The Stories Only I can Tell
Some stories are about personal struggles, some are about family and some are about friends, but our stories are exactly that OUR stories. I've always loved the idea of HISSTORY (no that's not a misspelled word) this phrase or spelling came to me when researching my Hicks family. One of my relatives called his writings, Hickstory. So when I began to write about my husband, now deceased, I used the term HisStory. But it could easily be UrStory, Bevstory, Herstory, Theirstory, etc.The idea is that we've been asked to write them, tell them and share them.
Cheryl A. Esplin, the 2nd Counselor in the General Primary Organization of the LDS Church recently told the women of our church to seek light to help us become what He wants us to be. She shared a story of her great grandfather's sister, Elizabeth Staheli Walker and a dream she had.
Many years after having this dream and several months before she died at nearly age 88, Elizabeth received a powerful impression. She said,
“The thought came to me as plain … as if someone had said to me, … ‘Do not bury your testimony in the ground.’”5
Sister Esplin challenged us to "Live it! Share It! Defend It!
Again I Begin to Blog Anew
Watch what God can do and acknowledge it in your life...share it with others. It doesn't have to be a formal testimony. It can be just a simple truth learned or a tender mercy you've been blessed with, or seeing God's hand in your life. It is not always the big things that touch another's heart, but the little tender things that they've wondered about or experienced. We each come to our own stories by way of living our lives in the midst of others. This morning I reread my journal for 2015. The first quarter has passed into history... MyHistory. I've learned many things in this rereading. And there's one that I'll share here.
A Recent Healing
I had become very aware that a certain percentage of people that I knew or had met, didn't like me. You've probably had that experience in life. I recently read a book, "Shakespeare Saved My Life" by Laura Bates. It was surprisingly engaging. Surprising because it is about men in prison and teaching them Shakespeare. This quote really touched me to the core because of what I had experienced when people didn't like me.
"A prison inmate who had not talked in more than two years said, "I think I had just developed so much hatred for everything and everybody that it just bled out to those around me too. Some of them guys I could look back now and see he was a good dude. He coulda been talking positive things, but I would hate him. 'aw that dude's so fake, man!' I' d have these conversations with myself: 'that dude's a phony!' So I wouldn't talk..."
Years ago when I asked a couple friends why they didn't like me at first. One said they thought I was a fake or phony person. Another said, because you are fat and I don't like fat people. Now I could see that peoples reactions to me came from their own prejudices and hatreds. The best insightful quote from Laura Bates' book comes from an enlightened prisoner.
"It is not our conscience that torments us over our image; that is our ego tormenting us. Our conscience torments us when we behave in ways that are contrary to our values. When you look in the mirror and cringe as a result of your shame, it is conscience. When you look in the mirror and cringe as a result of how people think of you, it is ego. Which of the two is more prevalent in your life?"
Are not we all prisoners? See Isaiah 61:1
A Dedicated Home Teacher
I had been feeling that my home teacher who has visited monthly for over two years, didn't really know me very well. So I purposed to ask of him several questions about myself that I thought were important. He knew none of the answers. It turned out they were not important, but instead it opened up his very personal story of who he is and why he'd requested to become my home teacher. The bottom line was that he didn't like me and wanted to work it out. Yep there it was, right in my face. I'd asked God to let me know what I did that certain people didn't like because I wanted it gone from my life. I knew that Christ's atonement covered bad habits, weaknesses and learned actions or demeanor. Now I knew.
We had a very long discussion and I now knew what to pray about. He told me about a picture of an angel protecting Christ that his wife had painted that had a quote something like this on it: "There is no earthly sorrow that Christ can not heal." How much I needed that.
This past few weeks have been spent in praying that the Holy Ghost would change years of the bad habit, removing that very problem, probably inherited from my parents when I was very young, that had been hidden from my awareness. It was revealed by a dedicated home teacher, and the resulting sorrow, tears and humiliation resulted in a heavy burden of depression for several weeks that was finally removed from my heart this morning by rereading my journal pages and praying for the gifts needed to overcome it. As Isaiah 61:3 says, indeed
Beauty for Ashes,
Oil of Joy for Mourning,
A Garment of Praise for the Spirit of Heaviness
These became evident in my life and when I read this next phrase, my heart sang and I felt His redeeming love:
"That they might be called Trees of Righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that
He might be Glorified."