I love that I have the opportunity each week to take the sacrament and receive those blessings. I love the Gospel. I love knowing who I am. I love Fast Sundays. I feel so close to the Lord while I’m fasting. There are wards that when the bishop turns the time over for testimonies, you might have people get up to speak but then have fifteen minutes of dead air between each one. In my ward, it’s not a concern as to if there’ll be people who will get up. No, it’s a matter of how long past the cut off time do we go? Will we have to cut anyone off? It’s so great! I know I’ve said this many times before and I’ll never stop saying it but I LOVE MY WARD!!
Today I was again witness to God’s love among His children. As soon as Bishop Morgan turned the time over to us, there was maybe ten seconds (which is a long time in my ward) before people stood up and walked to the pulpit. I listened to friends poor out their love for Heavenly Father, faith, following the spirit, patience, etc. Halfway though a testimony, I was prompted to go up. I didn’t know what I was going to talk about but I walked up there. I patiently waited my turn and tried really hard not to cry during other personal stories of strength.
After a little while, it was my turn. I stood up, took a deep breath, and just let the words flow. It’s incredible what you can teach when you’re relying on the Holy Ghost. I said something like this, “Trials can be tough. It’s okay though. I had something really hard recently popped up in my life. It hasn’t affected me the way I thought it should. Emotionally, I’m doing pretty good. I was talking to my mom the other day about what was happening. She had asked me how I was dealing. I kind of laughed and said, ‘You know, I think there’s something wrong with me. I should be having a mental breakdown. I should be loosing it. Any normal person would loose it but I’m fine! What’s wrong with me?’ She was quite for a moment before responding in a way only a mother could respond, ‘Sarah, there’s nothing wrong with you. Think about it. What are you doing?’ ‘Well, I’m going to school, studying hard, being with fri…’ ‘That’s not what I mean. What are you doing, spiritually?’ Obviously I gave the normal seminary answers like saying my prayers, taking the sacraments, going to church, reading/studying my scriptures and patriarchal blessing… ‘Exactly. You’re obeying the commandments. Your life is aligned with Heavenly Father’s path for you. You are close to the spirit. Why wouldn’t He bless you with peace?’ That really hit me. I had always known that there was a correlation between obedience and having the spirit but I guess I didn’t fully understand it. I know that when we do the things Heavenly Father has asked of us, He will bless us. Sometimes, it’s in ways you wouldn’t expect, but He will bless us. For example, I’ve been praying for this particular trail to go away. Heavenly Father has different ideas but because I’m living righteously, instead of being taken away, I have been blessed with peace.”
Google says peace is “freedom from disturbance, quiet and tranquility.” I definitely feel free from disturbance. My normally over anxious brain should be going a million miles an hour in every direction but I’m not feeling that way at all. As I was walking home from church today, a scripture reference came into my mind. I didn’t know it by heart so I had to look it up but it fit perfectly!! Doctrine and Covenants 59:23 says, “…he who doeth the works of righteousness shall receive his reward, even peace in this world, and eternal life in the world to come.” I know that to be true. Our lives can get hectic, turned upside down, and absolutely mad but it doesn’t matter. We just need to remember to do the things He has asked, and we will be blessed. There’s blessings all around us..all we have to do is look! In this particular time in my life, my blessing for being righteous is peace.