So, this has been an interesting week. A good week. But I’ve had some very strong impressions regarding my blog and what I need to share with you.
I have dozens of *sprinkles* written that I can use on my blog–after all, I’ve been working toward this new website for over a year! When it came time to pick Sprinkle #1 for last Monday, I literally scanned down my list and in a very random way, picked one. After I posted the sprinkle about looking up Elizabeth Mitchell singing Peace Like a River, I headed out for a walk and had this thought: “I should drive down to the river and walk along the river.” I loved that thought, so I did. I walked for more than an hour along the Spokane river. After a busy week of returning from Japan and launching a website it was a much needed respite.
I even snapped several pics with my iPhone (which, can I just say, I LOVE that I can take pictures with my phone?)
Anyway, as I walked along the river with the words of the song running through my mind, I thought about peace and where it comes from. I thought about how one finds peace in troubling times — especially peace that flows like a river.
I’m going to assume that if you’ve read my blog for very long, you know that I am drawn to spiritual things. I start each day with prayer and scripture reading and I contemplate things of a spiritual nature at least as often as I contemplate scrapbooking (wink.) While I am not afraid to write about things of a spiritual nature, I generally shy away from doing so on a public blog, primarily because these things are such an intimate part of me — who I am and how I think and why I choose to do the things I do. But … and here comes my “Aha” moment, if I claim authenticity and avoid blogging about something as important to me as spirituality, then I am in fact not being authentic with myself or my readers. Don’t get me wrong … I’m NOT all of a sudden going to start promoting, proselyting or defending my faith — this is not my style. I have decided however to be more open about what I believe and be more willing to share things that I read or experience that I find inspiring or insightful or just plain helpful in living life and more specifically living life peacefully.
Have you ever gone on a walk or taken a shower or been somewhere else when thoughts and feelings flow freely and powerfully — only to return and think, “I am NOT going to do that.” Well, this is exactly what happened to me. I came home, got busy and decided to doubt the very poignant feelings I had had on my walk. I brushed them aside, with the thought, I’ll blog more about spiritual things if I get some kind of sign (careful girlfriend.) Fast forward to last Wednesday morning. I’m reading along in the Book of Mormon where the prophet Nephi is dealing with his very disobedient and obstinate brothers (Laman and Lemuel) and is trying to encourage them to remember all that the Lord has done for the children of Israel (way back to Moses and the exodus from Egypt and everything) and he writes …
And I did read many things unto them which were written in the books of Moses; but that I might more fully persuade them to believe in the Lord their Redeemer I did read unto them that which was written by the prophet Isaiah; for I did liken all scriptures unto us, that it might be for our profit and learning. (1 Nephi 19:23)
Then Nephi quotes from chapter 48 of Isaiah (as in Isaiah in the Old Testament) …
O that thou hadst hearkened to my commandments—then had thy peace been as a river, and thy righteousness as the waves of the sea. (1 Nephi 20:18 and Isaiah 48:18)
I was like WHOA! did I just read “peace as a river”? No way. Obviously the folk song was inspired by the Bible. And I’m taking this as a sign and not messing with it, so … this leaves me only one option. I am going to be more authentic with the source of my peace and happiness, here on my blog. Right now, I take Sundays off. What I think I’d like to do is try and share a scripture or a quote or a video clip or something of a spiritual nature on Sundays. If you don’t want to read spiritual things on what is otherwise a scrapbooking/busy mom blog, then you can skip Sundays.
So, back to my interesting week. As soon as I made my decision to plan some Sunday posts, I received an email that to me was a tender mercy letting me know that my quest for more authenticity is a good thing. Here’s the email, name withheld.
I feel emotionally weary from life right now. I am not satisfied with who I am as a mother or as a woman. Last night and this morning have been especially hard. I didn’t want to hear the song I didn’t want to download it. But I felt compelled. Like I had to. As it played, tears welled in my eyes. I have not felt peace in my soul for a long time. I so want that. I put it on repeat and soon my family (3 of my 4 kids and my husband) were singing along. I felt my stress lighten and hope feels possible. Thank you so much for what you do. There are 2 other women in my life who I really admire the spirit of. They keep a smile through any struggle. The face life as a blessing, no matter what. They feel pain I know, but they have peace and are always a joy to be around. You must be like them, I just sense that you are! You have inspired me to paint my home in happy colors and to create a positive, happy place, and to make the small things in life special for my family.
I asked for permission to share this with you and the reason is because life is extremely challenging and we ALL have times when we are emotionally weary and dissatisfied with ourselves. In spite of all that, life is good and there is peace to be had. Simply put, true peace comes from knowing God and knowing that he is our loving, kind and accessible father in heaven. When you accept that you are a child of God (with all the wonderful things that implies) then you can through prayer and scripture reading come to know him and his son, Jesus Christ. As your faith grows, your ability to draw strength from this faith grows. You begin to see yourself as you really are — a person of infinite worth with unlimited potential — an imperfect person, but a person that can change and grow. A person that can be at peace with her present self and still anxious to discover a better version of that self.
This is the source of my peace (like a river.)