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Sunday, November 3, 2013

Some Random Thoughts

My super talented husband has been working on a new blog design whenever he has a free minute outside of his very busy work schedule. And, now we have it mostly done and ready to be revealed. I'm so grateful for his help and for the fresh new feel! I feel a renewed excitement to spend a little more time writing again. Now, it's just a matter of making the time to do it. I'm hoping this will help me get back into writing - it is one of my favorite outlets when life gets to be too much. And, speaking of... I seem to be there right now...

Lately I've been so overwhelmed by sad things happening, mostly in other peoples' lives. Death, divorce, abuse, depression, cancer, unemployment... to name a few. I hear about it all, I feel the heavy weight of sorrow. I want so much to do whatever I can to ease burdens and make things better. I wasn't sure I'd ever be able to say it, but I'm so grateful for the sorrow I've experienced in my own life. My heart has no trouble feeling that sorrow again and I hope that somehow in feeling it along with someone else, that it eases the weight of their sorrow even just a little.

As hard as life's trials are, I find it so amazing how much God can do when we're pushed to our limits. He always seems to find a way to make so much good come out of the worst of situations. There's a talk by Elder Holland, Lessons from Liberty Jail, where he shares the idea that "man's extremity is God's opportunity." Here's just one tiny snippet of an entire gold-mine of a talk:

"You can have sacred, revelatory, profoundly instructive experience with the Lord in the most miserable experiences of your life—in the worst settings, while enduring the most painful injustices, when facing the most insurmountable odds and opposition you have ever faced."

Isn't that such an amazing gift?! I have to say that the year after we lost our twins was both the hardest time of my life and also the most sacred. I actually think back to that period with such tender fondness because I felt such a clear closeness to my Father in Heaven. It was such a dark time, so lonely and so confusing... and feeling the contrast of that with the relief and comfort that would come... it was just undeniable that I was not walking that path alone. My prayers were earnest and urgent. And the answers that came were powerful and overwhelming.

And, so now when I hear about others going through hard things, I wish there was some way to prepare them for the spiritual outpourings that are about to come flooding into their lives. I'm afraid it would come across as overly celebratory for trials that are not to be celebrated. But, the rescue, the miracles, the healing that will come... I'm not sure there's something better to celebrate than that!

I used to be really bothered by the thought that I'd sometimes hear expressed at church that "Jesus is my friend." It felt too familiar, too presumptuous, almost sacrilegious or inappropriate. But, after losing the twins and feeling so alone, I found the Savior to be my one constant. He was there on dark nights when I couldn't stop crying. He was there when Marc and I were grieving so differently that we didn't know how to comfort each other. He was there when I'd close up retreat to some private place to be alone. He was always there. It was so comforting to know He'd been there once in His suffering 2000 years ago and that He'd be there again to walk with me through it. That is the best kind of friend there is. So, yes, He is my friend. I love Him.

I hope that all those who are struggling or suffering through hard times will feel the same love, relief, and comfort that I've felt through life's toughest moments. I find so much comfort in the ways the Lord has always led groups of His people through years in the wilderness, until finally arriving at their own promised lands. I feel confident He can do the same for each of us in our own individual wildernesses.

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