Lyrics from a Tenth Avenue North song that ring true in my life right now.
I am run down.
I am weighed down with concern for two of my children who are dealing with different health issues. Struggling to learn how best to help them and move forward. And it’s difficult to keep balance in other areas of your life when you’re just so weary.
I have been putting up a good fight, though. Most days I feel emotionally, mentally, and spiritually secure. Most days. Not all days. Certainly the daylight hours after a night of stress-induced insomnia can bring anyone’s spirits down, though.
Through all of this, I have deliberately made an effort to stay focused on keeping the Spirit in our home. And I have found one of the most assured ways to make certain that this happens is to be obedient to the promptings of the still small voice when they come.
It’s not always easy.
It’s not always convenient.
And just to be perfectly clear– I am completely imperfect at both listening and following through.
I am trying, however.
And so it was that I was driving along after dropping off our two oldest at school, with these thoughts and worries weighing on my mind.
I had errands to run, and I was planning on going to our local supermarket when I had a vague feeling that I should instead go to one not too far from where the kids attend school. It seemed fairly reasonable, so I headed in that direction. As I continued down the road, I passed a store that I seldom enter: Intermountain Farmers Association.
When the store came into my sights, I suddenly had a very strong but very short prompting that I should go there. Being that I am not a farmer by any stretch of the imagination– and had absolutely no reason to stop– I was seriously doubtful about it. After the thought popped into my head, I actually said “Really?!?” out loud in what may or may not have been a terribly sarcastic tone.
I drove past the store.
And then I felt guilty about it the rest of the day.
Yesterday morning, I decided to take a leap of faith and follow through. As I saw the store approach, once again I felt that I needed to go in. This time I did.
I have absolutely no idea why You have sent me here, but here I am. Please help me know why, because I really feel like a complete idiot right now. If there is something I am supposed to do here, please show me and I will try to do Thy will.
Looking around, I decided to head for the very small garden nursery on the side of the building. I was pretty sure I wasn’t there for livestock feed, after all.
They had flats of pansies.
I love spring pansies.
As I admired the flowers, I noticed that there was a small display of potted shrubs for sale. Looking closer, I couldn’t believe my eyes.
A variety of butterfly bush that I had spent the greater part of last year searching for without success was sitting right in front of me. On sale for half price, no less.
Heading inside to pay for my beloved little plant, I decided to look at their garden seed display. In years past, I hadn’t been too terribly tempted by their varieties– much preferring the heirloom and rare to the common hybrids typically sold. But I figured while I was here, why not? In the constant stress of the last couple of months, I hadn’t had time to order my favorite seeds by mail.
Again, I stood in amazement as I found every single variety I had been lacking. Even the strange and rare gourd seeds I traditionally get for my mom each year for her birthday– all there.
As I headed up to the counter, I saw a packet of seeds out of the corner of my eye. Picking them up, I smiled and added them to my collection.
The words of a much beloved sermon came into my mind, and I clearly understood why I was there that morning:
…Forget not that the Lord loves you.
(Dieter F. Uchtdorf, “Forget Me Not,” Oct 2011 Conference Report)
I learned an unexpected lesson yesterday. One I will never forget.
The Lord wants us to know and understand just how much He loves us.
The question is, do we stop to listen?
How many times had He tried to tell me before, and I hadn’t even noticed?
He has my attention now– love washing over me with a peace and stillness that has been lacking in my world lately. Mending my heart that has been frail and torn.
But not worn out.
And for that, I thank Him.