Sunday, March 31, 2013

He knows.

I wanted to share an amazing quote with you this Easter Sunday.  I know it is quite long but so worth the read.  He really does know how we feel.

 We know that Jesus experienced the totality of mortal existence as part of his great Atonement in Gethsemane. It's our faith that he experienced everything - absolutely everything. Sometimes we don't think through the implications of that belief. We talk in great generalities about the sins of all humankind, about the suffering of the entire human family that Jesus took upon himself.

But we don't experience pain in generalities. We experience it individually.

That means he knows what it felt like when your mother died of cancer - how it was for your mother, how it still is for you. He knows what it felt like to lose the student body election. He knows that moment when the brakes locked and the car started to skid. He experienced the slave ship sailing from Ghana toward Virginia. He experienced the gas chambers at Dachau. He experienced Napalm in Vietnam. He knows about drug addiction and alcoholism.

Let me go further. There is nothing you have experienced as a woman that he does not also know and recognize.

On a profound level, he understands the hunger to hold your baby that sustains you through pregnancy. He understands both the physical pain of giving birth and the immense joy. He knows about PMS and cramps and menopause. He understands about rape and infertility and abortion. His last recorded words to his disciples were, "And, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world." (Matthew 28:20) He understands your mother-pain when your five-year-old leaves for kindergarten, when a bully picks on your fifth-grader, when your daughter calls to say that the new baby has Down syndrome. He knows your mother-rage when a trusted babysitter sexually abuses your two-year-old, when someone gives your thirteen-year-old drugs, when someone seduces your seventeen-year-old. He knows the pain you live with when you come home to a quiet apartment where the only children are visitors, when you hear that your former husband and his new wife were sealed in the temple last week, when your fiftieth wedding anniversary rolls around and your husband has been dead for two years.

He knows all that. He's been there. He's been lower than all that.

He's not waiting for us to be perfect. Perfect people don't need a Savior. He came to save his people in their imperfections. He is the Lord of the living, and the living make mistakes. He's not embarrassed by us, angry at us, or shocked. He wants us in our brokenness, in our unhappiness, in our guilt and our grief.

You know that people who live above a certain latitude and experience very long winter nights can become depressed and even suicidal, because something in our bodies requires whole spectrum light for a certain number of hours a day. Our spiritual requirement for light is just as desperate and as deep as our physical need for light. Jesus is the light of the world. We know that this world is a dark place sometimes, but we need not walk in darkness. The people who sit in darkness have seen a great light, and the people who walk in darkness can have a bright companion. We need him, and He is ready to come to us, if we'll open the door and let him.”
--Cheiko Okazaki from her book Lighten Up

The Hunt


Spring Has Sprung

Enjoying some lovely spring weather in these parts.  Riding bikes and quads.  Swinging, running, and laying around.  Planning, planting, weeding, and watering.  Soaking in the sun. 

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Simple Mornings

I get to hang out with these two boys, everyday, and I love it.  They are constantly changing, teaching me, challenging me, and keeping me busy.  We have lots of fun together.  Lately we have been pretty relaxed and not too scheduled when it comes to our mornings together.  I try to get my chores done so I can relax more in the afternoon and evenings and the boys just follow me around and play. 

I have been thinking more about adding more of a schedule to our mornings.  Some simple and easy activities for the boys.  I'm thinking of having some items and activities that we work our way through in the mornings, so the boys can get use to a simple schedule and they can feel content and happy. 

Toys and the craft closet are in need of some real purging and organization.  In doing this I hope to keep these slow, thoughtful mornings in mind.  I know that rotating toys and activities will be part of this and I want to organize accordingly.  I also am planning to work on keeping activities super simple.  I have learned that you don't need every toy or workbook or art supply.  Simple and a small amount of variety can make all the difference.  Children don't need much to be creative and imaginative.