Saturday, December 5, 2015

Born Again

Growing up in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, I had always been taught that in order to enter into the Kingdom of God, one must become as a little child and one must be born again. I didn't understand this doctrine at all until I was much older.  How was I to become like a child and be born again when as a child I was babtized at age eight? How was this even possible as an adult?

In Mosiah chapter 27:25-26 in the Book of Mormon, Alma the younger shares his experience he had with the Lord pertaining to his rebirth:

25.  And the Lord said unto me:  Marvel not that all mankind, yea men and women, all nations, kindred, tongues and people, must be born again; yea, born of God, changed from their carnal and fallen state, to a state of righteousness, being redeemed of God, becoming his sons and daughters;

26.  And thus they become new creatures; and unless they do this, they can in nowise inherit the kingdom of God.

In 2003, I experienced my own personal mighty change of heart.  In other words,  I was born again.  I was at my aboslute lowest time of my entire life and in my own personal hell. There was absolutely no way of escaping the dark depression and panic attacks I was going through. It was so bad, I couldn't even crawl out of bed to take care of my two young children, ages eight and five.  As my husband took Forrest and Sadie out to the movies one night, I had an overhwelming feeling I should get onto my knees in prayer and plead to my Father in Heaven for help.  It took all of my energy just to fall out of bed onto my knees to pray.

I remember that prayer as if it were yesterday.  I petitioned with everything I had, every fiber of my being and soul for Father to take this darkness from me and if he did, I would give him everything I had, everything I had to offer and give it to Him for the rest of my life.  I apologized for trying to do everything on my own and not asking for His help.  After my prayer, I crawled back into bed and waited for my family to return home. As I laid there, I had another overwhleimg impression I needed to ask my husband for a blessing.

It was after 9:30pm when my family returned home when I asked for a priesthood blessing of healing.  George didn't want to inconvience anyone to come out so late so he asked me if I would settle for in the mornning.  I said no.  At exactly that same time, there was a knock on our door. It was the missionaries.  George was shocked to see them out past their curfew, but I knew the Lord had sent them to our home for me.

The next morning when I woke up, I felt the complete and total opposite of how I felt when I went to bed for the past several weeks.  I had clarity and peace of mind.  My heart and mind wasn't racing. I could breath normal. There was not the dark blanket engulfing me. It had vanished! It was as if I went to bed wearing black pajamas and woke up wearing white pajamas. This is the only explanation or analogy I have to explain the transformation that had occurred within me.

I was absolutely amazed and astonished at the immediate healing I had recieved.  Because of my faith, I had experienced the mighty change of heart.  I was reborn again.  I became a new creature in Christ.

How does this correlate with being like a child? I had always tried to do things on my own.  I had piggy-backed on my parents testimony for the longest.  After this spiritual transfomation, I became the child and my Father in Heaven and my Savior Jesus Christ became my teachers.  I couldn't learn fast enough.  I was like a sponge.  For the first time in my life, at age 31, I had officially gained my own personal testimony.  I had experienced it.  I no longer doubted.  I knew.

Looking back on this experience, I realized the Lord protected me in the months proceeding this rebirth as I was being taught and being rooted in the gospel. I had expeienced pure joy, just as my blessing said I would have along with a clear mind. it is a true testimony to me that our Father in Heaven does hear and answer our prayers and that through the atonement of Christ, we can be born again and become new creatures.  I can't ever repay the Lord for taking me out of my own personal hell.  All I can do is keep my covenants and my promise I made on that dark night in 2003.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Amazed by Enos

I have always been amazed and fascinated by Enos.  He wrestled with God to receive the remission from his sins.  The words his father spoke to him sunk deep into his heart.

In Enos verse one, we read:

 "And my soul hungered; and I kneeled down before my Maker, and I cried unto him in mighty prayer and supplication for mine own soul; and all the day long did I cry unto him; yea, and when the night came I did still raise my voice high that it reached the heavens."

As we were sharing this story in our Gathering Thursday night, my good friend shared a one of his prayers from his mission when he would told God "I'm too tired to pray." and remembers waking up the next morning still in his suit. I do not think this is the kind of prayer that Enos was doing.  He put every fiber of his being, of his soul, into this prayer, all the day long and all through the night.

in verse 5, we read:

"And there came a voice unto me, saying, Enos, thy sins are forgiven thee, and thou shalt be blessed."

Enos knew God couldn't lie, but he wanted to know how it is possible to be forgiven of his sins.  In verse 8, we read:

"And he said unto me:  Because of thy faith in Christ, whom thou has never before heard nor seen.  And many years pass away before he shall manifest himself inn the flesh; wherefore, go to, thy faith hath made thee whole."

I can't even imagine the feeling Enos had at that moment of truth and knowledge!  Once he heard the words of the Lord, he had a strong sense of welfare for his people and even the Lamanites.   He prayed that if his people, the Nephites were destroyed and the Lamanites survived, that the lord would preserve the record of his people so that they could be brought to the remembrance of the Lord their God and unto salvation.

What selfless man Enos was!  He wanted the salvation of his enemies,  I will always be amazed by Enos's great faith and love for his fellowman.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

The Last Days

The last five chapters of 2 Nephi are really awesome! My favorite chapters are 28-29. These couple of chapters talks about the Last Days here on earth before the return of our Savior.  Nephi tells us that there will be many false churches and apostasy shall occur because the hearts of men shall fail them.

 2 Nephi 28:8 reads:

And there shall also be many which shall say, Eat, drink, and be merry, nevertheless, fear God-he will justify in committing a little sin, yea, yea, lie a little, take the advantage of one because of his words, dig a pit for thy neighbor; there is no harm in this; and do all these things, for tomorrow we die; and if it so be that we are guilty, God will beat us with a few stripes, and at last we shall be saved in the Kingdom of God.

In our society today, we see exactly what this scripture reads.  I have to admit, even Satan has tried to convince me that I could sin just a little and still be in the presence of my Father in Heaven, This is false thinking.  No unclean thing can dwell in the presence of God.

The pitfall of society is pride.  Pride causes corruption.  Satan is raging in the hearts of men and we see this daily by all the mass killings that are taking place along with the corruption of our government. Satan is lulling and pacifying the hearts of the children of men.  He is convincing them that "All is well in Zion!".  All is not well in Zion.  Look around at the happenings in the world today!

We are to put our trust in the Lord and strive to have His spirit to be with us. 

In chapter 29, we learn that the Gentiles will say they need no more bible.  What we have to understand, is that our Lord has created many more nations than just our nation. In verse 4 it reads, 

"But saith the Lord God: O fools, they shall have a Bible; and it shall proceed forth from the Jews, and mine ancient covenant people.  And what thank they the Jews, for the Bible which they receive from them? Yeah, what do the Gentiles mean? Do they remember the travails, and the labors, and the pains of the Jews, and their diligence unto me, in bringing forth salvation unto the Gentiles?"

Did the Savior created more nations than ours? What about in the East? The West? The North? The South? How awesome is this? The Lord has commanded each nation to write the words that He speaks so that these records will come forth at a latter time. How glorious this shall be!

The Book of Mormon does not contradicts the Bible, nor is it made up by man.  It is a sacred record of the people of this nation, just as the Bible is a sacred record of the Jews in their nation.

Our day is very treacherous! Satan is raging in the hearts of men and his flaxen cords are being wrapped ever so tightly around our necks.  We are living in a day that has been prophesied by prophets of old.  Nephi saw our day and time and was so compassionate, he wept for us to hearken unto the Lord and to follow His commandments.  Words can't describe how I feel knowing Nephi wept for me and the Savior bleed and died for me, I will try to strengthen my testimony and to keep my eye single to Lord, all the days of my life.


Saturday, October 24, 2015

2 Nephi 10

Anytime I come across a description about the promised land in the Book of Mormon, I have to stop to ponder and to give a silent gratitude prayer to my Father in Heaven.  I have always taken this moment of silence to do this, as I truly am grateful to live in this great nation and to experience the many freedoms we enjoy today: freedom of speech/freedom of religion.

10 But behold, this land, said God, shall be a land of thine inheritance, and the Gentiles shall be blessed upon the land.
11 And this land shall be a land of liberty unto the Gentiles, and there shall be no kings upon the land, who shall raise up unto the Gentiles.
12 And I will fortify this land against all other nations.
13 And he that fighteth against Zion shall perish, saith God
14 For he that raisieth up a king against me shall perish, for I, the Lord, the king of heaven, will be their kings and I will be a light unto them forever, that hear my words.

There is such power in these versus! Who wouldn't want to live in this land?

I know we have all asked the question "Why am I here?" I go a little bit deeper into the rabbit hole than that as I flip the question to a state a fact "I am here" and the question immediately turns into a sincere prayer of gratitude whenever I read any scripture(s) focusing on this great land of inheritance.  Out of 196 countries in the world, I live in the one nation that is FREE, that has been protected and has been given to the covenant people of the Lord.  I live in a nation where the king of heaven is my king... How can I not go into an immediate silent prayer of gratitude?

When I reflect upon this great nation, here are some of my moments of  awe that come to mind instantly:

I have been reserved to come to this dispensation of time
I was born into the church/under the covenant
I was able to choose my husband for time and all eternity and to have my two children
freedom of speech
freedom of religion
Christopher Columbus
Lehi and his family coming over in the boat
brother of Jared

What do all of these have in common? GOD Without God, we wouldn't have this great land of inheritance and all the freedoms we enjoy.  I challenge you to ponder what this grand nation, USA means to you and as you come across a scripture that gives reference, stop to give a silent payer!

Friday, October 9, 2015

Laman, Lemuel or Nephi?

We all know how Laman and Lemuel murmured in the Book of Mormon. Over and over again, they complained against their younger brother and leader, Nephi and the Lord.  In 1 Nephi 17:17, they murmured as Nephi was about to build a ship. I can relate. While the Lord was about to build a new me, I murmured. I've never been one to complain, but the past three years, I did murmur as I experienced excruciating pain as my back deteriorated to the point of incapacitating me to being homebound and in bed 24/7. The physical and emotional pain was almost too much to handle.  I didn't understand why I couldn't go out and serve and do the Lord's bidding as I've done my whole life.

In 1 Nephi 16:36, Laman and Lemuel murmured  and wanted to go back to Jerusalem. I, too, wanted to go back to my old life back. My heart became hard, just as Laman and Lemuel's hearts were hardened.  I lost major pieces of myself over time. What good was I to my family and to others during this time?  In 1 Nephi 16: 37, Laman and Lemuel wanted to take Nephi's  and their father Lehi's life. Several times, I was tempted to take my own life. As the Lord protected their lives, He too, protected my life.

Laman and Lemuel experienced times when they were humbled by the Lord and did repent of their murmurings and walk in righteousness ( 1 Nephi 16:5)  I, too, humbled myself and had some wonderful spiritual experiences during this period of time. But with the horrid pain, I went back to murmuring within my heart as I waited on the Lord to give me instruction as to what to do. I'm sure I prolonged my surgery as I murmured, just as it took Nephi's family eight years to get to the promise land.

Ten months after the removal of my intrathecal morphine pain pump and my double lumbar fusion, I began to heal and feel human again. I've began to experience what Nephi did in 1 Nephi 17:7, as he was instructed to go to the mountain to converse with the Lord.

Looking back, I see clearly the Lord was watching over me. I know now that He truly does compensate for what is lost. I'm stronger now than I ever have been. I've learned many lessons during this time that are for my gain. I feel I have reached my promise land!

I do not want to be like Laman and Lemuel and murmur against the Lord.  I want to be like Nephi.  In 1 Nephi 18:3,  Nephi went to the mountain often to pray to the Lord and was shown great things.  My mountain is my bedroom. I pray to my Father in Heaven often for the strength to endure my trials and to soften the edges around my heart. I'm so grateful that I'm physically able to go and do the Lord's bidding again. Pieces of me are back in full force as I'm able to serve others and my family. I've asked for forgiveness for my murmurings and I pray I will continue to follow Nephi's of trusting in the Lord forever.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

my Top 10 Excuses of 2011

for not blogging this year:

1-lost interest after bloging for three years

2-started homescholing
3-would rather coupon than blog

4-stopped taking pictures
5-someone was always on the computer

6-paper journaled instead

7-my intrathecal pain pump malfunctioned

8-dealt with psychosis of opiate withdrawal for several months

9- too many damn doctor appointments

10-there is nothing positive to blog when you have lost your mind.
Trust me,I know

My Top 10 Reasons I want to blog in 2012:

1-I have most of my mind back, I think

2-wanted to blog one more time before turning the big 4-0
3- I'll get me taking pictures again
4-hopefully blogging will motivate me to get back to scrappin'
5-to keep in touch with family, all four of us
6-productive use of my time
7-will give me a chance to bump someone off the computer
8-want to share some of the hilarious things that go on at the Walker Pad

(warning: parental advisory will be required for some blog posts)

9-need to enjoy my freedom of speech before it's not free anymore

10-the world will be ending on Dec. 21, 2012

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Serious Business

Here's my first 12x12 page I've done in like forever! I'm so excited to share it with you today! This page is all about Forrest and his curiosity of Dad's skills in the auto-mechanics world. George bought him a 1981 camaro last summer and they have been gradually restoring it. What I captured in these photos was a serious conversation about what motor Forrest wants to put in his car and is asking Dad about all his options. This conversation went on for about an hour! I love the bond that this camaro has brought about with George and Forrest but I'm so not loving the fact that sometime in the future they will be building a faster motor for his car!

Title: Talks between Father and Son
Journal: "Forrest is a cut-up most of the time, but when it comes to conversations with his Dad about auto-mechanics and his camaro, it's serious business! "
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