Monday, April 25, 2011

Thank You Mormon and Your LDS

Today the Mormon Women website posted an article that I submitted to them about my experience in dealing with depression. I have come to gain a great respect for the people that oversee their website. I have specifically worked with Michelle Linford, who is one of their editors. She has taught me a great deal about the influence that writing can have, not only on the readers, but on the author as well. She is a very talented, kind, and insightful lady.

I want to thank her for her willingness to work with me and tutor me as I have searched for opportunities to share with others what I have learned and experienced as I have dealt with the struggles of depression in my life. Thank you Michelle!

I also want to thank those who oversee the website, Your LDS They have featured in their weekly newsletter one of my recent posts, "We Don't Have to Do it Alone."

I so appreciate the ability I have been given through others to share my journey in dealing with depression. My purpose in creating this blog was to have a means by which I could reach out to those who are struggling with depression, in hopes to be able to bring a glimmer of hope and light as they strive to overcome this adversity.

It is through the blessing of websites such as Mormon, Your LDS, and Mormon, who have featured some of my posts, that I have had the capability to reach even more people. Thank you for providing for me this opportunity to share my journey!

Here's a link to Mormon and Your LDS website:

Mormon Women

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

We Don't Have To Do It Alone

As we approach Easter, my thoughts have been turned to the significance of the Easter Holiday. I have taken time to reflect upon the Savior and the vital importance of His life, His sacrifice, His crucifixion, and His resurrection. I feel so very blessed to have the understanding and the knowledge that I have of the Savior.

As I have fought my battle with depression, I have come to understand that it is in these moments of our extremities that we can come to know as never before, our strength and our capacity to endure, through and because of the very real and very personal Atonement of our Savior Jesus Christ.

Because our Savior paved the way for each one of us, we can have the reassurance that we don't have to travel along life's journey alone. There may be times when we may question and wonder why we have to bear such difficult adversity and burdens. We may wonder when and if our healing will come. It is in these times of our extremities that we will need the reassurance, strength, and understanding, that can only be found because of the eternal power of the Atonement and the healing blessings that accompany it. We can come to understand that healing through the Atonement does not always mean that our burden will be removed. The Atonement is a means for us to become better, more pure, and more Christ - like. In some instances it may be necessary for us to endure our afflictions for a time in order for us to become better acquainted with God.

“Healing blessings come in many ways, each suited to our individual needs, as known to Him who loves us best. Sometimes a "healing" cures our illness or lifts our burden. But sometimes we are "healed" by being given strength or understanding or patience to bear the burdens placed upon us..... Brothers and sisters, the healing power of His Atonement is for you, for us, for all. The healing power of the Lord Jesus Christ—whether it removes our burdens or strengthens us to endure and live with them.... is available for every affliction in mortality." (Dallin H. Oaks, “He Heals the Heavy Laden,” Ensign, Nov 2006, 6–9)

Elder Holland of the quorum of the twelve apostles so elegantly teaches us of the sacredness of the EAster season. He said:

"Brothers and sisters, one of the great consolations of this Easter season is that because Jesus walked such a long, lonely path utterly alone, we do not have to do so. His solitary journey brought great company for our little version of that path—the merciful care of our Father in Heaven, the unfailing companionship of this Beloved Son, the consummate gift of the Holy Ghost, angels in heaven, family members on both sides of the veil, prophets and apostles, teachers, leaders, friends. All of these and more have been given as companions for our mortal journey because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the Restoration of His gospel. Trumpeted from the summit of Calvary is the truth that we will never be left alone nor unaided, even if sometimes we may feel that we are. Truly the Redeemer of us all said: 'I will not leave you comfortless: [My Father and] I will come to you [and abide with you].”20

"As we approach this Holy week.... may we declare ourselves to be more fully disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ, not in word only and not only in the flush of comfortable times but in deed and in courage and in faith, including when the path is lonely and when our cross is difficult to bear. This Easter week and always, may we stand by Jesus Christ 'at all times and in all things, and in all places that [we] may be in, even until death, for surely that is how He stood by us when it was unto death and when He had to stand entirely and utterly alone." (Jeffrey R. Holland, “None Were with Him,” Ensign, May 2009, 86–88)

How grateful I am for a loving Savior. I add my testimony to that of Elder Holland's and humbly and reverently express gratitude for the celebration of this Holiday in which we commemorate the sacred gift of our Savior which has given to me the knowledge and understanding that I don't have to travel my journey alone.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Divine Guidance

I love General Conference that comes around every six months, when the people of the LDS (Mormon) faith have the opportunity to hear inspired words from the prophets, apostles, and leaders of the church.  One theme that was really emphasized throughout the conference was that of caring for others.  This may be done through the Welfare program organized under the direction of the church leaders, or it may be done in a very personal way in which we have the sacred opportunity to serve as instruments in God's hands to become an answer to the very prayers that are being offered by those around us.

A couple of times throughout the conference we were reminded by Church leaders, that "God does hear our prayers, but it is often through another person that He meets our needs."

I have always had a deep gratitude for the knowledge that I have of understanding that the Lord can directly provide answers to our individual prayers, through other people just like myself.  In this setting, under these circumstances, these charitable individuals are no longer just mortal beings, instead they are for a time, mortal angels, carrying out the work of the Lord in a mortal state under divinely guided direction.

I have seen so many times in my own personal life and in the lives of those around me, people who have been blessed because of the willingness of others to reach out in the spirit of love and sacrifice to those around them.  These individuals are exemplifying the Christ-like attribute of charity. In doctrine and covenants 42:38 it says, "for inasmuch as ye do it unto one of the least of these, ye do it unto me."  If we understand that scripture, then we should also understand the importance of helping, loving, and serving those around us.

It is through my battle with depression that I have truly gained a deep gratitude for those who willingly listened to and obeyed those heavenly promptings received on my behalf.  I have come to recognize as never before, that my prayers are heard and they are answered, but many times those answers come through the divine guidance received by my family, friends, and neighbors.

"To the world we may be only one person, but to one person, we may be the world."  I love that!  How true that is!  I can attest to this because through my dark days of depression there have been individuals who literally have meant the world to me, because they made all the difference in the world, during times when I so desperately needed the reassurance that I was worth something.

I would like to reiterate a challenge given by Church leaders to carry out a day, or at least a deed of service. Think of how many lives could be touched, how many hearts mended, and how many prayers could be answered if we all made serving, caring, and loving a constant part of our daily actions.

I would also encourage you to take a few minutes to view this Mormon Message, "Cheering Each Other On."   My heart was touched as I saw the Christ-like love that these high school cheerleaders showed to their classmate.  To this sweet girl struggling with the paralyzing affects of muscular dystrophy, these cheerleaders made a world of difference.  These cheerleaders literally became mortal angels, carrying out a divinely guided and very personal mission on behalf of another who also in her own angelic way, has blessed the lives of countless others.

Here's the link: