Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Write about your need to draw on the redeeming
(liberating, transforming) power of Christ.
... the word "need" is a tough one.  I think I often feel like I don't "need" anyone, or that I shouldn't "need" anyone, but of course this is stupid.

And stupid is not helpful.

But really, I think the heart of this addiction issue is the stubborn inability to acknowledge that I might need something at all.  The addiction is all I "need," or at least that is what I tell myself when I act out, when I rationalize my behavior, when I refuse to do the things I know will help.

But the truth is I do need the Savior. In fact, his healing power is the only way to overcome my addiction.  The power of Christ is liberating.
"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is aeasy, and my burden is light." Matt 11:30
 The rest the savior is talking about is the rest for our souls.   And it is sin that makes our souls tired.   We labor under its burden and we are heavy laden with guilt, shame, insecurity, doubt, and worry.  The atonement gives us rest from those feelings, repentance frees us from the oppression of sin and invigorates us with the power and sanctifying influence of the Holy Ghost. We are literally transformed by the atonement because we become receptacles of light.

So what about learning of the Savior.  he says "take my yoke upon you." This means that we are to convert and live the disciples life.  We covenant to serve and sacrifice and be obedient.  And such obedience qualifies us for the companionship and cleansing influence of the Holy Ghost.

Interesting that he commands us to learn of him, and the reason is that he is meek and lowly of heart.  Meekness and humility--a willingness to sacrifice our own wills--are requisite for conversion and discipleship.

So he is saying that he we should take his yoke upon ourselves and that in order to that succesfully we should learn of him and do likewise.

So learn of the Savior and do his will. This is the Gospel plan for freeing us from sin.

How am I more aware of Jesus Christ and his power in your life than you were in the past?

"If ye will awake and arouse your faculties even to an experiment upon my words, and exercise a particle of faith, yeah, even if ye can no more than desire to believe, let this desire work in you, even until ye believe in a manner that ye can give place for a a portion of my words." - Alma 32:27

It's funny how awareness diminishes during stress.

How the world narrows to a dark tunnel when life becomes difficult.  I find that I am least aware, that I become less astonished by the goodness of God as my life gets more difficult. Then, when I'm at the bottom and I've looked down as long as  I can, then I finally look up.  It's as if I've been holding my breath, refusing to take in air, and then finally I give in.  When I am least aware, it is is difficult for me to reach out to God, to recognize the blessings in my life, and to feel gratitude and humility.  And when I am least aware of myself and my situation, and who I  really am in relation to God, then it is easiest to succumb to temptation.

When I am least aware, I am unable to give my children the attention, love, and guidance they need.  When I am most aware, I make time for my children, I patiently guide them, and I parent them with love.

When I am acting out, when I am trolling the internet for illicit images, I am unaware of my surroundings, I am choosing to shut myself off from God, and I become fixated on one thing, and that one thing consumes all my other decisions.

Today I am more aware of Christ's power than I have been because I recognize the good in my life when I am worthy of the Holy Ghost.   That influence and peace comes from the Savior.  I appreciate the promptings of the Holy Ghost when I sit down to my computer. I appreciate that God never leaves me (even if I try to leave him). I appreciate that forgiveness I have felt, the sweet peace of prayer, the kind and patient Bishops who have let me call them or email them when I am feeling weak.  I appreciate my wife and my children for loving me inspire of me. I appreciate the job I have, the blessing of an income, a home, a car, a backyard, a child who crawls up on my lap to hug me just because I'm Dad.

Today I am grateful.