I just finished watching the Women's General meeting, and I feel incredible.
As it began airing, I felt a hesitancy if the words of others' would be capable of reaching the very specific divots inside of me from my divorce four years ago. So I folded my arms and said a prayer that I would find resonance with the specific grievances that I hold.
It's just that the release of pain is so ongoing. Pain that you've worked and scrubbed and journaled answers over to no end - it remains present in subtle ways. And after awhile it seems obsolete and just downright frustrating that you have to keep requesting a release. How many times should one have to pull out the same splinter before it will just disintegrate?
But I have to remind myself of the process. "Handing things over to God" isn't like a dump truck that we can just toss in our hurts and say goodbye forever. But rather, a partnership agreement where God says, "I'm in this with you to offer light as you go. Your darkness doesn't become mine, but my light does become yours." He doesn't promise permanent release, but rather, consistent added vitality.
And when I am in the dim corridors of my pain, thinking in a small fashion, feeling through my callouses, I do have many outlets that help me feel restored. To where I'm no longer in a dim setting, but in front of a bright, sunny window. However, the light of Heavenly Father has always been the resource that pulls me the furthest out of the dimness. Seemingly to a mountain top where the spirit within me feels awakened in a vast and purifying sense. With so much light as though I'm looking directly at the sun.
So God's promise isn't to take our cracks away, but infuse them with joy. And would I experience such an intense washing of joy in my spirit if I hadn't been cracked by something in the first place? As Sister Reeves said tonight, when we finally make it to the other side and feel God's full light and love for us, we'll say, "was that all that was required of me?"
So though the outcome of overcoming pain simply cannot be absolute release - thus all questions cannot be answered, all memory cannot fade - but we are forever allowed to request more light. Light that seeps into even the most obscure of our cracks and enriches our spirits with the most powerful joy. And that is how I feel tonight. I have a huge amount of happiness and joy in my soul. I love being in the fold's of God's spirit and feeling that total trance of light.
As Carol McConkie said: "she shined with pure light."
"God, who foresaw your tribulation, has specially armed you to go through it, not without pain but without stain."
Upward and onward,
"When you offer peace instead of division, when you offer faith instead of fear, when you offer someone a place at your table instead of keeping them out because they’re different or messy or wrong somehow, you represent the heart of Christ."
Shauna Niequist, Bread & Wine: A Love Letter to Life Around the Table with Recipe