Tuesday, August 26, 2014

God Answers Our Prayers

I felt like writing. Everyone is in bed, the house is silent and I am alone. I relish these moments. I'm not even sure what to talk about. My days are pretty mundane to be completely honest. I gave up a lot of things. No more business, no more Facebook...okay maybe not a lot of things, but two very big things that took over my thoughts and my life.

I used to go to seminars to understand the ins and outs of creating a thriving business. Facebook was a big part of that, it seems to be where everyone is, and when you're a stay-at-home Mom social hour revolves around kids, and church. So that meant that Facebook was where the action was. If I wanted to find people I socialized there. I was obsessed! My business was an excuse to get on there and waste a lot of time. And my excuse seemed legit too. I convinced myself it was all okay. I was still getting everything done that needed to be, right?

It was actually at one of these seminars that the spirit spoke a powerful message to me...I need you to focus on being a Mother. Stop your business, and just be present. I felt so warm, and so loved by that simple message so I knew it was from Heavenly Father. I was a little confused at the message though. I had spent so much time trying to make this business work, and now I was to let it all go...so I did. It was actually a relief. I was so relieved to be able to take all the pressure off and just BE. Then came the second message Get off Facebook. That one had me asking all kinds of questions and justifying all the reasons why I needed to be on there, but the message was clear Get off Facebook. I will show you how it will bless your life. So I did. And I haven't looked back since.

Little did I know the reasons would become crystal clear why I received those two simple, but powerful messages, BUT an entire year later. It was during that period of time that I did some spiritual upgrading. I had been reading in the scriptures about powerful messages given to prophets, apostles, and even sinners, and I wondered how I could become one of those lucky people. I had also been reading a book my Mom gave me about a man who had received incredible visions. I knew I had received inspiration, and insight so I know God speaks to His children because He's spoken to me. But He can only speak to us to the amount that we prepare for. So I was seeking, studying, praying harder than I ever have. It was during this time that I had some incredibly powerful and spiritual experiences that I continue to look upon with wonder. "Experiment on my words," is so true. I am a witness of it.

During this time of being spiritually uplifted, I had no idea that Heavenly Father was preparing me for some difficult things ahead. I went from being on top of the world, to wondering why I felt like I was scrambling to fill my spiritual cup. I felt distance from Him that I couldn't explain. Instead of having strong, meaningful prayers that left me feeling enlightened and uplifted, they became empty, slow, and hard to come by. It seemed He was giving me just enough to thirst for more. When Heavenly Father had something to share with me I would feel this swelling in my heart. It would start to beat faster and I would have to really search for what He wanted to tell me. Two very distinct answers came with all of this searching of conference talks, scriptures, praying,...repeat.

One such answer came as inspiration to have an informal Family Home Evening with my children one Monday. I felt a powerful impression that I needed to share some scriptures that I had been reading that's all, no music or conducting, just those scriptures. This one significant moment changed the course of the next several months and probably the rest of our lives. I felt completely inadequate to face what came from that evening. I was left reeling. I felt weaker than I have ever felt. I leaned on my Savior in only small moments because I felt so lost. I wasn't sure how to tap into the Atonement, or if this was worthy of it. I felt like I had failed in some way as a Mother.

The next answer came in a way that made me incredibly uncomfortable. Again, I felt the swelling in my heart, but I couldn't figure out what He was trying to tell me. It stayed with me all day. We happened to be at my Mom's house that evening and I was explaining what was happening, how I was feeling. I suddenly had a recollection of this feeling I was getting in my house so I started to explain it to my mom. As I was sharing I felt the spirit confirm that what I was sharing with my mom was exactly what Heavenly Father was helping me see. My Mom gave me some advice. That evening I spoke to Kelcey, and He had the same impression my mom did without me explaining what she had said.

I want to bare my testimony that I know God lives. I know He is aware of our needs and our lives. He wants us to have joy. He wants to share His mysteries, but we must be ever vigilant in following His commandments, in studying the scriptures, and in having meaningful prayer if we want to receive such sacred things. I know that with every good thing there is it's opposite. We need the Atonement to overcome temptations, weaknesses, and to overcome the adversary. It is impossible to do it alone.

Looking back I can see why Heavenly Father has done things the way He has. Though I don't want to share the very personal details of what has gone on these last several months, I do want to say that without My Heavenly Father I would not have been blessed to have recognized the things that needed to change in my home. In order to truly be the Mother God wants me to be I accept His grace, His love, and yes, even His trials because they are ultimately for my good.

Friday, August 22, 2014

By Small and Simple

I'm averaging about a once or twice a year post. Not great...never-the-less, life happens and I've found the more we roll with it willingly the happier we are.

Have you noticed how looking back years seem like minutes? Every year I start out thinking how I want to change something dramatically. I want to write a book, become insanely fit, be patient, more loving, more compassionate, play more, read more, be closer to God, be more organized, manage my money, eat out less, etc., etc. My list is literally endless. There are a bazillion things I want to accomplish and I want them NOW! And every year seems like THE year for it to happen. However, I easily lose sight of the prize. Not because I don't want it, but because it's too much all at once. The scripture is true, "By small and simple things, great things shall come to pass." For some reason I have in my head By setting ridiculously high expectations and goals and taking huge, giant steps great things come to pass. It really is a silly notion, but for whatever reason I think I can do it. And then when I inevitably fail I blame it on my weaknesses, my easily broken will, my inferiority to anyone and everyone else who seems to have it all together. The truth is, I can have any of those things. I just have to take small, simple steps. So how do you decide what is small, which one to tackle, or what makes it simple? The simple thing is, I just pray. I pray for guidance. I pray for comfort. I pray that I can be who God sees me as. I pray that I can get through the day. I pray that I can feel like I'm doing something that matters. I just pray...

From the moment I had my first child I've been frustrated. Mostly because I have no idea what I'm doing. And every child after I get more confused. They get older and new problems and concerns emerge. How in the world does one figure it all out? I've been on my knees from day one, praying that somehow, someway, Heavenly Father could help me. I pray that I don't screw up horribly. I wonder and ask why He inspires me to have more. I feel inadequate, and I don't trust my ability. After every child I plead with God to let this be the last one. It's okay to just have one...okay two...well definitely just three...four, REALLY are you sure??!...NO WAY, NOT five??! and yes...even six. What does God see in me that I do not see? I'm not patient enough, strong enough, smart enough, loving enough. I don't have what it takes. I can't handle this...what about my goals, my dreams, my ambitions..... and then the fear quiets down as I kneel. And I feel Heavenly Father wrap the warmth of His spirit around me. I feel Him look into my soul and say..."I love you, I believe in you, I trust you, you are exactly what I need for these children, you are enough, and you don't have to do this alone because I am with you." And then I feel the burden lift, and that simple prayer with all my fears jumbled in a mess, God sees through it, and answers me EXACTLY as I need. Then I feel that I can do it again, because He walks beside me. He is in the details of my life. When I open my eyes I can see Him through it all. He's in it all. That is how we decide what to tackle, or what makes it simple. God is what makes my life. IF I let Him. All the other stuff is just stuff because it is God who sees through it and He knows me. He knows ME. He knows Lyenna, what troubles her, what fills her soul, what makes her laugh, cry, sing, dance, scream. He knows and that's all I need. HE is all I need.