Yes, there are times I find life challenging. In fact, most days I am completely overwhelmed. Even today. But, as I was scurrying about it occurred to me how completely blessed I am.
First, I have GREAT kids. No, they’re not perfect and there are things I’m concerned about, but there are things about myself that need improving too. Second, Heavenly Father provided a way for me to work from home and continue raising my children. I have always been committed to being my children’s mother and being there for them. My Father in Heaven has assisted me in doing that even as a single woman.
We are not rich. In fact, we live considerably below the poverty level. But, we are still a thriving family. As an added bonus He put people in our lives that willingly, under no compulsion, and in great sacrifice to themselves assist us. The Nance’s have assisted in my children’s music education since the day my parents said they wouldn’t. You might think it is silly that I think music is so important, but I believe we were created to create beautiful music to our Heavenly Father. It is part mathematics (like He used in creation) and part soul (such as He put in us).
You’d think that is plenty of service in itself, but when I lost my ride for Dillon (my teenager) to get to early morning seminary and couldn’t find a replacement they volunteered to come get him. Let me put this in perspective for you Utah natives who’ve never experienced early morning seminary. The students have to be there at 6 am. Yep. AM. Do the Nance’s have a child in seminary and are headed there anyway? Nope. Their children are all in college. They volunteered so I would get a little more sleep with my late night work schedule and so I don’t have to get all four little ones out of bed at 5 every morning.
On top of that, they are my friends. I trust them as much as I am capable of trusting anyone. They listen to me, are willing to have dinner with us at our home (my pathetic attempt at repaying their kindness) as much as possible, and are in general just the kind of people you like being around.
Then I have the Kings in Utah. They lift me up in prayer daily and often send me email that are designed to lift and encourage me. Bill King has hired me to pen the lessons he has learned fly fishing. He’s kept a wonderful journal and sends me entries to put in a book format. I feel honored he’s entrusted the task to me. I recently started outlining some of it. As I didn’t even know what fly fishing was, I suspect they did this to find a way to help us financially while not letting me feel like I was receiving charity. That is double kindness. On top of that they came and spent some time with us some months back. They traveled across the country simply to find a way they could tangibly make my life easier. They walked in, looked around, and said your laundry room needs some shelving. Then Susan King proceeded to do all my laundry (what a gargantuan task that was), while Bill took off to Home Depot and purchased and built and entire shelf and drawer system. It has made my life much easier and my laundry room stays organized. Every day that I go in there to do laundry, I think of them and what a blessing they are in my life.
Sometimes God sends me tender mercies. I’ve always been ashamed of my home. All my furniture is shabby and it is so small that it is nearly impossible to buy pretty things for it. Not just because I can’t afford them, but because there is no place to put them. Yet, this week God gave me a gorgeous loveseat, that is in pristine condition, free of charge thanks to LeeAnn Stehle. I’ve never had anything so pretty. As soon as I am able to afford a slip cover to match it for my big couch I will have a pretty living room for the first time ever. Kind of exciting!
Then there are myriads of little blessings in my life. Marian Bailey is always willing to come, if she can, when I have a babysitting emergency. Vicki Lorimer has been a steady, faithful friend since they day I’ve met her, and has blessed our lives in countless ways. Alison Jones always encourages me with one of my callings. Susan Adney looks for ways to bless my family.
When I look at all the blessings I’ve received, there is very little room to grow impatient with the stress and burdens of my life. I truly am blessed beyond measure.