Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Living in the Now

Daily I’m finding new reasons to live in the present. As I watch myself and the people around me I realize that when problems occur in a relationship, most of the time people don’t just deal with the present problem. Instead they haul in all the baggage from past problems and heap it on the present problem which makes it so complicated it becomes almost impossible to solve. If instead we simply look at the problem confronting us and with the help of the Spirit determine what the best solution is for this problem, it is much easier to solve and then move on.

For example, a woman confided in me that in the past years her husband had been psychologically abusive and the way she had survived was to pull away from the relationship emotionally. For the sake of the children she stayed in the marriage, but she and her husband had become little more than house mates. He lived downstairs and she lived upstairs. She told me that he had softened quite a bit and was no longer very abusive, but as she went on explaining the relationship I realized that the decisions she is making now are based on the old patterns and relationship. Even though (by her own admission) he is no longer abusive, she decides what to do and how to react to him based on the old abusive man instead of reacting and accepting the new gentler man.

It was obvious that sometimes she was punishing him for all the past times he had hurt her and that because of the past she felt justified in doing so. But that only creates more problems. The only way to end a war is for one side to stop fighting. If she would forgive and forget—live in the present moment instead of the past—she could have the very happiness and joy she wants. It is no longer her husband that is keeping her from joy, love and peace—it is her own behavior.

Living in Truth means living in the present moment and dealing with what is now facing you.

6 comments:

Wendi said...

I've noticed that forgetting is sometimes more difficult than forgiving--especially when relationships with others remind us of the past so frequently. It's something that has to constantly be worked at. I hope that for your friend and for all of us, Living in Truth and the power of the Atonement will help us forget any past hurts and struggles that may re-surface in our memories.

SuSu said...

This is so true. It is unfortunate that sometimes human nature keeps us in the past instead of moving us forward to the present. We do so much better when we look forward with love instead of back with bitterness or disappointment. Makes me think of the scripture "Get thee behind me, Satan..."

Sherrie Mills Johnson said...

Wendi, It is true forgetting is hard and I'm not sure we ever do, but the emotion we connect to the memory changes as we let the Savior take us by the hand and help us.

Sherrie Mills Johnson said...

SuSu, A good connection! When we really stop and see what we are doing to ourselves it is often astonishing.

Wendi said...

Thank you for that follow-up insight about HOW the Atonement helps with this. I appreciated that, Sherrie. :)

GRANDMA MUFFIN said...

This is a powerful post, Sherrie, and the illustration could not be more effective. If only we could all learn to live in the NOW all the time . . .

The Living Truth is I am thankful to you for making it easier to focus on the present moment and deal only with what really matters.