The sound of the heater blasts as my music shuffles in the background. A storm rolled in while I was at dinner with some old friends that night. My car was filled with the scent of teriyaki smoke that emanated from my saturated sweater from grilling earlier. It took about an hour to make it home from the average 25 minute drive. Bumper to bumper with limited vision, the snow pounded against the caravan of cars. A thought crossed my mind, "We're in this storm together." As I sat on this thought patiently waiting in traffic I came to the conclusion that this is what life is. It's this snow storm we must pass through on our way home.
Sometimes we may not comprehend or understand the "Why" of things. Why do I feel this way? Why did this happen? or Why am I here? In this moment? The Prophet Lehi explained to his son Jacob, "Thou knowest the greatness of God; and He shall consecrate thine afflictions for thy gain." (2 Nephi 2:2) Our storms we are in happen directly and indirectly and can occur from our choices or from the decisions of others. More often than not I find that I am my own whirlwind, hurricane or tsunami. Our individual and unique weaknesses are meant to help us trust in our Heavenly Father and grow closer to Him. "I give unto men weakness that they may be humble... For if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them." (Ether 12:27)
To consecrate means to set apart and make holy or sacred. As we grow in faith our lives begin to change and our perspective becomes just a little clearer to see through the storms. We set ourselves apart from the things that hinder us whether it be addiction, lack of moral judgement or giving in to influences we're prone to. The light within us grows a little brighter and our smiles a little wider. With each new challenge overcome and weakness strengthened there is an outward reflection of our inward commitment, for Christ will be in our countenance.
Just like the storm I was driving in. I was alone, but I wasn't alone. We are all here together, and need one another. A prayer. A phone call. A visit. The greatest act of charity is to forget oneself and put the needs of another before your own. In any circumstance, turn outward and look upward and "when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren." (Luke 22:32) We are all Ohana.