Lately I've been thinking a lot about perspective and attitude. The Lord has commanded us to be happy and stated it as our purpose in 2 Nephi 2:25. However, as part of His plan, He has given us the precious gift of agency which allows us to choose whether or not we will keep this commandment. Some days, I struggle to smile and be positive and I consistently break one of our Lord's commandments. But in His perfect love, He continues to be patient and work with me -- sending me little reminders to be happy.
That being said, I've recently made a goal to seek out those little reminders from Heavenly Father and search for the things in my life that testify to me that He loves and cares for me individually.
I've decided to be happier and more positive. That means that instead of looking at the bad things and classifying my days as "worst day ever" I will do the opposite and change my life motto into
(Don't worry that this is legitimately a sign by my house. Heavenly Father loves me...)
On Pioneer Trek over the summer at our testimony meeting, a cute girl stood up and bore her testimony of how she knows that Heavenly Father loves her. I was deeply touched by her words and refer back to the memory often. I'm paraphrasing here to fit my topic, but basically she said that whenever she saw a reminder to be happy from the Lord, she was also reminded that He loves her. She went on to give a list of such reminders;
"I forgot my lunch today and my friend 'randomly' brought me cookies. Heavenly Father loves me."
"While I was walking, I saw a pretty flower. Heavenly Father loves me."
"When running, I was really hot and it started to rain. Heavenly Father loves me."
Her examples were so sweet and simple and through them, I've started to recognize Heavenly reminders in my life. Here are just a few:
I didn't realize it, but I was confused about life and needed to talk to someone. Taylor called and asked if I'd like to go take pictures of the temple with him. While in the car, he bore testimony of exactly what I needed to hear. Heavenly Father loves me.
There was a rainbow over the football field at our first home game. Heavenly Father loves me.
I received this snap at a stressful time. Heavenly Father loves me.
I saw a really pretty flower, Heavenly Father loves me.
The sunset was gorgeous. Heavenly Father loves me.
I was sad and Kenzie sent me a funny snap. Heavenly Father loves me.
I was stressed and Parker asked how he could help. Heavenly Father loves me.
My mom made my favorite food. Heavenly Father loves me.
Matthew shared a scripture I really needed to hear. Heavenly Father loves me.
The roadsides are filled with sunflowers. Heavenly Father loves me.
My unfinished homework wasn't due. Heavenly Father loves me.
These things may seem silly, but to me they are testaments that the Lord lives. He knows me and He loves me. He wants me to be happy and He places people in my life to answer my prayers and help me be a better and more positive person.
I hope that as I am on my quest to find happiness each day my testimony will grow and I might be a better tool in the Lord's hands. I hope that I will be able to do something that will prove to someone that their Heavenly Father loves them.
I know that the gospel of Jesus Christ is true. I know that our Heavenly Father loves us individually and that if we seek His hand daily, we will find it. I know that our happiness is not based on our situation, but our perspective. I know that if you are living the principles of the gospel and are striving to be happy and make a positive impact on those around you, you will.