The Savior already paid the price. Take His hand and keep moving forward.
Recently I read an article by a young man that discussed how he was able to overcome sins in his life:
“There are sins I’ve carried with me throughout my young adult life that I’ve tried to conquer but haven’t been able to overcome through prayer or my own willpower. Despite my growth throughout the years, I knew I needed to overcome them to continue progressing. I decided that I would leave just one of my sins (each week) to the Savior and His atoning sacrifice…. With sincerity and full purpose of heart, I renewed my baptismal covenants and said a prayer in my heart, asking Heavenly Father for help and making a commitment to leave this sin behind. Then something happened I never expected: my desire to sin completely left. I tried this a few more times, and the same thing happened with other sins. Was it too good to be true?
ALIGNING MY WILL WITH THE SAVIOR
The next week, I knew what sin I wanted to leave …, but I didn’t feel ready to give it up. Looking back, I realize that my heart wasn’t in the place it needed to be. I wasn’t being sincere enough to commit to change. But I realized how much the sin hurt Heavenly Father. I knew I needed to align my will with His and center my life around Him to become free. So I did my best to make that a reality.
I avoided any temptation that could lead to this sin. I changed the way I read my scriptures every day and truly pondered them and applied them to my life. I focused on being sincere in my commitment to change, and I sought every day to seek the Lord’s will over mine. I put Him first, because I knew I couldn’t leave this sin behind without the power of the Savior’s Atonement. By continuing to put Him first, I was able to surrender this sin… I was finally free from something that had held me back for so many years. Through this process, I grew closer to my Heavenly Father and my Savior. I imagined Them looking down on me for all of these years with patience and love–knowing, eventually, I would give up the sins that spiritually hampered my progress. And when I was ready to give them up, Jesus Christ would be there to lift me–to take me by the hand and grant me forgiveness and strength. He already provided a way for me to become free from my sins through His Atonement. He paid the price for my weaknesses, mistakes, and sins. I just needed to trust Him.”
“During this time, I read some words from Elder Richard G. Scott (1928-2015) that gave me the little push I needed: “If your life is in disarray and you feel uncomfortable and unworthy … , don’t worry. He already knows about all of that. He is waiting for you to kneel in humility and take the first few steps. Pray for strength. … Pray that the love of the Savior will pour into your heart.”1
When we sang “I Stand All Amazed at the Love Jesus Offers Me” (my favorite hymn) the next week, each word rang true; I really was amazed–in awe that the things I had struggled with for more than a decade were taken from me. In awe that through the power of the Savior’s Atonement, I could move forward. That He can heal all sins and wounds and leave no trace of them behind. That I didn’t need to be held back by my past.”
The Atonement of Jesus Christ Removes Our Sins
By completing the steps of repentance for each of our sins, the Atonement of Jesus Christ becomes effective in our lives and the Lord forgives our sins and removes them. “…though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” (Isaiah 1: 18 in the Bible)
“…for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.” (Jeremiah 31: 34 in the Bible)
“Behold, he who has repented of his sins, the same is forgiven, and I, the Lord, remember them no more.” (Doctrine & Covenants 58: 42)
ESCAPING THE BONDAGE OF SIN
The opportunity to repent is a magnificent gift from our Savior and allows us to escape from the bondage of sin. It allows the Spirit of the Lord to fill our hearts with love, hope, faith, joy, peace and happiness.
Dallas Jones is the local leader of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.This article quoted Jeff Bates in the April 2020 edition of Ensign. For further discussion call (231) 383-8359 or send an email to [email protected].