Sierra's View: She's Taught Me About Strength.

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Sunday, November 6, 2011

She's Taught Me About Strength.

Reality has been hard.
I think of Holland often; very often.
This grieving process is a long, difficult journey. This has been one of the hardest months of my life (and I am not exaggerating). I was just starting to recover from the death of my dear friend, Ryan, and then the death of Holland happened two weeks later. The mundane aspects of everyday life do not seem as meaningful anymore. I wake up in the morning and take things literally one hour at a time.
I am doing okay, though. I just pray for my parents, my sister, my brother in law, and all the people who will, quite honestly, be struggling for a while.
I find that I HAVE to keep myself busy otherwise I fall into a deeper crevice of sadness. I force myself to be around people.
Despite the difficultness of this entire situation, my perspective has completely changed in the last week and I owe it mostly to LDC, my schooling, and spiritual experiences.  
This is then, ultimately, the Lord.
For awhile, I felt guilty laughing. I felt bad that I was able to feel a semblance of joy, while those around me struggled immensely. But then I realized that this is exactly what those on the other side of the veil would want. They want us to be happy.
The entire purpose of this life is to feel inexplicable peace and joy, in spite of the trials one faces.

Last Friday, my choir, LDC (love you guys so much), sang in devotional. It was a Friday just like any other Friday. I wasn’t feeling like anything special was going to happen. We got up to sing “Come Thou Fount” and I was completely, utterly, blown away. It was marvelous!
Now, I can single handedly count the amount of times LDC has sounded “bad”, but this particular time we sang was significantly magnificent.
And although this is going to sound so cheesy, I KNOW it was because we had angels surrounding us. In the midst of the song, I had to restrain from crying. I could feel the presence of Holland, Ryan, Meme, Kendall, and Grandma Kay with me, guiding my choir along.
This particular devotional from Elder and Sister Kearon was exactly what I needed to hear.

Holland’s death has taught me so much.
I know for a fact that her minimal time on earth was to teach me and my family some lessons that needed to be learned.

First, Holland has taught me that she is, in fact, still with me.
 Just now, she is guiding me in all of my spiritual experiences. Every time I need something, she will be my angel to give me peace when I am distraught. Just like on Friday, when I could feel her, this particular death has taught me that angels do exist.

Holland has taught me to not be with angry with the Lord. Ever.
With my excessive amount of emotional distress (ha), I sometimes, get frustrated with the Lord.
I am going to be honest, I was angry with Him for awhile after this. I felt as though this semester I haven’t been able to catch a break. I didn’t feel like it wasn’t fair for me to go through this trial.
Yes, yes, I know. I shouldn’t say that. “Has has given me this trial because He knows  I am strong enough to go through it…blah blah blah” And even though that is true, it doesn’t feel any easier in the midst of the particular trial.
Yet, I have once again been metaphorically smacked across the face.
I cannot be angry with Him. I can be angry. It is normal to be angry. But He is the ONLY thing that is going to get me through this.
Holland has taught me that anger does not solve any issue—and that includes ones with the Lord.
“Come thou fount” quotes one of my favorite lines: “Bind my wandering heart to thee.”
In the midst of my wanderings, my anger, my sense of confusion, I have been taught to bind my heart to HIM, to bind it, so that I am unable to fall away.
He is my rock. I need to turn towards Him, not away from Him, in order to gain strength.
Our lives are daily battles. And in this daily battle, our goal is to learn more. Dealing with harsh reality is, in fact, just that: harsh. But we need to humble ourselves in order to learn.
Holland has taught me that I choose how to respond to these battles of life. I am not a victim, even though sometimes I want to turn to that. I am an agent to my choices, my life. I choose how to respond.

Holland has taught me about my eternal majesty. She has taught me that my goal in life is just that: majestic. That lucky girl is automatically sitting beside God. I need to live my life in accordance with her perfect pureness so I can sit beside her eventually.
She has taught me that He is looking over us individually. INDIVIDUALLY. He knows of my heart ache. He knows that my struggle with this entire situation is different than my mom’s or Lexie’s. He is giving each of us tools and steps to get through.

Holland has taught me to look forward to the future with HOPE.
Unfortunately, in this life, once we get through one trial—another one happens to come our way.
We have the tools; we have the guidance, to get through those trials.
But, as it is said: “This too shall pass.” Because it will.
She has taught me to remember that He is proud of the choices I have made thus far. My future is strong because of the good choices I have made in my life already, despite my silly mistakes.
She has taught me to continuously look forward with hope, with excitement; to not look back, because I am not going that way. I am only going forward.
Hope anchors the soul. The Lord anchors our souls.

Elder Kearon explained in the devotional on Friday that, “Some of the greatest things in life are flecks; not pure gold nuggets.” Holland has taught me that tender mercies do exist.
I am doing a field experience in a 4th grade class. I was so hesitant to do this. I felt as though it was going to be a burden. But, being in this 4th grade class for the next month has been a HUGE tender mercy. I absolutely love it. The students are so hilarious, real, and enthusiastic. They smile through most things. We can learn so much through the simplicity of children. They are gonna get me through this hard time.

Holland has taught me that I need to look outwards.
I am in the “second phase of selfishness” as Elder Kearon put it. This point in my life is the second most selfish phase. First is the teenage years. Now is the second. Haha.
I need to stop feeling sorry for myself and find someone who needs me.
I need to pull myself out of these hardships and find someone who needs my strength.  

“Life up your hearts and be glad, for I am in your midst, and am your advocate with the Father, and it is his good will to give you the kingdom.” D&C 29:5.
“But behold, verily, verily, I say unto that mine eyes are upon you. I am in your midst and ye cannot see me.” D&C 38:7

LDC sang these songs once. I am listening to them currently while writing this post. How perfect.

Bind me not to the pasture, chain me not to the plow.
Set me free to find my calling and I’ll return to you somehow.
If you find it’s me you’re missing, if you’re hoping I’ll return,
To your thoughts I’ll soon be listening. In the road I’ll stop and turn.
Then the wind will set me racing as my journey nears its end
And the path I’ll be retracing, when I’m homeward bound again.
When the sparrows stop their singing…
I’ll be homeward bound again.

Come Home, the Father calls. Come home, my child to me.
Come home, the Holy Ghost will lead you to eternity.
Lest we forget, our Home’s with God.
Come Home, loved voices call. Come home where you belong.
Come home to live with joy, forever in our family throng.

Holland, thank you for teaching me about strength.
I am still learning. I am still growing. I am still messing up.
But, your life, your death, has taught me so much. Thank you for trusting my sister to let you into this world.
Your death has taught me about life. 


  1. So beautifully written Sierra. My goodness. You are a testimony builder.

  2. blogger needs a "like" button. perfectly stated.

  3. good thing you reminded me that you are a mature 21 year old now, because i would not believe a 19 year old silly girl could feel so much. you're a great girl sierra. i'm glad you're listening to the Lord.

  4. Very nice, Sierra. I think about sweet Holland often, too.


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