Last night I had the honor of speaking to a group of women called the Relief Society. It is a group within the Church of Jesus Christ whose purpose is to help prepare women for the blessings of eternal life as they: Increase faith in Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and His Atonement; Strengthen individuals, families, and homes through ordinances and covenants; and Work in unity to help those in need. It is a group filled with charity for each other and for those in need. Last night that charity was about helping the wives of pornography addicts and concerned parents or grandparents wanting to protect their children from the harms of pornography, or to help those who have fallen prey to its addictive powers and cannot help themselves any longer. They sent me a list of questions to answer that were heartfelt. I felt the heaviness of the burden of answering those sometimes wrenching questions. I immediately turned to God in prayer to ask Him what message I should share with them the most. There was only one answer and it stood out to me like a beacon of light: “Tell them how much I love them!” I was blown away by the power of that answer and I felt that power again when I shared that love with those women and their husbands (who were invited to attend as well). Continue reading
The parable of the sowers and being “all in”
I had an interesting visit with my counselor on Monday. Interesting usually means I learn something valuable and it’s generally not an easy lesson to learn (which no doubt is why it becomes valuable). The lesson this time was about giving our hearts to God, nothing held back. That’s not an easy thing for me to do. In fact, I think I do it more “letter of the law” than “spirit of the law” and that’s kind of my problem. But, the valuable lesson I learned is that I can see the difference now. I know that I am not all in yet. It means I struggle a lot on my own instead of turning to God for help. But the good news is now that I’m aware, it means I can work towards improvement. And it all began with a question, “Do you believe in God?” Continue reading
What does it mean to have a “Broken heart and a contrite spirit?”
For most of my life I always pictured the requirement for having a broken heart and a contrite spirit was to be “broken” in spirit. In other words, to be less than I am right now. To give up my freedom. Or to lose my sense of self. Or to give up my free will. That essentially I would lose my independence and having been broken, become unable to make my own decisions or to standup for myself and be who I want to be. In some ways, those statements are close to the true meaning of a “Broken Heart” and yet in ways that are subtle and very important they also couldn’t be further from the truth. Continue reading
The most hope filled 12 step meeting I’ve attended!
This last Sunday evening at my LDS Addiciton Recovery 12 step Meeting we had a visiting leader as the normal leader was out of town. At the close of the meeting the leader will usually share a thought he has prepared for the night. What set this time apart from the others is the visiting leader was a recovered pornography addict himself. You could have heard a pin drop in the room it was so silent. We hung on every single word he uttered! It was amazing. He had us all with his first line, “Brethren, I don’t know if you know this or not, but you are the cream of the crop! You truly are.” Continue reading
Why do we try to drive the bus when we’re blind?
A friend of mine asked me this question last night in our 12 step meeting. He had recently slipped up and was frustrated with how he got there and how long it took him to get back on the right path. He said it was like riding in a Bus with God. When we are willing to let God drive the bus He knows exactly where to go and will get us there safely and on time. But we usually start to get agitated at the route or the speed and decide we’d be better off as the driver and eventually we push God out of the drivers seat and take over. But what we don’t realize is that we’re actually blind and can’t even see where we’re going. So we bump into trees and light poles along the way until finally, we realize how foolish we’re being and we humble ourselves and ask God to drive the bus again. He’s happy to do it as soon as we ask. And He is so patient with us. He doesn’t berate us or punish us (we did that to ourselves as we drove around bumping into things) — He only loves us. He always loves us. And He is a great bus driver! Continue reading