We all belong to the family of God, which means we are all brothers and sisters. Brenda Reeser, the associate director of operations for the Financial Aid Office at BYU-Idaho, started her devotional address explaining how important it is to remember that we are all children of God.
“We have a larger family that now includes your ward family, your apartment family, teachers, co-workers, and many more,” she said. “You are my brothers and sisters AND family. There is strength in understanding your divine identity as a Child of God and that we belong to a larger eternal family.”
Twenty years ago, Reeser, started a sleeping ritual of singing The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ hymn “I Am a Child of God” in her head as she starts getting into bed. This has helped her understand more fully that she is a daughter of God, who has a divine nature and great worth.
“I just think it has such a great message and it just brings calmness,” she said in an interview with BYU-Idaho Radio. “It just helps me focus when I am trying to sleep or any other time that message comes out that even if it’s not just my parents here, there’s other people who Heavenly Father who provided to us to help us.”
Reeser explained how this deep and powerful concept, that we are children of God, can give us enough strength to understand what to do when we are going through trials. She compared this concept to a scripture found in The Old Testament, Daniel 3:17-18, when Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego say they were going to follow the Lord even if He didn’t save them from the fiery furnace.
She called it a “But if not…” moment. One of the experiences that she shared in her talk was a “But if not…” moment was when her husband was very ill. He had to be taken to a different hospital and for two weeks he was there, this was a difficult time because her husband was part of her life since she was a teenager. One day she felt overwhelmed and prayed in the hospital’s bathroom and asked the Lord to bless her husband, but if not, to give her peace during these hard moments.
After this experience she said she felt peace.
“By knowing your divine identity as a child of God, your faith in your Savior will grow. This prepares you to say, ‘But If Not’ I know my Savior loves me,” she said. “’But If Not’” I will still have hope. ‘But If Not’ I will still be faithful. ‘But if Not’ I will trust in the Lord’s plan for me. ‘But If Not’ thy will be done.”