Monday, July 14, 2008

That We Might Have Joy

ASB recently left a comment on my first post. (Be sure to check out ASB's blog. Talk about courage! I'll pray for your daughter!) When I wrote that first post it felt like my personal manifesto--and it is, sort of. However, looking at it now I think it oversimplified things a bit. If I was really being honest, which I try to be, I'd have included the fact that I am sometimes suicidal, that I have days I can't do anything but sleep and cry, and that my intrusive thoughts really make me feel nuts.

But I am still trying to find happy. And that is why I like ASB's comment so much. She said, "The scripture, 'Men are, that they might have joy,' troubled me a little bit at times. I've gone through some dark depressive days over the past few years and I felt like I was missing that one thing that the scriptures promised me.

I read recently (or heard at church?) that the joy referred to is eternal life. Now it makes sense.

I still believe there is more joy out there & I just need to work harder to find it or to feel it more often. But I feel like less of a failure knowing that maybe the joy-on-a-regular-basis that I've been seeking was rooted in misunderstanding."

On the dark days, like yesterday, I need to remind myself that it's eternal joy I'm working for. I know it sounds odd but there are plenty of times I have felt depressed and thought that was not in keeping with the scriptures. After all, "men are that they might have joy" can be seen as a sort of commandment. Needless to say, worrying about the fact that I was sad didn't help. It was a skewed perspective that created a cycle of spiritual loss out of things (like the scriptures) that were supposed to be places of renewal.

Anyway, I appreciated the reminder to keep things in perspective. When we persevere through the dark times with faith that our Savior's love is still a force in our lives, it IS a victory even though we may feel like it isn't. Sometimes all the Lord asks is that we keep on trying.


Charlotte said...

Ah Laura! You are so brave. How I love you:)

Elizabeth-W said...

I always get hung up on the word MIGHT :) maybe yes....maybe no....
But yes, I think that is what the joy refers to also.