I am giving a talk in church today. I thought I would share with you some of the things I am talking about. My thoughts are coming from President Uchtdorf's talk in general conference.
Here is a link to the talk. It is really good:
Click to read the talk
If you remember, he talks about his experience as a child in Germany during the war. He talks about the destruction in the city of Dresden, where 90% of the city was destroyed. He said he had wondered how these effects of war could be overcome. There was a church in Dresden, Frauenkirche which was completely torn down by war to a pile of rubble. But, this church along with the city of Dresden was rebuilt.
Pesident Uchtdorf says: "If man can take the ruins, rubble, and remains of a broken city and rebuild an awe-inspiring structure that rises towards the heavens, how much more capable is our Almighty Father to restore His children who have fallen, struggled, or become lost?"
The parable of the good shepherd in the scripture is the most hopeful parable because it tells us that our Savior, the good shepherd, loves His sheep. They are precious in His sight. He will seek after them, He will find them and He will place them on His shoulders rejoicing.
I have many friends who have lost their faith. They are offended by someone, or have lost their testimony for some reason. I have also many family members who struggle and don't fully believe in God. I know we are sad when things like this happen, but we have to remember that once we have done all we can to help them, we need to simply trust the Good Shepherd. Our Savior knows His sheep, he knows where they are and He will find them in His due time.
If you are lost yourself, if you have lost your faith...I invite you to act on the little amount of belief that you have and turn to Heavenly Father.
I personally got to that point once in my life...When I lost my faith and testimony...But, I gathered up every bit of faith I had left, and knelt down in prayer and asked: "Heavenly Father, are you really there?" He answered me that night, and He will answer you. All you have to do is turn to the Savior of the world, the Good Shepherd. Once you do, He will lift you up and carry you.
As I look at the destruction around the world today...where many cities have been destroyed by war or natural disasters. Cities in Italy, Gaza in Palestine, cities in Syria and Iraq and other places. Can these places ever be rebuilt? The world around us seems hopeless...
Yet I rejoice as I have seen the Lord reach out His hand and build faith and perform miracles in spite of the destruction and pain. He reached out to me in Palestine, a country torn by conflict, and He restored my shattered, hopeless life.
All His sheep are precious in His sight and He loves them all. He is the mighty creator and can create life from ashes. He does best when He has broken hearts and broken lives to work with.
He simply asks us to turn our lives over to Him and He will make something wonderful out of us. As president Uchtdorf says,
"His plan is to build us into something far greater than what we were--far greater than what we can ever imagine. With each step of faith on the path of discipleship, we grow into the beings of eternal glory and infinite joy we were designed to become."