August 7, 2011

Taking Spiritual Time For Myself

Just a few short weeks ago I was happily packing up after church and collecting the kids. I found my husband in the hallway and was ready at that point to head out the door. Only to discover the Bishop wanted to talk to us. Not a flicker of nervousness flashed through me. Not one. I had only been teaching my primary class for 3 short months. Of course, I should have notice the sly grin on my husbands face, I should have been paying more attention to the winds of change. But honestly, when I listened to our Bishop ask if I would be a counselor in Relief Society I was floored. I was not expecting this at such a busy time in our lives. But here I am participating more fully in this wonderful organization once again. Each month a member of the presidency gives a message to the sisters. This month was my turn. I wanted to share what I wrote with all of you.

Recently I seem to have read, heard, and even conversed often about the topic of how to take time for yourself as a busy Mom. One blog I read even compared the subject to flying. When you fly with children the flight attendants direct you to put on your own oxygen masks before attending  your child. Her analogy was simple: if you are not taken care of, then how can you care for others? While the message was directed at young moms, I believe it to be a very important message for each of us as members of the church.

Every one of us is surrounded by our own whirlwinds of life. We have school to get ready for, children and grandchildren to worry about, careers to work at, and finances and homes to maintain. I am in constant awe as I watch the women around me maneuver their way through their whirlwinds. And sometimes I wonder how they do it. Recently my husband, children and I were in Sacramento where he spent almost the entire time there arranging for the care of his elderly grandmother. He was overwhelmed with responsibility and I was exhausted from dealing with the kids. We stopped to get lunch and the two boys were in the back seat asleep so my awesome husband ran in to grab sandwiches while I stayed with them. My mind was racing and I could not calm down. I remember carefully bowing my head and just saying "Heavenly Father, how can I do it all?" I felt as if to say "Master, the tempest is raging..." I raised my head and stared across the street, only then to notice an LDS chapel that I had not previously seen. His answer was so obvious to me. "Peace. Be still." The only thing holding me together at that moment was the knowledge and testimony I have of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Rock of Our Redeemer

Our huge trials might seem insignificant when compared to those of others, but they are real and they are our own personal challenges. I want to tell you that while it is important to take care of your health and well being in order to be able to care for others, it is even more important to take care of your spiritual well being in order to provide yourself with the peace and happiness you need to make it through your storms. Helaman 5:12, in the Book of Mormon, is one of my favorite scriptures:

"And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall."

Most of us would never forget to brush our teeth, rarely ever forget antiperspirant, and manage to feed ourselves and our families on a regular basis. Our spiritual care should be just as common, just as important for us as our other daily tasks. That foundation of faith and spiritual strength which we can easily build each day should already be there before the trials begin so that they can carry us through the difficult times. Please remember to take "spiritual" time for yourselves.

Download the "Rock of Our Redeemer" Silhouette File above HERE. You can see a fantastic idea for how to use the file here.


Tiffany said...

Thank you for this message. It makes me realize that I need to take time for my spiritual self! I mean, I know I need it but .. I don't know, this really hit me! Like take time for yourself! But not in the way like girls night out! It's just as important to sit and really work on our spirit! Thank you again! I really appreciate it. Now I'll go and put the kids to bed and take some special time out! :)

Christine said...

Thank you for sharing this thought today. It couldn't have come at a better time for me to read it. My husband and I went to the temple together this week and it had been a while. It felt so great to get centered again and get back on track. Taking care of our needs in every category is so important!