Tuesday, September 14, 2010

In Proportion: Some Spiritual Truths About Burning Brightly

In which our Heroine Comes up with some good questions and recounts her Zest for life

This post is dedicated to those who have taken the time to write me personal emails about my trials and their own struggles of similar nature.  Thank you. 

I think it was my early college years when I really seemed to get my spiritual life together.  Rapidly afterward I gained what I will describe as a super ability: it felt like I could burn so brightly, spiritually speaking.  I would feel it as I went out to socialize with my friends: the feeling that I could smile a real smile and light up the room I was in with it.  All because I had found a new confidence once I was on solid spiritual ground.  That solid footing allowed me a kind of self-assurance I had only dreamt of in high-school.   I changed from someone who felt nervous in all social situations, to one who could begin to navigate them feeling not just happy and at ease, but as if I could actually help other people to be happier individuals.  And I think upon discovering this that Heavenly Father actually gave me the tools to do so.  My understanding of social situations and my ability to read people and their needs went way up.  I began to learn that Heavenly Father can change our abilities and talents according to need.
I wrote a short poem, a verse really, documenting this feeling:

“Quick and healthy, vibrant living,
shined sedately into my soul.
It plunged downward
A vast tunnel, my insides glowed.”

I wrote this a year or two ago.  I just felt so happy and lit up inside.  Now I can see it was a bit ironic, considering how I probably was not fully healthy at the time, and also how within a few weeks I will be going through radiation and my insides really will glow a little, for a short time anyway.  After the surgery, and during a short time when I was re-establishing my faith, I felt I’d lost my ability to burn brightly.  (Though truthfully, it may not be possible to do this when on opiates.)  I wondered if I would ever be able to burn like that again.  I’m happy to say that I feel I can.  In fact, I feel that I can do it even better or more brightly now.  It is possible that I have learned a new universal truth: that when a covenant-keeping person loses a physical health, the Father will generously compensate by offering spiritual strength, even in proportion to that which was lost.  Would a loving Heavenly Father leave us one-armed (so to speak) in a trying situation that frankly requires two arms?  No. He is not a small or a mean God.  As far as the "in proportion" idea, I have no quotes from any general authorities to support this—it is just what I feel about my particular situation.  I invite you to do the research for me if you feel so inclined. 

At one point in my struggles, I was also wondering why my honoring my covenants and following the word of wisdom had not protected my physical health more.  Of course, wisdom dictates that trials still come, but I wondered how I would ever be able to sit in a Young Women class and learn about the Word of Wisdom without scoffing a little about its simplistic a+b=c equation.  Well, along with a few other truths which I plan to share along the way, the above-mentioned idea is key to answering my spiritual dilemma. 


  1. Thanks for sharing. I admit I'm not one to write about my personal life changing trials. Maybe because I don't like to write. I am not against it. I think your words here are beautiful. Keep up the good work. You & your family have been in our thoughts & prayers!

  2. Love the insights that you share and your willingness to blog about your trial! I have to play 20 questions around here to get any information out of Jim from his conversations with Jon. Know that you are in our family's thoughts and prayers daily! We love you!

  3. "when a covenant-keeping person loses a physical health, the Father will generously compensate by offering spiritual strength, even in proportion to that which was lost." What a beautiful quote. In my recent experience I've discovered that when a covenant-keeping person loses ANYTHING substantial (health, loved one) our loving Father wants to comfort us and recompense us for our loss.