“Go Back”

Benton C., Maryland, USA

I had a very long, exhausting day, and I wanted to go home after school to spend some time with my family before I called it an early night. I packed my bag as the final bell rang. I got up and started to walk out of my ROTC class, heading to the other side of the school, where my car was parked. When I went through the door I had an impression to go find my friend Alex. I dismissed it, because I was tired and wanted to go home.

When I was about to walk out of the back door, it was as if someone screamed in my head to stop. A few seconds later, the impression to go talk with Alex came into my mind again. This time I heeded the prompting and headed back to my ROTC class on the other side of the school.

I walked back into my classroom, where my unit was practicing for an upcoming event. I found Alex off in a corner by herself and walked over to talk with her. As we talked, I found out that she was having a very down week. Everything had gone wrong for her. She then told me she had really been down and was having destructive thoughts. We talked for a while, and it started to get late. I made sure she felt better and then left.

The next morning when I came in, I ran into Alex. She wasn’t the sad, down girl she had been yesterday. She was full of love and peace, and she was happy and cheery again. She thanked me for being a friend in a time of need. She then went on to say that if I hadn’t taken that time to talk with her, she might have done something.

I thought back to when I first had ignored the prompting to talk with her. I didn’t listen to it. I could have lost a very dear friend to me that day.

Whenever I get a prompting from the Lord, I always remember this event, and I act immediately, for we are answers to people’s prayers, angels to others, and instruments in the hands of the Lord to work miracles in the lives of others. When the Lord prompts us, we need to act.

Able to Serve

Chris L., Colorado, USA

The members of our ward in the Grand Junction Colorado Stake were taught the true meaning of service as we witnessed a new deacon pass the sacrament for the first time. I never thought I would be a witness to such a humbling event that had most of the members shedding a tear or two.

Brother Braden Anderson bowed his head during the sacrament prayer then looked up to get ready to pass the bread to his section of the ward. He was helped by Brother Renner as he reached to take the tray of bread. You see, Braden Anderson has cerebral palsy, which makes it difficult for him to move, talk, or reach for a tray.

As I saw a big smile cross his face, I looked immediately to our good bishop, Braden’s father. I saw the face of Bishop Anderson turn from anxiety to gratitude that his son could fulfill his duties as a new deacon.

I heard some members whisper to each other, “Look at Braden. He’s smiling, wow! He’s fulfilling his duties.” I saw some other members take off their glasses to wipe away the tears caused by understanding the important lesson that unfolded before our eyes.

For me, Braden’s strength lifted me up so much that there was not room for tears—just the excitement of knowing that he was doing something others would have deemed impossible. Though he had help from Brother Renner, it was Braden who was doing his duties as a deacon.

There was another first in the meeting. After the second counselor bore his testimony, I wheeled myself up in my wheelchair to express my gratitude to Heavenly Father for letting Braden do his duties. Though my speech is always slurred and not easily understood, I didn’t care, because Braden Anderson lifted me up more than anyone could have done.

Priesthood Blessing

Preston A., Utah, USA

Just recently I was very sick and hurt so badly I could not move. I had prayed a couple of times to ask Heavenly Father if He could help me. It just kept getting worse. So I called my dad at work and asked if he could come home to give me a blessing. He agreed.

When he got home, I had prayed four times already and told no one about it. What was so surprising is that in his blessing he said that he knew I had prayed about it and that if I kept praying, then I would heal very quickly. I know it was Heavenly Father talking to me through my dad, because Heavenly Father was the only other person who knew that I had prayed. I thought that was amazing.

Illustration by Sam Lawlor; photograph by Matt Reier, © IRI