FFF #34–Spiritual legacy
When I moved here to California, we had four children and were expecting our fifth. We didn’t know a soul here. We got a job, moved our little family and began our adventure after college.
I didn’t have any idea what kind of stress that was for me or how much it affected me, until one afternoon, about 23 weeks pregnant, our little Scuff was being more rambunctious than he should have and not listening to me. He had recently turned four. He was running away from me while I tried to speak to him and instead of calming myself down, I simply grabbed him by his hair and took him to the floor. I said whatever it was I wanted to say to him and let him go. By the time Drew got home from work, I was a complete emotional basket case. One because I realized how much stress I was under and had been under for the last two months, and two because I took our little boy to the floor with his hair! I don’t do that kind of thing, usually. I have grown a lot in my motherhood since then. I can honestly report that I have not taken a child to the floor with their hair since!
But, when we arrived, I had to find schools, doctors, dentists, where the grocery store was, you know, all those lovely things about moving. Yuck!! Plus I was managing the emotions of my little crew because they moved too, and had their own feelings about it!
Not long after we arrived, a woman from the ward came over to our house. I felt immediately connected to her. It was as if the Spirit was saying, ‘You can trust her.’ Time would prove, I could trust her, completely. I called her to watch my little ones while I attended a doctor’s appointment, or when I needed to do something one on one with a particular child. My dear friend was there as I had all of our other children born here in California, except Spike. Over the weeks, months, and years she was a part of my life, there was never anyone I loved more. Her service and her ability to know when I needed help was uncanny! Actually, it was just that she was in-tune. She heard and listened to the Spirit and then she came exactly when I needed her.
When it was time for her to leave the area, I cried. I went over and helped her pack. I wrote her a letter from my heart expressing my gratitude for her love and service and tried to explain to her what our relationship and her love had meant to me.
As life went on, I learned that her father had been the stake president here when they first built our building. He had helped purchase the land, hosted Church representatives to oversee their progress, spoke to the city counsel about how our building would benefit the community, oversaw the construction of the building, and then dedicated that building. My friend’s family left a spiritual legacy here in our community. She passed that on to me through her service and dedication. She did that for each person she served, and she served many, many people, as did her entire family.
A few years ago, her daughter was roommates with our current Primary President, at BYU. They love each other like women can do when they live in the same house and have the same beliefs. Our current Primary President, just made the move here from Washington state a few months ago. She has three little people. Her little family, looks similar to mine when we arrived. Our Primary President has an amazing testimony and a great love for people and for the Savior.
Through our presidency meetings, I have been able to provide similar support for her as my friend did for me. How fitting, that my primary president dearly loves my friend’s daughter and has a similar relationship with her. As I explained yesterday how our lives (mine and the primary president’s) intertwine with my friend’s family and the spiritual legacy they have left here, tears just streamed down both of our faces. Because now the torch is passed to a new generation, with an understanding of where we have been and a vision of where we need to go.
I just think Heavenly Father is amazing in His ability to plan our lives and to help us to see His patterns as we go about His work. Do you have a vision of how the work is growing in your portion of the vineyard? Can you see His hand across the generations? If you cannot, or have not thought about it, do a little research. I bet you will find it. Talk to others who have lived there a long time. Ask them to tell you about your little spot in the vineyard. Ask them who built their building. Ask them who was the stake president at times of change and ask them to tell you the stories. Find out about the faith of those generations of people. It will give you a greater love for the people and the area you are serving in.
And Melanye, Solanye, Emilye, and Brittnye, you may never read this, but just know, I love your mother!! I love the legacy she left and I try to honor her and your grandparents with my service! Thank you for sharing your mother with me!!