One of the ideas I had when I looked at LDS.org today was to create a fun 5 minute video for Becky. In the video I could do the following:
- Have fun pictures of each of the kids
- Have fun music
- Interview the kids about what they love about Mom
- What’s one of your most favorite memories of Mom?
- What do you love about Mom?
- What’s one of the ways you want to be like Mom?
- How has Mom’s testimony of Jesus Christ helped you gain a testimony of Jesus Christ?
- What do you want Mom to know this Mother’s Day?
- Share my love for her, what I love about her, etc.
- A mani/pedi party with the 3 girls
- A dozen roses or flowers from Costco
- A dinner at a sushi restaurant (research this on Yelp)
- Schedule the massage with the lady I already bought the gift certificate from
I love Becky so much.
I’m so grateful for who she is, for the love I feel from her.
I’m thankful that she’s trying hard to forgive me.
I was blind but now I see…
We had a good lesson in Church today about the parable, or story, of the blind man that Christ healed with clay. It was really interesting, especially to think about the question the teacher presented,
How does this blind man apply to us today?
I think the easy answer for me is that I’ve been blind for many parts of my life. I’ve been bound in flaxen chords and have lost touch with true discipleship as I’ve practice lust and the things that come with it (pornography, masturbation, etc.).
How much more blind could I be?
And worse than that – many times I was so blind that I didn’t even recognize it or realize who I was hurting besides myself. I went about thinking that “all was well” and that “I was fine.”
The good part of this experience is that “I was blind but now I see.” Today I feel I’m not walking in the dark, at least not as much. Today I’m living in recovery and trying to submit my will to God. Today I’m “putting off the natural man” as I try to align my life with God’s will for me.
Today I’m truly happy.
I’m not perfect by any means. I still get easily frustrated with the kids, I still have thoughts that aren’t in accordance with what I know God would want me to think, but as I submit my life to Him, I feel closer to Him and more desires to want to do what’s right.
I read a few talks today/tonight that, interestingly, talked in part about “blindness” and the “light of Christ.”
This is how President Uchtdorf described it:
For though we are all born blind, through the Light of Christ we can see past darkness and illusion and understand things as they really are.
What does it mean when he says, “…though we are all born blind?”
Makes me think of the scripture I quoted earlier in Mosiah 3:19:
For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit , and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord…
As a natural man, we are all lost and far from the presence of God.
In Genesis 8:21 it says this about the “natural man:”
2 Corinthians 2:12-14 shares this insight:
Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.
I learn the things of God as I seek to have the Spirit.
My “carnal Nate” hasn’t received the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
Mosiah 16:3 talks about the power of Satan over men as well:
For they are carnal and devilish, and the devil has power over them; yea, even that old serpent that did beguile our first parents, which was the cause of their fall; which was the cause of all mankind becoming carnal, sensual, devilish, knowing evil from good, subjecting themselves to the devil.
And I really like this one in Alma 41:11:
And now, my son, all men that are in a state of nature, or I would say, in a carnal state, are in the gall of bitterness and in the bonds of iniquity; they are without God in the world, and they have gone contrary to the nature of God; therefore, they are in a state contrary to the nature of happiness.
This is a really direct scripture too about blindness and being an enemy to God:
Another question that comes to mind: Does blindness necessarily relate to being a natural man? Or does blindness have more to do with something else?
When I think of spiritual blindness, things like pride, arrogance, sin, deceit, secrets, addiction and guilt come to mind. To me, these are all forms of the natural man as talked about in Mosiah 16:3: “…which was the cause of all mankind becoming carnal, sensual, devilish, knowing evil from good, subjecting themselves to the devil.”
This is another cross-reference I found about the natural man:
Neither can any natural man abide the presence of God, neither after the carnal mind.
The “carnal Nate” can’t abide the presence of God, or, in other words, if I’m going to be that person I won’t feel comfortable at all in His presence, because ultimately, I won’t even know Him.
This scripture in Psalms 14:3 relates back to what President Uchtdorf stated about how we are all born blind:
As I read on in Mosiah 16:4-5 I found this answer too:
Thus all mankind were lost; and behold, they would have been endlessly lost were it not that God redeemed his people from their lost and fallen state.
But remember that he that persists in his own carnal nature, and goes on in the ways of sin and rebellion against God, remaineth in his fallen state and the devil hath all power over him. Therefore he is as though there was no redemption made, being an enemy to God; and also is the devil an enemy to God.
God has redeemed me from my lost and fallen state.
But I have to remember that if I persist in my “carnal Nate” nature, and if I let him back into my life and take place in my soul, and if I go on in my ways of lust and pornography and masturbation and adultery – willfully rebelling against God, I will remain in my fallen, and blinded, and natural state, and Satan will have all power over me (addiction); and I will become more and more like Satan: angry, prideful, hostile, unteachable, easy to anger, avoiding the truth, lost and fallen (just like I’ve been when I’m in my addiction).
And what’s worse than this is that it will be as if there was no redemption made for me because I will have willfully become an enemy to God, just like Satan.
I’m grateful for this reminder today.
I’m grateful for the lesson today in Sunday School.
I’m grateful that, today, I don’t feel blinded by the flaxen chords of Satan. Today I feel illuminated by the light of Christ; for He is the way, the truth, and the light; and no man cometh unto the Father, but by Him.
This is true!