As a young girl, I remember a church lesson being taught, which said that prayer is the way I could find answers to my questions, get direction for my life, and for me to feel His spirit. I was told these answers would come by way of a warm and happy feeling or by a still small voice. I tried. Nothing happened.
Sometime later, I had heard a story about a boy who habitually fell asleep at the end of the day with his music still playing. One night, he decided to turn his music off before falling asleep. As he drifted off, the spirit communicated with him. Without the interference of his music, the door of communication was opened between the boy and the spirit. I wanted an experience like that, too. My very own experience. This would surely make me happy. I tried everything, I thought, even burning my favorite music cassette tape. Still, no luck.
I wouldn’t say that I was un-happy, but being the second to the oldest of five children, all having been born in four and a half years, caused every- thing to seem like a daily rush and routine. I didn’t feel close to my parents. It was not a persona relationship for me with them.
I knew that communication from Heavenly Father comes in as many forms as there are varieties of people. I always knew that He lived. But, when I prayed, I didn’t feel the feelings of warmth and happiness that I was told I would have and I did not hear His still small voice. These feelings of disconnect with my parents and with my Heavenly Father remained with me for years. Even before I graduated high school, my logical mind thought that I should be weaned from depending on my earthly parents and my Heavenly Father. Of course, being independent of earthly parents is the goal of being an adult, I also felt Heavenly Father was showing me that I needed to learn to stand on my own, and not rely on Him. I thought this was a natural part of life, part of adulthood.
As a teenager, my new life scope was to be completely independent. Both temporally, and spiritually, I would be able to support myself. I would eventually be the money maker in my future marriage and home. Learning to be independent would make me happy.
However, nature abhors a vacuum. When I stopped relying on Heavenly Father, I started to rely only on myself. I started making choices that I felt would make me happy at last. Then, fear came. Instead of making decisions to bring me happiness, I started basing my decisions on the fear of being unhappy. This fear caused me to make a choice that put me in a situation where I feared for my life, and I needed to stay alive. This independent time in my life was the peak of my unhappiness. Although I was glad to have survived, I was at my lowest in life that I had ever been. The very life I feared for the week before was something I no longer felt hope for or a future in. Yet, it was at this lowest point I discovered my Heavenly Father was listening to me. My Young Women’s leader, Linda, knew I needed help. She was informed by a special spirit that I needed her. She contacted me and then took me to her home for a few days because my family was away on vacation at that time. I am happy to say that I have never returned to those dreary depths again. Heavenly Father, Linda, and that special spirit had saved me!
Although sadness tries to return at times, I know that my Heavenly Father and Jesus love me. I have learned to rely on them. They know me. They love me. They are my sponsors in Healing Through Christ. I am thankful for the important tools of this gospel and program that improve each of my days and to be so much happier. Although there will always be challenges tailor made to help me to grow, I am thankful for the tools to navigate through them. I am now happy and independent through and because of Heavenly Father and Jesus.