I love the spring time in Las Vegas. I opened the blinds to my home office window this morning and had a feeling of renewal. I love the cool air in the morning when you first walk outside. I enjoy every minute of it because I know that the heat of the summer will be here soon.
I felt like I have literally survived this last winter because of different struggles that took place in my life. A friend of mine once said that we don’t have struggles, problems or challenges. We have opportunities. These opportunities give us a chance to grow and learn.
Spring is a time of renewal and hope. And with Spring comes Easter. I love Easter time. When I was a girl growing up in Henderson, Nevada, my parents would take the family and go to the Boulder City park and have a picnic the Saturday before Easter. I love that memory, sitting on a blanket with the picnic spread out before us. And the grass was always green and smelled so wonderful.
Tomorrow we will have our children and grandchildren over for Easter dinner after church. My grandchildren are growing so fast and the two oldest are going to be seniors in high school this coming Fall. It seems like yesterday that I was looking forward to my children becoming seniors. Now it’s the grandchildren. As I grow older I realize how precious our time on earth is and that the choices we make here are so important.
Easter is a time of rejoicing and celebration. The center of Easter is our Savior Jesus Christ. Picnics and getting together as a family is wonderful and creates bonds and memories. But I don’t want to forget what Jesus Christ has done for me. His Atonement is central to our happiness.
In the recent General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, C. Scott Grow of the Seventy said: “We access the Atonement through repentance. When we repent, the Lord allows us to put the mistakes of the past behind us. . . . Each of us knows a person who has had serious challenges in his or her life―someone who has wandered or wavered. That person could be a friend or relative, a parent or child, a husband or wife. That person may even be you.
The Messiah came to redeem men from the Fall of Adam. Everything in the gospel of Jesus Christ points toward the atoning sacrifice of the Messiah, the Son of God. . . .
Through His suffering and death, the Savior atoned for the sins of all men. His Atonement began in Gethsemane and continued on the cross and culminated with the Resurrection. . . .
Through His Atonement, He heals not only the transgressor, but He also heals the innocent who suffer because of those transgressions. As the innocent exercise faith in the Savior and in His Atonement and forgive the transgressor, they too can be healed.
There are times when each of us needs “relief from feelings of guilt that come from mistakes and sins.” As we repent, the Savior removes the guilt from our souls.
Through His atoning sacrifice, our sins are remitted. With the exception of sons of perdition, the Atonement is available to everyone all the time, no matter how large or small the sin, “on conditions of repentance.”
Because of His infinite love, Jesus Christ invites us to repent so that we will not have to suffer the full weight of our own sins.”
I am so grateful for Jesus Christ and for the sacrifice he made for me.