Raise and Relief

For our Relief Society lesson today we discussed Camille N. Johnson’s talk from this last General Conference, Jesus Christ is Relief.  These are a couple of the quotes that really stood out to me…


“Covenant keepers are blessed with the Savior’s relief.

Consider this example in the Book of Mormon: The people of Alma were persecuted with “tasks upon them, and … task-masters over them.” Forbidden to pray vocally, they “did pour out their hearts to [God]; and he did know the thoughts of their hearts.”

And “the voice of the Lord came to them in their afflictions, saying: Lift up your heads and be of good comfort, for I know of the covenant which ye have made unto me; and I will covenant with my people and deliver them out of bondage.

“And I will also ease the burdens which are put upon your shoulders, that even you cannot feel them upon your backs.”

And their burdens “were made light,” and “the Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord.”

Those covenant keepers received relief in the form of comfort, increased patience and cheerfulness, an ease in their burdens so that they felt light, and ultimately deliverance.”



“What is relief?

It is the removal or lightening of something painful, troubling, or burdensome, or the strength to endure it. It refers to a person who takes the place of another. It is the legal correction of a wrong. The Anglo-French word comes from Old French, the word relever, or “to raise up,” and from the Latin relevare, or “raise again.”

Brothers and sisters, Jesus Christ is relief. I testify that He did rise again on the third day and, having fulfilled the loving and infinite Atonement, stands with open arms, offering to us the opportunity to rise again, be saved, and be exalted and become like Him. The relief He offers us is everlasting.”


That second quote stood out to me because it reminded me of one of the poems that I wrote this past spring…

I also started thinking more about the relief/raise part of the talk and I thought about relief sculptures and how they are still attached but just raised out from or above the background. A thought that that prompts for me is that relief doesn’t always (or even usually) mean that we are removed from our “background” (circumstance). Relief often means that our minds and hearts are elevated out of/above our circumstance, but still technically attached to it.


Mary Magdalene Meets Jesus Station Casting by Inspired Artisians


Margaret Beaudette and her relief sculpture titled St. Mary of Magdala Proclaiming the Resurrection

Relief, for me, often comes from my thoughts and feelings being elevated, or raised. A change of mind, a fresh view about myself, and about the world. … in fact that is the first part of the definition of repentance in the Bible dictionary…so “say nothing but repentance” (Doctrine & Covenants 6:9) could also point to helping to elevate the thoughts and feelings of ourselves and others. “The truth shall make you free.” (John 8:32) We can find relief when we call out to God, hear Him, and receive His words from His Word. Those true messages from Him will elevate/raise our thoughts and feelings and we will experience relief, even in the midst of the trying circumstance.

And as a society of relief, we can offer God’s words to others, inviting them to be raised above their circumstances as well. I’ve shared this little quote before but I’ll share it again because it’s one of my favorites: “If instead of a gem or even a flower, we could cast the gift of a lovely thought into the heart of a friend, that would be giving as angels give.” (George MacDonald)

I also thought I would share that poem I mentioned that I wrote this past spring…


Raised in the Gardens of God


It seems that God loves gardens,

The more I think and read,

The most important places,

Were started from a seed.


God prepared a garden,

For mankind to begin.

There they walked and enjoyed,

Nature and God’s presence within.


The Garden of Gethsemane,

Became a sacred place.

In this special garden,

Jesus Christ bought our grace.


Golgotha had a garden,

Where two vital events occurred.

Day one Christ died on the cross,

Was resurrected on the third.


Lille Myregård gardens,

Are special just for me.

Creating them brings life and joy,

When I’m in them I feel free.


I ponder all the special things

God’s gardens have fulfilled.

Sacred spaces give place for rise,

Renew, restore, rebuild.


In a garden Adam and Eve were raised;

Christ rose above weakness and sin;

He was raised up on the cross,

Then from the grave He rose again.


In my garden I am raised as well,

I am lifted up out of this realm;

Lead to the rock that is higher than me,

Freedom replaces my overwhelm.


My circumstance hasn’t changed. But in spending a lot of time in my garden this spring, I was able to hear God giving me His words. And those messages of truth raised and elevated me and have eased the burden on my back so that I can no longer feel its heaviness. Being raised gave me relief. 

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