I finally have started reading May's book for my Relief Society book group: Out of the Killing Fields, Into the Light. I knew the littlest bit about the terrible things in Cambodia in the 70s from one of my favorite movies as a child, "The Girl Who Spelled Freedom." Some years later (high school? college?) I read a book (title escapes me right now) and got a slightly bigger idea of what it was like for a Cambodian refugee adjusting to life in America. I'm only a few stories in to this book, and I am seeing that, yet again, I knew so little about this part of world history and that there was such awful, tragic goings on. What these people endured. What they saw. How miraculous it was that there were survivors. But then, in this book, to see that some found the truth of the Gospel and the light of Christ. And how the Gospel has changed their lives, most especially in knowing how to use it to help them deal with difficult things that still come to them in life.
Today, one of the passages I read really resonated with me: "At times it has been hard to forgive those who treated me so poorly throughout my life. But it has been the Atonement of Christ that has helped me let go of the pain and the resentment and replaced them with love and forgiveness. They did a lot worse to Christ than anyone ever did to me, and he was able to forgive. So somehow I have to learn to forgive as well."
This quote had me pause to think on not just the times I have been wronged by others (or myself), but also of the trials I've had in life. No matter what difficulty I will ever go through in this life, it will never compare to what my Redeemer went through. And if He could face all of that with courage, patience, kindness, forgiveness, and love, then I can do my best to do the same. Even better, this same Man who made it through life with such good traits and qualities has the ability to help me have them as well. His offer is always there and it is up to me if I will accept that help. Plus, accepting that help is not a one-time action, but constant throughout my life. And that is my intention.