When faced with life's challenges,
it is Important to Remember
that although Daniel was saved from the lions,
he was not saved from the Lion's Den.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

I can't do everything

Once upon a time, so many years ago.  There lived a very young mother who really wanted to show her Heavenly Father that she loved Him.  She learned to bake bread and cakes, and take them to all the neighbors.  She learned to have the missionaries over for dinner often, and to keep them fed when they were hungry.  She learned to read her scriptures and find answers to her prayers.  She learned to listen and hear the still small voice and follow it's promptings.  She learned, in her own small way, to make a difference in the world around her.
One of the most difficult challenges that she faced was to follow the council she was given in regards to a particular book of scripture.  The challenge to take one book in every single available language and to give them away, whenever a person would be met that spoke that language.  There were 30 of those books that year.  I actually thought that I would never manage to give them all away.
It took me just over 25 years.  I would put one of them in my car and when I heard someone speaking a foreign language, I would ask them what language that was.  Eventually, I gave every single one of them away.  The very last book was in Korean.  It sat on my shelf for years, and I did not believe that I would ever find a home for that.  One year, we had a foreign exchange student living in our house.  She was going through the bookshelves for something to read and came across that old Korean Book of Mormon.  She started crying, she was so grateful to see the words in her own language.  So, she took the last book home with her when she left.  Until that moment, I think that I forgot about my promise to find homes for all those books, but I totally remembered it when she hugged it tight against herself and I saw the joy in her eyes.
I learned so many lessons from that challenge in my life.  I learned that prayers are not always answered right away, even if your heart is in the right place.  I learned that the most daunting tasks can be completed with a little time, effort and faith.  I learned that He always knew who needed those books much more than I did.  How else can you explain the Samoan that I met at the gas station when I only had a Samoan book in my trunk, or the Swedish family that we met in a small diner on the way to North Carolina?
He knows what we can do if we will only follow His path for us.  If we will just believe in Him and in our ability to follow.  A little faith and trust (and a book or two or thirty) can completely turn your life around.

I have found the paradox that if I love until it hurts, then there is no hurt, but only more love. ~Mother Teresa

We can do no great things, only small things with great love. ~Mother Teresa

I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do. ~Edward Everett Hale

1 comment:

  1. This is beautiful Patty! Thank you for sharing your story... And 30 different languages to give away? Wow! Amazing!