Do You See Signs?

It is Sunday. On Sunday I usually attend church. For 3 hours, to be exact. Not today. Today, I thought it wise to stay home and not infect the entire congregation with the cold the Queen, Manly, and I have. I missed not hearing the messages that kindle my Spirit and encourage me to be a better person. I missed the Spiritual enlightenment.

I am a Mormon. Yes, a Book of Mormon toting, alcohol and coffee abstaining, Christ-loving Mormon.

It is a piece of what makes me whole. A large portion that defines who I am.

How has being a Mormon influenced my life? I will provide one example (more than one would make this post ridiculously long).

There have been times in my existence when I felt confused about where I should be going. I have received promptings hinting in a certain direction. Like when I was deciding what college I should attend after high school.

“Apply for Brigham Young University (BYU),” the voice whispered.

“I can’t. My grades are no where near good enough. I can’t afford to live on my own” I stubbornly answered back.

After a week of indecision, I once again heard that voice.

“Apply for BYU,” the voice said, a little louder this time.

“Fine!” I snapped back.

I applied for BYU. In Hawaii. I thought I had my best chances in that direction.

I received the rejection letter a couple months later.

“Hah!” I scornfully replied to that voice. “I told you I would not get accepted.”

Again, I received the inspiration to apply for BYU. In Utah.

“No way, BYU Utah is the hardest to get accepted into!”

“Do it,” the voice commanded.

I relented. But, to make my point, I applied to all three BYU schools (Idaho, Utah, and Hawaii).

A month later, I received an acceptance letter for BYU Utah. I was astounded. All the evidence supported my theory that my grades were not to the caliber of their regular freshman acceptees. However, I had applied for Winter, not Fall. With admission requirements slightly lower for Winter applications, my chances were elevated.

I was also accepted into Idaho, and, once again, Hawaii rejected me. (My mother did not inform me of this until I was on my way to Provo. She is sweet like that.)

The voice that guided me was the Holy Spirit. I can recount numerous occasions, some big (like marrying Mr. B), and others small (help me find my wedding ring!), where I have been guided by the Spirit.

My experiences are described by Mel Gibson’s character in the movie Signs.

“People break down into two groups. When they experience something lucky, group number one sees it as more than luck, more than coincidence. They see it as a sign, evidence, that there is someone up there, watching out for them. Group number two sees it as just pure luck. Just a happy turn of chance. I’m sure the people in group number two are looking at those fourteen lights in a very suspicious way. For them, the situation is a fifty-fifty. Could be bad, could be good. But deep down, they feel that whatever happens, they’re on their own. And that fills them with fear. Yeah, there are those people. But there’s a whole lot of people in group number one. When they see those fourteen lights, they’re looking at a miracle. And deep down, they feel that whatever’s going to happen, there will be someone there to help them. And that fills them with hope. See what you have to ask yourself is what kind of person are you? Are you the kind that sees signs, that sees miracles? Or do you believe that people just get lucky? Or, look at the question this way: Is it possible that there are no coincidences.” (Courtesy of IMDB)

I see signs. This is a profound influence of my religion on my life.

Other influences can wait for another time, another post.

How about you, do you see signs?
Do you believe in coincidences?
If you’ve seen the movie Signs, what did you think?



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9 responses to “Do You See Signs?

  1. BigLittleWolf

    This is a beautifully written post, that does indeed say much about you – and about life, whether we take things as luck, as signs, or that other group that is so insistent that they make their own luck. I don't categorize well so I won't really comment on where I fit into this set of choices, except that we have inner voices, and regardless of what you believe the source to be, I have found that when I turn away from my inner voices (usually speaking in my best interest), I face a tougher road than when I pay attention.I will also say it is lovely and inspiring to hear your story about BYU. We all struggle with self-doubt and esteem issues to some degree which we may couch in what we consider realistic or practical assessments of our opportunities. Isn't it wonderful when we turn out to be wrong in under-estimating ourselves, and right in growing beyond doubts, fear, and hard lessons.(By the way, your life is very different from mine, and I don't mean by virtue of age. And yet I love reading you, how you think and what you process. And the wondrous commonalities among women – and mothers – are there. Those commonalities cross miles, lifestyles, belief systems, age and any number of other differences. If only we could build bridges to each other through open minds and shared experiences, rather than being divisive. Yes, I am a bit of a dreamer, I know…)A wonderful 2010 to you and your family.

  2. Shell

    I'm a Christian and I don't know about signs. I think that they are there, but it's so hard to interpret them. A lot of people tend to call it a sign if it's something that they want to do. And then bad luck if things don't work out they way they want.

  3. Kristen

    What a thought-provoking post, and what a thought-provoking comment from BLW. Like her, I believe in the power of my inner voice, whatever its source. I am also a great admirer of people of faith, especially those who, like you, celebrate their faith through reaching out with love to those like them and those different from them. I wish all people – believers and non-believers alike – shared your kindness, thoughtfulness, and willingness to explain, with tolerance and without judgment, their own position.

  4. becca

    Fantastic post Ambrosia! I feel like I got to know you so much better from reading this! I am a strong believer in signs. I also believe everything happens for a reason and that "someone" is watching out for me and those I care for. I'm not a religious person, but I am a spiritual person and that gets me through a lot. I also had a similar experience with getting into Business School. I was very pessimistic about applying to my "reach" school but I did, and got in and I'm glad I acted on that gut feeling I had in making the decision to apply.Once again – great post!

  5. Linda Pressman

    Ambrosia, thanks for sharing what your faith means to you. I feel the same way about my Judaism.I also hear that intuitive voice, or direction; I consider it a direct link to my higher power. I can tell easily when it's me and when it's not. If it's me, it's normally something I want to do, if it's something else, it's something I don't want to do, something harder or something that may involve change. It's been a part of my life for so long now that it's something I seek out as essential to me.Thanks for putting your feelings into words so I could think about my own.Linda

  6. Nicki

    Ambrosia – I had to go to YouTube to see a portion of the movie "Signs" as I do not watch many movies.I do believe in signs. I believe that the Holy Spirit guides me in my life. I can tell when I have been ignoring God's plans for me and the voice that guides me. I can also tell when I have not been to Mass in a while. It happened this summer and I knew I was off but couldn't figure it out. A friend pointed out to me that I had not been mention Mass or homilys lately. Then, it hit me like a ton of bricks. I was off because I was not in tune with God.I love the comments here from those who believe in all kinds of higher beings. I think BLW is correct – if only we could build bridges.Know that I keep you and your family in my prayers daily!

  7. natalie

    I thought Signs was a terrible movie and that they should have revoked M. Night Shamalamayheinieman's license to make any more movies, ever.I believe in the mystic, the spiritual, the natural and the supernatural. I believe there is more, and less, than me. I believe in karma and I believe in ghosts. I have made decisions based solely on what I thought an invisible and omniscient wanted for me. Call it God, call it schizophrenia. It seems to be working.:)

  8. Yvonne

    I loved that scene in Signs and that quote. Thanks for this post. I know that we are guided by The Spirit. I know I need to work harder at listening.Thanks for sharing your experience with BYU.

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