First off, Happy Thanksgiving! I know it’s a week and a half late, but after we finished hosting thanksgiving, Andy graciously passed on his stomach bug… which I’m pretty sure he got from Maverick who probably got it from Max, though his didn’t manifest till a week later, oh and Bev had it a week before Max… so it’s either the weirdest longest gestation period in a virus or we were super lucky and got three different stomach bugs in the span of three weeks. Either way, today was my first day back in church after a three-week period. Andy still hasn’t made it back because he is at work, but he did go during that three-week period while I stayed home with the sick kids because he generally gets less opportunities to go to church than I do due to his job. Anyway, here I am playing catch up. The picture above is all I managed to take while hosting Thanksgiving dinner– it was just the appetizer! We had a great time with Andy’s parents and our neighbors, the Deharts. We had all the traditional food of course. The turkey was a bit of a struggle because I decided to do it on the Traeger, and then the Traeger decided not to work… so we ended up finishing it off in the oven. Some parts weren’t as moist as I like it, but it worked out ok. This week we have been busy with normal life. I’ve gotten a fair amount done around the house… but its current state would try to tell you a different story. Keeping up after these four kids is a constant, never-ending job. I’m trying my best to teach them HOW to keep up after themselves, but that also has to come with nagging and reminding and every day is different. Harvey continues to wake up at 5 am every morning. I have been going to bed earlier and earlier because I am exhausted by the end of the day. Because he’s been waking up so early, he is not the most pleasant person to be around. So really, there isn’t much to report on, so I’m going to share some thoughts I had this week about Come Follow Me.
Zephaniah 2:3: Seek ye the Lord, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought his judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the Lord’s anger.
There is a lot to digest in that verse, but for the moment I want to focus in on seeking meekness. I truly believe that meekness is one of the attributes that is most lacking in our society today. We walk around in a society that believe truth is fluid and individual, instead of truly seeking the one source of truth: God. They believe that if they can’t wrap their logical minds around something like a commandment of God through a living prophet, then surely it must not be true. If it doesn’t apply to their perspective or agenda, then it must not be truth. I have learned through many experiences wrestling with God, that I am nowhere near to understanding all of the things God knows, but I also know He wants to teach me. And this is where meekness comes in. When I don’t understand a gospel doctrine, I go to the Lord through his living chosen prophets, scriptures from previously chosen prophets, and prayer. Sometimes I am given exact answers and I get those “Ah ha!” moments. And these are interesting moments, because when I get them, I realize that I have been receiving layers to that answer for quite some time and it isn’t until the final layer that I see the full picture. It reminds me of this artist I saw on instagram. He was throwing pain on a canvas. It was messy and all over the place, but as he started throwing the final pieces of paint on the canvas, it became clear that it was a rainy city scene. It was beautiful! The camera zoomed in on the canvas and once again it became unclear– just smatterings of paint, then zoomed out again to the masterpiece he had finished. If I were to try and explain my answers to someone else who had the same question who hadn’t done the work, as I had, they would probably only see smatterings of paint and it would only confuse them more or prove their point that it must not make sense. That is why individual work in the gospel is not just important, but essential. Just as the 10 virgins in the New Testament– we CANNOT live on borrowed light.
Sometimes my answer isn’t a masterpiece, but instead just another smattering of paint that helps clear the picture up a little and pushes me to keep asking and keep studying. And other times the Lord just gives me a different picture altogether– a picture I already know to be true, and I completely understand– My Savior, or the truthfulness of the book of Mormon. This reminds me that since I know those things to be true, the other things must be true as well and in time, when the Lord feels I’m ready I will receive the full answer to those questions. Being teachable, and willing to admit that we don’t know or understand everything, nor may not be capable of understanding the whole mind of God, is when we are given a new gift. We can begin to learn at the level we’re at and receive layer upon layer, as we are ready. Some may scoff at this and say, why can’t God be clearer? I’ll give you one more analogy. Body builders don’t start lifting hundreds of pounds off the bat– they build up to it. We too must build up to our spiritual capacity to understand and know the mind of God. This is one of the reasons we are given a lifetime to prepare to meet God. In the Doctrine and Covenants it is promised that the intelligence we gain in this life will carry with us into the next. This is why work is still done in the spirit world. We have so much time to learn and grow. The Lord is and has given us every opportunity to learn. Knowledge and truth are some of the most sacred and valued gifts we could be given.