Monday, October 8, 2007

Furthermore

On my family blog I recently posted about a spiritual experience that our oldest son Trevor had. I was surprised that so many of the comments focused on me as a parent doing a good job. Maybe because most of them came from women, but as an RM it is second nature to help someone recognize the spirit when they don't realize it. For that reason I didn't feel like I had done anything special, but I felt that the experience was something VERY special.

To explain that I have to give a little summarized personal history. Having grown up in the church I have always felt like I had a little stronger testimony than the average Joe. Yet, I can't say that I have ever had any "hear a voice" or "strong burning in my bosom" types of experiences. Because of that there have been times that I have doubted, probably like most any person. Basically to get at the gist of my point...I couldn't logically/scientifically prove that any spiritual experience that I had wasn't just me. That bothered me for a while, but faith and hope won out in the end and I continued to step into the dark one foot at a time. One reason is that I couldn't deny that my life had turned out better than I had even dreamed as a child. I was either very lucky or blessed and I figured it prudent to lay claim to a higher source.

With that in mind, I have always prayed for some experience that would somehow be outside those bounds of...possibly coming from me, my subconscious or a predisposition to feel good when good things happen or anything else that someone could argue as originating internally and not extrinsically. So, how does having a six your old boy, with limited to no knowledge on the methodology of gaining a personal testimony, spontaneously asking for forgiveness directly to God for doing something offensive to Him and later unprovokedly stating that he has some weird "tingly feeling" in his chest? I can't think of anything much better than that! It will be an experience that we will help Trevor remember for the rest of his life, but more importantly I think it was an answer that I have been secretly and unexpectedly anticipating for about 10 years.

5 comments:

Chapman Family said...

Thanks so much for sharing such a personal experience. I too have never been a "hit you over the head, voice in your ear" type of person. I am still not sure why some people get answers so straight forward and others don't. Sometimes I think it's because I am not "spiritual" enough, or ready to listen. Other times I think that maybe it is because I don't need it like that. But whatever it is, I feel exactly the same way when you say you just kept "stepping into the dark one foot at a time"- a perfect way to describe it. I hope that darkness is a little bit lighter for you now. All I know for sure, is that we just have to keep stepping into it no matter what. Thank you Carson.

lettieb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
lettieb said...

Sorry I mistyped some things the first time around...
Carson, I would say that definitely not ALL RMs feel that is their duty. I think it really is more you than what you learned/did on your mission. You have strong feelings about the Church and I think that is a strong influence on Trevor. My brother in law had a baby when he was 18 - obviously never served a mission and is a VERY spiritual person and way better Mormon than most people I know. I imagine he would be the kind of person who would have a similar experience as yours with Trevor. As for my household - uh, probably not. ;)

Rehrer said...

thanks for being so open with your thoughts carson- em

Carson Calderwood said...

I don't mind wearing my heart on my sleeve a little, but with this especially I know that many others have the same doubts, but are afraid to share them in seeking for support. Hopefully, this can help some of those so that they don't make a wrong turn. Unfortunately, I have some friends that did.