This is a compilation of thoughts and quotes that I have found or written recently, as well as many that I've collected throughout the years. Most thoughts are posted randomly, as I feel inspired. A listing of quotes can be found alphabetically (check the 2008 and 2009 archives listing), or by source.

Feel free to suggest additions!

“For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he.” – Proverbs 23:7

Friday, August 6, 2010

Excerpts from "The Other Side of Heaven" by John H. Groberg

I love the inspirational messages of this true life experience told by John Groberg. A real primer for how to survive the storms of life!

John's experience of survival begins here as he was thrown off a small motor boat into the stormy open sea:

As I flew through the air, I remember thinking, “This can’t be happening! This isn’t right!”

I remember the sensation of falling, falling, falling through hissing winds and stinging salt spray into the boiling cauldron of an angry sea…As I sank blow the water, I still seemed to be falling, down, down, deeper and deeper. The pressure was almost unbearable; my lungs seemed ready to burst. When would it end? And how?

For a moment I thought again, “This can’t be! This isn’t true! …this isn’t supposed to happen!" But it was true and I was there, and I knew I had better stop complaining and start swimming.

Even as those thoughts filled my mind, another giant wave roared over me and I sank again…As I rose above the surface the second time, I began to swim. It seemed almost useless as the unbridled fury of the sea threw me here and there and pulled and tugged me in every direction and appeared unsatisfied with anything short of tearing me to pieces.

I began to despair …and found myself once again underwater.

As I came to the surface the third time, swimming and actually staying above the water seemed more plausible. There was extra help and I was feeling it. I sensed that if I put forth all the effort I could, things would be all right.

I swam steadily. I knew I must not panic or swim too hard. Land was far away, and I needed to float as much as possible and swim hard only to keep above the surface. The squall was moving on, and I sensed that the waves were gradually lessening in intensity and that the wind was not quite as strong.

After a few hours of exhaustive swimming towards the closest island, John was able to take momentary rest on a rock just below the water's surface. He related that to the bit of support we all need:

We all need assurances from time to time, such as a word of encouragement, an expression of love and confidence, or a rock to stand on in the midst of a sea of trouble. All these things, if heard or felt even for a moment, give us courage to go on, to move forward.

Sometimes the Lord calms the storm, and sometimes He lets the storm rage and calms his child.

So often in life we think that because we have done things in a certain way, certain results should follow. But life is like the ocean. Sometimes we get caught in squalls and storms and things don’t go the way we think they should, even when we think we have done right. But God can find us in the eye of a storm and give us courage to swim in rough water. We learn lessons from storms that we cannot learn from calm seas.

“Know… that all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good.” (D&C 122:7)

The Lord’s promise to us personally is that if we do what is right, He will give us peace no matter what the environment. I know that to be true. That peace may not come in the way we think or how, where, or when we think, but in the eternal scheme of things, it will come in the way best for us and we will yet praise His name for things we do not now understand.

When we find ourselves in these squalls or storms, we should remember we don’t have enough energy to complain and still keep our head above water. Our duty is to swim, not wonder or complain. We need to get to shore and must leave the reasons for the storm with the Lord. If all the effort we put into asking ‘why’ were used in swimming, a lot more of us, with His help, would reach shore.

If we sincerely try to do our duty, and work hard and are patient and prayerful, and, above all, have unrelenting faith in God, we can accomplish whatever He desires, for God always comes through.


See also Part 2, Excerpts from John Groberg's "The Other Side of Heaven"
for more excerpts from this book.

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