the sacrament. I’ve personally forgotten the most crucial step- To apply it. The way to understand the Atonement, is to use it! As usual, I’m sure this is probably obvious to many of you, and I might have said it was, too. But I learned it in my heart this week.
“Without repentance, there is no real progress or improvement in life. Pretending there is no sin does not lessen its burden and pain. Suffering for sin does not by itself change anything for the better. Only repentance leads to the sunlit uplands of a better life. And, of course, only through repentance do we gain access to the atoning grace of Jesus Christ and salvation. Repentance is a divine gift, and there should be a smile on our faces when we speak of it. It points us to freedom, confidence, and peace. Rather than interrupting the celebration, the gift of repentance is the cause for true celebration.” – Elder D. Todd Christofferson
I have no interest in airing my own dirty laundry, but I have a very strong desire to share this lesson that I learned. I want you to know that the Atonement of Jesus Christ is the greatest gift that could ever be given. It’s real, and it’s personal, and I know that it works because I’ve experienced its power for myself. For years, I’ve asked myself the same question, over and over again, after hearing, reading, or thinking about the Atonement.
How does it work?
It works when you use it! Through repentance, that’s how. And then you understand. As I think back about the times in the past that I thought I understood the Atonement, I believe that I understood as much as I was prepared for at any given time. And I’m sure I have more to learn. If you have any more specific questions, please feel free to ask me- Or your nearest priesthood leader 🙂