I just can't describe the awakening I have had...but I am going to attempt to do so.
I had another counseling appointment today. I came in as an adult this time and left with some greater understanding.
So I said I was having a faith crisis. He was not surprised. I WAS!!! He said that it usually happens as people go through this. WHAT!!! I am not the first. OK so I learned a few things. So wonderful to have a great teacher.
With more space in my head I have been doing alot of studying. This had lead to many unanswered questions regarding the scriptures and church history.
Two days ago I got a text from the bishop and he scheduled an appointment for me to see him. I had an appointment with him last night. I happened to be his last appointment. I was in a critical part of my faith crisis and I needed some inspiration and guidance. He must have felt inspired to call me in when he did. The timing was perfect. In fact a blessing.
He told me his story of how he had learned to nourish his faith. He had an uncle who had sent him letters when he was a teenager and exposed him to lots of faith challenging issues. I have been living in a bubble. I didn't have room in my head for much. The fog of depression kept me from having room for learning. Also, I am on ADD medication and now I am able to study in more of a disciplined manner (have loved it). This opened up a new world for me.
This faith crisis I feel was just the Lord in my life. In fact. It was like the Lord said to me. Time to grow up. Time for your faith to grow up. The Bishop helped me understand that he to had to work and understand many things through faith and that there are things that we don't have answers to. The issue is to nourish your faith. Two hours later I leave his office feeling peace and my faith strengthen. Yes the fruits of the gospel are good. When I immerse myself in the gospel, I feel good. It feels right. I know there is truth all over the world and I am grateful I have seen the truth that so many people offer. I am also grateful to be a part of the restored gospel on the earth. Yes it feels good to be restored back to my faith and my doubts gone. I don't have all the answers but that is OK.
Today, I say I really would like to go to a counseling appointment. (I know it has only been 5 days but I left needing more guidance) So I show up at my counseling appointment today after talking with the bishop last night. I tell the counselor the answer the bishop gave me to my faith crisis. The bishop gave me the right answer....FAITH. What??? NO ANSWER is the ANSWER to alot of questions!!!
I came wanting to know how not to fall into the victim roll, or the rescuer, or the persecutor. I don't want to act like a child. Last time I left his office, I left clearly seeing how I would engage in the drama triangle. (previous post) Now I needed to know how to stay out of it.
So he explains it to me:
As an adult we have Hope, Faith, and Charity.
When we are children (or act as children) we are hopeless and have no control. These are the opposite of faith. What do we do inside when we feel hopeless....we give up. The extremes are control and giving up. Catch and release cycle is another example. (wording?) These are all examples some of the things part of the drama triangle.
So there are three things I need to do to not fall into extremes. You are incapable of doing things things in a childish state.
1. Create more hope in my life.
2. Create more faith in my life.
3. Charity. Definition: act of giving faith and hope to someone else, acting charitable
more hope....more faith....more Charity
If we have faith, God does NOT provide us with ALL the answers. We can have faith that one day we will have ALL the answers but not now. That is not part of this estate.
SAFETY, CONTROL, AND ANSWERS do NOT rely on FAITH.
Elder Erying said (paraphrasing) we came to earth to learn to have greater faith in Jesus Christ.
This is why we are here. Not to have all the answers, to control, or even have safety (ouch...that hurts a little).
Simple Example: Food Storage. This is not about safety or not being hungry. It is about faith. Do we have faith to keep the commandments. A flood could come and could wash away our food storage. We could have to leave suddenly and lose all our storage. It is not about control or hunger. It is about Faith.
Earth life: Now we are here on earth and we are living in another war zone. We are in a world that thrives on a desire for ANSWERS, CONTROL, and SAFETY. All of which are not possible in this life. He never promised these. If Lucifer can get us to feel hopeless and have no faith, he is accomplishing the same thing that he did in the previous life. If he can get us to doubt our faith by saying, "I NEED THE ANSWER TO___________________(fill in blank)", he can get us to lose our faith. We become victims.
Death was an ever-present reality for the Saints crossing the plains, as depicted in this painting.
Our faithfulness can prepare us for a glorious resurrection, the reuniting of our body and spirit.
The Gspel of life and salvation reveals to each individual who receives it that this world is only a place of temporary duration, existence, trials, etc. Its present fashion and uses are but for a few days, while we were created to exist eternally. The wicked can see no further than this world is concerned. We understand that when we are unclothed in this present state, then we are prepared to be clothed upon with immortality—that when we put off these bodies we put on immortality [see Alma 11:43–44]. These bodies will return to dust, but our hope and faith are that we will receive these bodies again from the elements—that we will receive the very organization that we have here, and that, if we are faithful to the principles of [gospel] freedom, we shall then be prepared to endure eternally (DBY, 372).
War in Heaven: 1/3 of the host of heaven followed Lucifer's plan. He promised them safety and control of the outcome. God promised that at some future time a Savior would atone for the sins of the world and we could repent and receive all the commandments and ordinances we needed to return to our Heavenly Father. They were so afraid because if they believed in Heavenly fathers plan it required FAITH. They were not willing to live on faith because they would have to give up control. So they followed Lucifer out of fear of being lost. In the process of trying to control, they lived a self-fulfilling prophecy and were lost. So Faith was required before we came to earth. This is still happening today...
Jesus Christ's Example: This is why the scriptures are so powerful. Turmoil can be all around us and it does NOT have to touch us. For example the Savior in the storm. He was walking on the water in the midst of the storm. What kept the storm from sinking him...his thoughts. He had faith. He could not control the storm (actually he can but for the sake of the example) but it did not affect him. He kept his faith and therefore was not affected by the storm. It didn't take the storm away (storms will always be around in our lives) but with faith we can not fall away from the truth, even if others lose their faith along the way.
Trust others!!!! Can I really trust another person? Someone who has hurt me? A victim or rescuer will say....."My needs will never be met if I trust others". Trust is not about control or safety. These are a victim mentality (yes I can't believe I am saying this. Me...who has begged for safety for years). This does not mean that if my husband started looking at pornography again that I would not have to distance myself from him if needed or if he is not listening I can tell him all the thoughts of my heart. This would have to be based on accurate information and not on distortions. In reality victims don't trust people. If Lucifer can get us to not trust people, then he can get us to feel like victims. When we trust people, we truly believe in a Savior who loves them as well.
Excelent Article: Trust begins with each of us In a world waning in trust, 'what can we do to help?' By Robert L. Millet Published: Saturday, Jan. 1, 2011
Jesus, as the perfect example of trust, demonstrated a willingness
to trust others, as well as lived a life of trustworthiness, as
depicted in this painting of meeting Mary after His resurrection.
Fear/Shame: a form of control. I realize I have been shaming my sons. My father was a porn addict (and still is). I was so afraid to marry a porn addict that somehow I did. My husband's thinking was that he had taken care of the problem and it would not come back after marriage (common problem). Well after finding out I was married to an addict and unable to control husband, I decided I was going to raise my son's right. I would raise them differently. They would not struggle with the same things. I would change history. Ooops.... Lies....more Lies ....and more Lies. Control is not possible. I am NOT in charge. Taking away agency was Satan's plan. This plan (designed by Satan) lead to shaming my sons but not because I didn't care. It was all subconscious and reactionary. It was out of fear. It was out of love but not the love that keeps agency intact. Kids can't be given all the answers. You should teach correct principles. Guide them to seek their own answers to how to nourish and keep their own faith strong during their own challenges.
Modesty: I was taught and heard these shaming words. "Be careful what you wear. Dress modestly so you are not pornography for the boys." This is shaming girls. They should not feel like they have to rescue the boys from their thoughts. this is not empowering. The boys need to be in charge of their own thoughts. The girls should want to dress modestly because of who they are inside. They should not want to draw attention to themselves because of what they are wearing. It should come from who they are inside and not because they are afraid of becoming pornography to boys and need to rescue them. Boys are shamed as well. They are told they can't control their thoughts. They are helpless over their thoughts.
1. write down my experiences. Especially how I can apply faith to each area of question: church history issues, modesty, shame, children, and on and on. Review these answers. These will be like my own personal doctrine and covenants. Answers and patters for questions that strengthen my faith
2. create faith and hope in my life and have charity by increasing the faith and hope in others.
3. Do things to increase my faith in the Savior. This will increase my "Adult" behavior.
4. Accept adversity
5. Forgive Self and Others. When we forgive and repent we give up control.
It is OK to question but most importantly you must nourish your FAITH and when their are no answers to all question. Faith becomes important.
My bishop said to his daughter. She was asking about polygamy. He said I am grateful for polygamy. She looks at him funny. Huh! If we had all the answers we would have a church full of uncommitted people. It would not require faith. Yes that is true. We are required to study it out in our mind and go to the Lord. That is why sometimes people wonder about the timing of some events in the church. It is just the time that answers are diligently sought. Like right now. I am seeking answers. Answers are coming and I am being taught but not how I would have thought. That is the way the Lord works. His ways are not my ways.
I will eventually work through each of my faith issues and how I have worked through them in faith and nourished my faith. I am actually excited about this growth. It was scary at first but now I feel strengthened and sustained. I feel a great amount of HOPE!!! Hard to believe from a girl who sat across from a bishop 2 years ago and said "I have NO HOPE". He could not convince me that I had any. I was a victim then but not any more. I am empowered and I feel a great hope for the future. I even feel love for my husband. I actually like him (today at least....lets not push to hard...lol)