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Just Love

If you get confused, start with love. If you feel lost or overwhelmed, go back to love. Then you'll always find your way back to God. Love leads you away from falsehood, idols, hatred, and evil. Just love.

Be Good


"And now that you don't have to be perfect, you can be good."

- John Steinbeck, East of Eden

A Prayer I Pray


Dear Lord,

You are the Primal Creator and Grand Weaver of all life and wonders, you are my Savior, you are my Heavenly Father, and you are my best friend. Thank you for loving me, for taking care of me, for guiding me, and for finding me when I was lost and bringing me back into your loving embrace. Thank you for bringing Emilie to me -- my brilliant, beautiful, passionate, soulful, talented, compassionate, hard-working, generous, loving wife. Thank you for giving us Tristan, our shining little beam of sunshine; who has a big smile and happy laugh, a feisty determination, and all the true strength of a tender loving heart.

Thank you for gently and patiently leading me back into the light of life and love and joy. Thank you for hearing my prayers and keeping my family and me safe and whole. Thank you for all the blessings you have brought to us from all corners of the earth. Thank you for teaching me all that I know, and showing me the world.

Thank you for trusting me to take care of Emilie and Tristan and our family, our friends, the people I will meet on earth, the people I will meet one day in heaven, and all the other life of Creation. I am awed by your presence, humbled by the trust you place in me, and overjoyed with the love you give me every day. Please accept my heartfelt thanks, and my deepest vow of obedience and allegiance, now and in all times to come.

Forever your humble and loving servant,
Jody

Seek

"I know the plans I have for you - plans for welfare, and not for evil - plans to give you a future, and to give you hope. You will call on me, and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me, and when you seek me with all your heart, you will find me - and I will restore your fortunes."

- Jeremiah 29:11-14 (my own adaptation from the English Standard Version of the Protestant Bible)

Feel

To feel - just to feel - is never a waste of time.

Gratitude and Honesty


It's not ungrateful to God to be honest with Him and with ourselves. We can appreciate what we have, but we don't have to deceive ourselves when something is not making us as happy as we think it should. That will only make us false and bitter, and may cause us to turn to shameful action in pursuit of temporary happiness.

The Lord knows our hearts and loves us as we are. He wants us to be honest with Him and talk to Him about our pain and frustration, and to ask Him for help. If we ask for the wrong kind of help, He will gently lead us to what we really need.

Recognizing our dissatisfaction with something and deciding on a course of action are two different things. We can gratefully receive a gift even though we know in our hearts that we don't like it very much, or we find out it's not everything we had hoped. The Lord will help us find the right way to be either content with what we have or let him lead us to what we really need.

Reconnecting


Sometimes I don't connect well with God. In those times I don't hear Him or feel at peace. I've found that those are the times when I need to stop and spend time with Him through prayer and meditation and reading the Bible, and also paying attention to other books and things around me that he directs my attention to. Then He helps me bring things back into balance.

Sometimes I begin to feel that sin is keeping me distant from the Lord. I pray and search my feelings and seek the cause of my distress. The Lord leads me true, and I usually find the cause of my suffering. If I have done something wrong, I pray for forgiveness and the Lord forgives me. And then He reminds me to forgive myself. After that I feel some immediate relief, and He directs me and helps me find a way to feel better over time.

I find that as I progress in faith and righteous living, the Lord "raises my level." I begin to feel the weight of sin for small deviations from the holy path. But I also accept more easily my need to seek forgiveness and be renewed in the spirit.

Paying Attention

Everything we pay attention to matters. Not everyone realizes that they need to manage their thought-life. We need to pay attention to how we feel and what we are thinking about, because our feelings and thoughts become words and actions. And in themselves, they are a basis for future feelings and thoughts, which make up who we really are.