8:30am: Here's my kitchen in all of its horror...
If you could see it in real life you would understand why I'm sitting here typing... it's TRASHED! The other side of the room looks just about the same minus the food. I wanted to take a picture, but my phone is full, of course. Life can be so overwhelming. I can't seem to breathe. (ha! quite literally at the moment)
It was Conference Weekend and I've had a nasty cold since Thursday. Not a good combination. I've spent a lot of time on the couch... blah.
Oh, and just to add insult to injury -- I went outside yesterday for a moment of fresh air and I got stung by a wasp! I haven't been stung by a wasp or bee since I was a little girl! So weird! OUCH! (By the way, lavender oil works great on wasp stings -- the swelling and pain were gone in less than an hour.)
For the record, my sweet hubby and kids have been helpful -- bringing me tissues and cleaning up the house when needed, but last night we just kind of gave up. Zeke offered to clean, but I begged him to sit by me on the couch and watch another movie. This cold makes me feel like a big baby and my brain is so foggy... ugh.
Conference was great. I'm still trying to absorb it all and clarify my feelings and thoughts about some of the talks I would like to post about later.
One scripture that really stood out to me (I noted 5 different speakers referencing it) was :
"Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."
I know I've mentioned on my blog a few times that this is my favorite scripture.
It is THE scripture. The one that keeps me going. The one that got me going in the first place.
Long, long story, but when I was 18 and completely lost I had a miracle of a thought. To this day, I don't know what made me think it. I do know I'd hit rock bottom in my life and literally there was no way to go but up. I didn't realize this thought would change my life forever.
I thought maybe there was something to this Church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I wanted to find out for sure. I opened a Bible -- you know how people say they just randomly flip to a page and start reading? Well, I did that and came to Matthew 11: 28-30. The words practically jumped off the page at me! Those verses seemed highlighted somehow, like there was a glow surrounding them. Those simple, yet powerful verses changed my life forever. This was my answer. THE answer. I have never looked back.
This scripture has sustained me and strengthened me through the last 20 years, but trials still come. Life is very hard sometimes, but life can also be joyful and rewarding. There is always hope through the Atonement of our Savior.
Yesterday, Richard G. Scott said something like, "The Lord sees weaknesses differently than He does rebellion. There is justice for rebellion, but for our weaknesses He shows mercy." I needed those words yesterday. I struggle SO much. I get SO mad at myself. I feel SO weak and unworthy sometimes.
I think of 2 Nephi 4:17-21 when Nephi says, "... O wretched man that I am! Yea, my heart sorroweth because of my flesh; my soul grieveth because of mine iniquities. I am encompassed about, because of the temptations and sins which do so easily beset me. And when I desire to rejoice, my heart groaneth because of my sins;"
Then he says,
"Nevertheless, I know in whom I have trusted. My God hath been my support; he hath led me through mine afflictions... He hath filled me with His love, even unto the consuming of my flesh!"
We need our Savior to help us overcome our weaknesses. He is THE answer. I have prayed earnestly to overcome my weaknesses and turn them over to Him. I know it's a daily battle and a lifelong process. I know I can't do it alone. I know in whom I have trusted.
Another quote from Conference (I think it's from Timothy Dyches of the Quorum of the 70):
"All that is unfair about life can be made right through the Atonement of Christ."
One of my favorite talks was by Richard J. Maynes of the Presidency of the 70. It really brought me hope and comfort and... wow, the word that came to mind was vindication (for me, at least).
He said something like, "We need to develop spiritual stamina in order to find inner peace and strength to endure whatever challenge we wake up to each morning."
I appreciate so much that he acknowledged that some trials don't end. Some trials are with us throughout our earthly life. Many people face horrible and unthinkable and unbearable trials they are able to overcome through the help of our Savior and because they eventually end. (Like being out of work or recovering from a serious accident or illness). They get through it. It's an event in their life, not a way of life.
What about people that just have to endure? Their trial is ALWAYS there and most likely always will be. For some, it is reality. We need to have compassion and understanding for those people. Those people need to have compassion and understanding for themselves. (I'm talking to myself right here.) It's so hard, because some trials people face are invisible to others. Trials you can't actually "see" on the outside or maybe not realize how hard it is for them or what they are truly going through.
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland said, "If the bitter cup does not pass, drink it and BE STRONG!"
I honestly loved that and "hated" it at the same time. It stung me (and it was supposed to). I faltered because of my weaknesses. It sounds too hard. I want a reprieve sometimes. It's hard to be strong! I truly appreciated his talk and related to much of it -- but it made me realize I need to accept my trials and not compare myself to others, to "come what may and LOVE it". (from Elder Wirthlin long ago)
I know the Lord knows exactly what we are going through. He understands fully and He can truly see everything. He loves us no matter what. I find great comfort in that eternal truth. I hope I can be strong enough to "drink the bitter cup" and keep going and even "LOVE it".
One day at a time ... sometimes for me, it's one hour or even one moment at a time. I've come to realize that is what enduring is. We can't be perfect now and we certainly can't be perfect and happy every moment, but little by little we can keep going forward doing our best. That's all He asks. It is enough.