carlimac

Revelation- How does it REALLY work?

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Since we've been instructed to focus on personal revelation and how it comes to us I've been wondering a lot about what is revelation and if some of it is fabricated to fit our situation, to save face.

Here's an example: I have a daughter in college who I love and admire so very much! She is awesome!! Beautiful, kind, smart, loving sibling, RM, artistic and musical talents, loves to do active things like hike, play soccer, ice skate, in great shape, etc. Dream girl in my opinion. But she's also quiet and not terribly outgoing. She was having a dating dry spell about 9-10 months ago and  she said she felt spiritually impressed to go on Mutual (dating app), which she did. She got lots of match ups and went on sometimes 2-3 dates a week for awhile. She had fun but nothing earth shaking happened- usually just one-and-done dates kind of thing. Then she matched up with Mr. Mutual as I call him. She fell hard for him. She ended up going out with him a few times and then the semester ended and he went home. About that time she says she prayed and felt  like she should get off Mutual now. That it's purpose was fulfilled. She was smitten. We thought "he's the one".  She kind of arranged her summer to be around when he was around rather than spend the whole summer at home. They went out again. And then he completely "ghosted" her. Like, went Poof! She was very hurt. She texted him and he never replied. 

So now she feels like the reason she felt impressed to do Mutual at all was not to meet him, but just to get out of her dating rut. Which helped- she did get out of it. But now she's back in a dreary dry spell again. So was she really feeling the spirit when she opened a Mutual account? Or was she doing like we sometimes do when we see spiritual promptings as one thing but it doesn't pan out like we thought it would. So we unconciously make up another reason why we were "impressed" to do or think or say something?  Was it really a spiritual prompting at all or just a desire?

She's a very good, spiritually in -tune person. So I'm not trying to question her integrity at all. I'm just wondering if we Church members tend to put more stock in "impressions" than we should. 

There is more to the story but I'll leave it there for now. 

 

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6 minutes ago, carlimac said:

She's a very good, spiritually in -tune person. So I'm not trying to question her integrity at all. I'm just wondering if we Church members tend to put more stock in "impressions" than we should.

I personally don't think we put enough in our impressions such that many good ones are ignored because we create confusion by saying, "Was that from God, or just myself"? Then we don't act.

Not every impression is meant to lead to a garden of Eden.

Something I just noticed in the Book of Mormon, Lehi's vision, is that the messenger from God who bade him to follow him first lead him through a dark and dreary waste, which lead to even further darkness, by which Lehi prayed for mercy and then obtained mercy. Something to think about.

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I've had some incredibly strong spiritual impressions.  Sometimes I have to think hard about what they mean, sometimes I don't. 

Had one the other day as I was having barbeque with an LDS buddy of mine.  Doesn't mean he's the one for me. :)

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God has a plan for us...  However we at best only see the outlines of it.  This plan included teaching us to prepare us and testing us.

Sometimes however we mistake a teaching moment prompting for a eternal answer.  This is easy to see in the example you gave.  The lady in question wants to be marred which is good, but that can lead her to think that... Oh 'he is the One' which would be awesome rather then... oh 'he is a learning experience.'  Thus the young lady got and education that the Lord wanted her to have.

To summarize.  Revelation puts us on the path the Lord would have us on.  However that path might not been the one we want or even assumed he would put us on. 

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12 minutes ago, carlimac said:

Would there always have to be a reason for a prompting?

At this point in my understanding pertaining to promptings, yes, all promptings will have a reason. Whether or not we know/understand the reason for the prompting is a different questions.

Not every prompting though is from God. We are to become like God, and at times, our own Spirit will prompt us to do good. I like these because it is telling me that my mind and heart are in fact becoming more like God.

We also have promptings (although we call these temptations and rightly so).

We need to be enticed.

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38 minutes ago, carlimac said:

Would there always have to be a reason for a prompting?

Sure. Spiritual prompting always have a purpose. But I'm not convinced we will necessarily know what that purpose really is, at least not in this life.

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1 hour ago, Anddenex said:

Something I just noticed in the Book of Mormon, Lehi's vision, is that the messenger from God who bade him to follow him first lead him through a dark and dreary waste, which lead to even further darkness, by which Lehi prayed for mercy and then obtained mercy. Something to think about.

And the guy in white is not mentioned again once Lehi gets into the dark and dreary waste.  Did the guy leave him there?  Did Lehi get excited to tell the tree part of the vision and forget to finish this guy's story-line?  Did Nephi edit the guy out for the Reader's Digest Condensed version?

(I noticed this just this morning.  Along with more meaningful thoughts, I had to wonder about the guy in white.)

</derailment>

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Here is part two of the story:

 Even after he ghosted her I still felt like he was right for her...against all odds. She was disheartened  that he ignored her so she had deleted his number from her phone. Even if she wanted to talk to him again  she really had no way of contacting him. (They are both off Mutual at this point)  Bit I still felt positive about it. They seemed like a perfect match. I prayed that the Lord’s will be done. If there was a good reason he had dropped her but still had feelings for her perhaps the Lord could provide a way, work a miracle of sorts to get these two back together.   Lo and behold, she called me the first day of the new semester. “Mom, guess who is in my___________class?” It was him. I was genuinely surprised. She had not seen or talked to him for 5 months. No contact whatsoever. Then he ends up in her class? Wow! With this news hope was restored. I’m thanking God and thinking it’s going to happen after all. 

But two weeks into this class, and he has not acknowledged her. I’ve encouraged her to make her presence known, at least say hello to him. She says she’s quite sure he knows she’s in this class of over 100 students. She saw him notice her and then look the other way. 🤨 He obviously is still avoiding her. 

Ok so now I’m feeling sheepish. This very clearly wasn’t an answer to prayer. My impressions that these two will end up together were just my own desires- not spiritual promptings at all. So now if there must be a “reason” for this apparent miracle- these two having a class together it’s to put a final nail in the coffin of this potential relationship. 

Actually, I doubt the Lord had anything to do with it. They simply both had to take that class this semester. He’s graduating. She has two more years. 
 

I just really wonder how often we make something of what we think are impressions or works of God when they really aren’t.

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11 minutes ago, carlimac said:

This very clearly wasn’t an answer to prayer.

Erm, is one of them dead now?  Cuz if not...

(I'm not gonna guess one way or the other what is or is not revelation, just that in addition to all the other ways in which we misinterpret these things, timing and bumps along the way often make us assume final outcome despite the outcome not being final at all.)

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For me, I have to wonder why this young man can't just communicate to your daughter in a kind way that he is no longer interested in dating, friendship, going out, etc. What's with "ghosting" someone? To me that's just inconsiderate and rude. And because he handled the ending of their relationship in this way, I don't think he deserves your daughter.

M.

Edited by Maureen

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Saying this as

a) a male, and 

b) someone who was married off before “text messages” and “internet dating” were Things—

What is a guy supposed to do when a girl is more interested in him than he is in her—particularly when flatly telling a girl that often leads to tears, which tactic males have no defense for? 

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2 minutes ago, Just_A_Guy said:

What is a guy supposed to do when a girl is more interested in him than he is in her—particularly when flatly telling a girl that often leads to tears, which tactic males have no defense for? 

The most common answer is, "Tell her kindly how you feel and then it's her problem." Which is actually a fine answer, as long as you don't really give a rip about how she feels. But what if you're a reasonably decent person who doesn't like hurting women's feelings, even when it isn't "your fault"? What if, in fact, you consider the young woman a friend, someone you have gone on dates with and have enjoyed her company, but simply don't feel "like that" about her?

Many of our ancestors discouraged or outright forbade young adult friendship between the sexes outside of proper courtship. I suspect this is one of the reasons why. Based on personal experience, I'd say it's a valid concern, and the older I get, the more I think that such rigid-seeming roles are appropriate.

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4 minutes ago, Just_A_Guy said:

often leads to tears, which tactic

Maybe stop thinking of it as a "tactic" and instead as a natural hormonal response which doesn't need solving or defending against?  IMO, tears (assuming they're real) in a woman (and probably a male) are generally a release valve for overwhelming emotion.  We all have multiple such release valves, and tears are a more common one in females, but that's exactly what they are.  They aren't something to be stopped or a problem to be solved - they are, in fact, the solution to the problem (the problem being excess emotion which needs release, relief, or expression).  So just let her cry.  Maybe give her some Kleenex® brand facial tissue.

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24 minutes ago, Maureen said:

For me, I have to wonder why this young man can't just communicate to your daughter in a kind way that he is no longer interesting in dating, friendship, going out, etc. What's with "ghosting" someone? To me that's just inconsiderate and rude. And because he handled the ending of their relationship in this way, I don't think he deserves your daughter.

M.

Yes, I agree. Whole articles have been written about this phenomenon. It's really unnerving. And honestly, I think maybe we do ourselves a disservice by asking God to take control of situations like this. Humans ( me more than my daughter) need to just accept what is and try not to interject some false spiritual impression into the mix.  If he doesn't like her, he doesn't like her, no matter how perfect they look together "on paper." 

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16 minutes ago, zil said:

Maybe stop thinking of it as a "tactic" and instead as a natural hormonal response which doesn't need solving or defending against?  IMO, tears (assuming they're real) in a woman (and probably a male) are generally a release valve for overwhelming emotion.  We all have multiple such release valves, and tears are a more common one in females, but that's exactly what they are.  They aren't something to be stopped or a problem to be solved - they are, in fact, the solution to the problem (the problem being excess emotion which needs release, relief, or expression).  So just let her cry.  Maybe give her some Kleenex® brand facial tissue.

I was a little tongue-in-cheek about the “tactic” bit and hope I didn’t give undue offense.  

That being said—if an adult crying at the first hint of unpleasant news is a normal and healthy, hormonally-based outlet; then so is the tendency towards rage; and so is the tendency to simply avoid unpleasant/unproductive communications—the latter of which, of course, is fundamentally what a “ghosting” male is doing.  I don’t think we should give a pass to someone who manifests a stereotypically “female” response, while making a point of rebuking someone who manifests a stereotypically “male” one.

I should hasten to add that I don’t think ghosting a good thing to do.  But to be blunt: in all but the most extreme circumstances, crying and raging and abruptly terminating contact are all inconsiderate, immature reactions signifying poor communication skills and a lack of self-control.  We probably shouldn’t be terribly surprised to see that from people in their late teens and early twenties.  

Edited by Just_A_Guy

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8 minutes ago, Just_A_Guy said:

if an adult crying at the first hint of unpleasant news

Excellent point - tears as a knee-jerk reaction to a guy breaking up with you (assuming you're not married, blah blah blah) probably is over-reaction and evidence that something isn't right with your perspective.  Good rest of your post.

10 minutes ago, Just_A_Guy said:

hope I didn’t give undue offense

Never.  I had recently been considering this issue of "a woman crying is something that needs to be stopped", and responded to that issue without considering the fact that in the described circumstance, tears weren't warranted in the first place.

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7 minutes ago, zil said:

Excellent point - tears as a knee-jerk reaction to a guy breaking up with you (assuming you're not married, blah blah blah) probably is over-reaction and evidence that something isn't right with your perspective.  Good rest of your post.

Never.  I had recently been considering this issue of "a woman crying is something that needs to be stopped", and responded to that issue without considering the fact that in the described circumstance, tears weren't warranted in the first place.

And even then, I was maybe a little overly harsh talking about tears generally.  It’s one thing to deliver bad news (or bear your testimony, for that matter) and have some damp eyes; but actual crying is a whole other matter. And whether men should or shouldn’t learn to get comfortable with that—the simple fact is that most of us haven’t; and we’ll go to extraordinary lengths to make it stop.  

(Though I confess that having daughters, and taking people’s kids away for a living, does tend to facilitate a certain amount of immunity after a while . . .)

Edited by Just_A_Guy

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1 minute ago, Just_A_Guy said:

And whether men should or shouldn’t learn to get comfortable with that—the simple fact is that most of us haven’t; and we’ll go to extraordinary lengths to make it stop.

And this was my point - the thing I had been thinking about.  Trying to "make it stop" is actually hindering the solution.  You're seeing the tears as the problem1 rather than the solution to the (second) problem.  The first problem (the thing which still needs solving) is whatever evoked overwhelming emotion.  The second problem is the overwhelming emotion, which is solved by venting (whether the venting is tears, physical activity of some sort, raging, sulking in a dark corner, whatever).  The venting doesn't need to be solved (unless it's abnormal for some reason), but rather allowed to continue until the emotion is spent and reason can then rise again to address the first problem.

1 Perhaps because "real men don't cry".

That said, I doubt most people have given this much consideration.  I had no choice as two of my characters were having a prolonged discussion on the matter. :D

(NOTE: This isn't to say I don't think tears are ever unwarranted, insincere, or not helpful.  In the above, I'm assuming a genuine or normal response appropriate to the emotions evoked by the first problem.)

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28 minutes ago, carlimac said:

 If he doesn't like her, he doesn't like her, no matter how perfect they look together "on paper." 

Heh...   I was just going to say if the roles were reversed... We would be telling the guy to get a clue... stop being all creepy obsessive and that this was a clear NO and NO means NO.

But it looks like you got there before me

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Continuation to above: A woman-friend would tell her crying friend to "go ahead and let it all out".  Whereas a man tries to figure out how to make it stop.  IMO, the man would do better to learn to say "go ahead and let it all out".

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1 minute ago, zil said:

Continuation to above: A woman-friend would tell her crying friend to "go ahead and let it all out".  Whereas a man tries to figure out how to make it stop.  IMO, the man would do better to learn to say "go ahead and let it all out".

 

 

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2 hours ago, zil said:

And the guy in white is not mentioned again once Lehi gets into the dark and dreary waste.  Did the guy leave him there?  Did Lehi get excited to tell the tree part of the vision and forget to finish this guy's story-line?  Did Nephi edit the guy out for the Reader's Digest Condensed version?

(I noticed this just this morning.  Along with more meaningful thoughts, I had to wonder about the guy in white.)

</derailment>

I just studied that this morning. The man is Christ, see the footnote- Dan. 10:5.  (Chapter heading helps)  Christ is also the Iron Rod (see John 1:1 and the chapter heading. Some say the tree is Christ.  The message I get from that is that Christ is with us every step of the way. 

Edited by LiterateParakeet

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55 minutes ago, carlimac said:

Yes, I agree. Whole articles have been written about this phenomenon. It's really unnerving. And honestly, I think maybe we do ourselves a disservice by asking God to take control of situations like this. Humans ( me more than my daughter) need to just accept what is and try not to interject some false spiritual impression into the mix.  If he doesn't like her, he doesn't like her, no matter how perfect they look together "on paper." 

When I was in middle school, there was this boy that had a HUGE crush on my gal friend.  He hung out with us all the time, they flirted, etc.  I truly believed that they were PERFECT for each other.  But, he was nervous and It took him until Junior year of HS to muster the courage to formally ask her out.  And she turned him down!!  He was devastated.  But still, he felt so strongly for her.  Freshman year of college, he asked her out again, and she said yes!!!

I was so excited!!!!  When I heard the news, I literally danced in my kitchen for an hour-- finally she had realized it, and the were so wonderful for each other!!!

22 days later she dumped him.  And not nicely either.  There was no coming back from this.

...why was she like this?  Didn't she understand how they were so great for each other?

 

A few years later, I'm hanging out with this male friend more-- cause we were still friends after all.  And he asked me out!!  What the?!?  I sobbed.  Literally.  The water works, snot running down my face, "What about Sally?  She's was meant for you."  Really confused, he responded, "No... yeah, I liked her for a long time, and that's part of my past.  But it's just the past.  I want to be with you."  

Fast forward: we have been blissfully married for seven years.

 

 

 

God... is all knowing.  We really don't appreciate the grandness of what He sees, the way His marvels work.  And just because the marvel didn't turn out the way *we* thought it would, don't make the grand design any less.  

 

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