This is the first time – really – that I am going to post something just for me. No that does NOT mean I want you to keep out. That just means that I am writing it primarily because I needed to write it down and because I needed to find a way to say thank you. This is my way to say thank you – that is, sharing it with you.
I just had to post something tonight. It may strike some as odd, but I am who I am (and ‘odd’ is normal ’round here). I have had several experiences today and yesterday (oops, it’s actually later than I thought tonight, so shift that back one day) where I felt the tender mercies of God in my life. I do not generally believe in coincidence, because so often those things that others might label as such are accompanied by the gentle whisperings of spiritual peace – the witness that God is there and aware of – me. I have experienced that too many times in my life to even attempt to count, but tonight, I shall not fail to write it down. I also choose to do so here, even though not everyone will see it in the same light that I do and even those that do, not everyone will even care. I choose to share because sometimes by small and simple means are great things brought to pass. I think that anytime someone’s heart is lifted, it is a great thing. Even if no other hearts are lifted, it lifts my heart to write it, so it is worth the risk and worth the time, because greatness always is.
I know that I am only one human being, but I also know that God loves me for who I am, in spite of blatant and incessant imperfection. I love Him too and am daily grateful for His grace and the scriptures to guide my path. Tonight, I was having a bit of a sad moment (it was a silly one, but it came at one of those tired times of the day, when it is hard to brush things off as easily as I would like). My little boy – the 5-year-old that puts the Energizer bunny to shame – was being a nut case and a half. Then he spontaneously decided to turn on an old (as in still VHS old) church movie – one we have not had on in several years. When he started it up, it started at a part that directly related to the focus of my moment of sadness. It reminded me of what I needed in my life and in my heart to handle the issue and gave me that little extra that carried me through all the rest of my day. I know children have an inner connection to Heavenly things that is powerful indeed. I have no doubt that my rowdy little man did what he did because of that connection. This was not a super hero movie or even a cool scripture reenactment or something (which can look about the same sometimes – only without the spandex). This was a video of one of the leaders of our church giving a nice calm talk (AKA sermon). Not only did he dig until he found the exact movie I needed to see, but he did it at the exact moment I needed to feel God near me. No, I don’t believe in coincidences!
I will share only one more experience tonight. This one happened earlier in the day. It was being a bigger sad moment for me. For those that are not familiar with the LDS faith, a bit of background may be required – I’ll see what I can do to explain. Every 6 months, the leaders of our church speak to the worldwide membership of the church in what we call General Conference. It lasts for 2 days and has 4 (for the ladies, with another one for the men – there is an additional one for the women the week before) sessions that include 2 hours each session of music (often the Mormon Tabernacle Choir for the majority of it) and talks (or sermons) by the main leadership of the church. I think that a good simile would be if the Pope and the other notable leaders of the Catholic faith were to host such an event and the Catholics of the world tuned in to hear what the Pope wanted them to know. It is one of my favorite times of the year. I look forward to it like Christmas! Well, this weekend (Saturday and Sunday) was the time for General Conference. I was excited about the fun things I had arranged and put together to keep my 5 kiddos happy and nice while we listened to 8 hours of church (no small feat by the way). I was excited to not feel guilty for ignoring our business and my schoolwork for the weekend, while I got to focus on my faith and my family! Ours is a very family focused religion. I am a very family focused person. I LOVE being a wife and feel the most amazing joy in my opportunity to be a mother! I gripe about it often as a sarcastic coping mechanism for the inevitable moments of chaos, but never with ANY desire to go back and not be mother to my 5 amazing kids! This period in my life has been a challenge unlike any I have ever known. I question everyday – usually SEVERAL times a day – how I should balance my time. As much as I wish it were different, I realize there are simply only 24 hours available in each day. I think, I analyze, I discuss it with people I respect and trust, and I pray to find that balance point each day. However, no matter how much I try, there are often things that get missed. It seems that guilt has become a standard sensation for me – especially where my kids are concerned. I try to give them each some of my time each day, but it is rare to make it work to have that time be more than a precious handful of minutes. They need me and I need them – I miss them.
Well, with that background, I will try to explain my other mini-personal miraculous moment of God’s love in my life today. My big sad moment came during part of our General Conference. There were two (or perhaps it was three – I must admit that my emotions may have run them together a bit at that point) speakers in a row that were talking about the importance of families and the important role of parents in the raising of their children. They were discussing the many challenges faced by children these days and by families as a whole. Every word felt like a mental knife in my already tightly pressed heart. It was not the kind of grief that leads one to turn toward God and make a change, but one of hopelessness. I was feeling such grief at not being able to drop my schooling or quit doing what we are doing for our business and just stay home with my kids all day, every day. I felt sorry for my kids, I felt sorry for my hubby that has to pick up all my slack, and I felt dreadfully sorry for myself. I wanted to know that I am making my children feel loved, helping them feel empowered to reach for greatness in their lives and enjoy being who they are. I doubted right then that I was doing any of those things, let alone all of them! I KNOW that what I am doing with my husband right now in this business of ours is the right thing to do, and I realize that my semester ends in only one month, but it was hard to focus on those things at that moment. I just wanted to go have a good cry, quit life, and go camping with my family! Instead, I just kept stirring the gravy that was simmering on the stove for later. I had gone over to stir my pot once again, when I was suddenly wrapped in my oldest princess’ arms. She gave me the biggest, most wonderful hug I can imagine right now! I was completely taken off guard and asked her, “What is that for?” She answered immediately, and with no guile – with perfect sincerity and love, “For doing so much for us.” Even now, just as I type it, hours after it happened, I am still moved to tears. I know my daughter is preceptive to my emotions, but we were not even by each other and I had been facing my scapegoat pot since before my emotions started to get involved. What I felt – still feel – is much more likely than her perceiving my sadness, is that she was being preceptive to the guiding whispering of God’s Holy Spirit. God knew I needed to know, right then, that I was loved and even more than that, that I was succeeding at showing my children love as well. I am humbled and feel so very rich to have been blessed by the tenderest sweet blessings God could have given me today. I could have won the lotto (although I don’t play and we don’t have one in UT anyway, but that’s not the point) today, but it would NOT have been what I needed. I needed to know I am loved and I needed to know that my children know that they are loved. I needed to find and feel peace about all that I am doing in my world right now. I am so thankful to have been blessed with exactly what I needed – for me. Again I state, no I don’t believe in coincidences. But, I most certainly believe in a loving God, a God who cares about each of us, a God of miracles both great and small.