Thursday, April 7, 2016

I Thank the Lord for Letting Me Have the Ride

It seems to me that some people have plenty to say on a blog. Their lives are very interesting and uplifting. They have stories to tell and varied experiences. Other blogs are full of perfect parents and beautiful kids. You know the kind that make you feel like a loser of a parent because your kids aren't dressed in matching designer clothes and you don't take your kids on an outing every week. Well, I'm neither one of those. This is Deanne, and I am a normal average mom. I have my ups and downs with kids that are every bit as normal as I am. They are good kids that study, work and develop talents but not the kind that set records or earn great accolades. That could easily be my fault. I stay home and raise the children while I struggle finding ways to feel of value. When things are going well I can think of all kinds of blog posts and moments appear. But, when things are hard it's difficult for me to share my life with others. Not that I don't want others to know of my weakness but because I want to be positive and share the good in this world. I want me and my family to be a light to the world and give hope. Sometimes that's hard to do so I retreat into my little world and wish I could retreat even farther until the storm passes.

The storm has been raging in my soul and life for quite some time. The kind of storm that ebbs and flows but never really subsides. A storm that brings blessings of knowledge, faith, courage and light. Only those blessings don't appear at the height of the storm because the clouds are thick and the wind howls. The storm hides the blessings that keep me holding on. Some days all I can do is pray for greater strength and then that can even fail me and I retreat even more and stop calling out to my Father for his strength and mercy as I feel abandoned and alone. The darkness envelopes me and all I can do is survive. Yes, I have those times in life and am just coming out of that darkness to feel the light once again. My soul cries out for the warmth of the light and witness of love from my Father in Heaven and Savior Jesus Christ. Through it all I have questioned but still known that all of this is for my good and will teach me things that I could not have known without the struggle.

For it must needs be that there is an opposition in all things. If not so... righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness—neither happiness nor misery, neither good nor bad.  2 Nephi 2:11

I know that opposition is necessary and I have learned that we can not expect any blessing greater than our challenge. So for me to receive the light and knowledge that I desire I must go through these moments. 

I have had the whispering of the Holy Ghost to guide me and help me through but I was so lost at times that I couldn't believe that was the source or I just didn't want to listen. As my heart would become more humble I could hear and see how God was trying to talk to me. I want to share some of the thoughts that have been with me.

"And thus, if ye will not nourish the word, looking forward with an eye of faith to the fruit thereof, ye can never pluck of the fruit of the tree of life." Alma 32:40

This one came just as I was beginning to give in to Satan's buffetings that the blessings I desire could never be realized and I was wondering why we even had to leave the comfortable life we had created with the help of God. I had to be reminded that I had to keep believing and seeing with an eye of faith those things that I desired in my life. That I could become the person I want to be. I could serve and be of great value to others in this life outside of my family. And yet the darkness got thicker and the struggle harder and I began to forget these words when this quote came to me.

Such truth in the words of Jeffrey R. Holland. God can not answer prayers if we never speak them. He can not fulfill dreams if we never dream them. We have to pray, dream and believe even in the darkness. I began to pray again and I continue to pray to know what Heavenly Father would like me to seek after. I know that He has a better plan than I can even imagine so I want my desires to match his will. Heavenly Father wants my success and ultimately he wants me to return to his presence and receive blessings beyond measure.

And this last quote is from one of my favorite men. He was a very optimistic prophet of God that spread light wherever he went.

People ask how we are doing and believe all is well. Many think that we are living our adventure and couldn't be struggling with our move. This is an adventure that I would do again but it's not easy and has taken a lot of work spiritually, emotionally and physically. The Lord has allowed me to feel the struggle and hasn't rescued me but he has not let me fall. He will never let me fall as long as I look to him. The light is breaking forth and blessing are yet to come. I will still love and follow Jesus as I try to serve and love others and in time my capacity to follow and love will increase and so will my joy. I know that Jesus Christ loves each of us. He has felt our sorrows and pains and knows how to succor us. He gave his life and suffered deeply in his innocence that we might return with him to the presence of our Father. I can never repay God for the blessings he has given and will continue to give me, including the blessing of darkness and struggle. Today, I

                                          "Thank the Lord for letting me have the ride."