I was in Japan, the sun streaming through the window in my room, and I was in a hurry. I had made a decision that morning. I was going to move back to the states and reconsider every step I had made in my life so far. Now I was packing, a metaphoric sorting of all my perceived mistakes before moving forward. I was resolute. The decision was final. Then in one profoundly spiritual moment, I changed my mind. I saw a new path as clearly as a road. And without hesitation started walking in another direction.
I could say that this was a one time, move-your-wagon, “Saul on the road to Damascus” type of revelation that we believe can happen in crisis. Or, I could say that this was a process of weighing pros and cons and suddenly all the pieces of the dilemma fell into place. But over time I have realized a pattern. I am not a person who expects or invites help from earth or heaven. I have my own loud voice and the still small voice of the universe is mostly drowned out by alternating hubris or anxiety. But I am beginning to wonder if there is a particular context in which I am more prone to listen. When faced with directional decisions, I cling to each end of an internal divining rod and feel the tiniest twitch of the spirit. I have sensed which way to go again and again and chosen meaningful destinations that before were unclear, unavailable, or even unknown. I have come to believe that this may be a gift. The ability to sense and see through fog, developing an openness to this type of revelation and a receptiveness that eludes me in other situations.
The theme of the Exponent II Fall 2017 issue is Gifts of the Spirit. What are the patterns of revelatory experience that we feel, express, and that change how we move through the world? There are women who have the gift of prophecy, sister missionaries who speak with the gift of tongues, and healers of the spirit who bring comfort and calm amid chaos. How do we wield our own spiritual power and how do we ask others to share their own? We invite you to submit stories of your own gifts and those of others. Consider personal narratives, or historical and scriptural explorations. As always, we support a broad spectrum of belief and experience with the expectation of respect and connection.
Mormon women have a rich history of healing and blessing each other with gifts of the spirit. We want to capture this moment in time to share with our sisters and daughters in the next generation.
Please share essays between 700 and 2700 words. Please submit to exponentiieditor AT gmail DOT com. The deadline for submission is July 8, 2017.