A year ago I was struggling to find the answer to a question that Google would never be able to answer. For days and weeks I included it in my prayers, my thoughts during the day, and the conversations with my husband. It wasn't something I obsessed over, but it was always there; an unanswered question that was a roadblock to me moving forward with my life. Then one afternoon as I was home with Paityn, I really poured my heart out in prayer. I was tired of trying to sort through my fears, thoughts and what was the spirit was trying to lead me to. I was down the hallway sorting through it all in my mind while absent-mindedly picking up the house when my attention was gently guided to the fresh-cut sunflowers that had been picked up by my husband and set in a water pitcher a few days back. Kind and gentle words followed though the spirit that have since faded in my memory, but the power of that moment will last with me forever, and most of all what it meant. I could have had to go the rest of my life seeking the answer but I was blessed to not have to. And I love that Heavenly Father answered in a way that was personal and special to me.
Fast forward to a few weeks ago to where Landon and I were sitting in stake conference, a biannual meeting for members of our faith that reside in the same region. The meetings typically last an hour and a half, and members are chosen ahead of time to prepare a message to share. Occasionally, when there is extra time at the end of the meeting, other members will be called from the congregation and are asked to share their testimony. Being new to the area I had to reason no think that I would be called to add my testimony at the meeting's end, but my heart was telling me otherwise.
We have the opportunity to share our testimonies the first Sunday of every month as part of a dedicated meeting, but when the time came the past week it hasn't felt right to stand and share. But there in that larger meeting the spirit led me to organize thoughts in my head of the passion and testimony that I have of having spiritual experiences at least every week. To not hold onto the large stories tightly and think that we're fine; that we need to seek out moments that strengthen our relationship with Heavenly Father as often as we can.
Then, as fast as the thoughts were coming, they stopped. It was almost halfway through the evening conference and a woman was still sharing her assigned talk. I was able to relax and sit back in my seat a bit more, and soak up the rest of the meeting. I'm not sure that my name was ever even considered to help contribute to that meeting that night, but I don't think that was the point of that experience. I walked away that evening so grateful for that experience, and I've thought about it long since my frozen yogurt melted later that evening.
Am I having spiritual experiences weekly? Am I encouraging others to do the same?
I don't think by any means that they need to be large. But I need to be feeling God's personal love for me, opening the scriptures and soaking the messages up, and helping give back so much more than I do. Because as we have those daily moments, they add up. Oh how they add up.
So now, a year later I'm excited to have a new bundle of fresh-cut sunflowers brightening up our home once again. I'm reminded of that powerful experience last year and look forward to the future with an extra pep of faith in my step, that no matter what happens He'll be there. He always has, always will. And I know that as I try a little harder to live a life full of faith that I can have moments like this more often than I do.