It is all about the journey….

Posts tagged ‘light’

Too Great

Recently I have been studying 1 Kings in the Old Testament. The stories of Elijah the prophet intrigue me. I marvel at his bold courage as he taught truth to those who would not believe.

Too GreatAfter he calls upon the Lord to slay the priests of Baal, he finds himself alone and hunted. It must have felt so overwhelming to have to continue his ministry in this manner. The scriptures paint us a picture of his heavy heart:

But he himself went a day’s journey unto the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree; and he requested for himself that he might die; and said, It is enough; now, O Lord, take away my life; for I am not better than my fathers. 19:4

I marveled at this, because of the immense faith he had to have to call down fire from heaven…and yet, he was tired, alone and heavy.

After he uttered this prayer, he laid down and went to sleep.

Like all of our prayers, his was answered…but not how he thought he wanted it to be answered.

Twice an angel of the Lord awoke him and told him to eat a cake that had been miraculously baked and drink of water placed by his head. As the angel woke him the second time, the angel said, “Arise and eat; because the journey is too great for thee.” And he arose, and did eat and drink, and went in the strength of that meat forty days and forty nights unto Horeb the mount of God.” 19:7-8

As I read, “the journey is too great for thee” my heart was profoundly touched. Rather than taking him, the Lord sent him strength in the form that Elijah needed the most. He gave him food for his soul and, a short time later, a friend who would sustain him.

There have been times in my life that I have asked that the path that I am on be changed and my burdens be taken from me. I have begged for relief and the dawn of peace to come. I too, have laid down to sleep when I have felt my strength spent.

Like Elijah, the Lord has answered my prayers, not in the way that I thought I wanted them answered.

There have been countless blessings of “food” and “drink” for my soul that have miraculously come when I had nothing left to give, when the journey was too great for me.

As I have worked on softening my heart through repentance and gratitude, He has blessed me with ‘eyes to see’ the things that He has done for us. He has given my heart a deeper understanding of the growth that He needed us to experience. He has shown me that He is in every aspect of our lives. His miracles are real.

I can honestly say that I am truly grateful for a path that has been too great for me, because it has allowed me to see His hand in my life. I am thankful for all of the struggles, because I now see that He delivers us every time. I am thankful for the ‘night’ that has allowed me to see the little bits of light that I would have overlooked before.

 

My Stones

There is a story in the Book of Mormon that has been on my mind a lot today. The Jaredites were a group of family and friends that lived when the Tower of Babel was being constructed. The Brother of Jared (as he is called in the Book of Mormon) prayed that their families and friends would be spared from the curse Jehovah placed on the people because of their wickedness. Through his faith they were spared and subsequently told they would be moving to a promised land.

StonesAfter wandering in the wilderness for some time, they were brought to a beautiful, plentiful beach. It was a place they could have stayed for a long time and be happy. Yet, the Lord had other plans in mind for them. He asked the Brother of Jared to construct barges to carry those in his family across the ocean….uncharted waters. These barges were very unique in their construction in that they would be sealed, air tight and able to travel on top or underneath the water. Because of their construction, there was not a source of light.

The Brother of Jared took this problem to the Lord and asked Him what he should do that they might have light and air. He was given the answer for the air…a problem he could not have solved on his own. And then he was given the charge to figure out the light situation on his own…something the Lord knew he could figure out.

And figure it out he did….he went to the mountain and found 16 clear stones. He then took these stones and stood before the Lord and asked Him to touch each stone that they might shine in the darkness for them. What happened next was a miracle…born of the Brother of Jared’s faith. He saw the Lord’s finger as He touched each stone.

Today I took figurative stones to the Lord.

I wish I could say that I boldly stood before Him. I wish I could say that I boldly stood before Him. I wish I could say that I felt confident in the stones I had chosen.

I wondered what would have happened if the Brother of Jared didn’t stand before the Lord so confidently. I know the miracles that are recorded would not have happened. I know that they would have been lost in the darkness as they crossed the ocean. I know that we would not have received the amazing gift of his testimony and story to strengthen us as we are faced with problems we feel under qualified to solve.

How grateful I am that he did, because it gave me hope today. There is nothing I want more in this world than for my stones to be touched by His hand, yet, I feel so inadequate taking my stones before Him. I realized today how limited my vision is. I felt so small.

Tonight I came to realize something….as small and inadequate as I felt, I took my precious stones and laid them at His feet. I know that when He touches them they will bring the light that I seek. I know that He heard my prayer, because I felt the peace only He can give. I turned to Him with those things that I worked out.

I did not see the finger of the Lord today, but that doesn’t mean I won’t see His hand as He lights the way for us.

Not Yet

Not YetI have to hope that there are more people out there like me…. I have to hope that there are those who are in the process of a particularly keen growth spurt that hope and pray for it to end at some point…preferably sooner than later. If not, then once again I am unique in my heart and mind.

There are mornings when I wake up and can feel the heaviness of the day already in my heart. Other mornings are filled with a sense of hope and purpose (these have been a little less common). I have fought through every day, making it to the end with a prayer in my heart.

Every day I wake up, I say a prayer. I try not to bore Heavenly Father with repetition, but sometimes my needs feel like they are the same as they were the day before. I have been working on asking for help to find others to reach out to and for ways to serve, hoping that this will help ease the heaviness that lives there. Some days I find the answers to these prayers outside of my home, and other days the opportunities are right in my home.

As the dawn has begun to manifest itself within our lives, I hate to admit that I have become quite impatient for the rest of the light to spread. I ache for the warmth of the sun light to touch my heart and to lift the weight that is there. As hard as I pray for it to come quickly, the light creeps ever so slowly towards me.

“Not yet.”

This is what has been in my heart today. There is more to learn and to understand before I will be ready for the light in my life. As much as I want it to be day, there is still darkness to pass through. I have had to still my heart and allow my soul to find the rest that Jesus Christ has promised us. This has been the most difficult thing for me to do, now that I have seen a glimmer of hope.

“Not yet.”

Heavenly Father knows when we are ready to move on from where we are. He will bring the light to me when it is time. He will show me how to live in the light once again. He will give me the strength to endure, if I believe in Him. He will bring to pass all of the promises He has made to me and my family. He will allow us to grow until that time. He will take care of us as we move towards where He needs us to go.

“Not yet.”

Knowing this I prayed today for that peace that only Jesus can bring. This is the peace that will overcome the moments when the fingers of darkness try to wrap themselves around my heart causing me to doubt what I know. This peace will allow me to be still and trust in a Father who loves me more than I can know.

“Not yet.”

It is okay.

The Dawn

amazing-sunriseI have heard many times in my life that it is always the darkest before the dawn. When you are in that darkest place, that quote can either bring comfort or irritation. I have experienced both as we have traveled through a bit of darkness in our lives. Today it brought comfort to me.

I have been seeking understanding for the current journey we are on for quite some time. I have prayed for this understanding to lighten my load and bring light to a spirit that has felt dark and alone. The times when I have felt irritation with the darkness is when I have felt a hardening of my heart, the uncertainty of the future and the desire for the dawn to come earlier than it is supposed to.

Over the past few months there have been brief moments of understanding that have come into my heart. I know that they are not my thoughts, but whisperings of someone who knows far more than I do. They have come as tiny rays of light filling my heart and allowing me to see what was necessary to give me hope and direction.

With each dawn, the light comes almost imperceptively and gradually strengthens as it approaches. It is natural. It is quiet. It is life-giving. It is beautiful, especially after a particularly dark night.

Darkness brings with it a myriad of experiences. It is near impossible to negotiate in darkness without tripping, getting smacked at various locations, running into things and feeling hopeless. There is a special, exquisite feeling of loneliness that comes when we cannot see where we are going or feel what is ahead of us. It can feel as though we are screaming into a void, with nothing coming back.

Yet, the darkest of nights give us the opportunity to see the brightest dawns.

I love being in the mountains to watch the sun come up. I see the first evidences of light in the sky. As the sun begins to emerge over the top of the mountain, the horizon becomes clear. The shadows gradually creep back, retreating before the beauty of the light can overtake them. And then, the world has opened up.

Our dark night has begun to yield. We are seeing the faintest evidences of the coming dawn. Just as it is with the mountain, we have been able to see things on the horizon first. The shadows continue to do their best to keep hold, but they will retreat as the light grows stronger. I have prayed for this moment time and time again, knowing that the dawn will come at the time Heavenly Father knows it will be the best for us. I have tried over and over to speed this process up, however His timing is always perfect.

I am forever grateful for this night we have passed through. I have never reached out so deeply and strongly to my Savior. I have never relied so much on Heavenly Father’s love and mercy. I have never seen so many daily blessings that they give us, which we can take for granted. I have never felt so close to my incredible family.

To be grateful for the dawn, we must be grateful for the night.

Into The Darkness

file0001735790414This last week was something incredible to say the least. Sometimes we are blessed to have things ‘fall’ into our lives that will forever change the way we live, think and become.

We have been on quite the journey for the past 2 years. The path has not always been lit, even if a little bit. We have hit our heads on low hanging branches, ran into rock walls, stepped on sharp stones, tripped over debris on the path and bruised our knees every time we hit the ground. (more…)

Therapeutic Writing

This morning I learned a huge lesson for me in my life…writing is the best therapy for a heavy heart. Message Stones

I woke up feeling the weight of the world crushing my heart. I would rather wake up on the wrong side of the bed, because I know I could go back to bed and get up on the right side. The weight of the world however does not respond well to the ‘going back to bed’ solution. It is what it is right now. (more…)

Hold On To The Promises

Today just feels different. Some mornings come and they bring hope with them. file0002072402222

Nothing happened to change anything, just the dawn.

Promises is a song by Sanctus Real that has been playing on my brain MP3 player for weeks. It has been in the background trying to teach me something. Today I took the time to listen. (more…)

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