… and I’m already so enormously grateful for the incredible blessings in my life. Particularly those blessings in the form of people. I am surrounded by people who make every corner of my life sparkle. Seriously, I don’t know how I got to be so lucky. Sunday, I was squirrely at church. I just couldn’t sit still! Granted, by the time I got to sacrament meeting at Olathe 3rd Ward, I had already attended an hour at St. Andrews and an hour at Singles’ Ward. I had experienced a lot of church by the time I settled into the row with Team Hufford.
As squirrely and irreverent as I felt by 2:00 p.m., I had received some wonderful council from my day’s earlier ventures. The minister at St. Andrews gave a sermon about the Atonement and Harry Potter – clearly, I was in the right place at the right time. He spoke about how Professor Dumbledore (called him Dumblefore, but I’ll forgive him), and Professor McGonagall were both transfiguration teachers before becoming headmasters of the school. He related this to Mark 9:2.
I wish I could recall anything from his sermon, but I walked away with the knowledge that no matter what we’ve done, Heavenly Father has provided a way for us to come back. I felt, very powerfully, that He will never close the door on me, even if I need time to figure things out and maybe even screw up a bit. He’ll help me figure it out. He will help me transform, and hopefully not into a map or a pocket watch.
At singles’ ward, I heard a friend talk about his conversion story. It was interesting, because, as he noted, he’s been a member his whole life and can’t recall a time when he didn’t know or believe. He talked about wanting an on your knees, overwhelming fanfare of God’s presence (my words, not his), but never getting that experience. Since my very first experience actually on my knees praying, I’ve craved that feeling. Sometimes I feel like I’m not “doing it” right, or that I’m slacking because I don’t have those experiences anymore. But then he talked about trying to flip the switch to turn on a light in a room where the light is already burning brightly. It’s already there. I already know. I might need to change the light bulb someday, but the light’s still on. I felt at peace with that.
Both speakers at singles’ ward talked about Moroni 7:15-16
15 For behold, my brethren, it is given unto you to judge, that ye may know good from evil; and the way to judge is as plain, that ye may know with a perfect knowledge, as the daylight is from the dark night.
16 For behold, the Spirit of Christ is given to every man, that he may know good from evil; wherefore, I show unto you the way to judge; for every thing which inviteth to do good, and to persuade to believe in Christ, is sent forth by the power and gift of Christ; wherefore ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of God.
I’m on board. The way to judge is plain: if it’s good, it’s from God. If it’s bad, it’s not. Many many people are capable of handling deeper doctrinal principles and willing to ask more challenging questions… at this point, I’m okay with working on figuring out the difference between daylight and dark night. Categories are good.
During church in Olathe, I spent most of sacrament meeting out in the foyer with Maren and Anna. I had a blast just giggling and playing with that sweet child. We’ve really bonded over the last few months. I think she finally likes me! I justified my in-chapel irreverence with the scriptural suggestion that I become like a little child. Anna is a little child, so spending time with her totally counts.
After church, I spent some time with the roommates. I literally have not seen them in over two weeks. We cooked together, we cleaned together, we laughed together. Being in the kitchen together, just cleaning, was so refreshing. My floor, counter tops, and soul felt Swiffer wet jet clean.
Today, before work, I spent time with incredible friends. I visited Sue, a deaf woman who was recently hit by a car and somehow finds the blessings of her accident. Her life light is contagious. Being near her, I feel happier. Later, I visited Maren for a quick swing by during which I got to share some giggly moments, and some tender moments… moments where I needed someone to buoy me up and give me that good-feeling knowledge that “this”, all of this, is totally do-able and totally worth it. And she made me tomato soup with cheese dippers (delish), not to be confused with grilled cheese (apparently, gross). Who knew? And I got to squish on her children.
I dropped by Marie’s house for a smidge to pick up a movie I left with her. The woman mellows me out. She is the moderate to my extreme, and most often times, my sounding board.
At work, I have incredible friends. Max makes me giggle and gives me a solid center. Jodi and I made donuts a la Pinterest for our kiddos, and everyone finished the day happy.
Tomorrow, I get to spend time with Natalie, who has seen me from very early to the very current (I guess we’re not at the end, eh?). She is my voice of very bold reason and keeps me on the straight and narrow. She is the first to call me out on my crap, and for her, oh man, we should all be grateful. And, I’m going to kick her butt in Just Dance. Just Sayin’.
Finally, I had an incredibly honest and incredibly needed conversation with a dear friend. He is a friend who shows me a kindness and patience I can only someday hope to achieve.
People, you inspire me. You make me want to be better and give me the tools to achieve that. You teach me every day how to live a life filled with love, charity, happiness, hope. I’m so grateful for you.
My cup o’ blessings is already overflowing, and it’s only Monday.
So much love,