Tag Archives: Heavenly Father

Songs of the Heart Sunday: Let This Be My Prayer

Our Father in heaven is not an umpire who is trying to count us out. He is not a competitor who is trying to outsmart us. He is not a prosecutor who is trying to convict us. He is a loving Father who wants our happiness and eternal progress and who will help us all he can – if we will but give him in our lives an opportunity to do so with obedience and humility, and faith and patience. ~ Richard L Evans

A friend of mine felt prompted to send me this quote. I know the prompting came as a tender mercy from Heavenly Father. In the struggles I face, I do sometimes ask why? Or beg Him to give me a break, sometimes feeling like the red-headed step-child because of all that I have been put through. I try to remain faithful, occasionally not keeping my foot on the straight and narrow, but I am generally on the path looking towards God in Faith, as the trials of faith pour down.

I want to focus on prayer as a two-way conversation with our Father in Heaven. I hope to do it through music, quotes, and my own words.

This first song is a sweet song with a child questioning if Heavenly Father hears prayers. We sing it at Church. It is called A Child’s Prayer.

Our next song, Be Still, has always touched me. I know Heavenly Father hears my prayers, My Savior Jesus Christ suffered the things I endure, and the Holy Ghost comforts me.

Elder David A Bednar spoke about prayer. This message really touched me. I often give a grocery list prayer. I am thankful for, I need, they need, and end it. I really need to communicate with my Father.

We have a Prophet on the earth today. His name is Thomas S Monson. I loved his message on prayer given at a semi-annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

I want to end with one last song and my testimony of prayer. I do know my prayers are heard by my Father in Heaven. Those that I speak out loud, those that I whisper, those that I think, and those that I scream through tears. I know as my loving Father He wants to hear from me more, and my prayers of gratitude need to be more sincere and thought out, as does the rest of my prayers. I need to take more time in quiet reflection after my prayers to hear and feel those promptings and words He offers me.

Years ago I heard one of the saddest stories on a radio station. I was glad I was pulling into my apartment complex, because I bawled like a baby. This teenager called in to the station after scanning through the radio as we all often do. I think I Can Only Imagine had just played and the DJ was talking about prayer, and how he prays everyday that he and his family gets to be with Jesus. He said something to the effect that we should all pray for that. That statement is what prompted this girl, I want to say she was 17 or 18, to call in. She started right out of the gate that she had been to a few churches, but in each of them she was taught that only the leaders could pray. She had often wanted to talk to God, about the things going on in her life, and ask Him questions, but based on the teaches of the churches her parents took her too she felt she would be sinning to pray. She mentioned some of the horrible things she had experienced in her life that she felt that talking to God, and not having someone do it for her would comfort her, but instead she felt alone and betrayed by God. Then she asked through tears “Can I really pray?” The DJ said “Yes, not only can you, but God wants you to.” The DJ prayed with her, she did not speak, but he expressed gratitude for guiding her to the station that day to answer the question in her heart.

I am so grateful that I was taught to pray as a little child. As I prayed and saw the prayers answered my faith grew.

This last song is The Prayer sung by Jessie Funk Clark and Daniel Beck.

Advertisements

Afraid To Leap, Adoption and Fostering

Česky: Matka a dítě. עברית: אם ובנה, 2007. Sve...

 

Daily Prompt: Might As Well Jump
What is the biggest risk you’d light to take-but haven’t been able to? What would have to happen to make you comfortable taking it?

 

This is my first time using one of WordPress‘ daily prompts. When I saw it my heart immediately went to my desire to be a Mother.

 

As a child there was no room in my bed for the stuffed animals and dolls I had, each named, each loved, and tenderly cared for. Every night I would go to bed dreaming of the day that they, like Pinocchio, would come to life and be my real children. Our family always had dogs, I would Mother the dogs and their puppies, imagining they were my babies.

 

As I grew, cousins entered my extended family. When we would gather, the babies would be on my hip. The same with Church gatherings, children and I flocked together. A “Mother in Training” if I heard it once, I heard it a million times. I baby sat, almost as many times, oftentimes without pay, because of my love for children. “You are a natural”.  Was always the compliment given.

 

My senior year in high school, I participated in the Practicum Check Out Program. I would go to on of the local elementary schools and work with the Special Education Students.  I developed a deep love, respect, and admiration for special needs children. They really have my heart. I would often pray at night, that when I got married if Heavenly Father was going to send a special needs child to earth, please send them to me, because of the love and patience I felt as I worked with them. I truly feel I am rubbing shoulders with Heaven as I serve them.   They teach me more than I ever can teach them.  I had another opportunities to work with Special Education a few years later, and that bond grew stronger, those prayers more fervent.

 

When asked on high school on career day, what do you want to be, my answer always remained the same, A Mother. I had the dream of marrying shortly after school and being a stay at home Mother to ten children. I do not know where that number came from, but it sounded great to me at the time. If you open my yearbook, the notes left by classmates all wish me well on my dreams, most of them mentioning the “ten kids”.

 

With the only dreams of my life being a wife and a mother, you can only imagine the disappointment and utter betrayal from God that I felt when I was diagnosed with PCOS, and heard the words from a heartless female doctor, “Oh, it will not be a problem, unless you want to have children. You will not be able to have children.” My world ended then and there. I was not married at the time. I had not even met my husband. No man would want a woman that could not give him children. I did not want to live if I could not be a Mother. Who was I if not a Mother? Why was I even born?

 

I changed doctors and was given hope. She assured me that PCOS was not to be the final nail in coffin of my dreams. Years passed, oh how wrong that first Doctor was. PCOS was a problem, other than my child bearing. I was always sick. I could relate so easily with the woman with the issue of blood that reached to touch the Master’s robe in the Bible; however,  my reach often fell short. In 2005 I was diagnosed with pre-cancer of the uterus. A month after I met my husband. We married a few months after that. The pre-cancer medication I given for two years, made it so that we could not try to have children during that time.

 

When we were given the all clear, we tried. We tried. We tried. Month after month. Nothing but heartbreak. Sex became a chore.  Something had to be done, just like you had to pee on that stick.  Only to be disappointed by the outcome.

 

In February 2007 my husband received a call from a friend of ours. She was raising three of her grandchildren. The mother was pregnant with the forth. Knowing our desire and heartbreaks with infertility, she immediately thought of us. She wanted this baby to have parents that would love her and care for her.  They were not in a situation to take her themselves. She was going to be a baby girl. Her Mother was on Meth, and they were pretty sure that she was going to have health problems, at the very least, be premature, very premature, as her siblings were. I was close friends with the Grandparents, but I still took the time to pray, but was told that I could not take a long time. They needed an answer the next day.

 

Oh how I wanted a child. Would this be the special needs child I had prayed for all these years? My husband and I discussed it, we agreed to move forward with the adoption. I was going to be a Mother. I received daily, sometimes more than daily updates from the grandmother, but I was told I could not talk to the case worker. It would “scare the mother” and she would run.  Which she did anyway. There were so many things that went on over the next several months, that seemed like years. I even went to my doctor and talked to her. When we found out that the baby was coming and she would have health problems. We discussed my medications. I came off of some of them, and started taking an herb to make me lactate so that I could breastfeed her. I would pump several times as day, running a coworker out of her office for privacy.. Oh how bad that hurt. I had had breast surgery in 2005 removing my central duct, because of a pre-cancer in my right breast, but I wanted my little girl to have the best chance to make it. So she could be strong, and healthy.  The weekend I that her delivery was imminent, was the weekend that my brother was graduating from law school.  I missed his graduating, because the grandmother said she needed me to stay close.

 

Let me put it this way, to this day I have a closet full of little girl things that have never been worn. Bottles that have never been drank from.  Pacifiers that never have been lost.  A stroller she never sat in.  I highchair never eaten in. I had almost everything I needed. Why? Because she never existed!! My baby girl was a lie.  It was an adoption fraud! No money was given, food, a bunk bed, and a friendship, someone she could talk to and give her attention everyday.  My trust destroyed.

 

It all came to a head after the lies kept mounting, and we finally called the judge that was supposed to be the “good friend” that was going to sign the adoption papers.  It was my being naive, and her being evil and needing something that I had, that caused her to destroy my faith in people.

 

I had rebuild myself.  I am still rebuilding.  I will never be the person I was before.  I will never look at people the same again, nor trust my instincts again.  Even during the fraud, there were many times that I felt that something was wrong, but I could not turn my head or heart on my little girl.  The what ifs were too great.

 

A couple of years after the fraud, we went to the classes for the State Fostering and Adoption program. Private Adoption is too expensive. I want to be a Mother so bad, but I am terrified. They preach reunification, and I am all for families being families, but I cannot imaging the heartbreak of having a child in my home and then having them taken from me again. When I love, I love with all my heart and soul. I have a Mother’s Heart.

 

Who knows if I will ever have the courage to take that leap? I might have let an evil person steal yet another dream from me.

 

 

 

 

 

Walk On Through The Storm

Another blogger (please forgive me for not recalling what blog–if you read this, I will edit and pingback) anyway, they reminded me of the Louis Armstrong version of this song. I love Louis version, but I love the attached version because when I started watching it I saw the rainbows.

Music has such a calming power in my life.

Thank you for reminding me!

The Window To The Soul

They say the eyes are the windows to the soul.

Well I really believe Heavenly Father created all creatures. I was reading about Noah today, and the great care that Heavenly Father took to save the animals roaming the land and the fowls of the air.

As I promised I went out and took a picture of my eggplant flower. (I know you were waiting beside your computers in great anticipation to see it.) When I stepped outside the door, to my right on a pillar that we are raising Magnolia trees on, one of our friendly porch lizards waited for his daily photo shoot. He posed so well. Very GQ!

I actually teared up when I looked at the images. Whether that was me just being emotional or because I had just read about the care Heavenly Father took to save some of animals I do not know; however, this image touched my heart. Look at the way the light reflects in his eyes. He has his purpose, not to just be my photo subject, but to help keep the mosquito and spider population down. He might be falling down on the at job just a tad, but that is okay. He is doing wonderful at helping me and giving me something to photograph and interact with. He and his friends are tender mercies, some of Heavenly Father’s blessings to me.

The eyes are the window to the soul. Unknown
The eyes are the window to the soul. Unknown

The tomboy in me is really coming out as I take pictures, manifested by my nose being only a camera’s length plus three or four inches away from the guys you will see in the next picture. I know I showed you pictures of them the other day, I am just so fascinated with them. They thrill me to no end with their genius in creating their nest and their protecting eyes. This might however be the last photo op I they provide me. They do not seem quite as eager as Mr. Lizard to star on my blog. As I leaned in close, one of their scouts buzzed by my ear. I thank you, Mr. Wasp for the buzz-by warning, and thank you kindly for not stinging me, or sending the rest of the troops after me.

Danger!! Danger!! Back away from the nest!
Danger!! Danger!! Back away from the nest!

Lastly, as promised, my eggplant bloom. This little booger provided to be more difficult to capture than the wasps or the lizard combined, and an ant bit me in the process! The flowers hang downward facing the ground. I kept trying to focus on the bloom but would focus on the leaves. The picture does not do it justice. It is such a pretty flower. Each velvety lavender petal curls in toward a topaz center. It is simply beautiful. I am so thankful that I have been blessed to helped nurture it and see the bloom, even if the eggplant does not produce fruit, I have been blessed with a harvest.

I know without a doubt that Heavenly Father guided me to take pictures and to grow a few things in the garden to help with my mental health.

Who knew Eggplant Parmesan started off so pretty?
Who knew Eggplant Parmesan started off so pretty?

Small and Simple Things, Photo Therapy

Small and Simple Things, Photo Therapy

“Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.”
― Mother Teresa

I am finding so much beauty and solace in nature. As I walk around, I begin to see things that I have not seen before. Nature tutors me in lessons that only it’s gentle reminders can teach me.

This tiny flower it is literally tucked in the camellia bush right beside my front step. I pass it anytime I go outside. Only today did I notice it. But it’s tender reminder that it only takes those small things daily to accomplish those things that we need to do, and in those small things we can find our beauty and our worth.

My Mother and my sisters are the true gardeners in the family, but through the camera lens, I am beginning to see the beauty that they see in the flowers and the wonderful creations that Heavenly Father has blessed us with.

I am very grateful for the inspiration Heavenly Father whispered to me, letting me know that photography would help me. It really is opening my eyes to a new world just outside my front door.

Seeing Beyond The Shadow

Sometimes it is hard to see beyond our own shadow, but there is a whole world out there. ~Hope
Sometimes it is hard to see beyond our own shadow, but there is a whole world out there. ~Hope

This is my first attempt at (clearing my throat) photography. I saw this little tiny fly. He seemed oblivious to me or to the rest of the world around him for that matter. That could have been good or bad, depending on the perspective I guess.  He is in dangerous territory, we have lots of frogs and lizards that enjoy that area.

Either way the lesson I took from my little winged friend, was there is a whole world out there waiting to be discovered. A whole world waiting for me to look at it through my, well, my Mother’s camera lens. It is nice to have something to focus on.  Something that requires me to stay in the now.

Heavenly Father has blessed us with such a beautiful earth to explore and nourish.  Speaking of which, I really need to go plant my squash, zucchini, and cucumbers today.  I will probably wait until it is cooler, it is seriously hot and humid outside right now.

I might talk to my husband about putting the pool up this weekend.  We’ll see.  We have both been wanting a way to relax, but he is allergic to mosquitoes.  Poor man, I transplanted him from Oregon to Georgia, he loves the South, never wants to move back to Oregon, but the little flying vampires adore him.  He has to practically dope up on Benadryl anytime he spends any substantial amount of time outside during the summer months.  Oh well, like I said, we will see what he wants to do.  This year those stinkin’ no see ums are awful too.  Sounds like I am talking myself out of the pool?!  Huh?

As you can tell I am rambling, and that means, so far, dare I say, today has been a good day. A few moments of anxiety, but nothing crushing. I am sincerely grateful for that.  Such wonderful, wonderful tender mercies!

Some People Have No Clue

Oh I was hot, but I tried to explain in a way that I represented the faith I have in my Savior.

A friend posted a quote on Facebook today by George Mueller that said, “The beginning of anxiety is the end of faith, and the beginning of true faith is the end of anxiety.”

That really bothered me. Does faith cure a broken leg, a cut finger, a gun shot wound, the stomach virus, a cold, or any other of a million sicknesses and diseases. Yes, faith can carry you through, but sometimes we, most times we must endure the sickness and the disease, in faith in Jesus Christ that it will work to our good or that we will eventually overcome.

What is faith? The Apostle Paul taught that “faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen”.

With the overwhelming, all encompassing fear you have with an anxiety disorder and major depression, darkness is almost always present. Faith is required to wake up and get out of bed. Faith is required to only take the amount of medication that you are prescribed, when you have all the medicine you need to end your life in your hands. Faith is required to pick up the phone and call for help. Faith is required to speak out and tell our story. Do not tell me I do not have faith.

I could not share and you would not hear my story if I was not yoked with my Savior Jesus Christ. I do not understand why complete healing has not happened, but in His wisdom He does. My Father in Heaven does. It does not always make it easy to bare having that knowledge, sometimes I do get angry and ask why, but moments like this I know that I am given the opportunity to share and testify.

“When you get to the end of all the light you know and it’s time to step into the darkness of the unknown, faith is knowing that one of two things shall happen: either you will be given something solid to stand on, or you will be taught how to fly.” –Edward Teller

I have always wanted to help people and had a either the sympathy or empathy required. I am in the darkness of anxiety, depression, and PTSD. I have the Gospel of Jesus Christ as my “solid to stand on”, and as I heal, I know I will also be taught how to fly.

20130518-113748.jpg