“You always hear about people today saying they don’t know how the pioneers got through all their hardships, but I’m sure some that are in heaven are saying the same things about us today.” – A talk given by Sister Janette Hales Beckham in May of 1997 titled "Modern Pioneers".
When we think of pioneers we imagine this:
Faithful, courageous, sacrificing, brave children of God. Hundreds of years ago our fellow members of the church, our brothers and our sisters left the east to come to settle in the west to get away from religious persecutions.
An article from the friend stated:
"Between 1856 and 1860, eight Latter-day Saint handcart companies crossed the plains successfully. Only the Martin and Willie Companies
suffered such tragedy. Out of 576 people in the Martin Company, at least 145 died. Approximately 67 out of 500 Willie Company
members died. Yet members of these companies were grateful for the Spirit they felt and the testimony they gained through their
experiences. Francis Webster, a member of the Martin Company, said, “We suffered beyond anything you can imagine and many died
of exposure and starvation, but . . . every one of us came through with the absolute knowledge that God lives”.
Today we're not being killed for our beliefs, but we are still made fun of, judged and treated poorly. We're not being asked to pick up all of our belongings, families and walk thousands of miles across the country but we are asked to make sacrifices for our families, church callings and serving those around us. We're not dying of the lack of food or water but we are dying spiritually. We weren't asked to cross the plains on a wagon to save our lives while risking them but we are asked to stand up for what we believe in, to have faith enough in the Lord to do what He asks of us, to follow promptings, share the gospel and be courageous, brave and to sacrifice for our religion.
They had to have faith enough in God. Enough faith that they would trust His prophets to lead and guide them to a better life. Faith that they would make it and if they didn't, faith that they would see their family again. They had to have courage that the Lord knew what was best for them and there are always better things lying ahead. They had to be strong in dealing with their trials and afflictions. They had to be brave, not knowing what laid ahead of them. They had to believe, trust, and rely on the Savior.
The pioneers had to do all of these things, and now so do we because we are modern day pioneers. Yes our trials our different but more alike than they seem. We each learn and grow from the hardships we endure. We have to embrace them and let the Lord lighten our loads.
We have to be modern day pioneers and we can do that by:
» Standing up for what we believe in & being an example to others regardless of what they do to us or think of us
» Sharing the gospel in all times & places
» Believing that God has a plan for us & we can see our families again
» Having faith in and trust that Heavenly Father provided a modern day prophet to guide and direct us in these latter days
» Letting the Lord lighten our burdens by prayer, reading and praying about the Book of Mormon and worshiping Heavenly Father and His son Jesus Christ by partaking of the sacrament
» Sacrificing our time, talents and efforts in our callings & serving those around us
So I challenge a of you to be a modern day pioneers, to stand up for what you know is right and to lead and be an example to those around you. Endure your trials and hardships with faith in Christ. You can do this, don't give up.
I'm a member of the church of Jesus Christ Of Latter-day Saints. I'm a missionary and I'm a modern day pioneer.