Be Still My Soul
Here I am.
I have done a lot of pondering so far this week. I have also done a lot of praying and reading of scriptures, and journaling.
I have felt godly sorrow. I don't know if I have ever felt godly sorrow like this before. What's godly sorrow you might ask? Godly sorrow is one of the steps of repentance.
Sorrow for Sin. In order to be forgiven, we must first acknowledge within ourselves that we have sinned. If we are striving to live the gospel, such an acknowledgment will lead to "godly sorrow," which "worketh repentance to salvation" (2 Corinthians 7:10). Godly sorrow does not come because of the natural consequences of sin or because of a fear of punishment; rather, it comes from the knowledge that we have, through our actions, displeased our Heavenly Father and our Savior. When we experience godly sorrow, we have a sincere desire for change and a willingness to submit to every requirement for forgiveness. (click here for reference)
I have much work to do. The details are my business to take care of with my Heavenly Father. I would like to share a few things though.
I wrote in my journal on September 28th. That day I wrote about the seasons. I wrote about why I love Fall. Many people like the season due to the changes that occur. Leaves change color and fall to the ground, the air starts getting crisp, and many vegetables are in season. I too have always loved Fall for this reason.
Excerpt of an email to Friend A (not on this blog)
Where I grew up many times school started after Labor Day, or just a few days before. I also have ALWAYS loved the Fall. The start of the school year was/ is a bigger deal to me than New Year's and starting a new calendar year. Life is just lived in school years for me, I guess. I always made my resolutions at the beginning of the year and loved planning back to school outfits to wear, anticipating my new classes, visualizing the changes that would come (i.e. different locker hallways, Seminary starting, new classes, books, friends, etc......dumb stuff I know) There would even be times that my sister and I would "practice" our new morning routines down to the very detail of timing how long it would take to walk to school (sounds comical now, but this was done with complete seriousness at the time).
Yes, I love change. I have talked about that before. However, I realized last Tuesday, September 28th that I love Fall, not because of the change, but that it represents "preparation".
Fall is a preparation for Winter. Fall is a strong season. It is busy, because of the preparations. Squirrels store nuts, animals grow thicker fur, and trees shed their leaves all in preparation for the upcoming Winter storms. It is a beautiful season. It is full of vibrancy and hard work with goals to accomplish. People are drawn to those types of people (vibrant, hard workers, goal oriented, etc.). People love Fall.
I wrote that Fall was a great time to prepare myself spiritually. I wrote that I didn't know when the next storms of my life would come (little did I know, it'd be less than a week!!!). By choosing to change I will also be qualifying myself for more opportunities to weather storms and grow.
It is two-fold to prepare. First, preparedness brings peace. This refers to preparing for unexpected winter storms. A squirrel will be well taken care of if they have gathered nuts all Fall. We call this provident living. No matter how many storms come, they will have enough to eat. Secondly, we can prepare because we EXPECT storms to come. We can know that our souls will be ripped apart, BUT LOOK FORWARD TO IT, because we can look forward to the "rebirth" that comes with Spring. We know we will be better, like a child, more humble and submissive after we endure a period of Winter.
CAN YOU BELIEVE that I wrote this last week? Before General Conference? Before my situation?
I finished the entry with, "Like the seasons that cycle through each year, this cycle is something we should want to have in ourselves. This is something that should be repeated many times as we develop or "birth" new godly traits."
I seriously am so amazed by this sequencing of events in my life. I KNOW that my Heavenly Father is aware of me. He loves me so much. I have no question.
So I have been completely honest with myself the past few days. I still hurt, but now that I know the scope of the issue I am moving on to the next step. What is the next step? It is hope. How do I know that it is hope? Well, I am following the Addiction Recovery Program from LDS Family Services. While this was put together based on the Alcoholics Anonymous program, it is indeed applicable to any addiction. What? You have an addiction? Well, yes, I have a flaw that I cannot control, so that is why the program is so great. I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to make a change in their life. I assure you that I am not dealing with a Word of Wisdom issue or moral transgression, just a really bad habit that I am powerless to stop on my own.
I have already been working out of this manual for the past few months for a different something that I had wanted to change about myself. A friend recommended it to me. The first few times that I picked it up (for indeed printing it out is a must) I just kept thinking, "I don't need this. This is for people who have problems. I don't have any problems." After several weeks, I finally was HONEST with myself and realized that my friend meant well and knew that I could change something undesirable about me.
I have a plan. My soul is still troubled, but I have a HOPE that I can and WILL change. The thousands of pieces that I was in a few days ago are slowly coming back together.
Husband reminded me of the scripture found in Ether 12:27, "And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them."
The future is bright. That doesn't mean the path is easy, but the future is bright.