Tuesday, August 30, 2011

2. Prayer

Here we are with item #2 from Do Not Despair.

Catch up if you need to:
The beginning
1. Repentance

The second item President Benson discusses in his article is prayer. How fundamentally, monumentally, drastically vital it is in combating depression!

There's a hitch, though. Many people (me included) feel like their minds have been swapped for spaghetti when depression strikes.

I remember way back when I was pregnant with the twins and realizing how deep and dark of a pit I was in. As two year old Jonzy napped, I shut myself in my room with my scriptures; hoping to drive away the darkness with some spiritual light. Only I couldn't read. I'd stare at the same sentence and try and try and try to read it, but three or four words in my mind would jump to something else, then something else, then something else. I wish I could describe it better than that.

I sat on my bed and stared at my open scriptures, so insanely confused at why I could no longer read. So I decided to pray.

I lumbered the three of us off the bed and onto the floor. But I couldn't pray either! Every thought was suffocated in an Olympic sized pool of other random thoughts; none of them able to complete before being interrupted by another. I'd been struggling with jumbled prayers for a while, but it didn't hit me until right then that I'd lost my ability to pray.

*I never thought to pray out loud. That probably would have really helped me at least complete a sentence, if not an entire prayer.*

I knelt there by my bed and tried to deal with the shock. Why, when I had this problem I knew could be helped, were two of the main sources of help blocked from me???? I argued with Heavenly Father for a long time about that one and honestly I still don't understand it. "That's not fair!" I told him. "I NEED those! Please please please give them back."

Fortunately, I found I could still pray if I kept my thoughts super short. So my prayers became a jumbled mess of random thoughts interspersed by as many, "please help me's" and help me's" as I could stick in there.

I found that the more often I prayed, the more breaks from the dark I got. I love what President Benson said: "...prayer—persistent prayer—can put us in touch with God, our greatest source of comfort and counsel."

Persistent prayer!

The more I filled my days with my simple plea of "help me, help me, help me..." the more I would get that answer he always gave me: "It'll be okay, Lindsey. Remember, I love you." And just knowing he loved me would give what I needed to go on.

After some years passed and I learned more about depression and my experience with it, I have been able to get into the scriptures more and prayer more deeply about it. It's been such a light.

The more I study the scriptures and pray for protection and help, acknowledging that this is a temptation for me and I really really need help, the better I feel.

I'd like to share two of the scriptures I found in my studies of prayer that have really helped me this last year.

"Behold, verily, verily, I say unto you, ye must watch and pray always lest ye enter into temptation; for Satan desireth to have you, that he may sift you as wheat. Therefore ye must always pray unto the Father in my name; And whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, which is right, believing that ye shall receive, behold it shall be give unto you."
3 Nephi 18: 18-20, emphasis added

"Yea, and I also exhort you, my brethren, that ye be watchful unto prayer continually, that ye may not be led away by the temptations of the devil, that he may not overpower you, that ye may not become his subjects at the last day; for behold, he rewardeth you no good thing."
Alma 34:39, emphasis added

I love them both. The first gives me hope. The second warns and reminds me that following the temptations "rewardeth [me] no good thing."

That's all I have to say about that.

I hope these posts are inspiring, enlightening, encouraging, etc. If you have thoughts to share, feedback, or whatnot please do:)

Monday, August 29, 2011

I feel better about myself.

So last week I posted about an incident I had with the radio.

I was slightly disturbed. One- because I didn't recognize that voice that usually makes my skin crawl. And two- because I'd started to like the song.

Imagine my surprise and happiness then when my brother informed me that I misheard the radio. It wasn't Katy Perry. It was Christina Perri!!


Most of my faith in myself has been restored. I have no idea who this Christina Perri is, but I know I like at least two of her songs now so I probably better figure it out before I get in too deep; just in case this isn't something I should be listening to.

I tell ya, it's so sad that we can't trust music anymore. Not just because of the lyrics, but because of the artists, too.


Thursday, August 25, 2011

Thankful Thursday

Air Conditioning.

Need I say more?

On a hot summer day when I can only stand to be outside for two minutes at a time?


Ahhhhhhh. Air conditioning.

What are you thankful for today?

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

1. Repentance

I'm finally starting the in depth look at the Do Not Despair article! *yaaaaaaaaay!*

**Disclaimer: These posts are in no way claiming that my experiences are the only way these things happen, that my choices are the only correct ones to make, or that I think myself better than anyone who experienced otherwise or chose differently. These are my experiences (though not the complete story; I fully intend on going to my grave being the only one who knows the complete story. Unless of course sharing some things would help someone I know...so maybe a few more will know before I die.). These are my choices and decisions. This is my story and what is working for me. I do believe it could help others though, so I'm sharing and discussing. Please don't judge me harshly if you disagree with me. Many thanks:)**

President Benson wrote this article back in 1986. What he wrote was true then and even more so now. Particularly this:

"Satan is increasingly striving to overcome the Saints with despair, discouragement, despondency, and depression."


But!!- "To help us from being overcome by the devil’s designs of despair, discouragement, depression, and despondency, the Lord has provided at least a dozen ways which, if followed, will lift our spirits and send us on our way rejoicing."


Those of you who have been reading for a while know that I believe depression is rooted in temptation.

So let's get into the first thing Pres. Benson mentioned. Repentance.

***I started writing this three days ago and hit a road block (or better said, writer's block) right here when I was going to start writing about my own experience with this aspect on the road to rejoicing. My mind reverted back to a jumble of disconnected thoughts and I couldn't think of how best to write it out.

I've decided that my experiences with repentance and depression are just too close to the heart to share with the world at large (however small my readership may be).

So I'm going to continue to keep it close and just share some thoughts and scriptures with you on this subject.

First, I love how President Benson included a quote from Abraham Lincoln.

"When I do good I feel good, and when I do bad I feel bad."

Lincoln is often quoted on depression, and regularly in a tone that seems to say "it is how it is, so stop telling me to just be happy, punks." My opinion is that Lincoln had a much harder life than the majority of us, but he still managed to see that he was responsible for his emotions and he would employ whatever degree of power he had in improving them. What an example! I like that guy:)

And to conclude, here's a couple scriptures that have been especially insightful and poignant for me when studying about repentance:
"Preach unto them repentance, and faith on the Lord Jesus Christ; teach them to humble themselves and to be meek and lowly in heart; teach them to withstand every temptation of the devil, with their faith on the Lord Jesus Christ." Alma 37:33

"And after their temptations and much tribulation, behold, I, the Lord, will feel after them, and if they harden not their hearts, and stiffen not their necks against me, they shall be converted, and I will heal them." Doctrine and Covenants 112:13


P.S. The font was reverting to italics when I didn't want it to and nothing would fix it. So i got into the html code and after a few tweaks, I managed to fix it. I feel so smart!:)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


I make no secret of the fact that I wish Katy Perry's music didn't exist, along with her music videos.

My disdain is quite strong.

We'll leave it at that.

Bret will attest to my uncanny ability to spot a Katy Perry song on the radio and lightening quick reflexes when it comes to then changing the station.

So imagine my reaction when after listening to a song in it's entirety and beginning to think, "this is an okay song. might even like it..." the automated announcer woman's voice comes on to announce that the last song was "arms- Katy Perry."


Darn it! One more song I have to avoid.

There seem to be more and more of those these days. Grrrr.>:(

I'd be more mad, but I have to laugh at myself every time I remember yelling "what!?!" right there in the car.

At the radio.

That can't hear me:)

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful for-

Fresh fruit.

A handy dandy, compact and snazzy dehydrator.

Sharp knives.

Electricity to make the machine work.

Indoor plumbing to keep my hands from getting sticky.

And the amazing aroma of peaches that has permeated my home while they dry out in the dehydrator to become a delicious winter snack (who am I kinding? they won't last through the fall).

*big lungful of peach scented air* Ahhhhhhhhh.

Happy Thursday!

What are you thankful for today?

Monday, August 15, 2011

A new project

I'm sure you've missed me...;)

I've been busy, busy, busy! (I know, I know; aren't we all?) I was busy with life, family, and getting ready for an out of state trip last week. Things I've wanted to blog about, and Thankful Thursday, got pushed to the bottom of the priority list.

There's two things I really want to blog about. But starting school this week and the craziness of life weighing me down, I'm reduced to mentioning them.

Last week my parents, my brothers, my sisters in law, Bret, and me were all in the temple together. My whole nuclear family. In the temple. Together. For the first time ever. But definitely not the last:) It was so amazing.

Best. Night. Ever.

The following Sunday, we all went to my parents' ward for church. As I sat in Relief Society (a rare occasion for a Nursery worker) with my mother and sisters in law, I was made aware of a spectacular article written by Ezra Taft Benson, a former prophet of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

It was quite the timely reminder for me as I'd "fallen off the wagon" and was finding it hard to scramble back on. Boy am I glad the God hasn't given up on me, even when I want to give up myself.

The article concisely summarizes what I've learned in the battle against depression over the last handful of years.

It gives twelve ways to "lift our spirits and send us on our way rejoicing."

I want to make it a focus on this blog for the next while. I plan on breaking it up and sharing my experiences with each way of lifting spirits and hope some of you might get in on the discussion and share your experiences with me.

Here's the original article I'll be focusing on if you want to read it ahead of time:

Do Not Despair by President Ezra T. Benson

I'm excited for this:)

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful for:

Church leaders who saved me in a pinch.
Silly boys and their smiles.
Public libraries.

What are you thankful for today?