ALL IN – Episode 64

Last night, for family movie night, we decided to watch Sherlock with the children. Brilliant BBC series! Intense, for sure. But it was also a bit scary – this particular episode, anyway. And three of the children ended sleeping on the floor in our bedroom when it came time for bed. And after all the children had finally fallen asleep, I sat in my bed and started feeling guilty for suggesting the series in the first place. What kind of mom …. Then I stopped myself. And I asked myself a different question: What can I learn from tonight’s experience? And I spent some time, before I fell asleep, thinking about intentional parenthood: What experience I want to give my children, deciding what beliefs I want to offer my children. What kind of characters do I want to introduce to my children, in real life and in the entertainment we play in our home. What kind of language do we want to use and to hear in our home.

“We don’t get to choose what our children are going to believe (and do) in the end – they are going to have to decide. But I think it is really powerful as parents to offer them a way to look at things … And that comes from being intentional and thinking through what you want them to believe.”

https://livingandtravelingwithkids.com/2020/01/day-78-parenting-with-thought-work/

I have room for improvement. I can be a more intentional parent. I can be a more intentional human.

I just wanted to share. It’s been on my mind today.

This episode of All In is a really beautiful conversation with a BYU professor, Eva Witesman. Just a few points I want to write about today in SUNDAY SABBATH STUDIES:

ONE. Each of us have gifts given to us – different spiritual gifts. I wonder what I’d learn if I asked myself, How am I different from others? Maybe that can start me down that path of discovering my spiritual gift.

“Everyone has their own unique physical and spiritual instrument – their own soul – and that physical and spiritual instrument is going to hear the vibrations of the Spirit differently.”

When I was a young(er) mom, in London, pregnant with Matthew, I was still learning how I hear those “vibrations” – but I knew I heard them. And I think I have written about this before, but I spent a lot of time in the bathtub. The pregnancy was hard, and I was in a lot of pain a lot of the time. So I spent a lot of time in the bathtub. And one quiet evening, in the bathtub, I was looking at my large belly, and I was rubbing it, and I was talking to my Heavenly Father about my fears and my hopes, and I was crying a little bit. And the words came clearly to my mind: I saved you. And I can save him. And I knew for certain that the Lord would save my son, Matthew. A few weeks later, in church, I was speaking about the Lord’s saving hand in our lives, and I shared this story from the pulpit. I said, “The Lord told me, ‘I saved you. And I can save him.'” Later that night, seven year old Ella came into my room, very disheartened. She had heard my testimony and was wondering why the Lord has never “told” her anything. “Mom, I pray and I read my scriptures, and the Lord doesn’t speak to me.” She was in tears now. And I realized that I had not taught her this principle of receiving revelation:

“(Our) spiritually defining moments come at different times and in different ways, individualized for each of us…

Those listening to the Apostle Peter were ‘pricked in their hearts.’

The Lamanite woman Abish believed the ‘remarkable vision of her father.’

And a voice came into the mind of Enos.”

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/general-conference/2020/04/15andersen?lang=eng

We read in Doctrine and Covenants:

“There are many gifts, and to every man is given a gift by the Spirit of God.”

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/scriptures/dc-testament/dc/46?lang=eng

TWO. Eva suggests that the Spirit will speak to us in our learning style, in fact.

  • Visual
  • Auditory
  • Tactile

This is maybe the most natural way we, individually, look for and receive messages or guidance from the Spirit.

I was curious. I took an online quiz. Apparently I am primarily an auditory learner. That makes sense, considering the example I gave above, when the Lord “told” me that He could save Matthew, right?

Knowing this now, what else can I be aware of? Revelation and inspiration coming to me in an auditory way. Right. But also temptation. Is it possible temptation will be of the auditory type? I’m going out on a ledge here – thinking out loud. If stealing isn’t a temptation for me – that would be tactile, I imagine – maybe gossiping would be more of a temptation as that is more auditory. I’m not sure. I am going to have to spend some time with this.

I can start from here, though. I can look for ways the Lord is communicating to me through my learning style. And then I can move forward. I can learn about other gifts, experiment, practice, ask in humility. Spiritual gifts can also be developed.

THREE. Eva has lived a very different life than I have – she has felt inspired to go down roads that I have never considered for myself. But this is also the case with every woman that I love, in my life. My mom. My sisters. My dear neighbor, Allyson. When we are seeking to receive revelation as to our lives, we can’t compare, because the path is so different for each person.

“There’s nobody exactly like you, and if you’re bold enough to inquire, I believe you’ll be swamped with impressions about your purpose—more than you ever thought possible.”

Who am I? What do I have to offer? “What lack I yet“?