Joy is very infectious; therefore, be always full of joy.

~ Mother Teresa

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Prayers for the Fire

After watching footage on the news of the wildfire that took out people's homes here locally, we put kids to bed. Sweet Caleb, age 5, prayed as follows:

"Pweese bless the people who are loosing their houses to da fire... could you put it out? Umm... maybe you could send some rain? that could maybe put it out..."

So so sweet...

Friday, September 10, 2010

About my great-great-great-grandma...

We went to the library today. I wasn't really looking for a book for me. The kids needed reading books, and some movies  to entertain them for the busy weekend Jes and I have going on that they will be left home for. I was standing watching Jes try to use the library computer to put a book on hold for Emmalee when I started walking down the isle. There were lots of interesting titles... self help... lose weight... remodel your house... etc.

And then
I saw this little book:

Now I must admit, I know of the author. One of the few things I asked for for Christmas was her other book:
I really wanted this book. I asked for it from my in-laws... but my cute mom-in-law told Jes, when he told her what I had requested, that HE could buy me that book! She was NOT going to buy me a book with that kind of title! (*giggle*)

Well, Jes bought me the book. And I LOVED it!
(It's about stretching yourself spiritually. It is not about loosing weight! LOL )

SO when I saw this little book tonight I decided I needed a book for me too.

I brought it home. And tonight as my family was gathered on my bed, watching the last few minutes of one of their borrowed movies, I used up that 20 minutes and read it from cover to cover.

And I cried. And cried.

It is a great little book about finding the true balance in life... AWESOME!
...but for me tonight the next to the last chapter is what had me in tears.

She talks about my great-great-great-great Grandmother, Agnes Caldwell (Southworth)!

 Agnes came across the plains in the Willie Handcart Co. at age 9. She talks about how Heavenly Father easily could have stayed the elements, or not let them leave that late in the season. But He didn't. And then she talks about Agnes' story of wanting to ride in the wagon of the rescue party, even though she was not one of the ill or aged, and how the driver (in her history I have that she names the driver as Heber C. Kimball) told her yes, then grabbed her hand and made the wagon go faster, causing her to run. Grandma said, "...what went through my head at that time was that he was the meanest man that had ever lived or that I had ever heard of".

The author says, "I've tried to imagine this scene. I've pictured a little girl who had given everything she knew how to give for a cause she had been taught was dearer than life itself. I've wondered how it felt to finally be offered some relief, and then have it just as suddenly withdrawn."

Grandma said, "Just at what seemed the breaking point, he stopped. Taking the blanket, he wrapped me up and lay me in the bottom of the wagon, warm and comfortable. Here I had time to change my mind, as I surely did, knowing full well by doing this he saved me from freezing when taking me in the the wagon."

She then uses this story, which has always been so dear to me, for an analogy I had not really considered before...

When we have those "running beside the wagon moments", when we have given all we have to give, and we are relying on the Lord's promise to lift us up and bear our burdens, and we start to question why He doesn't pull us up into the wagon; when we are about to drop from the sheer exhaustion of it all, that if we stopped and listened, we might hear Him say, "Wait. Wait just a little bit longer. You don't know what I am trying to save here." and that maybe the message would be "you don't know who I am trying to save here. You don't know who's life may be eternally affected by your willingness to hang on for one more moment, to keep taking step after step. I promise I won't leave you to drop. I know what you can bear, and your trials will not exceed your capacity."

And I cried.

 I always loved that story of my grandma... for the strength that she was... and how cute that she was in saying he was the meanest man she ever met... and for the joy in my pioneer ancestry. But I had missed the whole point of what I could have seen.

I am running right now. I am out of strength in this trial. And I have wondered about the hand dragging me along.

But I am not alone. I know that I can do it! That I will survive it! That we will finally be pulled into that wagon, all snug and warm, and that I DO trust my Heavenly Father to know what is in store for me and my family... even if I don't get to see what's ahead. I just have to have faith, like my little great-great-great-grandma did, I want a wagon ride... and this run is for my benefit and part of my plan... and soon He will scoop me up, and nice and warm inside the safety and peace of the wagon.

And I am so thankful this night for a random book from the library.