My intent with this blog is to share my thoughts, understanding, and testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the events that are currently unfolding and will soon come to pass, with my family and friends (anyone who wants to read these musings). We are living in a time that has been seen and prophesied by all the prophets from Adam till now, it is an exciting and tumultuous time. In the scripture references I use there are two citations; one is referenced with "RE" meaning Restoration Edition scriptures, the other is "LE" meaning LDS Edition scriptures. Jeff Carter

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Saturday, February 17, 2024

 Becoming One

I believe the two most important things we can learn in this life are to trust God and become one with our spouse.  Those are very difficult to accomplish.  And they are both difficult for many of the same reasons.  We are all broken.  We have trust issues resulting from our own life experiences as well as those stored in our DNA from generations past.  Perhaps we had difficult childhoods and trust was hard to come by.  Abuse, broken marriages, either our own or ancestral; so many stories and reasons and justifications for our not being able to trust reinforce the belief that we can’t trust anyone.  Even those we thought of as friends, being part of a like minded group where, because we say we are working at becoming one we thought we were safe to trust.  But then people we thought we could trust turn on us, accuse us and sometimes as a result we have a difficult time trusting.  Like the Kenny Chesney song “Can’t we all get along?”  We have to be able to put that all the experiences in our lives that teach us not to trust in the past if we are to learn to become the people we need to be.  We have to learn to trust each other and learn to trust God. We have to turn away from those beliefs that we can’t trust Christ (because that is a lie the adversary teaches) and turn toward Christ who loves us.  It may be most difficult to do that within a marriage but that is part of the reason for a marriage is to practice.

Many of us also deal with anger issues that find their way to the surface especially around those we love the most (perhaps because of our anger our loved ones find it hard to trust us). When I was a younger man I dealt with anger issues.  Who knows where it came from but I was, at times, very short with my two oldest children.  When my wife had a physical and emotional collapse as a result of a brainstem tear (from two car accidents), I went through much of the same alternative healing processes that she did.  I was able to release much of my anger and as a result I was a much different father with our youngest two children than I was with the oldest two. When we say “that’s just the way I am” that is a cop-out, we can change, we can become better if we choose.

 In the Answer for the Prayer for Covenant (section 157 in the T&C) The Lord admonishes us to be better, and promises that He will labor with us to get us there.  “For the sake of the promises to the fathers will I labor with you as a people, and not because of you, for you have not yet become what you must be to live together in peace.” (T&C 157:19) This section is replete with instruction on how to be better people.  I want to narrow the focus down to one relationship, husband and wife.  All of these instructions should be practiced between spouses first to truly learn how to love others.

I’m going to go on a rant here for a minute.  From our vantage point (not that it is an advantage, but it is a point from which we view the world around us) we see so many people we love struggling and being wounded. Husbands love your wife like your life depends on it (your eternal life does.  Be her safe haven where she can truly learn to trust because she knows nothing will ever come from your mouth or your behavior that will cause her any sort of pain.  Same for wives, always be supporting and uplifting.  As Coach Vince Lombardi once said “it is better to have a good offense than a good defense, and vice-versa.”  Also, we are so imperfect that we can never come from a place where we have a right to criticize anyone or anyone’s actions or what they believe and write. Knock it off and straighten up. To quote the Lord in section 93 of the D&C/T&C “what I say to one, I say to all.” I include myself so that I may not be accused of hypocrisy.

I think we all understand that we are broken and wounded, but perhaps we don’t understand how our wounds effect how we interact with others, especially our spouse.  The Lord said: “You have all been wounded, your hearts pierced through with sorrows because of how the world has treated you. But you have also scarred one another by your unkind treatment of each other (spouse), and you do not notice your misconduct toward others because you think yourself justified in this. You bear the scars on your countenances, from the soles of your feet to the head, and every heart is faint. Your visages have been so marred that your hardness, mistrust, suspicions, resentments, fear, jealousies, and anger toward your fellow man bear outward witness of your inner self; you cannot hide it. When I appear to you, instead of confidence, you feel shame. You fear and withdraw from me because you bear the blood and sins of your treatment of brothers and sisters (your spouse). Come to me and I will make sins as scarlet become white as snow, and I will make you stand boldly before me, confident of my love. (T&C 157:49)(the italicized parenthetical are added by me for emphasis)

I would like to share an experience I recently had while meditating.  I know I have mentioned this before, but for clarification, when I meditate I send my spirit to find the Lord.  So, I sent my spirit to find the Lord and found Him in the treasure room.  (There have been others who have written blogs and articles about treasures in Heaven.)  Anyway, we were in the treasure room and it was vast.  I asked the Lord the purpose of this room? He said “this is where the treasures you accumulate by your good works, deeds, your obedience, thoughts, kindnesses, etc., the things you do and think that help others lighten their burdens, those things are recorded here.”  As I looked around there were names on the shelves. Among the shelves assigned to each name there were empty sections and full sections, some shelves were full to overflowing and others were empty and had dust on them. Mine was definitely not full, but fortunately not empty ether. There is still plenty of room for me to fill my shelves with good.

Here are a few more reminders of what the Lord is asking of us today, that we may be of greater service to Him tomorrow.

“Flee from the cares and longings that belong to Babylon, obtain a new heart, for you have all been wounded.” (T&C 157:51)

“Be of one heart, and regard one another with charity. Measure your words before giving voice to them, and consider the hearts of others.” (T&C 157:53)

“Study to learn how to respect your brothers and sisters and to come together by precept, reason, and persuasion, rather than sharply disputing and wrongly condemning each other, causing anger.” (T&C 157:54)


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