"So, the great test of life is to see whether we will hearken to and obey God's commands in the midst of the storms of life. It is not to endure storms, but to choose the right while they rage." - Henry B. Eyring, October 2005 General Conference, Spiritual Preparedness: Start Early and Be SteadyMy little storms seem so mundane compared to the great trials and challenges that some people have to face. I wonder sometimes if I could ever manage the bigger things since I'm always so stuck in these small ones.
This morning I woke up distracted by a couple of small things that happened yesterday. I was worried that I had offended people. I was worried that I had ruined things beyond repair. I was worried that I needed to do something to fix them, but doubtful about my ability to do that.
When those kinds of little storms happen for me, I often let them linger in my head for so long that they become HUGE storms and they color the day for me. This morning, I couldn't seem to gather my thoughts into anything useful, and I could feel the storm getting bigger, so I texted the Scout Master, who is in Chicago. I think it was 6:00am there, too, but I'm not sure. I can never keep the time zones straight. I'm pretty sure I woke him up.
I poured out my worries and doubts, and within a few minutes he texted back calm and rational responses.
And they were just what I needed to point me in the direction that would be the most beneficial. I finished getting breakfast, lunch, and kids ready for the day. I locked all the doors and turned off all the distractions. I decided against the chocolate chips. And then went to my room and prayed. I poured out all those same doubts and worries to Heavenly Father, too. And that quote up there is what I heard in response. (I had heard that on Friday and again yesterday in Institute, so apparently it was readily available because Someone knew I was going to need it.)
I decided to listen to the whole Conference talk from October 2005. And yep, guess who's voice that is? Henry B. Eyring's. Someday I'll have to tell that man what a huge influence he is in my life. He said this other great thing, too...
"There is another even more important preparation we must make for tests that are certain to come to each of us. That preparation must be started far in advance because it takes time. What we will need then can't be bought. It can't be borrowed. It doesn't store well. And it has to have been used regularly and recently. What we will need in our day of testing is a spiritual preparation. It is to have developed faith in Jesus Christ so powerful that we can pass the test of life upon which everything for us in eternity depends."and this...
"We will need to have developed and nurtured faith in Jesus Christ long before Satan hits us, as he will, with doubts and...lying voices saying that good is bad and that there is no sin. Those spiritual storms are already raging. We can expect that they will worsen until the Savior returns."Although I'm sure my little storms are not exactly what President Eyring had in mind when he wrote that talk in 2005, those things he warns of are exactly what I feel when they hit. I hear voices of doubt and worry. I second guess things I already KNOW for sure. I don't trust my instincts. And the noise in my head drowns out the whisperings of the Spirit.
I am grateful to have been redirected today, that the storm only raged until 8:30, that it has now been sufficiently calmed, and that there were no chocolate chips involved.
I am grateful for words that sink in, from people I trust and can count on.
And I am overwhelmed at the compassion, perspective and spirituality that my husband has developed over the last two years. I don't know if it's his calling with all those little 12 year old scouts that has refined him, or having a wife with a lot of little storms to calm, but he has become the consistent and reliable voice of reason when I can't seem to hear it in my own head. He is always patient with whatever storm I happen to deflect his way. And he knows me well enough that he can say the things that will be the most helpful with the fewest number of words. I'm so grateful that he is available when I can't quite get myself to the praying step on my own.