Friday, November 12, 2010

I've gained some new insights on prayer and the Atonement

This week I've been studying the Atonement as I do fairly often.  We hear it spoken of so much that I feel as though I'm missing something in my studies and, I did have something new hit me this time.  I'm probably the last on board with this,  but the comment that The Savior took on not only our sins, but our troubles and sorrows particularly hit me this time.  So He would know how it felt to be "us".  Does that really mean that every time I feel I've been inadequate, He felt that?  Every time I allow myself to be burdened with guilt over past parenting errors or not fulfilling my calling to my best capabilities or whatever, He felt that  too?  Every pity party?  Every betrayal?  Every hurt feeling?  Disappointment in myself and/or others?  I'm not sure about anyone else, but for me and how often I've allowed myself to slip into the "depths of despair", that's quite a load.  Not to mention the fact that I've added to it especially regarding the  parenting issue by feeling that no one could possibly understand the extent of my disappointment, grief and guilt over this one issue.  As one who has suffered a lifetime of serious issues with self esteem, this concept adds to the disappointment I have in myself for allowing those feelings to creep in, now knowing I added to the pain and discomfort of  my Savior.  But it helps at the same time knowing He knew and felt I was well worth the effort.  Yet another layer.  I am grateful that we so often receive reminders of The Atonement and grateful there was enough love for all of us that our Savior felt we were all well worth the effort.

And a small note on prayer.  I've also been trying to pray more specifically and intricately for the help I and my friends and loved ones need.  I can just testify it absolutely works!  SKW (a brother in our branch) testified this past Sunday that you receive inspiration more specifically when we pray more specifically and by name so I decided to try it out and put even more effort into my prayers.  I have been blessed this week beyond measure.  I have been strengthened and humbled by the power of a simple "please help _____ to be able to feel the spirit and gain a desire to do the things they should be doing".  I am once again in awe of the power within our grasp and the amazing blessings that are available to us. 

Because no post would be as fun without a picture--here is a picture of myself and a group of sisters in front of the St. Paul Temple in October.  What a wonderful day we had!!!

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