Friday, April 4, 2014

Miracles of Time

I have been praying a lot this week about my use of time.  There are so many wonderful things to teach my children, and I want so badly to choose those things that will bless their lives and the lives around them the very most.  I want to do God's will in their lives.  There are so many good things to do in this life!!  I've been praying to see into their souls just a piece of what God sees to help me make my decisions.

The first thing that was brought to my attention was that I had been driving long distances to take my children to wrestling tournaments, but I hadn't taken the 2 hour journey to the temple in a couple of months.  Since the children cannot enter the temple yet, it seemed to me that it wouldn't be a possibility without my husband to help me watch the children.

Jackson babysits the children when we go on dates; but if Jackson were to babysit on the temple grounds, I was concerned about my little Jayden running into the busy street beside the temple.  I was also concerned about not being able to check in on them for the full two hours I would be in the temple with no cell phone.

Through my prayers, my mind was enlightened, and I felt peace about trying anyway.  I left with the kids at 6am yesterday for our temple trip.  I felt immediate peace when we pulled up to the temple.  I realized that I had forgotten about the gate that encircled the entire temple grounds.  I had forgotten about the security guards at both ends of the temple.  I knew the children would be safe, and I knew I was where I was supposed to be.

Jackson watched the five younger children while I served in the temple.  The temple patrons and security guard knew my children would be coming to them for any emergency.  Once I was done, Jackson joined a youth group from another area and did baptisms with them while I stayed outside with the children.  (I wrote about why baptisms are done in the temple in my religion in a previous post in January. :-))

It was an absolutely perfect morning!!  I felt deeply moved by the messages I received in the temple.  After Jackson came out of the temple, he shared with me in detail how the Spirit moved through his body during his service there.  I wondered how I had let this wonderful use of time slip from my schedule for so many weeks.

As I prayed further about our use of time, a question returned to my mind about our upcoming weekend.

My boys are passionate about wrestling.  We have an option of attending one of two wrestling tournaments this coming Saturday.  General Conference is coming this Saturday and Sunday too.

(General Conference is a time when our prophet, apostles, and general authorities speak messages from God to the entire world.  It's a weekend which is always highly anticipated in our home.)

I explained to the boys that they would rebroadcast the conference, and we could watch it later in the day if they wanted to still go to one of the tournaments.

Jackson, who had just been in the temple, immediately declared he wanted to stay home to watch General Conference instead of competing in his wrestling tournament.  I explained again that we could still watch it later if we went to the tournament.

…but who am I to discourage such a righteous decision?  I had been praying for enlightenment on better uses of our time.  What an answer to my prayer!!  I believe that when choosing what to do with our time, each good decision has GREAT influence on every following decision.  I did not want to break the effect of what was happening.

So… we will be devoting our day to conference as a better use of our time.

In my prayers this morning, I asked God again for guidance on our use of time.  I had a big list of activities we had been invited to… all good things.  I also had a huge list of things I wanted to teach the children.  As I cooked breakfast, I listened to a past General Conference talk on my cell phone.  Not knowing which talk would come up next, I pushed play.

It was a talk from October 2011.  The title was "A Time to Prepare" by Ian S. Ardern.  The entire talk was about how to make better use our precious time given to us from God.  I was in complete awe!!  I had been praying so hard for this, so I listened intently and allowed the Spirit to speak answers to my soul about how to spend my day.

God continues to enlighten our minds on the things we pray about, but already I have received great answers to this question of time.  I'm thankful to have found a way to go to the temple.  I'm thankful the Lord allowed me to see a piece of what HE sees into my son's soul when Jackson boldly chose to sacrifice a day of wrestling for a day of listening to General Conference. I'm grateful to have been guided to listen to a talk that "happened" to be the most perfect talk I could have listened to right after I had knelt in prayer about that very question.

I have no doubt that the Lord is answering our prayers and playing a very active role in each moment of our lives.  HE loves us dearly.  I know our time is precious, and I pray for courage to use it in a way that is pleasing to God.