"Oh remember, remember . . . I urge you to find ways to recognize and remember God's kindness."

President Henry B. Eyring

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Birthday Grandpa Frank

Love You Forever

As I write this tears are streaming down my face. I have already tried to sleep, but my sleeping pill hasn't kicked in and I couldn't be more tired. I finally went back to the temple today. It was wonderful and soooo tiring, so I am plenty tired, but as I lay in bed thinking about all the mistakes I have made as a mother---all of the disapointments my children have suffered at my hands, I felt blue. I miss Robert today. I have missed him almost EVERY hour of every day of the last ten years, but sometimes it's worse, like tonight. So, unable to sleep, I was just dinking around on the internet traying to get as sleepy as I am tired and I typed into google: "Robert where are you?" When to my amazement a 34 page list of books came up, (I didn't search for books) and the very top book was "Love You Forever" by Robert N. Munsh. Who knew that a Robert had written it?

Kristi gave me that book for Christmas signed by all of my children while Brian was on his mission. (I later had him sign it.) The amazing thing about the book was that the day after Robert died I found myself alone in the living room, and cried out loud, "Robert do you love me?" My eyes immediately went to that little tiny blue book on the bookshelf. I have a lot of books on that shelf, and I did not know where that particular book was at the time. I certainly didn't know where anything I owned was on that horrible day, but my eyes immediately landed on it and I took it off the shelf and read it, then read all the signatures of my children including Roberts!

Can this even be a coincidence---of all the books written by men named Robert and this one came up first? Surely someone is trying to comfort me. Could it be Robert? Can he possibly love me?

Monday, October 27, 2008

Paradigm Shifts

Perhaps the greatest barrier to a paradigm shift, in some cases, is the reality of paradigm paralysis, the inability or refusal to see beyond the current models of thinking..

Ron issued a challenge to me---to shift my thinking in certain areas. I've been giving it a great deal of thought. I actually had a small revelation after praying and pondering about something for awhile. I'm so insecure about most things, mostly myself---my abilities, etc. etc. etc. Wow, how different things can seem when you take a look at the world from a different angle.

For instance Ron worked with this man years ago in scouts, who was really hard for most people to get along with, he was just stubborn and difficult. Then we found out he had a brain tumor, and that it had dramatically altered his personality. He eventually died from it, and before he did, it changed everything about the way we viewed him.

In the Book of Mormon, Jacob talks about seeing things as they really are. That is what Ron's challenge has started me searching for---truth! Anyway, I found this really great quote which I find very thought provoking!

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn't serve the world. There is nothing enlightening about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you." -Marianne Williamson, 1993

I hate to hurt people's feelings. I just hate it! Not that I don't, but I have NEVER purposely tried too, ever! I spent too many years as a child being called names and feeling rejected! Well, because of that I spend a lot of time worrying about the things I say. It's just so much easier to be invisible, because no one criticizes someone they don't see. As a gospel doctrine teacher I'm forced to be up front and believe me I am out of my invisible comfort zone. My little revelation was how people in my class really perceive me. It's a crazy thought (which I'm not ready to share) but wow---it has shifted my thinking, it really changes everything! Anyway this quote is calling to me. I hope that it might resonate with you as well.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

For The Beauties of the Earth

On Sunday I taught my gospel doctrine lesson on the Sermon on the Mount! All last week I played the Mormon Tabernacle Choir's "Consider The Lillies" CD. Ever since, I have been absolutely filled with "the beauty of the earth!" I played the music as prelude music with a note on the board asking everyone to look up the corresponding scriptures to items I had placed on the table. All items I found in my own home---salt, a picture of lillies that Ron gave me that I had printed, a rock from the yard, bread, a picture of my newest little bride, a beam of wood, a picture of my neighbor, and many many more things.

This idea came to me so clearly as I prayed for guidance in teaching. Before prayer, I had no idea how to present so much absolutely wonderful material in half an hour! We really didn't have time to discuss each item, but they got the message before class even started. The wonderful thing was how reverent it became even before starting class! The power of sacred music has always been wonderful to me. It never fails to bring the spirit! After my son Robert died it was the ONLY relief and comfort I could find. Several of my friends who knew how much I love reverent, spiritual music gave me new CD's and they were, and still are my lifeline to the Lord and to hope!

I spent most of that class time talking of the Beatitudes and of their progressive nature as outlined in the Bible Dictionary! It is worth reading, really worth reading! I have pondered so much since preparing and then giving this lesson. We all have to go up the steps---line upon line---from being poor in spirit and finally learning to love ourselves, to then mourning for our sins enough to repent, being meek enough to submit to the prophet and thus to the Lord, which leads us to actually hunger and thirst after righteousness! Those steps teach us to love the Lord! Then on to being merciful, in other words, treating others with patience, kindness, and long-suffering, while always remembering our OWN weaknesses. This leads to our becoming pure in heart---being purged of all desire to do wrong by the Holy Ghost---till we become peacemakers. A person wanting to live in unity, law abiding, pleasant agreeable and generous. (Doesn't that sound like Ron? He's pretty wonderful!) These three beatitudes teach us to love others! And, then---the hard one---learning to love our enemies, by being willing to suffer trials and NOT compromise our ideals to win approval of the world! And, I think even harder, to do this without offense to man or God (Well, some men will take offense no matter what) but even when they do, the Savior actually commands us to pray FOR our enemies.

I am so thankful that He judges us by the intent of hearts. He is so merciful when we fall short! He just wants us to get back up and try again! I think I realized after studying these principles this time around, that we can go through all of these steps in certain times and phases of our lives, and then boom---we are right back to having to learn to love ourselves all over again. Life gets more challenging. We find ourselves at the top of the ladder only to discover that it is, in fact, the bottom of the next ladder, and so on I suppose to the end of our lives and even beyond until we have become perfect!

I pray that the Lord will help all of us. I think if we just find ourselves going up ... just keep going up we can make it! But, even when we slip down, the minute we reach for Him, our Father in Heaven is there. It has always amazed me that when I turn to Him, He just overwhelms me with his love!

And, I believe that things will always get better. They always will! The world is indeed beautiful. Like this picture I took while Ron and I were in the canyon on Saturday! It was a beautiful, beautiful autumn day! The big rock in this picture reminds me of the "rock of our salvation" Jesus Christ. Ron is also a rock for me---strong, steady, safe and kind!

Monday, October 13, 2008

At Least I Can Walk

My friend and neighbor Kathy Samsel, has had a herniated disk for eight years now. She is still so limited, she can never shingle a roof, but she can now pick up grandchildren, which she says is all she really wants to do anyway. And, she can now sit without pain.

This was my reply to her email: Thank you Kathy. I think my asperations are similar to yours. Well, I still have the desire to build my own house, but I think not in this lifetime, though I would like to repaint my little front room. Can you do that?

Yet, I cannot believe how grateful I am for the ability to walk. I may not gain back the nerve damage in my calf, but I walked on the treadmill for 20 minutes today! And, I feel fine!!! If I can walk without a limp I will truly feel blessed. We take our bodies for granted so much don't we? Can you clean your house? Don Hansen still just shakes his head no, when I ask if I can vacuum or mop yet. Ron's idea of a clean floor is not mine. Frustrating. I had planned on cleaning out closets and doing some deep cleaning (like the carpets) and reorganizing my storage room this fall, but . . . oh patience. Can you do any of those things? And, why do I get so tired? Has anyone explained that to you?

Kathy, when we have our new resurrected bodies, would you like to run and romp in a beautiful field of lillies, after we swing on a very large rope and drop into a deep blue pool at the foot of a gorgeous waterfall where we will have a lovely swim, before we picnic on food that is out of this world? (Which of course will never make us fat, but give us amazing, unbounded energy) Is it a date?

Love, Bonnie