Tuesday, April 23, 2013

A Piece of the Divine

Recently I was teaching a temple preparation class and a girl visiting for the day asked what I do when I am doing everything right in my life, but I still feel unworthy of holding a temple recommend.  We preceded to have a great conversation about worthiness and the value of a person as an individual.  The conversation moved on to the lesson, but I still felt like there was something more that I could have said.  It was like there was something just out of reach in my mind that I could share.  Of course more came to me as I got home. I often wish my brain worked faster on the fly, but as I started getting more inspiration flowing through my brain, I knew that it was inspiration just for me.  I'd like to share it with you today, and maybe somehow that sister who was visiting will read this and be reminded of her true value and worth.

I grew up being taught that I was a daughter of God, and in my mind I always have known it, but understanding it with my heart has come more over time. As a child I just knew that Heavenly Father loved me and would answer my prayers.  As I grew I built a wall with my limiting beliefs that kept me from living in my Soulful Brilliance, and it grew more difficult to always feel that love. Luckily, with each new trial or mistake I am reminded of His love for me and that I truly am a daughter of a divine Father in Heaven. 

I recall a time about 11 years ago, I was walking down the crowded street of Zhengzhou, Henan, China.  It was night time and all around me were crowds of people shopping at a market.  The streets were wall-to-wall (or perhaps sidewalk-to-sidewalk:0) with people.  It was noisy with music and merchants selling their wares.  I was just enthralled with how many people were just on this one street.  I thought about how much Heavenly Father loved all of these people.  Then an amazing feeling of love and peace washed over me.  I knew that not only does He love all of the billions of people that have lived, are living, or will live on the Earth, but He loves me personally, and He knows me intimately. He rejoices when I have success, and He sorrows when I'm struggling. He is my Father.  He created me and loves me as only He can love.  It was an amazing moment that I have never completely forgotten. 

After that experience, I still struggled to fully remember that love and knowing with my heart and my mind that I am a beloved daughter of Heavenly Father.  I doubted myself, my choices, and my true worth.

How many of us feel that every day?  When you get up in the morning and look in the mirror, what do you see? Do you see all the things you hate about your body and yourself?  Or do you see the amazing BRILLIANT woman who was created by a loving Heavenly Father? Today we live in a world that judges a person by what they look like on the outside. Many of us compare ourselves to what the world considers "perfect." We go about our lives always comparing ourselves to others and always feeling like we've come up short. What if we stopped comparing ourselves to others, and started seeing ourselves as we truly are? 

Who are we? We are daughters of a Heavenly Father who loves us! 

Before we came here to our mortal life, we were create as spirit daughters of a Heavenly Father and Mother.  We were create in their image.  We were created unique from any other spirit. We were created with a Soulful Brilliance! As we lived in our premortal life, we "developed [our] identity and increased [our] spiritual capabilities" (True to the Faith, 116).  We were also blessed with the amazing gift of agency.  We were able to use that gift to make important decisions like following our Heavenly Father's plan to come down to earth and receive a body. 

In Abraham 3:22-23 it says, "Now the Lord had shown unto me, Abraham, the intellegences that were organized before the world was; and among these there were many of the noble and great ones; And God saw that they were good, and he stood in the midst of them, and he said: These I will make my rulers; for he stood among those that were spirits, and he saw that they were good; and he said unto me: Abraham, thou art one of them; thou wast chosen before thou wast born." That was us, the noble and great ones! God foreordained each of us for a special mission here on earth. He has "called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began" (2 Tim. 1:9). As we make righteous choices, follow the Lord's will, and remember our Soulful Brilliance, He will reveal to us that mission, one piece at a time.  

Remembering that we are daughters of God, is the one of the most important things to help us on our way.  Because He as a divine being created us, we also have a piece of the divine in us, a divine DNA.  We are capable of so much if we just allow ourselves to be the amazing women we were created to be.  

What stops us from accomplishing the important tasks that we covenanted with our Father we would do?  

Hold your hands in front of you and picture yourself holding a ball of light.  Picture what color it is and how it feels in your hand.  This ball is you.  It's your Soulful Brilliance. It is a ball of power, a ball of love, a ball of all the wisdom you have gained both in your premortal life and your life here on earth.  We came here to earth as babies with this Soulful Brilliance, this radiant light.  It is who we truly are inside. It is always there, a part of us. We've always been worth more than rubies.  We are priceless. 

As we start growing and progressing through life, we go through trials and other learning experiences and we create beliefs about ourselves, others and the world around us.  Sometimes these beliefs are empowering, but many times they become limiting.  These limiting beliefs are like a layer of darkness that covers our brilliance, our greatness. Each limiting belief creates a new layer, obscuring the light of our true selves.  We begin to doubt our worth and our talents.  We begin comparing ourselves to others and seeing imperfection. We don't see our true potential in life.

It is only through the Savior's Atonement that we can begin to break through those layers of fear and doubt and again see our soulful brilliance and find the life that our Heavenly Father intends for us to have. President Dieter F. Uchtdorf once said, "Our Heavenly Father sees our real potential.  He knows things about us that we do not know ourselves.  He prompts us during our lifetime to fulfill the measure of our creation, to live a good life, and to return to His presence." I truly believe that our loving Heavenly Father sends us personal revelation to guide us to live our best lives.  We just have to be in a place in our lives where we can listen to the whisperings of the Spirit.

This week I would like to invite you to really think about your Soulful Brilliance. Pray for His help to see it!  You are one of the 'noble and great ones' that was there in the Council in Heaven. Put your hands over your heart and close your eyes.  Feel your heart beating.  You are a daughter of a Heavenly Father who loves you as only He can love. He created you to succeed gloriously! 

What do the scriptures say about being children of God?
What do they say about our divine nature?
What have we been told in General Conferences?

If Heavenly Father were sitting next to you and you asked Him what the truth is about you, 
what would He tell you?
If you have your Patriarchal Blessing, it would be a great thing to look at.
It is like a letter from Heavenly Father reminding us
of our Soulful Brilliance and many other important things.

Remember to record your thoughts in your journal,
and listen for further revelation.

I know with my whole heart that each of us is priceless!  Our value never changes. We have been sent here to earth with an amazing brilliance.  I know that if we live being that radiant person we were created to be, Heavenly Father will bless us to find the next steps in our journey. I feel like I kind of got off track from where I started, so returning to the topic of feeling worthy when we're doing all we need to be doing to live a righteous life, I'd like to leave you with one of my favorite quotes about the importance of temple work and being worth by Elder Boyd K. Packer:

 "When you come to the temple and receive your endowment, and kneel at the altar and be sealed, you can live an ordinary life and be an ordinary soul--struggling against temptation, failing and repenting, and failing again and repenting, but always determined to keep your covenants... Then the day will come when you will receive the benediction: 'Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things; enter thou into the joy of thy lord' (Matthew 25:21)."

I can't wait to share more with you later about all the thoughts running through my head!  Heavenly Father loves us and truly wants us to succeed in life! 


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