The Mist of Darkness
Have you ever driven in a thick fog? Maybe a torrential rainstorm? What about in a blizzard or blanket of snow? I've had the pleasure of driving in each! (Florida for the rain and Utah for the rest.) It is so hard to see anything in front of you, and I never know what lane I'm supposed to be in. I can tell my heart is starting to race just thinking about it.
Clark tells me that the only thing you can see in the fog is yourself and that addiction is like that, just focused on self.
-1 Nephi 8:23 Lehi talks about a fog called the "mist of darkness."
"And it came to pass that there arose a mist of darkness; yea, even an exceedingly great mist of darkness, insomuch that they who had commenced in the path did lose their way, that they wandered off and were lost." - 1 Nephi 8:23
I remember one night, one super late night. Side note, we now have a lot of late nights, it's been since about 3 or so weeks after "D" day, but not because of Netflix anymore, when you're trying to heal your marriage and connect with your spouse, you don't care what time it is, you just want/need the bad feelings to go away and are willing to do whatever it takes, whenever it takes, just to feel better, to feel safe.
So one super late night, in bed (it was during our sex fast), I remember Clark just staring at me and telling me that he could see me so clearly. He started telling me how he appreciated me, told me about specific things he loves about my mothering, specific things about my being a great wife, specific things about how I serve others, how I'm a hard worker and go after my dreams and accomplish hard things, getting up each morning though feeling depressed, sad and experiencing betrayal trauma, and really at first I just felt like he really could see me, and I felt loved. This is the first time in over a decade that he expressed in detail how he felt about me. (We need to do that more often!)
Sweetest thing ever right?! This, actually, made me feel all kinds of mixed thoughts and emotions:
- 1st. I felt great to be appreciated! Finally, right?! What a sweet hubby.
- 2nd. I started to feel super inadequate for all of that praise (the whispers started to creep in, like: he must not really know me, and I know he isn't talking about me, I didn't even fold the laundry today?!)
- 3rd. Finally, I felt super angry (more fiery darts, like: WHAT?! Now he's just flat out lying again, if he felt all of that, then why had he acted out? NO, he's just saying that so you won't be mad at him and get things back to the way they were and wants to be intimate with you.)
Alma talks about the "midst of darkness" too.
Alma 5:7-8 "Behold, he changed their hearts; yea, he awakened them out of a deep sleep, and they awoke unto God. Behold, they were in the midst of darkness; nevertheless, their souls were illuminated by the light of the everlasting word; yea, they were encircled about by the bands of death, and the chains of hell, and an everlasting destruction did await them. And now I ask of you, my brethren, were they destroyed? Behold, I say unto you, Nay, they were not." Alma 5:7-8
The mist of darkness he was in was "illuminated by the light of the everlasting word."
Elder David A. Bednar says, "I long have been impressed with the simple and clear definition of truth set forth in the Book of Mormon: “The Spirit speaketh the truth and lieth not. Wherefore, it speaketh of things as they really are, and of things as they really will be; wherefore, these things are manifested unto us plainly, for the salvation of our souls” (Jacob 4:13; see also D&C 93:24).
Technically we are all still in the midst of darkness, but we can see "things as they really are" when we are reading, studying and listening to God's words. His "word" being the words found in all of the Holy Scriptures and words of Prophets and Apostles.
How grateful I am for God's many words, which we have access to anywhere we are, which bring peace, comfort, confidence, healing, and light in this dark place.
"As we learn to see others as the Lord sees them rather than with our own eyes, our love for them will grow and so will our desire to help them."
I pray that together we can keep "seeing" each other while in this mist of darkness. And boy do we need a lot of help!
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