The Blessing


It had been one week since school started, and I was very discouraged. I had so many things to do. I wanted to be a cheerleader, and I wanted to take voice lessons. I was planning to take private flute lessons, as well as playing in the band. I was taking piano, and I had a big part in a play. I also had lots of homework each night. On top of that I was trying to maintain a decent social life. Every single day from September to the middle of November was booked solid. I could not fit in everything I needed to do.

The day of our annual family breakfast in Waterton, matters really came to a head. After climbing the usual mountain, we left for home with seven tired brothers and sisters cooped up in a small car. That is enough to make anyone depressed, but in addition to that I was thinking of all the things I had to do. I could not think of any way possible to accomplish it all. When we got home I was not only discouraged—I was cranky. My heart was screaming, and life didn’t seem worth living. When I get like that, I often retreat to my bedroom and read my patriarchal blessing.

As I was reading it this particular time, I thought about the day I had received it. It had been a very spiritual experience for me, and I had felt the power of the truthfulness of the gospel. I had felt so good and peaceful that day. I wanted to feel that way again.

After I finished reading my blessing, I prayed sincerely. My heart was still crying. I needed answers. I was so confused. What about school? How would I ever find time to study or do homework? What about all the things I want to do? Where will I find the time? What about piano—when will I practice?

The answer came, but not in the way I expected. I remembered the words I had read in my blessing: “Remember your father is the patriarch in your home. You can go to him for counsel, for direction, and to receive blessings for …”

I read over and over the words from my blessing. Finally I got the courage to ask my father for a blessing.

I invited my mother to listen, and my father began. “Charlotte Marie ZoBell, by the power of the Holy Melchizedek Priesthood which I hold, I lay my hands upon your head to give you a blessing. …”

The words which my father spoke answered the questions I was struggling with, calmed my aching heart, and gave me hope. I felt the same spiritual feeling that I had experienced the day I received my patriarchal blessing, and I felt good and peaceful inside. It was indeed a blessing given by God, for only God and I knew the questions that needed to be answered. It was God’s blessing given through my father.

[photo] Photography by Scott Tanner