Yesterday morning I decided to sacrifice some sleep so I could get a run in before I had to take Dust to work.
I walked through the neighborhood to warm up. Turning onto the main road for my usual three miles, I picked up the pace to match the rhythm of the music blaring through my head phones.
Feeling anxious and stressed before I took off, I was really hoping for a release of some tension. For me, running makes me feel alive. Usually as my heart rate rises and crisp morning air fills my lungs, my body feels strong and all my stresses begin to fade from my mind - all of which makes my soul feel so good.
Yesterday was different. Katy Perry's "Firework" beating in my ears just wasn't cutting it for me. My chest still felt tight, my body sluggish, my mind still weighed down by a pile of small stresses. House plans... upcoming surgery... a few family members I have been wanting to help... and on and on.
With my breath matching my stride, my mind flashed back to a Stake Women's Conference I attended a few weeks ago where our amazing Stake President said something very profound.
President Strong was talking about how to best organize our time for "The Things that Matter Most." He told us that it goes against God's nature and His laws to give us anything we do not ask for. Our minds are very limited, but His knows no bounds.
Why would we think that we can come up with the very best solution to this problem of organizing our time efficiently without His help? We might be able to come up with some fair answers to the many stresses of life with our own minds, but with our Heavenly Father there is nothing we cannot sort through and deal with. He can lead us to the very best conclusions. All we need to do is ask for His help.
I turned Katy Perry down to silent, headphones still in my ears, to say a quick prayer. I always ask for help with the big problems, but sometimes I figure I shouldn't bother Him with ALL the small, insignificant stresses.
This day, this combination of small, insignificant stresses were just too much for me to work out in my own mind. The difficulty of my run began to fade as I poured my heart out to my Heavenly Father.
I pulled my headphones out of my ears after a few minutes, realizing this was going to be a longer prayer than anticipated. Small anxieties I didn't even know I was feeling were coming into the conversation.
One by one, problems were addressed and thought through. One by one they were checked off the loaded list I was carrying.
Before I knew it I could see my neighborhood a few blocks ahead. I picked up my speed and my lungs easily drew in air, releasing tension with each exhale. My body felt stronger, my mind much lighter than it was at the starting line.
How thankful I am for a loving Heavenly Father who hears and answers prayers. A Heavenly Father I can take all my problems to, big and small. What a blessing it is to be able to talk to Him, to converse with Him. Not only to be able to tell Him what's on my mind, but to really converse with Him. To be on the receiving end of His counsel, to be able to listen and feel His solutions fill my heart. I am thankful for guidance from strong and righteous leaders. It is so amazing to have the spirit of the Holy Ghost remind us of words spoken at moments when they will be most helpful in navigating through the trials, no matter how mundane they might seem.
I do want to clarify something from my last post. Yes, I am terrified about the next surgery. But I am not scared about the outcome. I have full and complete faith in The Lord and His plan and His promises. I KNOW without a shadow of a doubt that things will turn out just the way they should.
What I am terrified about is the short term - the temporary pain and anguish. I don't know if I can take the anxiety of sitting in the surgical waiting room as surgeons perform tedious and delicate surgery on my sweet husbands face, eyes, bones. And knowing the torturous recovery that follows is literally excruciating for me. I watch with a heavy heart and wish so badly I could physically take away some of his pain.
But we will do it. We will press forward, no matter how terrifying.
"For with God, nothing shall be impossible." (Luke 1:37)