Thursday, January 24, 2013

Blessings from Promptings Part Two

Another new post! Look at me, I'm on a roll! So, I know none of you have probably been able to sleep at all because you've been anticipating my part II post. Right? Well, even if you weren't, here it is.

Because I followed the promptings to invite James to sit at our table on Monday, a similar decision wasn't too difficult to make later in the week.

As I was sitting in study hall for the first time, I looked around to see who I knew. One person. Her name was *Marie, and we only sort of knew each other. She sat behind me. I turned around and searched the room for anyone else I knew, but I couldn't find anyone. Except a girl named *Kathleen. She was very quiet, and not many people talked to her. But I didn't take much note. I went about the study hall working on homework. At the end of the period, I talked with Marie to wait until the bell. I remembered Kathleen, sitting right next to us. I knew she was watching us talk. She was bored and had no one with whom to converse. But I didn't want to talk to her. If I were to be brutally honest with myself, I'd have to admit that I probably didn't want to talk to her because I didn't want people to associate me with her. In hindsight, I see that was a completely awful attitude to have. But, I knew that I should talk to her, even if I didn't want to. So I struck up a casual conversation that probably sounded something like this:

Me: "Hey, your name is Kathleen, right?:
Kathleen: "Yeah, you're Whitney."
Me: "Yeah. Um, I think we were in the same Spanish class last year."
Kathleen: "Yep. We were."
Me: "So... um... how's the semester going?"

You get the point.
It was kind of awkward.
At least for me.

I walked out of that class feeling proud of myself that I followed the prompting to talk to her even though I didn't want to. I knew Heavenly Father was proud too.

Okay, now fast forward a few weeks. In that time, I talked to Kathleen more in study hall and I got to know her a bit better. I learned that we have some common interests. Oh, and in those weeks I was nominated "Student of the Month". And yeah, that does affect my story.

So, on a certain day last week, all the kids who were chosen as "Student of the Month" were supposed to meet in the office so that we could all go out to lunch with some of the administrators. Guess who Whitney saw when she got there? If you guessed Kathleen, you're good at guessing. If not, then I'm seriously doubting your logic and reasoning skills. :D So, I went over to her to congratulate her and we ended up sitting by each other for lunch. I learned even more about her. By this time I had decided that she was a pretty cool person. We had a lot of fun during that lunch, met some new people, and the food was delicious. Near the end of the meal, the girls at our table were discussing our different religions. When it was my turn I briefly shared about being LDS. Then, Kathleen turned to me and said, "My parents told me that if they ever got the chance to become Mormon that they would. I always tell them that our whole family should become Mormon." Woah! Woah! That deserves a third woah. Woah! I couldn't believe my ears. I was SO EXCITED. I don't think you can fathom how excited I was to hear that. SO EXCITED! And even though I was dancing on the inside, I kept my composure and warmly told her that I could give her some information and talk to her more about it if she wanted. She agreed, and the next day I brought her some stuff. (You know, pass along cards and other good stuff).

Wow! Do you see how the Lord blesses us when we follow His promptings? I've seen that. People who are ready to hear the gospel have been placed in my path, and I wouldn't have even known it had I not heeded the promptings that the Holy Ghost gave me. I feel so incredibly blessed to have this opportunity!!! I know that the Lord blesses us when we heed the promptings we are given. When we do so, we are given more inspiration and responsibility. It's so cool.

Thus ends my two-part post about the promptings of the Holy Ghost. Keep checking back, though. I have a ton of posts in mind.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Blessings From Promptings Part One

Wow! It's been a REALLY long time since I've posted! I'm sorry. Life has gotten in the way. But don't worry, I haven't forgotten about my blog, or all of you lovely readers. I have several posts I want to do really soon, but I can't write them all now, so one must suffice for the time being.

So, I've had some really cool experiences lately regarding the blessings I've received from following the promptings of the Holy Ghost. And, I want to tell you about two of these times.

If you rewind my life to the second day back from Christmas break, that is where my story begins. I was at lunch. Most of my closest friends and I were sitting at our usual table. We were blessed enough to be with mostly the same people and found the same table as we'd had the semester before. I was having a great time talking with my friends about the new semester. Looking up, I saw *Josh meandering around the cafeteria. He didn't seem to have a place to sit. Josh is an awkward kid. He's really smart, but he doesn't have many friends. He wandered around the room for a long time. It seemed to me as though we were in a classic New-Era-story-situation; he, wandering around, and I in a position to help. I knew I should offer him a seat at our table, but it astonished me how much I didn't want to offer him a seat. I felt promptings pecking at my heart, but I rationalized reasons why I didn't need to help Josh, and pushed the promptings away. I did that all lunch period, and I'm quite ashamed to say that I never invited him to sit with us that day.
Now you are wondering why this story is at all inspiring. Just be patient. You'll see.
Later that day I was reflecting on the occurrence. I knew what I had done was wrong. I prayed that my Father would help me feel sorry for what I did and help me feel the error I made. After more pondering, I remembered something one of my young women's leaders said:

"My brother was one of the kids that no one talked to. He was awkward and couldn't connect with people. One day I was driving past his elementary school and I saw all of the kids playing at recess. He was in the outermost corner of the playground by himself. I remember praying everyday after that day that someone would just talk to him. Never forget that every awkward kid you know is someone's brother and that they are probably praying that someone will talk to their brother that day."

I immediately felt the wrong I had done. I prayed to my merciful Father in Heaven and told Him that if He would give me another chance, I wouldn't mess it up. I told Him I was sorry, and that I truly knew that every kid is His son or daughter. I prayed and prayed that I would get another chance to help someone like that. And another chance I got.

In fact, the chance came the next day. At lunch. I was sitting at the same table, with the same friends. And who did I see wandering around the lunch room? Josh. I knew exactly what I had to do, that time. I knew I couldn't let the Lord down again. After all, I specifically asked Him for this opportunity. So, I told my friends that I was inviting Josh to sit with us. They agreed. I got up and ran over to him. When I extended the invitation to sit with us, such a smile of relief and happiness filled his face. It was beautiful. He came  and sat down with us. I introduced him to everyone at the table. In that instant, I knew for sure that I had done the right thing and that my Father was proud of me.

This is only half of the story, but if I write anymore in this post, it will get really lengthy. So, stay tuned for part two.