Tag Archives: Jesus Christ

Oh Have Mercy!

Helping-others
Photo Credit: http://www.techtricksworld.com

Funny how the mind picks things to ponder on.  This morning will waiting for Roscoe and Enos to finish their “business” outside, my mind drifted to how we judge people, we being me.

I try really hard to walk the path my Savior, Jesus Christ, asks.  He commands us to be merciful.  Yes we obey he laws of the land and execute righteous judgement in  prosecution of criminals doing so, but within ourselves and while dealing with offenders our charge command is to be merciful.

Why is that?  Does it matter?  Not really.  I think though in addition to the fact that in order to being able to receive the gift of mercy ourselves we must be merciful, there  is another piece to it.  We cannot see inside of an individual like out Savior can.  We have not watched their daily struggles or successes, and seen what brought them to this point

Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables comes to mind.  Jean ValJean, imprisoned for stealing a loaf of bread..  He was not a mean or a cruel thief, he stole because his nephew was starving.  We received a huge prison sentence for this.  When released he could not find work because of his past.  Eventually going to a parish, he steals the silver.  This time however, the priest shows him mercy, and explains to the constables that the silver was a gift, and even goes so far as to give him a candlestick that he missed.  Because of this kindness, not only ValJean’s life was changed, but many others.

I am not saying if someone breaks in to our homes to say, “oh you forgot this.” I am saying that we can be more freely forgiving, more free to offer the hand of fellowship, free to serve those that are least serve-able

I could be completely wrong in this hypothesis, but I feel if people exhibited more charity and mercy, there would not be a need for so much “justice”. Some of those, especially the youth, that are acting out, and fall into the jaws of justice would feel compelled to change because they would see their worth as human beings and as sons and daughters of God.

Such would be my hope.

Thanks for reading.  Have a wonderful Saturday.  ~Hope

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It’s Raining It’s Pouring

It has been raining today.  Heavy showers passing by.  Roscoe cannot stand the sound of the rain, he jumps up and begins shaking.  Yeah, my dog even has anxiety issues.  When it comes to the rain, I love it.  I love the sound. I love the smell. I love how it feels. I just love it.  Do not love how my head feels when the barometric pressure changes, but oh well, I still love rain.

The hubs and I have been watching a marathon on American Restoration on the Roku today.  Gosh, it totally amazes me how they can take something broken and in completely horrible shape, and restore it to such beautiful mint looking condition.  Of course as I watch it I think about myself.  I know how I look physically and emotionally.  I am in a pretty rough state.  The journey I am on, and the Healer and Refiner working with me, my Savior Jesus Christ, will in the end help me to be mint condition again.  A new person, well and whole.  It is just going to take time.

Another lesson I have learned in this analogy is that just like different methods need to be used on different materials or you will do more damage, so it is on this journey.  He’s with me and leading me.  Helping me to find the right things I need to do.  Yet another lesson is that each thing has its own time, you cannot rush it.

I know in the end I will be excited with the improvements and healing, and say, “Wow! I am not the same person that started on the journey.  I am better.”

My pray for myself and others on this journey that these thoughts are taken to heart.  It is easy to write them, and feel them as I write them.  It is another to remember them in the darkness of trial.

Thank you all for reading.  I am still working on my MP3.  Please send your music choices to help me.

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Songs of the Heart Sunday: A Poor Wayfaring Man of Grief

First thing this morning the word to one of my favorite hymns kept running through my mind.

Savior, may I learn to love thee,
Walk the path that thou hast shown,
Pause to help and lift another,
Finding strength beyond my own.
Savior, may I learn to love thee-
Lord, I would follow thee.

Who am I to judge another
When I walk imperfectly?
In the quiet heart is hidden
Sorrow that the eye can’t see.
Who am I to judge another?
Lord, I would follow thee.

I would be my brother’s keeper;
I would learn the healer’s art.
To the wounded and the weary
I would show a gentle heart.
I would be my brother’s keeper-
Lord, I would follow thee.

Savior, may I love my brother
As I know thou lovest me,
Find in thee my strength, my beacon,
For thy servant I would be.
Savior, may I love my brother-
Lord, I would follow thee.

I had decided to write my whole Sunday post about this song. It teaches so much about service and who our brothers and sisters are.

Then at church today we sang another favorite, but we generally only sing the first three verses, the chorister today was prompted to sing all seven verses. At the conclusion of the song, there was not a dry eye in the room, or one that I could see through my tears.

As I have thought about the two songs together, realize that the theme is serving one another, and not knowing what is hidden that the eyes cannot see. The song touched everyone in a different way, for different reasons.

A poor wayfaring Man of grief
Hath often crossed me on my way,
Who sued so humbly for relief
That I could never answer nay.
I had not power to ask his name,
Whereto he went, or whence he came;
Yet there was something in his eye
That won my love; I knew not why.

Once, when my scanty meal was spread,
He entered; not a word he spake,
Just perishing for want of bread.
I gave him all; he blessed it, brake,
And ate, but gave me part again.
Mine was an angel’s portion then,
For while I fed with eager haste,
The crust was manna to my taste.

I spied him where a fountain burst
Clear from the rock; his strength was gone.
The heedless water mocked his thirst;
He heard it, saw it hurrying on.
I ran and raised the suff’rer up;
Thrice from the stream he drained my cup,
Dipped and returned it running o’er;
I drank and never thirsted more.

’Twas night; the floods were out; it blew
A winter hurricane aloof.
I heard his voice abroad and flew
To bid him welcome to my roof.
I warmed and clothed and cheered my guest
And laid him on my couch to rest;
Then made the earth my bed, and seemed
In Eden’s garden while I dreamed.

Stripped, wounded, beaten nigh to death,
I found him by the highway side.
I roused his pulse, brought back his breath,
Revived his spirit, and supplied
Wine, oil, refreshment—he was healed.
I had myself a wound concealed,
But from that hour forgot the smart,
And peace bound up my broken heart.

In pris’n I saw him next, condemned
To meet a traitor’s doom at morn.
The tide of lying tongues I stemmed,
And honored him ’mid shame and scorn.
My friendship’s utmost zeal to try,
He asked if I for him would die.
The flesh was weak; my blood ran chill,
But my free spirit cried, “I will!”

Then in a moment to my view
The stranger started from disguise.
The tokens in His hands I knew;
The Savior stood before mine eyes.
He spake, and my poor name He named,
“Of Me thou hast not been ashamed.
These deeds shall thy memorial be;
Fear not, thou didst them unto Me.”

Through out the song I pictured several people, but during the prison scene in my mind I saw one person. “Him”. As I sang the words, “He asked if I for him would die”. I knew the answer. I sobbed as I sang the words that echoed my own reply to “him”. I would and I knew I would. As terrified as I get when I see him, I do not want anything bad to happen to him.

My Mother was one of the speakers. She was sitting on the stand, I in the congregation and we locked eyes, I sobbed. I did not know what my face registered. I know when “he” usually comes into my mind or my PTSD kicks in Little Hope is evident on my face. I did not feel that so much, it was just the realization within myself that I would die for this friend. Then singing the next verse, was very overwhelming.

After Church and a visit to see my aunt, when we were about to turn into our drive we saw “him”. I was already holding my husband’s hand. I squeezed it tightly afraid to let go. My breathing increased. The words to that verse started going through my head over and over and over again. When I would allow myself to move on to the next verse I calmed down enough to get out of the car.

Songs of the Heart Sunday: For can a woman forget her sucking child..

This is an essay I wrote for an Institute class several years ago.
I wanted to share it with you, in the hopes that it might help anyone
that is struggling with the trials this life has to offer.
It is truly my testimony of our Father in Heaven and the love He
freely gives to each of us.

“For can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have
compassion on the son of her womb? Yes, they may forget, yet I will
not forget thee, O house of Israel.” 1 Nephi Chapter 21 verse 15.
During the past summer months, this scripture’s meaning enlarged my
life. The experience I cannot relate for, the deep spiritual nature
of it, but through it, I learned the greatest lesson a daughter
could learn. My Father in Heaven loves me, and He knows each step I
take. He, as a loving parent, allowed me to learn this lesson the
hard way. You see, I reached a point in my life that though I praised
my Father in Heaven with voice, the internal person drifted in to waters
occupied by the Grand Spiritual Crocodile. I only allowed one toe
dabble with an impure thought here, and a word in anger there, but
once my toe touched the water, he grabbed me. I fell. The fall
hurt, the most excruciating pain. Not quite the intensity Adam must have felt
knowing, his unworthiness to be in the continued presence of Father,
but my own personal detachment from Father. I chose to walk away. I
felt lost, the testimony that once sustained me, ceased to exist. The
comfort I felt I merited, He denied, or such I assumed. I tried to
depend on my own strength, but my strength failed me. For as a wound
from a crocodile will make you bleed and lose life blood, a wound from
Satan if not tended by the Great Physician, will allow your spiritual
blood drain, therefore a permanent fall into Satan’s realm.

I drifted farther and farther away, and no one around me knew it,
because I always portrayed myself as spiritual. What I failed to
realize was Satan tried to fulfill prophesy with me, by “gently leading me
down to hell.” In losing my faith and testimony, I felt like I also
lost myself, my identity. The Hope who existed only a few
months before, could be found nowhere. I prayed, but not in faith
that God would hear me, but to say I had prayed. I read my Patriarchal
blessing, but with my heart hard, I felt like He betrayed me.

One night after realizing, if I did not rediscover myself and faith,
Satan would be victorious over me, I knelt and prayed. I prayed with
the hope that Father would hear me, and send me comfort and peace and
take away the anger. As I prayed vocally, relating the desires of my
heart to my Heavenly Father, I felt peace, but the questions remained
unanswered. I resolved myself to remain kneeling until I understood
the reason, why I had to experience this. While kneeling, floods of
memories came. I recalled my lessons in Relief Society when I felt
the Spirit and I spoke the words of my Father in Heaven. I recollected
my experiences in the temple, the words of my Patriarchal blessing
(one particular phrase), and then the question why? Why if He loved
me so much did He allow me to go through this grievous experience that
almost cost me my testimony? Then they came, the words from a
blessing I received almost exactly a year before, “Hope, you are one
of the Noble and Great Ones who will be called upon to endure many
trials…” I do not recall the whole phrase but I understood, and
thanked my Father in Heaven for reaching out to me when I needed him.

He knew the moment I could no longer bear the burden upon my back,
and He allowed me to go to that point, before He reminded me that He
listened. Not only did He listen to the words in my most recent
prayers, but the words of the prayers I had uttered, though not in
complete faith. Father lovingly extended His arms wide to me, but I
had to walk into them. He reminded me of many wonderful things, that
night, the greatest thing being, my Older Brother, Jesus Christ, and
His atoning sacrifice. At one point even He felt alone asking if He
must endure and yet, He succeeded coming face to face with Satan, and
He didn’t falter, experiencing excruciating pain and anguish to the
point of bleeding from every pore and yet not a murmuring word. And
then to my mind the words of the Prophet, “Art thou greater than He?”

The Godhead, each individual member, takes an active interest in our
well-being. They love us, and work as a team to ensure our happiness
and joy. “Adam fell that men might be, men are that [we] might have
joy.” I believe part of our own personal plans of happiness includes
a fall. For we must experience opposition in all things, to truly
feel the joy that comes after a complete repentance.

All in all, it is my belief that the scripture in 1 Nephi 21, details repentance.
Father in Heaven will not forget us, but He also knowing the minute
details of His kingdom, cannot run after us when we turn away from
Him. He provided us with the freedom to choose, “liberty and eternal
life…or to choose captivity and death.” The beauty comes from the
gift He furnished through Christ, repentance. When trials come and
our flesh weakens causing us to momentarily opt captivity, Father
prepared from the foundation of the world the way for us the erase the
mistake and return again to Him. He brought us to this existence for
the opportunity to prove ourselves and our love for Him.
Sister Mary Ellen Edmunds wrote a book entitled, Love is a Verb and
how correct she is. Acting on the feelings within, and turning to the source
of eternal life and happiness, insures joy beyond imagination.

We should not pray not to have trial, but rather for the wisdom to learn
from our trials. Wonderful opportunities and blessings awaken in the
hours of trial, faith can be nurtured, love expanded, eternal perspective
broadened if we listen without murmur and work without grudge.
We do not give our Heavenly Father credit when we lack the faith in
His wisdom. He will not give us more than we can handle.
“And the truth shall make you free.” I find freedom in this truth.

My testimony is this. We act out the story of the prodigal son
every day, and every day our Father willingly takes us into His loving
arms welcoming us back. He loves us, flaws and strengths. He loves us
so much that He offered our Older Brother as a sacrifice for times that
we do stray. I love Him for that. It saddens me to know that I
caused much of His pain and anguish, but oh what joy I find in the
knowledge that He loved me enough to do it.

Having experienced such a significant change in myself over the past
months, I want to share the joy I feel. Doctrine and Covenants 18 has
new meaning to me, “and if it so be that ye should labor all of your
days and bring but one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with
him in the kingdom of my Father.” That soul is me, the “many
souls” spoken of in the next verses include those that I may help to
come unto Christ. I carry much gratitude in my heart for a Father
who loves me enough to send righteous men and women, past and present, to aid
me on my journey back home. I am eternally grateful for His
Priesthood Power upon the earth today. I know when men uphold their
sacred calling, they speak the words of God and act in His name. We
can listen to them and hear our Father’s voice.

I am thankful for the Book of Mormon and the Holy Bible, and new meaning they bring to
my life each day I sup from their pages. When I learn and practice the
principles taught within, I experience miraculous joy. Now I conclude
my humble testimony in the name of He who made joy possible, my Older
Brother, my Lord, my Savior, my Eternal Friend, Jesus Christ, Amen.

____

As I mentioned I wrote this several years ago, almost 20 when I think about it. Reading it now, it has even deeper meaning. The Atonement has deeper meaning.

The Atonement of Jesus Christ not only covered my sins if I would repent, but also during His Atonement, in a way that I cannot fathom or imagine, He suffered the feelings that I am enduring right now as I am walking my journey of healing from abuse. I might meet others along my path that can empathize to a point, but my Savior truly understands what I am feeling even when I cannot find the words to describe the emotions, because He suffered them too. I find comfort in that, not that He went through anything of the sort, but because He willingly experienced every emotion to the deepest depth that anyone could suffer so He could succor us in the midst of our afflictions and infirmities. I am so grateful of the love that He has for me. I am so so thankful that I can call Him my Savior, my Brother, my Lord, my God, my Friend, my Healer…and know that He walks this familiar road beside me.

Blocking Out Negativity With Music

My husband is watching a tv show that has a good bit of swearing in it. Swearing is one of those things that bothers me. Ironically, I have found myself saying a word or two since I have been going through these most difficult days. I do not like that. That is one of the reasons I put on my headphones and started listening to uplifting music and watching uplifting videos. I do not want negative words to be the first things that pop into my mind when I get angry, and if I put a filter on my mind it seems it is easier to control my mouth. Go figure.

Ironically, the first song I listened to tonight on the LDS Radio was a saddness trigger for me. I am not sure why except that maybe I sang it around the time I was abused. It used to be one of my favorite songs. It is still a beautiful song, just makes me alittle weepy.

Right after that song came on, I was comforted by this beautiful song. I thought about the things I have been taking photos of lately, and the love Heavenly Father has for them, and how it does not compare with the love He has for me.

Then I started searching Youtube. These next three videos are songs that touched my heart.

The first one made me want to sob. I want to put it on my Iphone, and when I cry put it on repeat, for when others ask questions vocally or with their eyes.

These next two are basically my testimony of Jesus Christ put to music.

Strength and Talent of Others

Today is my 8th wedding anniversary. So far it has been a good day. I spent the morning out at my parents with them, Heidi, and Piglet I mean, Lillee. I keep teasing Mother that her name will be Piglet because she comes to me when I say Piglet.
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After spending most of the day there, I came home and spent time with my fur babies waiting until time for my husand to come home. As I have relaxed here, I watched youtube videos. I am so grateful for talents. The talents He has blessed His children with truly help me during my trials, and when I am not in trial. I just seem to reach for them during these times. The talents of others are tender mercies in my life.

I still find being alone difficult, especially since the theft of my garden the day before yesterday. Knowing someone was in my private space, and chances are they watched me to know when I was gone really disturbs me. So having calming, peaceful, Christ-centered videos and music, helps to soothe my soul.

These two songs really reached out and pulled my heart strings today.

I hope to get to a point where I can look back on this time and see it as a beautiful heartbreak. I hope that sharing my experience with others gives them the courage to work on making their experiences beautiful hearbreaks too.

I love accappella music. This is one of my favorite hymns, so the combination of the two brought peace to my heart.

Wow, my husband just came home early! YAY! Let’s hope for a continued happy evening. 🙂

He Is Always Near Me

Much improved from yesterday, today ended up being a fairly decent day. Only one semi-meltdown when someone innocently though ignorantly made an insentive comment without knowing the full story. I felt horrible for crying because they honestly did not intend to hurt me with their words, the tears were just triggered. I looked at my Daddy and he helped me get my emotions in check.

I believe my therapist is correct in that my medication must not be at the right levels. I went from talking fine to crying in a couple of seconds. My appointment with my new psychiatrist is about a month away, though I am on a call list for cancellations.

Tonight I thought about a song we are teaching the children at Church. If The Savior Stood Beside Me

As I listened to the song I wondered about my emotions that go crazy in an instant. I want to remember thst the Savior is beside me at all times. Especially times like yesterday when I was so so angry about my plants, I am still upset, but I contemplated the unhealthy level of anger and frustration I had yesterday as listened to this song.

I am so sleepy right now I do not know if I am making alot of sense. Either way, I hope this song has the same impact on you as it did on me today.

Close Enough To Touch

A friend talked about the story of the of the woman with with the issue of blood who in faith reach out and touched the Savior’s robe and was healed. That story always touched me. I have often imagined myself pressing my way through the crowd to touch the hem of his robe, and then falling short.

Several years ago I had the opportunity to perform in a production of Women at the Well. One of the scenes that I participated in was bathing the Saviors feet. During the production the spirit was so strong that the feet of gentleman who portrayed Jesus Christ were drenched with my tears when the scene was over.

The scene of the woman of great faith was also portrayed. This is the song that was sang at that time.

With mental health issues we often feel like if we can only get close enough to touch then we will be healed. I know that He is mindful of us, and with us. It is so hard. So so hard, but one of my favorite things is knowing that He went through the things He did so we would not be alone when we went through our Gethsemanes.

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!