I have been working hard over the past year to make changes in myself so that I could be more able to have the Spirit close. I have come to truly value the impressions that the Spirit has given to me. For me, this has always been something I have struggled with due to the fact that I have a diagnosis of depression and anxiety. When I went on my mission I struggled to try to recognize the Spirit and it was something I was ashamed of, I didn’t understand it. What was I doing wrong that made it so I wasn’t able to hear? Why would the Lord not speak to me?
With the help of a great counselor through LDS Family Services I learned that one of the ways that my depression impacts me is through making it so that I didn’t recognize the Spirit in my life. The Lord was indeed there, He was aware of me, and He was sending the Spirit into my life, but I was unable to see it, to recognize its presence. For the past 20 years I have worked hard to pray for help in recognizing the Spirit. I have worked hard to really listen and to recognize the ways in which the Lord speaks to me. Each of us has different ways to hear and recognize the Spirit in our lives. Some people hear a small voice. Some feel warmth. I find it often in the words of others or in impressions in my mind. It is important that we find how He speaks to us as an individual.
Some of these promptings are small things, to pick up the phone and check in on a friend. Sometimes the promptings are much larger, to make a great change in your life. I encourage each of you to act on these promptings because as President Henry B. Eyring shared, “As you obey, the impressions from the Spirit will come more frequently, becoming closer and closer to constant companionship. Your power to choose the right will increase.”
Artwork by Jenedy Paige Eggleston