15 March 2012

out of the ashes

Photo from Sondrio Festival
I like to respond to comments in a blog post, because I never know if people come back and read my response in the comment section.  This will be quick, I promise. 

"Sometimes I wonder...can this awful thing really be some incredible spiritual journey?"

First of all, I love the words, "sometimes I wonder." Me too.  I OFTEN wonder.

Some trials come upon us because of an unfortunate accident, or circumstances beyond ours or anyone's control.  I can't possibly say that it makes those trials any easier, but it does seem like those circumstances are clearly God's will.  Especially when there is no reasonable explanation for them.

But then there are trials that seem go against God's will.  By that I mean, people use their agency to make stupid choices that are contrary to the choices God wants them to make. 

So is this really what God wants for me? 

There are a million different answers to those questions, you have to find them yourself.  In the beginning there was nothing spiritual about this for me.  It was painful, disappointing, frustrating and had everything to do with sin.  I HATED that Pete's bad choices were so hurtful. There was much anger.  (And my situation isn't even as extreme as others.)

But along the way I've learned a few things, and as I started to recognize a change in me I could see that I could learn from this. I encourage you to think of ONE thing, one little thing that you understand now that you didn't before.  Maybe its the way you treat others, maybe its the discovery of your own inward strength, maybe its something about the type of mother you want to be or maybe its an amazing new friendship that wouldn't have happened otherwise.

I know it doesn't seem like this whole ugly ordeal is worth one little nugget of truth, but start a list.  And even if it takes years you might be able to see how far you've come.

Guess that's wasn't so quick.  Anyone else want to weigh in?


  1. Yeah, man! I have one. A nugget, I mean. I was just talking to my sister about it this afternoon. I'm not as much of a pushover as I used to be. 10 years have really toughened me up! We've got to be refined somehow, right? And I've definitely been through some major fire!

    p.s. You don't have to apologize for not being quick! Besides, that was pretty quick. Besides it's your blog. You know we love it. That's why we read. ;)

  2. Wow that's a lot of "besides." I'm tired ... and rambling. Sorry. Comes with the territory. :)

  3. I finally had a chance to really sit down and read this (home from work early and kids are napping). I know I've said it before, but I don't subscribe to the idea that everything happens for a reason or because we needed to learn something, etc, etc. I believe that sometimes things just happen. And that they key to this life is not why things happen, rather what we do with things that happen. I've found myself wallowing thinking, "Why me?" but I normally snap out of it really quickly and remember that things happen to everyone and wallowing in the "why" doesn't actually get me anywhere (I know from personal experience). Sometimes we learn and grow and these things that happen often do end up being spiritual journeys. I have learned so much through this. I have learned that lots of people out there are going through things we don't know about--and this has taught me to be more patient, more understanding, more loving, and to give people the benefit of the doubt. It has brought me closer to my Heavenly Father and made me commit to staying that close to Him even in good times (when we tend to think we don't need help). It has forced me to look inward and work on correcting my imperfections instead of only pointing out those of my husband. I have made what I believe to be strong relationships with the other ladies who blog--especially you, Jane! (I like to think that we'll all have some fun girls weekend some day.) My self confidence is also stronger than it ever has been before. I've always had a lot of confidence, but the more I go through this struggle, the more I have been forced to truly reflect on myself and know that I am strong, I am powerful, I am resilient, I am fun, I am attractive, I am smart, I am a resource to others, and Heavenly Father knows me and loves me as I am. My husbands mistakes were not a result of me. So, yes, this has been a spiritual journey.

    (Speaking of rambling...)

  4. Thanks for hearing me. For taking time to respond and showing me your journeys. It's all so blurry right now. Having been where I am now, thanks for pointing me down a safe path. I am the driver of my journey.

  5. I strongly believe that while God does not need such horrible disgusting experiences to help us learn and grow, he certainly can use those experiences and make them be for our good.

    That is the infinite power of the atonement, he can take something horrifying and terrible and make it a beautiful spiritual journey. But only if (and when) we want that.

  6. Here I am re-reading old posts in the middle of the night to get through a tough spot. I'm so grateful these conversations are here and ready to lift a soul anytime, night or day. Thank you Jane and commenter.