Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Eric's testimony

(read by JoLynne)

The other day, my good friend shared this email with me that my sweet husband, Eric wrote to her in response to a conversation that they had at work last year.  I would like to share it with you. His words and testimony lift my heart and bring me comfort.  It represents so well, Eric’s enduring and lasting faith and love of his savior. 

Dear Becky,

You asked me a question the other day at work about mercy and grace.  That is not an easily answered question, certainly not while drilling on a patient, though there is some mercy involved there.  Anyway, I have continued to ponder that question for several days since you asked and here are my thoughts.

First of all, I can't talk about mercy and grace without talking about the atonement.  In my mind they are all connected.

Secondly, I think that mercy and grace are largely misunderstood in our church, perhaps more even than in other churches.  Somehow we have got it in out heads that we can "earn" our way back to heaven by just being good enough.  I think there is nothing farther from the truth.  We are saved by grace!

Third, in these past three + years I have come to understand the atonement differently.  I always knew that through the atonement Christ paid the price of my sins and bore their weight.  Though I don't really understand that.  Now I have come to understand that through the atonement he has carried the weight of not just my sins but all my pains and my sorrows.  It is a much bigger category.  It includes physical and emotional pain as well as the pain associated with my sins.

So, back to these points.  How are the atonement, mercy and grace connected.  I love the part in the scriptures before the creation where, God knowing that sin would enter the world provided a Savior.  I can imagine the look on Christ's face when that decision is made.  I think it was a look of Pure Love.  I believe he knew perfectly well the assignment he was being given.  Through the fall of Adam and Eve all of that sweat of the brow and pain and suffering entered the world, just as promised.  None of that was happening in the garden of Eden.  Sin came too.  Satan became the god of this world with many willing to follow him.  In my opinion Christ's atonement was the answer for all these changes.  When we come to the Savior in our moment of desperation, whatever that may be, there he is to take upon himself the burdens we cannot bear.  Sometimes it is the burden of sin, sometimes it is physical or emotional pain.  I have found him there for me in every category.  He doesn't always take it all away but enough so that what is remaining is bearable for me in my weakness.  To me that is the essence of mercy and grace.  Christ is willing, through mercy and grace to bear what we are unable to.  Often times we don't even know the burden he has lifted in it's fullest sense.  We couldn't bear it, how can we understand it.  I hear people sometimes talk about meeting the Savior and  saying will you march up to him with your head held high or hung in shame.  I don't believe that anyone who understands mercy and grace will walk up to him with head held high.  Those who have the beginning of understanding at all, universally, will fall at his feet and bathe those feet with tears of gratitude.  They will know that they didn't earn their way to heaven nor did they bear the full weight of physical and emotional pain themselves.  Christ did it for them, through the atonement because of his profound mercy and grace towards us all.  I remember times when in these last three years when I experienced physical pain beyond anything I had ever had in mortality.  Times I hurt so much I couldn't even cry out for help except in silent, pleading prayer.  One night in specific it was so bad there are no words to describe it.  I screamed out in prayer, "Oh God, please spare me"  I couldn't even speak.  I was curled in a ball on the bed.  At that moment I heard behind me a voice, it said "It is an honor to be assigned to you"  I don't know even whose voice it was.  In that moment my pain was largely taken from me.  Some remained but lessened enough that I could call out to JoLynne who came running.  I don't know whose voice it was, probably my earthy father but I don't know.  I do believe that it wasn't him who took my pain but the Savior.  It was physical, not spiritual but at that point I was so grateful to have it lifted.

In the scriptures it says "We are saved by grace, after all we can do".  For some reason we focus on the second part, not the first and assume that "all we can do" is the lion's share.  I believe that the "lion's share is lifted by the Savior not us.  We take a little part and assume we did it mostly ourselves.  It reminds me of a two year old who is always saying "I can do it all myself"  They have found a little ability and now assume that they can control the whole world.  How little do they realize where their food comes from, where they have their warm bed or even air to breath and body that works.  They have control of 0.1% of their world and they can do it "all themselves"  As adults maybe we aren't so different.  Now we control maybe 1% of our world and we proudly announce we can do it ourselves.  Mercy and Grace are discounted and we think we are so grand.  We are as ignorant and perhaps as innocent as our little two years olds.  We just don't get it, yet.

When we truly "Come unto Christ" we will begin to understand his role in our whole life.  The atonement covers the sins of those who truly repent.  That is still beyond my understanding.  i don't understand the full price of sin so I can't understand the full payment.  I believe that the atonement also covers emotional and physical pain we experience in this life.  Like with repentance, we must "come unto him" and allow him to bear away our pain.  Will he do it for those who don't "come unto him", probably because that is how kind he is.  And someday they will see what he did and come to appreciate it but maybe not in this life.

Isaiah 53:4-5 says,

4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.
 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.
So, all that being said, through mercy and grace, Christ bears away a weight and pain that we will never understand in this life.  I feel like I understand just the beginning of the beginning and it makes me weep tears of gratitude to think about it.  Christ is the embodiment of kindness, charity, love, mercy and grace.  He is my Savior.  He has literally lifted me out of a hole that I could never escape on my own.  I love him with all my heart and gladly accept him as my Lord, my God and my Savior.

There is my answer that I couldn't share over a patient while drilling.

This is the testimony of my sweetheart Eric, who I am eternally grateful for. His love of his Savior is real.  His life reflected this love in Eric’s love for his fellow sojourner on this earth. I am privileged and honored to be loved by him and to be his wife. I love him.   I leave you with this, HIS testimony in the name of our beloved Savior, Jesus Christ, Amen

Shanelle's Remarks

There is no way to fully capture they way I felt about my dad in just a few minutes.  He meant everything to me.  He was the person I went to to make sense of this crazy world and to talk to about how to navigate life’s problems.  He was the best father in the world. I love him and miss him more than I can say.  I will try to highlight a few things that I loved about him knowing that it cannot possibly do justice to such an amazing man.  
One of the things I loved about my dad was how he made the mundane everyday tasks fun.  Matt Haggard wrote a wonderful tribute to my dad after his passing.  I want to share a quote from that tribute.

”There are some people in life who seem to have just figured it out- who truly succeed.  Dr. Vogel is one of these.  I think he probably earned some awards for being a good dentist, and he performed life-changing dental work for people in various parts of the world.  But, more than those successes, he succeeded at the living part of the life- the normal part- the daily mundane part.  From my perspective Bro. Vogel lived a thoroughly, consistently, pervasively, good life.  He took upon him Christ’s name and honored it.”

This was so true of my dad. He made daily normal chores fun and made us a part of them with him.  When he was flattening the dirt in the yard to put in grass, he had us sit on a big wooden pallet and pulled us around giving us sled rides.  Instead of just mowing the lawn, he would let it get long and then mow mazes into it with prisons and safe zones and then pull all of us outside to come play tag in the maze with him. For Halloween, dad got the idea to build a giant mouth that opened and closed on the porch complete with a foam rubber tongue that you had to walk across to get to the door.  One year, he even put up a bunch of gross dental pictures all over inside the mouth and recorded seth screaming while a dental drill was going to add to the effect.  

Dad was always thinking about his kids.  When I was 9, I had to stay after school for a dance practice.  My dad used to ride his bike to and from work and that day he decided to stop at the school and see how I was doing.  When he saw that I was not done with practice, he told me he would come back later and took off again on his bike.  I did not want to be left behind so I grabbed my backpack and ran after him.  He heard me and stopped and gave me a piggy back ride all the way back home on his bike, which was no easy task since I was a rather tall and gangly 9 year old.  But he did it anyway, and it is a fond memory I have of him.

Dad loved to tease us and had a great sense of humor.  When I turned 16, he arranged to have on the young men come over and hand me a large thing of balloons making it look like he was asking me on a date.  My friends at the party all danced around laughing and teasing while my dad just smirked.  When we popped the balloons it showed my dad’s name.  He wanted to be my first date.  I loved that.  

In high school, I used to stay up late doing homework and would lock up the house when I went to bed.  One night, I locked up the house as usual not realizing that my parents had gone on a late night walk.  Instead of calling the house or knocking, my dad thought it would be funny to jump down in the window well of my basement room and start scratching at the window.  I did not think it was so funny…. He finally apologized…. after he stopped laughing.

Dad had a unique way of seeing the world.  He was spontaneous and did not follow convention.
One of my mom’s only memories of my dad from high school was him walking around school with an iguana on his head all day.   

He was interested in the world around him and always shared that love with us.  I remember being a kid and going through his gross dental pathology book with him.  He would point out all the grossest pictures of weird dental diseases to me and talk to me about them.  

When I was in fourth grade, my dad chaperoned us to Espanolandia at BYU.  He took me and a couple of my friends over to the Widstoe building to go see the cadavers, because he thought we would think they were interesting.  The teachers were not too thrilled with him, but we thought it was so cool.

During our long road trips in the motorhome, my dad and I had a ritual of staying up late after everyone else had gone to bed and talking while he drove late into the night.  We talked about everything but especially loved to sit and talk about unique solutions to the world’s problems.  We used to talk about how you could theoretically plug into plants to harvest the excess energy from photosynthesis to get truly clean energy.  He was always thinking outside the box like that.

My dad taught me how to love people and see them as children of God.  When we first moved into the house in Orem, dad got called as the Young Men’s president.  The group of priests he had was a pretty rough around the edges.  He used to have them over on Sundays after dinner to play basketball and make cookies.  I remember walking out into the front yard as a small girl on one of those first sundays they were there and feeling frightened of these big rough looking priests.  But then I watched my dad with them.  He treated them just like they were normal and fun, so I figured it was ok for me to as well.  I have many fond memories of those young men and playing around with them on Sundays. I know he had a great influence on many of them simply because he loved them and could see past their challenges.  He was like that with everyone.

I had privilege of working with my dad from the beginnings of Share a Smile.  I have fond memories of helping him push back tables in the lunchroom of the homeless shelter and then then providing dental care to the homeless.  I was only a teenager then and I felt nervous about some of the people we were helping.  They were not always easy to be around, but Dad never saw them like that.  Watching him with those people was a life changing experience for me.  He was always kind and loving and treated them the same way he would treat his brothers and sisters.  He truly loved them.   I have never seen such Christlike love.

Despite going through cancer for the last four years, dad kept living a full and wonderful life.  After his last major surgery in Miami, Vivian and I went to go visit him.  Even though he was only a week out of a huge facial reconstruction surgery and in a lot of pain, he came out and played with his granddaughter all over Miami and even went canoeing with us through the mangroves singing songs and looking for manatees. He was the most wonderful grandfather to Vivian.  Even though he rarely felt good, he always played with her and loved her.

The last four years for my dad were not easy. I have watched him walk through hell and back over and over again with this cancer.  His suffering and pain were tremendous and yet he never wavered in his faith.  He never complained.  He simply loved and trusted God.  Watching him go through this cancer has taught me more about faith in God than anything else in my life.  

Many of you prayed with us for four long years for my dad to get better.  We all prayed and begged for his life for a long time, and if you are like me, it may be difficult to understand why it did not work.  I do not have an answer to that question.

When it became obvious that things were going very badly and that the cancer was progressing despite everything we could do, I was devastated. One night, I was praying downstairs for a miracle and thinking that there was simply no miracle big enough to fix what was happening to my dad.  After praying, I looked up and saw a picture hanging on the wall that had been there for many years but I had never really noticed it.  It was of Christ in garden of gethsemane.  I immediately had the thought come into my mind, “there is a miracle big enough to cover what is happening to your dad and it has already happened.  It happened 2000 years ago.”

We may not have gotten the miracle that we wanted in having my dad healed, but God gave already gave us the miracle we really needed.  Through the miracle of Christ’s sacrifice, I know I will get to see my dad again.  My dad will live again, and we will be together as a family.  What greater miracle is there than that?  

The pain of losing our dad now is difficult, not only for us but for many of you who loved him.  But I know through the atonement we can be healed from those wounds.  One of my favorite scriptures is Isaiah 53: 4-5 it says:
4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.
5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

Brothers and Sisters, I know that we can be healed from this pain.  The world is full of horrible things that happen that are not fair.  What happened to my dad is only one of those things.  Christ’s atonement is the only miracle that can make all the awful things in this world right someday.  His stripes can heal all the wrongs in the world, and he can heal us from this loss.  I know that, because of that miracle that happened 2000 years ago, our Savior’s atoning sacrifice, one day I will see my dad again, and just like that day when I was 9, he will again carry me all the way home.
I love you dad.

Mike's Remarks

I have written and rewritten notes in an attempt to organize my thoughts for this talk.  This has not been an easy endeavor.

There are many accomplishments Dad achieved and wonderful attributes he has. There is no way that we could discuss all of them here with you today.  I have wondered to myself what dad would want to hear or say himself in this situation.  I hope to capture a message that he might want delivered.

What I think that he would want me to talk about first would be the gratitude he has (and that we have) for the outpouring of love and support given during these past four difficult years -- with special attention to the trials of these last few weeks.  We have had countless expressions of love and support from friends, family, and many other loved ones.

I personally have been impressed at the love and support that has been offered - whether in word or deed. There is no question that we (Eric and his family), are loved. Thank you for the meals and treats, services that have been offered, the time that has been given so freely, for phone calls/letters/emails of support and encouragement, and for prayers of faith offered in our behalf. All these expressions of love have strengthened us and lifted our spirits.

I am humbled at the consistent gratitude exhibited by Eric and JoLynne. Every dark cloud that we have encountered along our journey has had a silver lining - whether it wanted one or not. As far as I have been aware, dad never complained or said 'why me?' throughout this process. He was, however, often heard saying how grateful he is for his wife, kids, family, friends, and many others that he met along his way.  He frequently expressed gratitude to Heavenly Father for blessing him and helping him.  I do not pretend to know how this level of gratitude was cultivated or maintained.

Sadly, I have found myself asking ‘WHY?’ all too often.  There have been many sleepless nights and tears shed in asking these questions; worrying about whether we were taking the right roads, concern that we were missing something, feeling angry or sad or lost.  Why is this good man having to go through this experience?!?  

Dad usually called me back from these dark roads. His bright light of faith and his trust and confidence in our Father in Heaven and Savior refocused my attention.

With the recent events, I find myself frustrated that I am losing a most dear friend. He has been a trusted career counselor, master gardener, gift advisor, and fun planner. Yet, there was dad again, calling my attention back to the Savior and our Father in Heaven - though perhaps not directly.

Dad often gave of his time and means to serve those around him.  As I reflect on the years gone past I have a few moments that are recalled without effort. These are happy memories. I think many of you have experienced the same phenomenon.  In the past few days I have had many individuals tell me of different ways that dad has blessed their lives. From letters or expressions of appreciation, love, or support to physical assistance given.  From his use of personal time to assist others to his callings with the youth or as a leader in the church, he has touched many of our lives.

I remember one sweet time when he touched my life. It soon after returning from my mission, before Shanelle and I were dating, when I was struggling in a math class. Dad came over to assist.  He encouraged me and took the time I needed to help me understand the concepts I was struggling with. He loved me - though there was no obligatory relationship or conventional social requirement for him to care.  He was genuinely interested in me. I perceive that he believed I could do anything.

His interest in me increased as I began seriously courting his daughter, Shanelle. This interest was made evident in various ways. My personal favorite was his playfully cleaning his shotgun before I picked her up for one of our many date.  Another sweet memory I have was the time that Dad, Mom and I sad down for an interview before I asked for Shanelle’s hand in marriage.  I am honored at the joy he and JoLynne expressed when we woke them one December night in Mazatlan to tell them that Shanelle had accepted my proposal of marriage.

Honestly, I do not think that he treated me any different than he treated his own sons. He joyed in successes, cried in defeats or frustrations. He was always interested in my schooling and career. Through good times and bad, dad was there - never wavering or holding back. As our family continued to grow, I saw this same love expressed to Natalie and Callie. That is the amazing thing about love, there is no need to apply principles of economics. Love is boundless.

Dad was OVERJOYED at the birth of our little Vivian. He loved talking to her and playing with her. He would spend every minute he could reading to her, swimming with her, chasing her, or playing whatever game she wanted. He loved watching her color, paint, ride her bike, or just run around.  When we were home in Oregon, Shanelle and Vivian would video-call with Grandma and Grandpa every day. They were even lucky enough to go to see them in Miami after one of grandpa’s surgeries. Another sweet memory I have is when Vivian made mom and dad cry when she announced our pregnancy with our little boy who will be coming in January.   I will never forget these times and expressions of joy.

It hurts me to think that he will not be able to be here for Vivian and our expected little boy throughout the rest of their childhood....   Yet, his influence will still affect them.  Because of dad, I want to be a better man, a better husband, a better father. The multitude of uncles and aunts has also been impacted by dads infections love.

In preparing my message I noticed many areas in which I could not separate dad and JoLynne out from one another - I think there is a great lesson in this difficulty of separating their influence.

I have been impressed at the relationship that he and JoLynne have. I am not privy to their entire relationship by any stretch of the imagination - but you do learn a lot about people when you drive from here to the middle of Mexico and back again in a motorhome together.

During regular life, as well as during vacation times, Dad cherished Mom. With nearly every breath and action he expressed his love and respect for her. Similarly, he was constantly focused on living a life that is pleasing to our Heavenly Father. He did not care if he was popular or if he had the best or nicest things -- he wanted to know that he was right with God.

In the interest of time I will sum up a few things that I learned from dad:
  1. Do Not Delay - Live for Today.  Follow those promptings for good that come to us... and do it now.
  2. Humor is an important part of life. Use humor to build and strengthen those around us. Use it to lighten the burdens of those we love. Never use it to harm or degrade others.
  3. Smile - you never know that comfort or strength that might be conveyed to someone in need.
  4. Remember the teachings of the savior found in Matthew 25:40 "...Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me." (Also see Mosiah 2:15)
  5. Be "anxiously engaged in a good cause" by "[doing] many good things of [your] own free will" (See: D&C 58:26-27).
  6. Mosiah 4:9 - Believe in God; believe that he is, and that he created all things, both in heaven and in earth; believe that he has all wisdom, and all power, both in heaven and in earth; believe that man doth not comprehend all the things which the Lord can comprehend.

The final, and most important, things that I think he would want us all to know that God lives and that Jesus is the Christ. That Christ provided the atonement for us so that we could return to live with our Father in Heaven, Savior, and family again.

I can almost hear Dad say:
1 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for [He is] with me; [His] rod and [His] staff they comfort me.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.
5 ... my cup runneth over.
(adapted from Psalm 23: The Lord is my shepherd)

To his family - though I am sure there are many things he would want to say individually -  I believe the central message he would relate would be:  Thank you for making this difficulty journey with me. I love you. I believe in you... you can do anything you want to do.  I love you… And never forget how much I love your wonderful mother.

Seth's Remarks

One of the things that I really admired about my dad was how fun he was with kids. When I was growing up we had such a wonderful time with him, and when I got older, it was fun to watch him play with my younger siblings. He never got too old to have fun and be silly. Before we were old enough for him to read us Lord of the Rings and all that good stuff, he would tell us bed time
stories that he made up. I don’t know how this got started, maybe he was just sick of reading the same children’s books over and over again. For these stories, he invented characters that were thinly veiled versions of his kids and then told us about their adventures with a dragon named Abigar who lived in a cloud castle made of marshmallows. Most nights, there would come a point in the story when the children would be facing a certain problem and he would pause and ask us “what would you do if you were in that situation?” Sometimes he would take our advice, sometimes he wouldn’t. Regardless, we loved that the stories were interactive. Later he told us that he didn’t really plan for it to be that way, but that he just sometimes got stuck and needed to buy some time to think or poll the audience for some new good ideas.

He would make the most challenging Easter egg hunts for us, often we would stumble across candy hidden from years before, because that’s how well hidden it was. Even more epic though was that just before starting the Easter egg hunt, while all of us kids sat together confined to the basement, we would hear the Easter bunny hopping through our house. My dad would narrate loudly during all of this, commenting on how huge the Easter bunny was and how he seemed to be getting fatter every year. He bounced so hard we were sure that one of these times he would come right through the ceiling and land on our heads. One year the Easter bunny got so carried away with his house-shaking antics that he somehow managed to jump right onto a pen and impale himself in the foot. My dad limped around for a week. I’m still not sure how he managed to do that.

My dad had a ridiculous amount of energy. I remember one time when I wanted to start running more. I thought maybe I would start running with my dad in the mornings. So I asked him what time he usually left for his morning runs. Then I thought “yeah, never mind.” He was never one to waste time. He never did anything half-heartedly, whether it was work, family, or church. To fit more things in, he learned how to be a master multi-tasker. He used to listen to language tapes while running at the track at BYU and practice out loud his Chinese, or Russian, or French, or whatever he was learning at the time. I think he worried that with all his work and service obligations it would take away from spending time with his family, so he just pulled us in and let us participate. Most of the kids had a chance to work at dad’s office at one time or another and we all helped out with Share a Smile in various ways. I think in his 54 years he probably accomplished as much as most of us will in eighty or ninety years, if we’re lucky.

There were a million other things like that. He wrapped the little kids up in a towel after bath time and would run around the house swinging them back and forth and yelling “sack of potatoes for sale!” He would lie on his back and make a throne for Shanelle with his feet and tell her that she was “queen of all the world.” When I was a brooding third grader that hated getting up in the
morning and going to school, he would help me get out of bed by using his body as a slide for me to get down from the top bunk.

My dad laughed at my stupid sense of humor. He helped me finish my first marathon. He taught me how to ski, how to tie a tie, and that ice cubes can make a great family night treat. He believed that while life’s problems are sometimes complex, the solutions are usually simple. His solution for the dating woes of his neurotic sons was “if you want a girl to like you, just be nice
and talk to them.”

I love my dad so much. I will miss being able to talk to him. I’ll miss going running with him on the beach. I’ll miss the look of joy on his face when I call or visit. I have been having a really difficult time trying to make sense of his passing. I don’t pretend to have the answers, but these are some of my thoughts. Sometimes really lousy things happen to the very best people and it
doesn’t seem fair. In our small and finite understanding we think that a just God would never let the righteous suffer. When we are feeling especially broadminded, we might acknowledge that maybe God can allow good people to suffer a little—just enough for them to learn some hard lessons—but that it had better not last for too long, and that there needs to be a happy ending where each trial we endured gets compensated for with some enormous blessings like in the story of Job. I wish things were that way. Life would certainly be a lot easier. It’s really hard to accept that instead we live in a world where the wicked sometimes seem to prosper and good people suffer and die all the time. Not every blessing is fulfilled, some of our prayers get answered in ways we don’t want to hear, innocent people get caught in the middle of wars and
disasters. We live in a fallen world. To be sure, miracles happen too, but they are not always where or when we would like them.

Christ’s own cousin, John the Baptist, a prophet who was so righteous that Jesus said “there is none greater born of women,” likely never saw a single one of Christ’s miracles performed. Instead, he spent the last years of his life languishing in prison where I’m sure Satan had plenty of time to try to get him to doubt and question. “How is it fair that I’m stuck here, I who have
been one of your most faithful friends?” He might have wondered. “Have I sinned against thee? How can I possibly further the Kingdom while locked in this prison?” As faithful as John was, if anyone deserved a miracle it was probably him. This is probably not how he expected his life to turn out. He likely hoped and prayed to be rescued so that he could continue crying repentance and preparing people to receive Jesus. This was a righteous man with righteous desires. John knew that Christ was performing miracles on the outside, the dead were raised, the blind received their sight, the lame walked. I like to think that for John, that was enough. I know that for my dad, it was enough. It was enough that Christ could rescue and heal. Even though my
dad definitely wanted to live, his faith wasn’t so fragile as to depend on receiving the specific miracle that he hoped for.

My dad was an incredible example of faith and patience his whole life, but especially the last four years as he faced down demons of doubt and despair that I can’t even begin to imagine. Throughout all of it he never stopped trusting God. Even in the midst of terribly difficult circumstances, he maintained his faith and kept a smile on his face. His last testimony that he

shared with us was about having joy in life. I’ll never forget that lesson which he embodied so well. There is plenty in life that is not right, things that are most certainly unfair that make us sad, but with Christ as our sure foundation and through the mercy of the atonement, we can live with joy here and now and we don’t have to wait until the next life when the great balancing act of the Savior’s atonement satisfies justice and accounts for all the unfairness.