July 29–August 4
“When we are on the Lord’s errand,” President Thomas S. Monson promised, “we are entitled to the Lord’s help” (“To Learn, to Do, to Be,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2008, 62). We are not entitled, however, to a smooth road and an endless stream of successes. For evidence of this, we need look no further than Paul the Apostle. His errand from the Savior was “to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel” (Acts 9:15). In chapters 22–28 of Acts, we see Paul fulfilling this errand and facing great opposition—chains, imprisonment, physical abuse, a shipwreck, and even a snake attack. But we also see that Jesus “stood by him, and said, Be of good cheer, Paul” (Acts 23:11). Paul’s experiences are an inspiring reminder that when the Lord’s servants accept His call to “go … and teach all nations,” He will fulfill His promise to them: “Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world” (Matthew 28:19–20).
In this episode, I talk about Paul’s courage in declaring the gospel, the joy we feel when we share our testimonies, how Christ upholds us during our trials and how we should follow the counsel of the prophets and trust God when He gives us assurances.
Here’s the quote I shared.
“My relationship with God and engagement wit the Spirit in me are why I can have joy despite the chaos life might bring. But I also know what happens when I neglect disciplines that mark the well-lived spiritual life. I know from years of flowing in and out of consistent connection with God that keeping the connection is the only way my soul stays full and maintains joy.
Your connection with the Spirit of God is the only experience that will give your soul access to an always-flowing source of joy.
Even if we don’t have happiness, the Spirit offers us the gift of peace. Like my daddy says, “Peace doesn’t mean you won’t have problems. Peace means that your problems won’t have you.” While God calls us out of complacency, His peace allows us to choose contentment with our place in the world.
Know Spirit? Know peace.
No Spirit? No peace.
When you believe that you are loved by God and know the peace that He provides, you will know deep, abounding joy that is not dependent on your circumstances. Even in Galatians 5:22-23, joy makes its home between love and peace: “But the fruit of the Sprit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law’ (NASB).
But if you feel you just aren’t quite experiencing the fullness of God’s Spirit in your soul or the steady filling of joy of which I speak, can I ask you a question?
How much time do you spend reading His love letter to you?
How much time do you spend talking to Him and sitting in quiet waiting for Him to speak to you?
How much attention do you pa to living a life that make Him happy?
Relationships take time, and your relationship with God is no different.
I know you are busy, but make room for more of the filling of the Spirit in your life.
I know you are tired, but wake up a few minutes early to put His words in your heart.
I know you want what you want, but I dare you to go after what He wants for you and to watch our joy rise.
It’s simple. Know him, love him, and seek to please Him, and you will know an unexplainable joy that simply overflows.
Choose to nurture your soul by cultivating joy.”
–Chrystal Evans Hurst, “She’s Still There”