3
Feb

straightway

There have been several times I’ve experienced a prompting and questioned whether or not it was, in fact, from God. I’ve then questioned, was that just my own thought, or was it really something?… and I’ve often dismissed the feeling.

Enter, the parable of the Bing.

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You know, that little feeling, a little high-pitched low-decibel but very auditory … Bing. Like a high-C tap on a xylophone. Bing. Hurry and do this. Bing. You should do this. Bing. This is important. And often, we dismiss.

This week’s Come Follow Me teaches us all about the Bing. When Jesus called his first disciples, the scriptures say they left their ships and nets “straightway.” They didn’t ask to join Jesus after the fishing season; they didn’t even delay their response in order to make just one more catch. They didn’t finish cleaning, sorting or storing fish for their families and kin. They left “straightway”!

Neal A Maxwell says, “Suppose Peter had not left his nets “straightway”? He might have become the respected president of the local Galilean Fishermen’s Association. But he would not have been on the Mount of Transfiguration with Jesus, Moses, and Elias and heard the voice of God.”

I wonder what, where, how each of us would be if we heeded the first Bing.

Elder Rasband taught in his April 2017 conference address: We must act on the first prompting.

Remember the words of Nephi. “I was led by the Spirit, not knowing beforehand the things which I should do. Nevertheless,” he said, “I went forth.”

And so must we. We must be confident in our first promptings. Sometimes we rationalize; we wonder if we are feeling a spiritual impression or if it is just our own thoughts. When we begin to second-guess, even third-guess, our feelings—and we all have—we are dismissing the Spirit; we are questioning divine counsel. The Prophet Joseph Smith taught that if you will listen to the first promptings, you will get it right nine times out of ten.

Now a caution: don’t expect fireworks because you responded to the Holy Ghost. Remember, you are about the work of the still, small voice.

Last week Mikelle was in SLC getting her hair done and I had a distinct voice that left no room for misunderstanding . . Go to the Urie school right now and see if Oaklyn is OK. So I called Mikelle and told her to hurry and text Oaklyn’s teacher and see if she was alright. Fifteen minutes later, I called and asked her and she hadn’t texted yet but said she would. When Mrs. Potter texted back she said that Oaklyn had a little trouble at recess about fifteen minutes ago. One of the other girls [for the hundredth time] was mean to her and she was crying.

I should have gone to the school. I should have had lunch with Oaklyn. I should have comforted her. I should have head-smacked the other little girl. Oh wait . . .nooo.

I know there are BIngs aplenty in our everyday. But they have dissolved into thin air as we busy ourselves and numb ourselves and blast ourselves with the sounds of living. I want to always remember this.

 

18
Jan

and you can quote me

You have the power to turn your wounds and worries into wisdom; you just have to do something about them. You have to accept what has happened and use what you’ve learned to step forward. Everything you’ve experienced has given you the upper hand for dealing with everything you have yet to experience. Realize this and set yourself free.

I have a boat-load of quotes that resonate with me. My phone is full of inspiring, encouraging, up-lifting words and phrases that I keep saving. I use tons of them on my weekly bulletin, a calling that has quite literally saved me [OK, figuratively!]

Remember not only WHO you are, but WHOSE you are!

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Everything can change in the blink of an eye,
but don’t worry… God never blinks.

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Believe in yourself and all that you are.
Know that there is something inside you that is greater than any obstacle.

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And podcasts. Oh, my goodness. There are soooo many. And there are a few really good ones. I listen to Tony Overbay’s Virtual Couch. Free therapy for moi! Bold New Mom. Better Than Life. Two new ones I have LOVED, All In, and This is the Gospel. Sooooo wonderful.

What I’m saying is that there is more light and truth and love and comfort than a person can possible absorb in a whole lifetime, especially if you are looking in the right places. There’s plenty of garbage out there, and plenty of ‘garbage disguised as wholesome’ … but as I have tried to find AMAZING, it has found me.

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Seriously … John Bytheway, Hank Smith and Meg Johnson rolled up in one. It really doesn’t get better than this. They have a special calling in life and it is to inspire, invigorate, encourage, improve, enlighten, energize, brighten and edify. Their program is heartwarming, entertaining and can I say it…revelatory.

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It is not possible to make real changes all by ourselves.
Our own willpower and our own good intentions are not enough.
We must have the help of our Savior.

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God is eagerly waiting for the chance to answer your prayers and fulfill your dreams,
  just as He always has.
But, He can’t if you don’t pray, and He can’t if you don’t dream.
In short… He can’t if you don’t BeLiEvE.

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When in doubt, pause.
When angry, pause.
When tired, pause.
When stressed, pause.
And, when you pause, pray

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There are two types of ‘tired, I suppose
One is a dire need of SLEEP. The other is a dire need of PEACE.

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God has somehow taken me by the hand, and led me to a better place. I feel His peace, His direction, His calming, His acceptance, His love. I don’t know how he calmed the storm in my life, but I gratefully acknowledge that he did. He DID. HE DOES.

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7
Jan

new balance isn’t just a shoe

It’s 2pm and I am, seriously, still in my sweats that I wore to the gym this morning at 7am. Lazy day? Not at all! I woke up early… 4:45am and I’ve been listening to good things ever since. I’m living in the podcast world presently! There are soooo many good things, so much information to improve outlooks and understanding and lives. I started listening to Bold New Mom last summer and moved on to approximately twenty more! I listen to The Virtual Couch, Bloom for Women, Ted Radio, Invisibilia,The Life Coach School, The Joyful Soul Project, 30 in 30, Super Soul, Interpreter Foundation, BYU Speeches and podcasts on Scripture Sudy. I just started COLD, the story about Susan Powell’s disappearance, Serial, LDS Lesson Helps, Meridian Magazine, Priceless, Women in the Scriptures. So many good things. Every now and then I’ll run into something I don’t relate to, something offensive, or something ‘not me’ and I just move on to something else. I’ve learned so much. I have loved using my brain and thinking deeply and trying to improve my basic outlook on life. To what? To: Life.Is.Good. So Good.

The divorce is over. It’s been two months. I spent one entire year gathering information for the attorney. The four previous years I was consumed with the wrecking-ball going on in my home. And now, all I have is wonderful time and space and openness… to learning and growing.

For instance:

I learned something new about emotions and what an emotion “is asking us to do.” Emotions bring a message to us, and if we do what is required, the emotion will move on. If, however, we dart around and avoid the emotion, it will keep trying to deliver the message [much like someone trying to deliver a telegram . . it will keep trying to get the message to us]. If we accept the message, say, hey thanks, then the emotion is able to move on.

There are four main emotions and thousands of other emotions are a combination or layering of these four primary ones, much like all colors are combined from the three primary colors of red, blue and yellow. They are sadness, anger, scared and happy. And each one has a message for us.

The message from sadness is to slow down and to let go of something.
The message from anger is to find what boundaries we need to set [or release] and what changes we need to make.
The message from scared is to make a plan, to get prepared for something,
The message from happy is to enjoy and rejuvenate.

Other emotions are combinations of these as they blend together in our everyday experiences. You can be angry and happy at the same time. You can be scared and happy at the same time. You can even be sad and happy at the same time.

It’s all so interesting to me. Of course, I Googled the topic and many many many other sites say there are 8 main emotions, 20 main emotions, or 27 main emotions that all others come from.

I also learned about the importance of not isolating yourself. Isolation leads to every negative mental state there can possibly be. I tried to put that thought and information into perspective in light of what happened to who I have lived with for the past 32 years.

And, last, for now, is the wonderful suggestion I learned about having a “self-check” every single day. Maybe right before bed. It’s productive and enlightening to ask ourselves these questions, or similar ones, about the day. They involve my physical, emotional, spiritual, social, psychological state, and how I feel about self-care, boundaries, commitment/goals, and gratitude.

How do I feel physically? Let’s see, my back still aches, but my stomach feels better, I love how my muscles feel after going to the gym this morning, my eyes are finally rested and the cut on my thumb is healing. My feet are always cold . . . Etc.

How do I feel emotionally? OK, I am feeling pretty calm, or I could really use a good cry. I’m nervous about my presentation at RS tomorrow night or I laughed out loud at Marty Deeks on NCIS/LA. . . Etc.

How do I feel spiritually? My prayers are more meaningful, I find that I look forward to morning and evening prayers. I’m not avoiding talking with God anymore, I love the feeling I had in church during a talk. Or Satan won’t leave me alone, I’m sliding backwards, I resent having to toe the line . . . Etc.

After the P/E/S/S/P list, check in with self-care. Something like: I need to take time after my shower to lather on lotion, and I really need to get my browns cleaned up. I made a smoothie for today and one is in the fridge for tomorrow. I thought of two uplifting positive affirmations and I love thinking about the power of the word “elevate.” I took time to read a thoughtful inspirational quote.

Follow through with awareness about boundaries, commitment/goals, and gratitude.

One more thought:
Gratitude reminds us to balance out our thinking.

So many good things to learn and enjoy. There’s literally no end to it. Our Creator expects His children everywhere to gain an education as a personal endeavor. He issued this commandment: “Seek ye diligently and teach one another words of wisdom; yea, seek ye out of the best books words of wisdom; seek learning, even by study and also by faith.” D&C 88:118

 
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