A place to share struggles and triumphs, a place to bless and serve - but never a place to murmur or complain. 

Sunday, March 30, 2008

I cannot say the smallest part.

Alma 26:16

Therefore, let us glory, yea, we will glory in the Lord; yea, we will rejoice, for our joy is full; yea, we will praise our God forever. Behold, who can glory too much in the Lord? Yea, who can say too much of his great power, and of his mercy, and of his long-suffering towards the children of men? Behold, I say unto you, I cannot say the smallest part which I feel.

I'm just so aware of my own weakness, and need for the Lord in every minute of my life right now. Sometimes I feel like I can't breathe without Him. More amazing to me, however, is what he can do with me in my weakness. He causes me to stand, helps me to face an uncertain future with strength and resolve. He lifts my spirits and leads me to His will. I am often overwhelmed by the love I feel, His tender and watchful care over me. He is powerful and merciful, patient and all-understanding. He lets us pass through sorrow and difficulty that we might learn to turn to, trust and draw strength from Him - and then, to testify of His matchless and wondrous power. I know. I'm there. He is so good to me, and I love Him.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

I'm sorry, It's my fault, please forgive me.

This is what my friend suggested I say to fix a frosty relationship in my extended family. We were driving home from a weekend conference, and I'd asked her advice. We were taught there that you can't have a relationship with someone you don't trust, you can only have a strategy. I had a serious 'strategy' relationship in mind. Every time we would contemplate a visit, I would form my plan. If she said this, I would do this, and so on, and so on. This had been happening for over ten years. In fact, I'd know for sure that I had PMS when this certain person would come to mind. I'd mop the floor in gleeful ferocity, replaying the wrongs I had suffered, over and over in my mind.
When my friend suggested that I write a letter of apology, there was a gripping sensations in my vitals; a knotting, tightening, nauseating feeling that told me she was on to something.
A funny thing happened though, as I opened my heart to the possibility of writing that letter. I began to see things in my behavior that had been hurtful. Memories that had been buried deeply under hard feelings began to surface. I'd completely forgotten the time she drove almost an hour to take me to the hospital when my oldest child was a baby. He was very sick, and I was heavily pregnant and without a car. All sorts of forgotten kindnesses widened the cracks in the wall I'd built between us. By the time I sat down to write the letter, all hard feelings, jealousies and resentments were gone. I felt truly and deeply sorry for the years I'd lost of closeness and friendship. I sent the letter off, telling myself I didn't care how she responded. I almost believed it. "I've asked for forgiveness, whether she forgives me or not is her problem." I told myself. I waited a little over a week with no response. When the phone rang this morning, and her voice was on the line, I knew that I really did care. She told me how sorry she was, that it was really her fault, that she'd love to be closer too. We spent a long time catching up, without the undercurrent of tension. I felt giddy, healed, and lifted to a higher place. A miracle happened in my life. Bad feelings that I'd fought for a decade and begged the Lord to remove were whisked away like smoke in the wind the moment I was willing to humble myself.

By Small and Simple Things

Hi, my name is Amiee House. I am the mother of 5, wife of Brent and trying to be a righteous woman of God. This is my first blog post...ever. I support the role of motherhood and the knowledge that it is a divine institution. I am learning so much through motherhood---there is wonderful joy and sometimes heart-breaking sorrow, but always there is learning and growing.

I felt emotionally drained one Saturday morning in March and had only 5 minutes until the next "thing" to do was happening. My state of mind had much to do with my 6 year old daughter and the awesome responsibility of helping her learn and remember that she is a child of a Heavenly Father who loves her.
All of my family was in the van waiting for me, but I needed to ground myself and quickly. I prayed and flipped open the Book of Mormon sitting on the desk. A few sentences passed through my head, another page flip and then I was stopped in my tracks. My problem seemed great and I have spent many hours on my knees. The anxiety of the whole issue was creeping up on me and then I read those freeing words by Alma, "...by small and simple things are great things brought to pass....and the Lord God doth work by means to bring about his great and eternal purposes; and by very small means the Lord doth confound the wise and bringeth about the salvation of many souls." Alma 37:6-7
Hope flooded through me as I realized that not only is my Father aware of my concerns but He, who knows my daughter better than I, also has already provided the "small means" on the earth to bring her to salvation. Hope comes through obedience to the small, simple gospel truths. I am teaching my daughter to pray, to have faith, to come to know Jesus Christ and His atonement in a very personal way. I have weaknesses, as does my daughter, but those means are in place and if I keep taking the small, daily steps to follow the true gospel of Jesus Christ and teach my children that also, there is great hope and truly "...great things (will be) brought to pass."

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

The Pink Crayon

n excerpt from Knowing When to Persevere and When to Change Direction, a speech given at Brigham Young University by Janet G. Lee on 14 January 1992. I posted this on Seats Seven, but felt that I should post it here, as well.

When my daughter Stephanie was five years old, I took her to register for kindergarten . . . A teacher was sitting just outside the room with a box of crayons and several sheets of blank paper, and I smiled confidently to myself from across the hall as Stephanie was asked to choose her favorite color and write her name. "She could write all the names in our family," I thought to myself. . . But Stephanie just stood there. The teacher repeated the instructions, and again my daughter stood still, staring blankly at the box of crayons with her knees locked and her hands behind her back.
In the sweet, patient voice that teachers use when they are beginning to feel slightly impatient, the teacher asked once more, "Stephanie, choose your favorite color, dear, and write your name on this piece of paper." I was about to come to my daughter's aid when the teacher kindly said, "That's okay. We will help you learn to write your name when you come to school in the fall." With all the restraint I could muster, I watched Stephanie move into the classroom with a teacher who believed my daughter did not know how to write her name.
On the way home I tried to ask as nonchalantly as possible why she had not written her name. "I couldn't," she replied. "The teacher said to choose my favorite color, and there wasn't a pink in the box!"
I reflect on this incident often as I watch my children grow and observe life in general. How many times are we, as Heavenly Father's children, immobilized because the choice we had in mind for ourselves just isn't available to us, at least not at the time we want it?. . .
In other words, what happens when we look in the box, and the pink crayon just isn't there? It is so easy to lock our knees, put our hands behind our back, and do nothing when the things we wished for and dreamed about are beyond our reach. But to do so would defy the very reason we are placed here on this earth. As hard as it sometimes is to understand, stumbling blocks are essential to our progression.
Remember what the Lord said: "If thou are called to pass through [some] tribulation . . . know . . . that all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good" (D&C 122:5-7)

Thursday, March 20, 2008

A Mother's Prayer for her Children

Even though these words were spoken by Alma, (Alma 13:27-29) they are exactly the things I hope and pray for my children. What I am learning, is that the Lord is able to bring us under his wing, and let us "rest" from our cares even as a storm rages around us. There is nothing more sure to bring happiness to my children's lives than this.

27 And now, my brethren, I wish from the inmost part of my heart, yea, with great anxiety even unto pain, that ye would hearken unto my words, and cast off your sins, and not procrastinate the day of your repentance;

28 But that ye would humble yourselves before the Lord, and call on his holy name, and watch and pray continually, that ye may not be tempted above that which ye can bear, and thus be led by the Holy Spirit, becoming humble, meek, submissive, patient, full of love and all long-suffering;

29 Having faith on the Lord; having a hope that ye shall receive eternal life; having the love of God always in your hearts, that ye may be lifted up at the last day and enter into his rest.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Purpose for all Things

After I had my fifth baby it was a hard time of feeling far from the Lord and rather emotionally weak and sad. I wondered what had happened because I used to be so strong and never sad. It was like Moses, when he said "I found out without the Lord I was nothing, which thing I never had supposed." So finally when I received the inspiration on how to fix the problem through more regular temple attendance and was feeling better I wondered why it had taken so long for me to get that inspiration. The thought came to me that it was so that I would truly understand where our power comes from...that then I might be able to testify to others where true power comes from. It's amazing. There is a purpose for all things even though we may not understand.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Our Sacred Trust

“As mothers in Israel, we are the Lord’s secret weapon. Our influence comes from a divine endowment that has been in place from the beginning. In the premortal world, when our Father described our role, I wonder if we didn’t stand in wide-eyed wonder that He would bless us with a sacred trust so central to His plan and that He would endow us with gifts so vital to the loving and leading of His children. I wonder if we shouted for joy at least in part because of the ennobling stature He gave us in His kingdom. The world won’t tell you that, but the Spirit will.” Sheri L. Dew, “Are We Not All Mothers?,” Ensign, Nov 2001, 96

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Patience, Faith and Chastening

Hebrews 12:6
6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth

Mosiah 23:21-22
21 Nevertheless the Lord seeth fit to chasten his people; yea, he trieth their patience and their faith.
22 Nevertheless—whosoever putteth his trust in him the same shall be lifted up at the last day. Yea, and thus it was with this people.

Mosiah 24:14-16
14 And I will also ease the burdens which are put upon your shoulders, that even you cannot feel them upon your backs, even while you are in bondage; and this will I do that ye may stand as witnesses for me hereafter, and that ye may know of a surety that I, the Lord God, do visit my people in their afflictions.
15 And now it came to pass that the burdens which were laid upon Alma and his brethren were made light; yea, the Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord.
16 And it came to pass that so great was their faith and their patience that the voice of the Lord came unto them again, saying: Be of good comfort, for on the morrow I will deliver you out of bondage.

Patience and Faith. Patience, Faith and Trust in the Lord.

Expect a Miracle

You, as a mother, are entitled to miracles. The miracle is the Lord’s hand reaching down, through the power of grace and by the agent of the Holy Ghost, to help. You won’t suddenly receive a miraculous change in your circumstance…and he won’t make you perfect…but He will make up the difference. When you sacrifice your will through faith and obedience, you can expect a miraculous change inside of you…spiritually. You will receive more strength, more power, and intelligence that is not your own that will help you with your trials, duties, and responsibilities.

Try it. Reach up and take the Lord’s hand that is reaching down. Reach up and claim the miracle that is yours.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

The Lord knows who I’ll become.

He knows what I’m capable of, truly. I have only my earthly experience to give me a sense of what I’m made of. He has memories of me that stretch far back into the eternities before this life. He can show me who He sees. Somewhere in that immense love I feel from Him are glimpses of all I was before my life on earth, and who I will become.