Today’s Reading: Alma 7: 21-27
22-24: “ … I said these things that I might awaken you to a sense of your duty to God, that ye may walk blameless before Him …being diligent in keeping the commandments of God… always returning thanks unto God… And see that ye have faith, hope, and charity, and then ye will always abound in good works.”
It had been a rough week. Nothing catastrophic, but I felt utterly defeated. I wanted nothing more than to shut the door to my room, pull the covers over my head, and never emerge. Perhaps it was the non-stop rain or the never-ending lists of things that I really couldn’t put off any longer. I just felt like my little world was topsy-turvy and its center was gone. As nighttime came and the house was filled with that comfortable silence of everyone being fast-asleep, I fell to my knees and began a prayer.
My prayer was more silence. I willed my Heavenly Father to just know what was in my heart since I felt I couldn’t find words for it. I opened up with “Dear Father in Heaven, I don’t know what I need, but, I need something.” And then I just listened. I didn’t get a reply. Trying to be the dutiful disciple, I got out my scriptures for my daily reading.
I turned to where I last left off and began. Now, Alma chapter 7 is a continuation about Alma setting the church in order. I couldn’t help but chuckle at the irony though. I felt as though I needed my life put back in order. I wasn’t centered and I knew it. I came to verses 22-24. Talk about a bolt of lightning to my heart! I realized that was what I had been missing and why my soul felt so empty and upside down.
The Spirit was working on my heart, soul, and mind and awakening me to a sense of my duty. But what was my duty anyhow? And if I could just figure that out— Oh! To walk blameless before God?! I was taught right then that my role right now is to be a wife, to be a mother, and to lift those around me. That’s a tall order yet it is precisely what I was put on this earth to do. I wasn’t giving my thanks to God as I should for being blessed with the time to do just that. I had come to buy into Satan’s lie that if only I could contribute to my family by having a career, then things would improve. Wasn’t being a stay-at-home-mom was a waste of my talents and my degree? We just needed to have more money so we could give more to the needy. We could have more family time if I could work so as to have more money to hire a maid, a landscaper, a nanny, and get take out more often. Somewhere along the last few weeks, I had begun to see my duty as a wife, mom, sister, and friend as a burden to be born—not an opportunity to be cherished.
I sat stock still as I tried to absorb this revelation. “Could I really do it?” I wondered? What would happen if I truly embraced my duty? President Hunter said in his talk titled True Greatness, that “the achievement of true greatness is a long-term project”.
I sighed and thought why the things that matter take so long to accomplish. And even more startling, what would happen if I dedicated myself to this duty I had been awakened to? I took Alma’s advice and became more diligent in keep the commandments and giving thanks for them. My prayers became more specific. I prayed to have greater faith and charity. After a time, my little world started to right itself.
It’s been weeks since this incident. Now and again I sense Satan’s lie starting to creep into my mind. However, that is quickly snuffed out and replaced by the joy of knowing that as I am diligent and continue to go forward with faith, hope, and charity, His peace will fill my heart and my little world stays centered.