Friday, February 24, 2012

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Post 101

Sometimes, on very long days, what you need is a little spiritual reassurance.

The Definition of Shame

So what does shame have to do with being widowed?

Isaiah 54:4

4 Fear not; for thou shalt not be ashamed: neither be thou confounded; for thou shalt not be put to shame: for thou shalt forget the shame of thy youth, and shalt not remember the reproach of thy widowhood any more.

I had always wondered why someone would reproach a widowed person, then I became widowed and understood.

Defining Shame from Brené Brown on Vimeo.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The Power of Vulnerability

This evening we had a Relief Society meeting with the speaker being Sister Carol Ramsay-Scott, LCSW, of Chandler Gilbert Counseling.

Among the many insights she gave were a list of books, one of them being The Gifts of Imperfection by Brene Brown.

She mentioned Brene's Ted Talk, so I looked it up.  I love it.  So many things I need to work on, having listened to this talk.  There is some mild language in it.

Monday, February 20, 2012

A time To Prepare

I need to work on my time management skills.  Along with having a cluttered, disorganized home I also feel like I have a cluttered, disorganized life.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Congratulations, Jenny!

Congratulations to Jenny Oaks Baker on her Grammy nomination!  That's a huge achievement!

I love to listen to Jenny perform music, but I've enjoyed watching this video of her testimony even more.

The Latest

I'm sorry I've missed the last few days of posting.

A lot of things have developed just over the last week, namely an accidental water leak from my dishwasher to the condo below mine.  My week has been stressful and required a visit to an urgent care for repeated anxiety attacks.  I've been put on medication for that.  Because I'm the Worst Case Scenario Girl like Laurel Christensen.

So, between work and dealing with issues with my home, dealing with issues with my financial situation, it's been pretty much crazy.

A few good things about this past week:

- I'm understanding Job a lot more.
- I was still able to find, each day this past week, at least one way to give a random act of kindness to someone, whether it was a teacher, a student, my Mother and yesterday it was even for myself.
- People (including the neighbors downstairs) were a lot nicer about this than I was expecting.
- I still have a long way to go before the Lord is finished refining me into what he wants me to be.

Hopefully people will continue to be patient with me while I get things worked out.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentines Day

As your sweetheart isn't here to personally wish you a Happy Valentines Day, I hope this will suffice.

Monday, February 13, 2012

How To Become Happier Part 7

This past week has been a crazy one, and it culminated into a 12 hour panic attack marathon that had me physically sick for 10 hours last night/this morning.

Part 7 is Don't Endure To The End

This came from a quote from President Hinckley (I'm paraphrasing here) - "Life is to be enjoyed, not just endured."

We should try to savor the everyday delights - it could be nature, pets, good friends, good food, the abilities you have, the gifts you have been given.  Find the beauty in something you take for granted everyday.

After the night I had last night, I decided to spend some time, while eating dinner, to watch some talks from the last General Conference.  I could feel peace and savor the lessons.

Try it!

Brainstorm five tiny pleasures you could savor this week.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Fear Not

Part 6 of How To Become Happier is on celebrating failure, as a step towards improvement.  What kind of service could you offer to someone else who is feeling this failure and could use a boost?

Friday, February 10, 2012

Grateful Service

In part 4 of How To Become Happier we look at not trying to become happy, become grateful.

 Gratitude and Service can become a continuous circle.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Friendly Service

In part 3 of How To Become Happier we looked at not trying to find friends, but instead to develop the skills of friendship.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Service "Exercise"

In part 2 of How To Become Happier, how could you combine exercise with serving others?

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Unselfish Service

Looking back to Part 1 of How To Become Happier, what of your strengths do you possess could you use to serve others today?

Monday, February 6, 2012

Letting Go: The Power of Closing Doors

Sometimes in order for us to serve others, particularly as we go through the stages of grieving, we need to start by letting go of doors that have closed with the death of our spouses.

How To Become Happier Part 6

Don't Try To Get Help With Your Problems

If you have clinical depression, this doesn't apply, as you may need to get help to get to the point where you are able to get to "neutral".

This is about becoming happy.  Getting counseling will not bring happiness.

Instead, help someone else - science found it the single most reliable way to better our mood.

Try It!

Find one wholly unexpected kindness you can perform for someone else and just do it.

Keep track of daily who you have helped today.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

I Testify

Today is Fast Sunday, so in the Sacrament Meetings for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, it means the majority of the meeting is spent with people coming up to bear testimony of Christ, His Church and other spiritual matters.

 Our Bishopric has been counseling us in Sacrament Meeting that this is not a time to give out travelogues or to give a long back-story to explain our testimony. Just simply testify. With that in mind, I tried to limit my testimony this morning. I only spoke in phrases that began with "I testify...".  It was difficult, and will require me to do some practice, as I tend to be more of a storyteller than a testifier.

How about you?  Could you bear your testimony if you could only begin each phrase with "I testify..."?

I testify that Jesus is the Son of God.

I testify that He atoned for our sins.  How grateful I am for that, and the opportunity it gives me to repent and be forgiven.

I testify that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is His Church.  It is his Gospel.  It is the Gospel of love and the great Plan of eternal Happiness.

I testify that as we draw unto Christ, He and the Holy Ghost will draw closer to us.  We must, however, open the first door.

I testify that The Book of Mormon is Holy Scripture, the Word of God translated for our day, just as The Holy Bible is also Holy Scripture, translated to bring men unto Christ.

I testify that God is a God of families, and that families can be together forever through Him.  How grateful I am for Temples and the Ordinances within them that makes this possible.

This testimony is but a small part of my beliefs and spiritual knowledge.

I testify these things in the Name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Sisters: Deep Beauty

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Increase In Learning Chapter 1

I must confess something right now:  I'm somewhat exhausted as I write this.  It's been a long week and I can tell I'm coming down with another respiratory infection again.  I just got rid of the last one less than a month ago.

I've read Chapter 1 of Increase In Learning and am really loving it.  There is so much there that is, for me, "connecting the dots" in a spiritual sense.

A few thoughts:

Chapter 1 is about our individual responsibility to learn - not just our role, but our role in seeking and receiving knowledge from the Holy Ghost, and then acting upon that knowledge.

A lot of this chapter reminded me of this scripture, found in Doctrine & Covenants 9: 7-8:

"7 Behold, you have not understood; you have supposed that I would give it unto you, when you took no thought save it was to ask me.
 But, behold, I say unto you, that you must study it out in your mind; then you must ask me if it be right, and if it is right I will cause that your bosom shall burn within you; therefore, you shall feel that it is right."
If we expect help by way of knowledge, warnings and other types of personal revelation from the Lord, we need to be doing our part as well.  She should not walk up to the Lord and tell Him, "okay, I'm here.  Enlighten me."
Yet, how many of us pray like this?  I've been guilty of this as well, which is why so much of this has been changing the content and language of my prayers.  It's made a huge difference in how my day goes and what my choices are.
Along with this comes the strengthening of my armor.
Last Sunday, the Primary children created a "class shield" of what kinds of things they use to make good choices in their lives.  It made me wonder, what symbols would be on my shield?
Learning also means knowing what the Lord wants you to be asking.  It reminded me of one of the TOFW talks by Laurel Christensen where she talks about her "aha" moment when she learns about asking for bread vs. asking for a stone.  It comes from Matthew 7:9:
 "Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?"

She talked about learning to ask for the appropriate things, at the appropriate time when she received an answer telling her "Heavenly Father wants to give you bread, when you ask for bread."

The related readings also prompted some learning, but also some questions as well.

One of the biggest questions was for me:  if I had a Liahona as did Nephi, what would it say?

The Liahona was the outward symbol of what we should be inwardly doing - seeking to know the will of our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, through the Holy Spirit.

In order to be able to fully answer that, you need to have fully received the Holy Ghost, and receive the counsel He gives.

With that in mind:  what would your Liahona say to you today?

Friday, February 3, 2012

Breaking The Mold

If you've seen my profile on,  you understand what this post is about.

Over this past summer, I was wondering why my life is so different than what I've always believed to be the "norm".  That norm would be having a living husband, children, home, mini-van and the ability to be a stay at home mother.  When I married Decker, I thought I would have that life.  It didn't turn out that way.

Decker passed away after two years of marriage, and we were unable to have children.  This left a lot of unanswered desires.

I wondered why, though, my life turned out so differently?

The answer was in Ephesians 6.

This chapter of scripture talks about putting on the whole armor of God.

What I received, through personal revelation, is that we fail to realize our armor is not supposed to be identical to that of others.  Our relationship with the Lord should be as unique as we are, and our lives will also become unique.

My life was never meant to be the "norm".  Was yours?  Perhaps it's time to embrace your uniqueness.

By Doc Christensen

Welcome To The Widowed Connection

Welcome to the Widowed Connection, where widowed members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints can read and share in this blog.