Friday, April 24, 2009

A Purpose

I just finished teaching a Morningside message today at seminary.

I am back in my pajamas too. See. I am never up this early in the morning.

I'm on day three of a stiff neck (I think it was stress or sleeping funny - stress from watching Fringe right before bed. Maybe I am now part of the patter?) although it's more mobile than day one and day two. I don't know if it's allergies or a cold, but my voice is hoarser and I am tired.

Wanna know what I was talking about today? I addressed adversity, and knowing how powerful each of is, and knowing beforehand what we stand for.

I taught my husband's Sunday School class for kids in 7/8 grade. The lesson was about President John Taylor, third president/prophet of the Church. I used the questions I was was asked when I took a TMA class at BYU. "Do you know how powerful you are?" and "What do you stand for?"

President John Taylor was known for being a "defender of the faith" and a "champion of liberty". I love that. I love his experiences - his living boldly with faith.

That afternoon I received a call from Bonnie, our seminary principal. I've taught seminary before - when I first finished college and was working. I taught my sister the Old Testament. I am a crazy tired grumpy woman without sleep. I think I scared those kids sometimes. So when I heard her tell me she was the seminary principal, I mentally prepared the word NO in my head.

But then she had to pull the "President Norman suggested I contact you since our original speaker will not be in town". First, I love Pres Norman. He is one of the kindest men. Second, he is in our stake presidency, so I am a rules girl - I will go and do what is asked of me.

I don't remember having Morningside when I was in seminary. Apparently it's a fireside in the morning. They do it every month on the last Friday of seminary. After the original speaker, they tried getting President Norman and our Bishop to speak. So I was totally a back-back-back... picking at straws back-up. No pressure.

I was grateful my husband had been sick and needed me to sub for him on Sunday - it was like a run through for Friday. I added a lot of new things, but essentially the message was the same... try to inspire these amazing teens with the knowledge that they have a purpose, that they can overcome adversity and that they are extremely powerful.

I was also grateful that a couple days ago the BYU Magazine came. In it was an Q&A with Randy Bott, and old professor of mine...and anyone that took "Sharing the Gospel" at BYU. I had forgotten his four elements of a sacrament meeting talk. So this was perfect in organizing all my thoughts I hadn't yet nailed down on paper.

Yesterday my girls who never go down for a nap without a fight, were quiet in their rooms long enough for me to finish writing all my thoughts down. They didn't nap, but they were quiet. What a blessing.

Also I wanted bean bags. I called a few stores, none of which carried any. So I called the crafter queen Angela. She said she'd whip some up in 20 min. She did. It was awesome.

Then I realized I needed someone to watch my girls since my hubby goes to work when I was to start teaching. My wonderful friend Brooke had time, and was willing to cut her morning swim short.

My little business card handouts came out great too.

Funny how things work out.

Last night Bonnie called to ask me how I was. She then asked how to introduce me. I told her just my name and ward is fine. I'm a nobody...I like it like that. She suggested that she could mention I was recommended by Pres Norman... I said NO WAY. No pressure. I don't want to puff myself up...don't need it, don't want it. Let the kids learn about me from me.

I think it went okay. I hope the messages came across. I prayed before I went to teach. I am always nervous when I teach. Why? Because I hope that I am a good tool for my Savior. I want the kids to hear what He wants them to, what they need through me. I like to imagine I'm a hollow tube to let His messages flow through me. So I'm nervous because I hope I don't clog up along the way. (har)

It was a good experience for me. I remember how hard school was. How scary it could be. How it felt to be picked on, insecure and feeling alone. But I know how it is to overcome, to let it pass (har)... to look back and be grateful because adversity makes us stronger.

We have great teens in our stake. They are dealing with much more than I ever had to. I"m grateful for the gospel. I'm grateful for the chance to spend a whole week preoccupied with preparing a lesson. It was a nice spiritual place to be. I think the Lord knew I needed a concentrated dose. All my silly challenges this week served in reminding me about adversity. I felt like this week, was very purposeful. Things fell into place.

I apologize if this is at all jumpy... I am never up this early. I so need a nap. Also, how cool is MormonWiki?


La Yen said...

That is awesome. I don't know that I could have it all together that early. And with handouts. Very impressive!

Holli said...

Nice job. Being the YW president, I feel such a responsibility to help these youth know those things you taught about. It's tough to get up that early, way to sacrifice yourself for the benefit of the youth!!

glittersmama said...

Does your Pres Norman have four daughters? Email me at glittersmama at gmail dot com please?

~j. said...

I bet you're a wicked good teacher. Lucky stake teens!