Strengthen Healthy Traditions

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How will you strengthen healthy traditions this year?

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Have fun this holiday season, no regrets, no pain, no dysfunction.
Make conscious choices to create positive change.

Affirmation:  I am TODAY’s ChangeMaker*.  I strengthen healthy traditions.

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*NOTE:  TODAY’s ChangeMakers are sincere, determined men and women who do not give up on creating positive change in spite of obstacles.

Are you among the wounded innocent?

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Are you among the wounded innocent?  You know how it is.  The holidays may hold painful memories.

It’s a privilege to  pay loving attention to the children in our presence.

Let’s join together as TODAY’s ChangeMakers and make a positive difference in the world.  Enough is enough!

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Dreading the Holidays?


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Are you DREADING the holidays?

There are lots of reasons that we sometimes don’t experience the joy that the lights and sounds and gatherings with friends and/or family that the holiday season can bring.  Especially for those who have experienced childhood or adult relationship trauma and distress (including divorce), memories of Christmas past can be painful.

So to all of you who are TODAY’s ChangeMakers, who are facing obstacles head-on and creating positive change anyway, please know you are not alone.

If you need a little encouragement, I like this reminder that there is present-moment help and support.  No one has gone too far or done to much that a TURN-around is not possible.  Christ’s mercy can be extended to all who will turn to Him with full purpose of heart and a sincere desire to let go of misery and embrace the LIGHT.

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“[Christ’s] mercy is the mighty healer, even to the wounded innocent.” ~Boyd K Packer, 2014

HE is the mighty healer.

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You are loved

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When times get tough, remember this reminder from the Apostle Paul.

 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

 38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,

 39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
—Romans 28: 35, 38-39

Dallin Oaks reminds us, “The love of God does not supersede His laws and His commandments, and the effect of God’s laws and commandments does not diminish the purpose and effect of His love….

If a person understands the teachings of Jesus, he or she cannot reasonably conclude that our loving Heavenly Father or His divine Son believes that Their love supersedes Their commandments. Consider these examples.

When Jesus began His ministry, His first message was repentance. (See Matthew 4:17.)

When He exercised loving mercy by not condemning the woman taken in adultery, He nevertheless told her, “Go, and sin no more” (John 8:11).

Jesus taught, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 7:21).”

All things are done according to the free choice of individuals. Dallin Oaks also reminds us, “[God] will bless us to endure the consequences of others’ choices, but He will not prevent those choices.”

Also, “If only we will listen, we can know of God’s love and feel it, even when we are disobedient.”   He related one woman’s story, who said: “He has always been there for me, even when I rejected Him. He has always guided me and comforted me with His tender mercies all around me, but I [was] too angry to see and accept incidents and feelings as such.”

INspired Action INvitation:  May we all obey God’s laws and feel His love rather than becoming “a law unto ourselves” by participating in iniquity, therby TURNing away from the source of our true strength and ultimate happiness.

Unsteadiness

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My life’s experiences with emotional turmoil have led me to study, love and be INlightened by scripture references that have to do with the heart When we regard our heart symbolically as the center of our emotions, feelings and devotions, we can see teachings about the heart all throughout the Bible and the Book of Mormon.

Although written over two thousand years ago, I think you’ll see that these words have application, even today.  Here are the words of Helaman as he laments because he has seen the goodness of God in his life, and he knows and remembers the goodness of God in the life of his ancestors-through their written records and stories–yet his people have faced much war and pestilence because they continue to turn away from God after they prosper.

Helaman records:

And thus we can behold how false, and also the unsteadiness of the hearts of the children of men; yea, we can see that the Lord in his great infinite goodness doth bless and prosper those who put their trust in him.

 Yea, and we may see at the very time when he doth prosper his people, yea, in the increase of their fields, their flocks and their herds, and in gold, and in silver, and in all manner of precious things of every kind and art; sparing their lives, and delivering them out of the hands of their enemies; softening the hearts of their enemies that they should not declare wars against them; yea, and in fine, doing all things for the welfare and happiness of his people; yea, then is the time that they do harden their hearts, and do forget the Lord their God, and do trample under their feet the Holy One—yea, and this because of their ease, and their exceedingly great prosperity.

 And thus we see that except the Lord doth chasten his people with many afflictions, yea, except he doth visit them with death and with terror, and with famine and with all manner of pestilence, they will not remember him.

 O how foolish, and how vain, and how evil, and devilish, and how quick to do iniquity, and how slow to do good, are the children of men; yea, how quick to hearken unto the words of the evil one, and to set their hearts upon the vain things of the world!

 Yea, how quick to be lifted up in pride; yea, how quick to boast, and do all manner of that which is iniquity; and how slow are they to remember the Lord their God, and to give ear unto his counsels, yea, how slow to walk in wisdom’s paths!

 Behold, they do not desire that the Lord their God, who hath created them, should rule and reign over them; notwithstanding his great goodness and his mercy towards them, they do set at naught his counsels, and they will not that he should be their guide.

Why is it important that we remember God?  Among many other reasons, one reason that motivates me is that someday, we can all return to live in His presence.

On earth, we find ourselves forever longing for peace and happiness.  We may involve ourselves in temporary pleasures only to return to feelings of emptiness.  Our thoughts may wander into paths of self-doubt or hopelessness.  We may not realize that feeding our spirit and getting our “homing beacon” for heaven working again is part of the solution to our longing.

Building on the secure foundation of centering our hope in Jesus Christ and following, as best we can, His teachings will position us to return, after death, to our heavenly home.  Yet, to live in the very presence of God again, where we can find the feelings of true, unpolluted, joy, love and happiness, we must claim the gift of repentance that Christ offered.   It is only by that means that we can allow our heart’s to be purified and worthy to be in God’s presence.  It is a TURNing of the heart toward God and an acceptance of Christ’s grace and mercy toward us that allows this to take place.  We can receive joy instead of misery. It is a beautiful experience that allows us to feel astounding peace, and it’s not something to criticize.

So today, let us reflect upon any unsteadiness found within our own hearts.  Let us be true to our our real selves and to God by TURNing our heart to Him.  By doing so, we turn our heart toward our heavenly home, and toward the great hope we have in Jesus Christ, who made possible the WAY for us to repent and eventually find everlasting joy.

Spiritual Vitality: Where is the Solid Foundation Upon Which to Stand?

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Helaman said to his sons:

And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall.
–Helaman 5:12

Enough said today.

For Such A Time As This

I saw this on YouTube today, and it caused me to think back to the time when I would drive my second son to work.  I love this song by Wayne Watson, and we would have it in the car–playing on the CD player.

I especially like the lyric, “Can’t change what’s happened ’till now, but we can change what will be.”

In a world full of turmoil, what a great reminder!

I love inspiring music, and I make it a habit of playing things that uplift my soul and remind me of who I am and why I’m on the earth.

Consider your favorite songs today.  How do they lift and build you?

Spritual Vitality: Love God Through Thick and Thin

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This morning, I was pondering. This realization came to the forefront of my mind.

I have a deep and abiding desire to teach my children and grandchildren, through my example, to Love the Lord through thick and thin.

In Isaiah’s words:

“He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength.
“Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall:
“But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” Isaiah 40:29–31.

God helps us when we call upon His name in faith, believing we shall receive. I bear witness to His constant goodness and divine intercession in our behalf.

Consider the deepest desires of your heart. What will you do today to take creative action in order for your desires to be fulfilled?  Take decisive action.  Celebrate your results.

Mental or Emotional Illness: Like a Broken Vessel. A Message of HOPE.

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This is a message from one of my spiritual leaders who once
“took a psychic blow that was as unanticipated as it was real.”

He once spoke some of my favorite words when he said,
“Broken minds can be healed just the way broken bones and broken hearts are healed.
While God is at work making those repairs, the rest of us can help by being
MERCIFUL,
NON-JUDGMENTAL
and KIND.”
–Jeffrey R Holland

For those with any form of mental illness or emotional disorder and those who love them,
view Like a Broken Vessel.

Spiritual Vitality: The face of Jesus is like an open door.

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My Brite Star granddaughter loves to draw. She has quite the gift to draw meaningful pictures.

Today, I was reviewing a journal entry I made in 2015.  She had recently turned nine and said something that is still very precious to me.

She said, “Now I know the secret to drawing Jesus face!  Don’t make it too stern. Make it like an open door.”

I asked, “What does an open door mean to you?

She responded, “Like an open door.

Jesus face is supposed to be kind, letting you in, like an open door, not stern.”

I love that she is learning the truth about the character of Jesus. When we want to approach Him with real intent, and sincerely ask in faith for the desires of our heart that are in alignment with His will and teachings, He lovingly lets us in.

In an article written by Tanja Pajevic after the recent massacre in Florida, “Grieving After Orlando: 5 Ways To Take Care Of Yourself“, one thing she mentioned is, “Recommit to your personal values. Consider the legacy you’d like to leave behind. Will it be love? Kindness? Recommit to the people and the values that bring joy and meaning to your life.”

The power of kindness and love is remarkable! It has a positive ripple effect, and the influence of our kindness can ripple through generations!

Do we think of the face of Jesus as if it were an open door? Do we feel that forgiveness and help is readily available to each of us? Do we take the steps we need to take through prayer and communication with Heavenly Father to access Christ’s kindness and mercy. Do we feel of his grace (enabling power)? Being kind to ourselves and others adds stability to daily living.

Knowing that Jesus will enable us to develop this quality within our hearts and allow us to feel His love is a blessing worth reaching for. Let us do one thing today to connect with God and envision the face of Jesus Christ as if it were an open door.

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The day of the Lord is at hand.
“Tell ye your children of it, and let your children tell their children, and their children another generation.” – Joel 1:3

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Creating Positive Change?

Don’t forget to purchase JOURNALriffic.  It will help you turn your pain into purpose.  The 4 Steps of Discovery will help you process your emotions quickly so you can continue to progress in spite of obstacles.  Click here to discover the 2 ways you can access JOURNALriffic.
Join one of our ReNEW YOU Membership circles.

Everyone wants to be happy!  Our ReNEW YOU Joyful Breakthrough Membership Circles can support you as you take 15 or 20 minutes a day to establish your own renewed, forward-facing  habits.  Elevate your thought patterns, habit patterns and family patterns. You will participate in daily encouragement and join with other TODAY’s ChangeMakers in a small group setting.  We provide charts and graphs for your daily accountability as you take consistent, proactive steps to improve your life’s circumstances.  You will receive personal support from me or my ReNEW YOU leaders and will always have a place to ask your questions. There is no need to feel alone or isolated any longer in your journey to create positive change.

I hope to connect with you soon.
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To your happiness,
Carolyn

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Disclaimer.  I am the author of JOURNALriffic, founder of CarolynCalton.com, FamilyTreeQuest.com, HealingYourFamily.com and CEO of the LiahonaLightAcademy.com