I have been toying with the subject of this post for weeks now. I started thinking about it when my Facebook newsfeed blew up with posts about a new show on Netflix that was bringing a lot of attention to bullying and suicide.
The reviews I read were mixed. Some of my friends really liked it and felt like it opened their eyes to problems that their children might be facing. They also felt like it gave them an opportunity to talk with their kids about these serious subjects. Both of those outcomes are awesome. Others that have watched it have said that it was too graphic and they felt like it glamorized suicide.
I have not not seen the show or read the book that inspired it, and I really have no intentions to do either. Although I am not naive to the fact that life is graphic, and terrible, horrific things happen to people every single day, I do not like to fill my mind with those images if I can help it. I have also read too many emails and news stories expressing concern about the negative effect this show may be having on vulnerable teenagers.
**Here are a few links to news articles if you are curious... CNN article, Scientific American article (which brings up a valid point that this is not the first time in history where a show, book, or media coverage of suicide has produced a rash of "copycat" suicides), USA Today article (which brings up the mental illness issue related to suicide and how just being kind can't help everyone. People who are having thoughts of suicide because of mental illness need medical attention ALONG WITH kindness.)
In the Scientific American article that I mentioned above, I found this quote...
"...the message that suicide can have simple, or a simple set, of causes, or that suicide represents some type of solution, is unfortunate. There is never one reason why, or even thirteen."
Suicide is not simple, nor is it a good solution to overcoming problems. It is heartbreaking for everyone involved and even those not involved. My heart literally aches with sadness whenever I hear of anyone taking his/her own life, even if I have never met them.
I know we will never be able to prevent suicide from happening, but that doesn't mean that we shouldn't try to reach out and help others who are struggling. I also know that not many people will read this post or watch my video, but in my own desire to do something to help, this is one way that I feel I can help, even if I only ever reach 1 person.
In my desire to help, I offer only 1 thing...1 reason, if you will, why you should not consider taking your own life...
I am passionate about getting this message out there, but I cannot do it alone. I am asking for your help. Please share this post, or at the very least, the YouTube video. Let's get these two words out there and let's get to work reaching out to others and assisting them in getting the help that they need. I know that I am not a doctor who specializes in mental health, nor am I a researcher who has spent years researching suicide. I realize that the things that I say or write are simply my opinion and you can either take my opinion or leave it. However, I hope that something that I have said will at least get the ball rolling for someone; that through my words, spoken or written, someone will find the strength within his or her self to reach out and ask someone for help.
You matter...we ALL matter.
Once the young missionary has that envelope in his/her hands, the real fun begins. Family is rounded up and the moment of anticipation comes to a head with the tearing open of the thick white envelope.
We are so stinkin' excited we can hardly contain ourselves. Part of that excitement stems from the fact that my husband also served his mission in Taiwan. He was in a different area than Josh will be serving in, but he learned Mandarin Chinese so they will be able to share that language with each other. (My hope is that the girls and I can also learn some Mandarin over the next two years. Fingers crossed that it will actually happen.)
All of this leads me to my song choice for today because ultimately, it did not matter where Josh was called to serve. We knew that he would go wherever the Lord needs him most. I am grateful that he will have this opportunity to share the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ with the Taiwanese people. It makes my heart do a little happy dance every time I think about it.
I'll Go Where You Want Me to Go- Rob Gardner
Welcome to a special Mother's Day Edition of Songs for the Sabbath.
I hope you enjoy it, but more importantly, I hope you have a very happy Mother's Day.
Whether you are a mother or not, you still have the divine nature to be a mother and have opportunities all around you to be a "mother" in someone's life. I hope that you can follow the guidance of a loving Heavenly Father as He helps you to recognize those opportunities in your life.
I love being a mom.
It is my favorite thing...ever.
Can you blame me when I have kids that are as amazing as these hooligans are?
But seriously, I just love being a mom. I love everything about it, even on the days when I dislike everything about it. I wouldn't trade it for any other job in the world (although sometimes my kids probably wonder, especially when I spend too much time on the computer instead of being with them.) But each day I try to be a little better, a little more attentive, and a lot more kind. I hope that my kids know that I am trying. But more importantly, I hope they know how much I love them.
As I was gathering my thoughts for this post, I thought I would look back over my posts from previous Mother's Days and see what I could find. I was not disappointed. I came across this post that I wrote in 2015. It brought tears to my eyes and I felt like I needed to share it again because the feelings that I felt while writing this post have only magnified over the last two years.
I cannot leave this post without sharing one of my all-time favorite songs about motherhood. Every time I hear it, I feel my heart swell with gratitude because of my opportunity to be a mother.
Walk You Through the Night- Mercy River
Happy Mother's Day to every, single, amazing woman out there.
Remember that you are divine and you inherited divine qualities not only from a Heavenly Father, but a Heavenly Mother as well.
On this Mother's Day, I express my gratitude for my Heavenly Parents and my earthly parents, especially my own mother.
She is a wonderful example to me of true motherly love. From changing my diapers, to being my chauffeur, chef, and cheerleader, to practically moving in with me when each of my children were born and when I was going through cancer treatments, she is simply the best and I love her with all my heart.
No, I did not misspell a ton of words in the title of this post.
If you are familiar with the movie The Princess Bride, then you know exactly why the words are spelled the way that they are.
If you are unfamiliar with the movie, I have a little clip for you so we can all be on the same page...
Before I begin...
Because this post will be addressing a subject that is very personal and of a sensitive nature, I am requesting one thing as the owner of this blog--please be kind and respectful if you choose to leave a comment. I fully understand that those who are reading this post may not agree with some of the things that are written in it. My goal for this post is to share what I believe to be truth and to do it in a manner that is respectful of those who believe differently then me. We can do that, you know. We can have different beliefs, different ideas, different values, and still be kind to one another. AND, dare I say it? We can even LOVE each other.
I saw this meme a while ago and I thought, "This is so true!" I wish more people would understand this idea...
We live in an age of instant communication. Sometimes that is wonderful and sometimes...not so much. With a few key strokes and the click of a mouse or finger press on a screen, words are out there in cyberspace forever. I will be the first to admit that I am not proud of everything that I have ever posted on social media platforms or my blog. However, as I have gotten older, I have realized that I need to choose my words carefully because my children, grandchildren, and so on will read these words. What kind of a legacy do I want to leave? Do I want my great great grandchildren to read my words and think, "Wow. My grandma was kind of a bully." Or do I want them to be proud that their grandmother shared her love for the Savior, her desire to be His disciple, and her hope that people could co-exist and disagree about things in a kind and respectful manner?
I choose the latter. I give a lot of thought, say a lot of prayers, and really care about every post that I write. It's important to me.
Unfortunately, I like to ramble, which is exactly what I am doing now. Time to get to the meat and potatoes of this post.
What I Believe...
I believe that the same church that Christ organized when He was living on the earth exists once more on the earth.
Because I believe these things, I also believe that "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" is "a declaration and reaffirmation of standards, doctrines, and practices" that the Church of Jesus Christ has always had (Gordon B. Hinckley, Ensign, Nov 1995, 100). Some people argue that through this Proclamation, the church is trying to create new doctrine or that it is not doctrine from God at all. But as I have studied the Proclamation intensely over the last two weeks, I know that the statement that President Hinckley made back in 1995 is true.
What Studying the Proclamation has Taught Me...
What I have learned from studying just the first paragraph of this inspired Proclamation to the world...
*Families are central to God's plan for us. We have been part of a family from the very beginning of our existence.
The elephant in the room...
Yes. I believe that marriage between a man and a woman is ordained by God. But allow me paint a picture for you...
Let's say that sometime in the future one of my children, grandchildren, or other family member or friend comes to me and says, "Mom (or grandma or Des, whatever the case may be) I am gay. I have also fallen in love with someone and we want to be married." Any guesses as to how I would respond to this person that I love?
Some of you reading this may jump to the conclusion that because I believe that marriage between a man and a woman is ordained by God and that no sexual relations should take place outside the bonds of marriage that I would say, "No. This cannot be. You may not get married and what you are doing is wrong."
On the contrary, in my mind, when I have thought about this scenario (and believe me, because of the world in which we live, I have put a lot of thought into this scenario), this is what I feel I would say,
"I love you. Thank you for trusting me with this information. I am sure that this was a hard thing for you to say to me knowing that I believe what I believe. Nothing that you have told me changes the way I feel about you. You will always be my child/grandchild/friend/etc. And although I don't agree with the lifestyle that lays before you, I will be there for you. If you want to get married, I will be there, on the front row. I will love you and I will love your significant other. I will also pray that the both of you will be able to find peace within yourselves and with God. He loves you both and I know that He has a place for both of you in His kingdom."
We don't know everything...
Friends, family, strangers--whomever is reading this post right now--we simply don't know everything. There are so many things that God has in store for His children that simply have not been revealed yet. Now, having said that, because God's laws will never change, I don't ever foresee His law relating to marriage between a man and a woman changing. I am not a prophet and so the words that I am writing are solely based on revelation that I have received in answer to MY questions. However, we have had prophets and apostles speak on this very subject and God has always guided us through prophets and will continue to do so.
Faith in God's Plan...
Here's what it comes down to for me.
*I have faith in God's perfect plan for His children.
*I have faith that there is a place for every single person in the kingdom of God.
*I have faith that if we keep God's commandments, make and keep sacred covenants with Him, and allow our will to align with His, then we will be blessed with peace about things that we don't understand. That peace may come quickly, but more often, it comes slowly, in bits and pieces over a long period of time. The trick is, we have to hold tightly to those bits and pieces. We have to cherish them and continue to study and pray or those bits and pieces will disappear.
*I know that being blessed with peace about something that you are questioning, doesn't necessarily mean that you will receive an answer to the "Why does it have to be this way?" question. What it does mean if that you can receive peace in knowing that everything will work out in the end and that you will be strengthened as you try to press forward with faith. I know this to be true because there are many questions that I have that I simply have not received an answer to. But as I rely on my faith, my knowledge that God loves everyone, and my own personal desire to keep sacred covenants, I have found the peace that I need to keep going.
Again, with the rambling...
It's one of my weaknesses for sure.
I think I have belabored this subject enough. And now, the choice is yours, and isn't that wonderful? We have all been blessed with the gift of agency which allows us to ask for ourselves. Sometimes the trick is, asking the right questions to receive the answers that will bring us the most peace. I'm still working on that...
Other Posts To Check Out:
His Love- Nathan Pacheco
I testify that His Love can truly heal. His Love will lead us and His Love will endure forever.
His Love is for everyone, my friends. That includes Y-O-U. No matter where you are in your life. No matter what you have done--what mistakes you have made--His Love is there for you. He is waiting for you. Turn to Him. Trust in Him and His Love.
Let Him heal your heart.
I am loving my second chance at life.
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Copyright Desirae Ogden, www.desiraeogden.com, 2015.
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