It has been a long month with my mom's passing due to cancer and a scheduled surgery a week past that.
But I am now back to blogging and for my return, it is my great pleasure to tell you about a book I read while recovering from my procedure called Enjoying the Journey - Steps to Finding Joy Now by Jaime Theler with Deborah Talmadge.
When the book was sent to me, I admittedly was hesitant to open it up. With my insides scrambled and my emotions even more so, I did not feel any joy at the moment nor did I think that it was possible for me to find any on the horizons close at hand.
But something happened to my aching heart as I forced myself to read the pages contained therein. I found peace and hope and joy in knowing that my circumstances were only temporary and that my mother whom I missed so terribly had found her eternal joy with my dad and for the first time in close to a month, I was able to smile and understand what I was striving for.
I found purpose again.
The poignant words written "In speaking to his apostles, the Savior reassured them that he would not leave them comfortless when He left them (John 14:18). He promised that he would send them 'the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost' (John 14:26). Not only does the spirit enlighten our minds, but it also fills our souls with joy and comfort. As Sheri L. Dew stated, 'No mortal comforter can duplicate that of the Comforter'. In times of great hardship and pain, we know that we can turn to the Holy Ghost for comfort....We are much stronger in this life when we are walking with God than when we are walking alone. Together, there will be nothing you cannot endure, be it cancer, the loss of a loved one, depression, a wayward family or financial hardship," helped me to remember where I needed to turn for solace.
I had forgotten to apply His spiritual salve to my heart. It was then that I "cast my burdens upon the Lord", and true to the promises made, He did sustain me! (Psalms 55:22).
The next day seemed a little brighter, the physical pains seemed more bearable and most of all, I was able to look at my parents picture and rejoice in the the life they'd given me and the life for which I was striving instead of feeling the immense amount of responsibility they'd left upon my shoulders taking care of a brother on a mission and keeping my family together.
Later on in the book, the author reminds the reader through the analogies of the Battle of Little Round Top at Gettysburg (which changed the tide of the war) and the battles of Captain Moroni and his Title of Liberty (which inspired and fortified his people) that great things can be accomplished by small numbers giving me hope that maybe I could make a difference in keeping my family together.
Since reading this book, I have slept a bit better, had clarity of thought and been able to find the small things in life to smile about. And even thought I cannot yet quite say that my joy is full, I do have hope that I can make lemonade out of the lemons life has handed me.
I highly recommend it to anyone who is dealing with overwhelming stress, loss, or simply feeling down and not knowing where to turn so that you too can find a path to eternal joy and happiness.
For more information on Jaime Theler and Deborah Talmadge, you can go to Jaime's website and blogspot at www.jaimetheler.com and www.jaimetheler.blogspot.com.