Monday, February 28, 2011

The Power of God: That's Better.

So I can't lie, I have been the absolute worst person when it comes to reading my scriptures, and for quite some time now. I haven't often wondered when I would be better at it, but recent bouts with depression have turned me back to a vital behavior I know I need in my life consistently.

I have been going through some really tough times lately, on and off, with a few things that have been weighing heavily on my mind lately, and tonight I reached a breaking point and finally decided that reintroducing that daily behavior surely couldn't hurt in life, but only stood to help me rise, if even only slightly, from the position I've been hovering at. Chance happenings led me to 1 Nephi 18, and being a faithful believer that the Lord guides me to passages at the exact time when I need them, I committed to reading the entire chapter before turning out the light for bed tonight.

If you're like me and couldn't name off the top of your head what 1 Nephi 18 is about, I'll briefly recap it for you: Nephi builds a ship with the guidance of the Lord and everyone boards it to set sail for the Promised Land. After being on the ship for a while his brothers, good ol' L&L, begin to get rowdy and tie him up. Nephi, being the valiant man that he was, however, doesn't complain a bit and waits for the softening of his brothers' hearts. Soon enough a storm sets in, though, and after four days of relentless tossing and flailing about on the ocean his brothers begin to fear and, here's my favorite part (v. 20) "... there was nothing save it were the power of God, which threatened them with destruction, could soften their hearts; wherefore, when they saw that they were about to be swallowed up in the depths of the sea they repented of the thing which they had done, insomuch that they loosed me."

Oftentimes the Saints of the Church, and justly so, equate themselves to Nephi or Sam. In my case, however, I haven't been acting like much of a Nephi or Sam, at least by my own standards, and it's a humbling experience to read a verse like verse 20 and realize just who you might be emulating the most. I've been wondering a lot lately why I might be going through such a negatively consuming state lately, even though I've been making a concerted effort to abandon and forsake my greatest vices, and finally realized one possible solution tonight: sometimes the Lord has to let you fall on the rocks in order to break you so He can build you back up in the way He knows is best. Threaten me with ailments, my heart won't soften. Threaten me with guilt, my heart won't soften. Threaten me with solitude and destruction, however, and perhaps it begins to melt.

Oh I know not everyone reading this will be LDS, but I do want anyone reading this to know that I am. Despite all my faults, intentional or not, I know God lives. And I know He wants us to simply know of His love for each of us individually and to experience that same love for our neighbors, even as if they were ourselves. I'm thankful that He loves me enough to let me fall to the bottom so I can realign myself with Him and even one day return there. I know it's true and I'm grateful for His gospel, and I say this all in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

1 comment:

  1. Oh Sister I don't even know you, but I know that the Savior knows you. He knew even before we came here all the faults we would have. He agreed than to help us become stronger and turn to him more. I don't know if its something in the air but I know a lot of people (including my self) who have been going through a rough time lately. I'm sorry things have been hard. I do know that as you strive to draw closer to your Heavenly Father daily he will surround you in his arms of love. He will be there each day helping you through all you are going through. I also understand it is difficult to sometimes read everyday. It seems my most recent trial as pushed me to my knees more and more and I find my self not wanting to put down my scriptures because of the peace or reassurance that is coming from them. I'm sure you know of this suggestion but I wanted to share it anyway. I know that finding the time to read each day may be difficult. I do not know if you have young children in your home or if you work every day or what your daily life consists of. But I know there are many ways of gaining your spiritual nourishment from the scriptures daily. For my aunt she has discovered that she can download talks and scriptures to her I pod and listen to them through out the day as she works around her house. For others it maybe listening to the scriptures on CD if you spend (like I do) a great deal of time in the car. What ever works for you just as long as you are getting them in your life daily I think is the important thing. Maybe your life is really busy so you may not be able to read for hours on end that's ok, you can read a verse or two before your day begins or set an alarm on your phone to read them through out the day when you know you have a quiet moment. Anyhow I was searching for a picture of the Savior and came across your blog. I just wanted to write a little (seemed to become a bit larger than I expected) comment of encouragement. i wish you the best. And remember it's ok that you may not be perfect yet. none of us are. So don't beat your self up if you seem to only be getting in a little each day. As long as you do your best, the Lord covers the rest. (it rhymes for a reason :) ) But its true. The Savior knows when we will fall short and he is there to help us overcome all of our weaknesses and help us mind that gap. Good luck each day. Lots of sisterly love :)