This is going to be a pretty word-heavy post. So if you're ready, brace yourselves and dive right in.
Sorry I've been a little off the radar the past few weeks. Coming back to Provo has been just one thing after another (including a really nasty 50-ish hour work training week-my bad knee is not pleased.) I haven't climbed in over 3 weeks and I've had so much stress trying to figure out a school schedule I can handle. So I have a full schedule and 15-20 hours of work per week-why am I complaining? This shouldn't be too terribly difficult, right? Wrong. Only because I can now finally come out with the tidbit of info that's been with me all summer just wanting to burst out.
For this school year, I've been called to be the Relief Society President for my ward at church.
For those of you who don't know what this is, my "ward" is the group that lives near where I do and who I attend church meetings with every Sunday, and the "Relief Society President" is basically responsible for coordinating and looking after the welfare of all the girls in the ward. (For answers to more questions, please click the "I do believe" tab.) And let me tell you, for the two weeks or so that I've actually been doing this job, it is not a small undertaking. I knew it wouldn't be easy, but I never expected it to actually eat up this much of my time and energy. Jumping from meeting to meeting to work to class......how am I ever supposed to get any homework done? I have had a fair amount of reorganizing of my life to do, (hence why I have been so absent lately), but there are a few things I want to share regarding my feelings toward this.
Normally the leaders in the church don't hand out callings more than a few weeks before you're supposed to start, but for some reason I've known about this all summer. As many blessings as this has brought me and as much as it's allowed me to mentally, emotionally and spiritually prepare, it was hard. I remember when I found out about it, not only did I not say yes immediately, I cried. Like really, unattractively, embarrassingly hard. But I accepted, and I have to admit that my rocky feelings did not stop there. It is part of what made summer so difficult for me, despite the fact that I was in minimum credits and had no job. My mind was constantly on and stressed over the immense task I knew I had ahead of me. I can say without a doubt that I have never ever been closer to my Savior, but I also have experienced some of the lowest lows. On top of annoying boy drama (which we won't get into), stress over watching my savings literally vanish before my eyes with no prospect of a job (although thank goodness I found one!)...I had the most overwhelming feelings of complete inadequacy and doubt. Why on earth would my leaders feel impressed to choose somebody who is so scatterbrained, tongue-tied, and different from your average Mormon girl? Until very recently, I've never wanted kids or a family, I can barely cook, I'm extremely sarcastic, I don't get nearly as offended as I should when my friends (and admittedly even myself sometimes) let out the occasional colorful vocabulary when we're frustrated, and I have so, so, so many other very noticeable flaws. On a few occasions, I could (and sometimes still can) literally feel the adversary on my shoulder telling me, "you obviously aren't good enough." In fact, I remember some instances in which I was literally woken up in the middle of the night so choked by these feelings of inadequacy and worthlessness that I could for the life of me not figure out how to move forward. If I looked Satan's way, I truly began to believe what he was telling me.
I have, however, learned a great lesson. The Lord only chooses who he knows can succeed and who needs to grow from it most. This past Sunday when I started this calling, instead of being nervous about being in a position of high scrutiny and responsibility, I suddenly saw the task ahead of me illuminated and just....did it. I know I am not going to be able to make it through this year without the Lord right by my side, and I am going to try with every last ounce of effort I have to keep Him as close as possible at all times. There must be a reason the girls in my ward are in need of someone like me. I haven't always made the best decisions, and there's been a lot to learn and grow from over the years. But I have grown and I want the girls of my ward along with anybody else who might be reading this to know that I have an extremely strong testimony of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. I hope that whatever knowledge and experience I have had in life, the ups and the downs, the good and the bad, the times when I've chosen right and the very many times I've since had to repent for....I hope all this allows the girls to know that they can come to me with anything without fear of judgment and that all I want to do is help. I am truly discovering more and more every day that "whom the Lord calls, the Lord qualifies."
So to close this post, I'll ask, Have you ever been asked to do anything that scares you to death or that you feel incredibly unqualified for? How do you handle these feelings of inadequacy and what have you gained from these experiences?
All my love, B.