Sunday, July 11, 2010
After finally purchasing some chips, I drove away but didn't go home. I reflected on meeting the Prophet. I realized I don't feel ready to meet the Savior. And I realized exactly what I need to change to be ready. So, starting then, I committed to change. I also realized how important it is to look, act and be a Saint, at all times and in all places, not just on Sunday or in the temple. My heart softened, and I felt so blessed. I felt the love of God. What a blessing it is to have a Prophet, who speaks regularly and gives God's counsel. What a blessing to have the fulness of the gospel so I can be a Saint. I love Jesus Christ, I know living the teachings of the Church bring me to Him, and I know for myself that Thomas S. Monson is the Prophet.
Sunday, June 13, 2010
A few nights ago I was babysitting for a family that I babysit for on a regular basis. I had put the all the kids to bed and was getting ready to finish up the dishes that were still left in the sink when I heard the three year old call for her mom a few times, then remembering that she was gone, started calling for me in her sweet, sleepy little girl voice. My heart immediately melted. I don’t know what it is, but there is something terribly endearing about hearing a small helpless child call for you. It had been a frazzling evening, but the moment she called my name things changed. Peace and love entered my heart. I don’t know what it is, but there is something terribly endearing about hearing a small helpless child call for you.
The nurturer in me came out and all my thoughts went to her and her comfort. All I wanted was to make sure she was comfortable and able to sleep well. And I was lucky enough to catch a glimpse of why being a mother is such an incredible privilege.
As I went to help the little girl calling to me, my thoughts turned to Heavenly Father and how He must want to come running to my aid every time as soon as I call, just as I was for her. He is quick to come to our aid and wants so bad to help us here in mortality. Just as there are many things this girl couldn’t do on her own, there are many things that we cannot do on our own. We need the Savior and the Father in their infinite wisdom to come to our aid and bring us the help and comfort we cannot provide on our own.
Earlier that day, the little girl had thrown a tantrum because I wouldn’t let her just eat sweets for dinner. She saw things very differently from me, and with her limited knowledge, there was nothing wrong with eating candy for dinner. I was trying so hard to help her do what was best for her, yet she didn’t understand and so threw a tantrum. It made me wonder how many times I have thrown “tantrums” when Heavenly Father has asked me to do things. I may have felt like I knew what I was doing, and from my perspective it seemed like the best thing to do. But Heavenly Father in His infinite wisdom knew otherwise. What have I done when He’s told me this? Have I thrown my own little tantrums? At times yes I am ashamed to say. But I was so lucky to recognize this with this little girl and made a commitment to myself and the Lord that I would trust Him, knowing that He has a perfect perspective and that He would only do things that are for my good.
Nurturing is an incredible way to come to know our Father in Heaven and begin to understand the beginnings of His love for us. That is our privilege as women that we can look forward to. I had let myself get distracted a little from my goal of having a family. It hadn’t dropped completely from my mind, but it certainly wasn’t in the forefront of my mind. This experienced changed it. I began to remember why having a family is so important and see the incredible blessings that come from being a mother.
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
This is how we normally think of a blessing, at least I do. Me in white shirts and ties or a suit, hands folded reverently, eyes, closed, calmly listening to the word of the Lord.
I'm a little nervous to go into too much detail, because I don't want to distract from the message, but I feel like the full impact of the story is lost without some background. I feel like there's a good lesson here that needs to be heard. It's a little more personal, but here's the basic story:
After a thoroughly enjoyable Sabbath and a nice rest, I awoke Monday morning and prepared to go to the HBLL to pick up a book I've been waiting to read for MONTHS (you know how that goes). The Really Good Book that Started All This---->
On the way up Maeser Hill (south of the Benson) I suddenly had severe cramping in the left side of my chest. Now, before anybody panics, 1)I'm not dead, and b)these happen sometimes as a result of a different medical problem.
I was with my roommate. She helped me over to the grass, where I immediately sank to my knees. This cramp was worse than I'd ever had before, but I still assumed in would pass in a matter of seconds, as they usually do. I motioned my roommate to wave people on, as many had stopped to ask what was wrong. I assumed I would be fine, and I was extremely embarrassed to be causing such a scene.
After about a minute of extreme pain and next to no oxygen, I began to be concerned (and more than a little light-headed). These cramps had never lasted longer than 40 seconds, and usually only 10-15. This one had not only continued, but had become more and more painful (like, the worst Charlie Horse of your life, in your chest). I was not totally aware of what was happening outside the pain and trying to calm my muscles down, but I heard my roommate say "blessing."
I nodded, and probably babbled something or other.
She immediately looked to the paved path up the hill and saw two male students walking, presumably to class or work. I didn't see their faces. She asked if they held the priesthood, and attempted to explain the situation. I think they misunderstood at first (she first tried to explain with "muscle cramps" and they laughed, a little embarrassed. BOYS: "Muscle cramp" does not always equal "menstrual." Bah.)
They came quickly, and gave me a blessing. I felt bad for thinking they were "stupid boys," as I was suddenly aware that they were indeed righteous holders of the priesthood. Ruefulness at immaturity was replaced with gratitude that they were worthy, capable, and willing to give such service when I needed it.
I do not remember everything they said, as I was collapsed in on myself and trying so hard to regulate internally with an extreme lack of oxygen. But when they placed their hands on my head--me, a girl they did not know and may never see again--I felt the tightness on my lungs loosen. The pain was still there; the muscles still in tight knots that rendered me unable to move or stand--but I had air.
And that, wonderful friends, is the moral of the story. In my time of unanticipated, unsolvable pain, the Lord knew exactly what I needed. He sent His angels, in the form of my roommate, police and medical officers, a randomly-passing-by nursing student, and two worthy priesthood holders that I'd never seen before.
Thursday, April 1, 2010
But here's the thing....its called faith. No matter how much we learn and how much we grow and how strong our faith is...we still have those moments full of doubt and fear. About a week ago now I was saying my morning prayers. A few minutes later I was in the shower when I realized I wasn't done with my conversation with God. So I continued. Some trial or struggle I was going through fell from my lips and I was suddenly pleading with God for direction and help. I found myself telling Heavenly Father "I will do anything you want. Anything. I only want to do Thy will" and then in almost the same breath (and relating to the trial at hand) I added, "But please don't let it hurt me"
"Oh Sister Haag" He responded (yes, He DOES call me Sister Haag ;) "That is not real faith." And sisters, I think that is a problem. We have this thing, its called "partial faith". I really did intend to do whatever the Lord required but I was trying to do it without hurting. Sometimes the pain is required for the desired result. Partial faith is not sufficient. REAL and true faith takes everything you've got.
"The future is as bright as your FAITH" and sisters, get ready because it looks like the sunrise!
Sunday, March 21, 2010
But sometimes, at least for me, I get so consumed in looking for what I think I need to hear that I miss what is really important: Jesus Christ. I said that sometimes we get lost looking too hard for our problems, when really the answer is right in front of us, practically in every verse. The answer to a lot of our problems is to become like our Savior. When we spend our time looking for Christ’s characteristics in the scriptures, we know better how to become like Him and in that we find the happiness and satisfaction we’ve been looking for all along.
Life is complicated and crazy and confusing at times, but if we take the time to pause in our busy lives and ponder on the words in the scriptures we will come to know our Savior better and He will make Himself known to us. He is there and He is the simplicity of life. Even if we don’t know where we are going, He does. Right now, there are a lot of unknowns in my life, but I take comfort in knowing that despite that I still have something to work for – becoming like Christ. I know that as I work towards this and continue doing what He asks me to, He will make known to me what I need to do. He is there for each one of us. It is in the journey of becoming like Him that we find simplicity and joy in life.
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Confession: I am afraid of the dark. So when the Lord asks me to “take a step or two into the darkness before we can see the light” (President Harold B. Lee) I start to panic. Now I realize this is the spiritual kind of light but I am afraid of being without either light. The only dark I like is when I get small moments to lay out under the stars. The reason I like that darkness? Because I can see little bits of light penetrating through the darkened sky, ever reminding me that we can penetrate even the darkest periods of life with our light.