I love that it is the Sabbath day again. What a blessing it is for us to have this one day of the week where we can worship our Savior together. We have been blessed with families and congregations to take part in this day of rest and it is truly something that I am thankful for in my life.
I chose the song, "You're Not Alone" for today because of an article that I recently read in the LDS Living magazine.
This article is about an LDS singer/songwriter by the name of Michael McLean.
I spent many hours during my teenage years listening to his songs. At one point, I also acquired one of his songbooks and spent a lot of time playing/singing them on my own.
He is the mastermind behind The Forgotten Carols, which is one of my favorite things at Christmas time. He has written so many songs that have really touched my heart and strengthened my testimony of the Savior.
So it was quite a surprise to me to read this article and find out that he recently had a 9-year crisis of faith. I have been touched by his music and now I have been touched by his story of doubt, confusion, and learning how to trust in God again.
Click here to read the article on LDSLiving.com
“It was like somebody decided to bolt heaven shut,” McLean explains. “I started to wonder, What if I’ve gotten it all wrong? What if I got the church thing wrong? What if I got Heavenly Father wrong? I kept thinking this would end—that there would be some peace that would come or some answers that would start trickling down. But they didn’t. I couldn’t believe I was saying it out loud, but I was thinking about an exit strategy. It was so painful.”
I also love how Brother McLean shared that he read a book about Mother Teresa which talked about a 49-year faith crisis that she went through. Forty-nine years? Mother Teresa? What is that all about? How could someone as pure and holy as Mother Teresa have a 49-year faith crisis? What this tells me is that none of us are immune from questions, doubt, and loss of faith. It can happen to anyone at any time, no matter how strong your faith is.
“I decided to recommit,” he says. “I’d wait on the Lord and look for answers that satisfied both my heart and mind. I’d attend church and not escape to the parking lot when I’d hear things that broke my heart or just made me feel like I was not where I truly belonged. I’d show up and shut up and listen and wait.”
He would listen and wait for nine years. Then something suddenly changed.
But it was the perspective of John the Baptist that especially impacted McLean. “John the Baptist had a faith crisis that goes beyond anything I’ve experienced,” he says. “While he’s locked in prison, about to be executed, he tells some of his disciples to find Jesus and ask Him, ‘Are you the one who was to come? Or should we look for another?’ He’s wondering if, after all he had done, he had gotten it all wrong.”
McLean continues, “John’s disciples find Jesus, and He says, ‘Watch me.’ He doesn’t race to the dungeon to comfort John the Baptist. He starts performing miracles. Then He tells the disciples to go back and tell John the miracles they saw, in the order they saw them. John realizes that his question is being answered perfectly because 700 years earlier, Isaiah had prophesied that the Messiah would perform these miracles, and they would happen in the order that the disciples saw them. John is getting the perfect answer that is designed perfectly just for him.”
The perfect answer that was designed just for him.
My friends, I know that we can receive answers to even the most challenging of questions. I also know that if the time is not right for us to receive an answer to a specific question then we can be blessed with peace in knowing that all will be well in the end.
"I will not leave you comfortless:
I will come to you."
We are never truly alone. Trust in God. Trust in our Savior.
Turn to them in times of crisis and in times of peace. I promise that they will always be there for you.