emblems of the sacrament

To all of us who have come into mortality, the Savior said, “In the world ye shall have tribulation” (John 16:33). Yet He gave this wonderful promise to His disciples during His mortal ministry: “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you” (John 14:27). It is a comfort to know that this promise of personal peace continues for all of His disciples today.

Some of us live in beautiful and peaceful surroundings, yet we are experiencing inner turmoil. Others feel peace and perfect serenity in the midst of great personal loss, tragedy, and continuing trials.

You may have seen the miracle of peace on the face of a disciple of Jesus Christ or heard it in his or her words. I have seen it many times. Sometimes it has been in a hospital room where a family is gathered around a servant of God who is near death.

I remember visiting a woman in the hospital a few days before she died of cancer. I had brought my two young daughters to accompany me because this sweet sister had once been their Primary teacher.

Her family members were gathered around her bed, wishing to be with her in her final moments on earth. I was surprised as she sat up in the bed. She reached out to my daughters and introduced them both, one by one, to each member of her family. She spoke as if my daughters were royalty being presented at the court of a queen. She found a way to say something about the way each person in the room was a disciple of the Savior. I still remember the strength, the tenderness, and the love in her voice. And I recall being surprised at her cheerful smile even as she knew her time in life was short.

She had received priesthood blessings of comfort, yet she gave us all a living testimony that the Lord’s promise of peace is true: “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).

She had accepted His invitation, as we all can, whatever our trials and troubles:

“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

“Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls” (Matthew 11:28–29).

It is only through following the Savior that any of us can find peace and serenity in the trials that will come to all of us.

The sacramental prayers help us to know how to find that peace amidst the tribulations of life. As we partake of the sacrament, we can determine to be faithful to our covenants to follow Him.

We each promise to remember the Savior. You can choose to remember Him in the way that best draws your heart to Him. Sometimes for me, it is to see Him in my mind kneeling in the Garden of Gethsemane or to see Him calling Lazarus to come forth from the tomb. As I do, I feel a closeness to Him and a gratitude that brings peace to my heart.

You also promise to keep His commandments. You promise to take His name upon you and to be His witness. He promises that as you keep your covenants with Him, the Holy Spirit will be with you. (See D&C 20:77, 79.)

This brings peace in at least two ways. The Holy Ghost cleanses us from sin because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. And the Holy Ghost can give us the peace that comes from having God’s approval and the hope of eternal life.

The Apostle Paul spoke of this wonderful blessing: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith” (Galatians 5:22).

When heavenly messengers heralded the birth of the Savior, they declared, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace” (Luke 2:14; emphasis added). I bear my testimony as a witness of Jesus Christ that the Father and His Beloved Son can send the Spirit to allow us to find peace in this life, whatever tests may come to us and to those we love.