Sunday, March 9, 2014


For all of you who struggle in your relationship and even understanding and belief in God or a higher power-- in a place of complete vulnerability and sincerity and honesty, I share with you what I wrote to my two missionary children tonight.

Perhaps there's one soul who might read this and feel a bit of comfort. That's my simple hope.

My love to you...

"As you know, I've been struggling for a long time. Feeling such a distance and pain; so many questions, longings, and searchings unanswered.... Giving God the silent treatment as far as prayer is concerned. (Again, it's so hard for me to even share this with you two, as I don't want to cause any amount of worry or concern, or cause you to judge me which I know in my heart that you do love me)-- anyway, I share this experience with you to hopefully boost your own feelings that God is aware of you and loves you and accepts you just the way you are. --- just like He does for me.

Monday night I went to bed feeling so discouraged and in tears. Not really anything I could say as to the reason why. I guess the feeling would be a despairing type of feeling. The next morning, Dad had to go to work early and left around 5:30, and so after he left, I couldn't go back to sleep and just lay there thinking in bed. I don't know why, but I felt such a feeling of hope in prayer like I haven't felt in such a long time. Even in this tiny reaching out in full humility and deep heart felt yearning, not knowing if I could trust Him or believe Him, but just holding onto the desire of wanting to connect, be heard, be loved and know that He really does care and accept me and know the silent struggles and longings of my heart. 

I got down on my knees in bed and tried to express these feelings. I cried and it felt like a burden was lifted and that in a small way, my heart was cleansed through my tears and the tiny faith I was exerting. I then layed down and prayed some more. Very simple yearnings, mostly for you two. "May Gary be blessed. May Gary feel peace. May Jane be safe. May Jane feel joy." Then the thought came into my mind to look upon myself-- this Emily-- almost as I would a child-- with those same feelings of total love and compassion. " May Emily feel loved. May Emily be blessed. May Emily feel peace..." Again, more expressions of pure, simple faith. Then, I tried to create positive thoughts to create and envision this new day before me.

The day proceeded and I decided mid morning to run to Orem to see if I could find some new comforters for the boys bedroom. No luck there or at Ross so I got in the car, ready to check out Target. But, as I put the key in the car, it wouldn't start. Ugh... Thank goodness for cell phones, but I called and continued to call and text Dad, but no answer. It was raining and I decided that all I could do was pass the time by wandering around the stores, then going back and sitting in the car, trying all the while to contact Dad. It got to be over an hour and my cell phone was about ready to die. (I knew I should have charged it.) I hesitated to call Mama and Papa to have to put them out, but at this point I was feeling kind of desperate-- needing someone, anyone to come to my rescue. I got to the point where I felt so alone, even when I knew it wasn't that desperate, but just feeling like I was kind of abandoned and really didn't know how I was going to get help. I knew I should pray to ask for His help, but again, my doubts and fears crept in and thoughts of "if I don't get an answer, then how will I deal with that letdown to my faith that is trying so hard to grow." (thinking of that morning I really prayed for the first time in a long time).

 While wandering around, over and over looking at all the things on those shelves, I started to see things popping out at me. Little messages on wall nick-knacks or journals with words of "Trust in God" and "God Loves You" I started to feel in my heart like these were direct messages, and the quiet tears started to well in my eyes at just the sight of them, but I didn't know if I should trust them. So as this was going on, I get on the phone with Papa. "Emily, I'd come and get you right now, but Mama has the car. She went to the dentist this morning and then had to go to Costco to get a new iron." You could call back in a little while. (my cell phone was totally dying by this point.)

The tears were right on the verge of spilling over. Feeling so lost, alone, and hopeless. So right when I was ready to hang up, I look up across the store (Ross) and all the sudden, I see what I think is a woman that looks like she has Mama's hair, standing in the check out line. She turns and miraculously, it is my beloved mother! "Oh, Dad, Mama is right here! She's actually here!" He starts to cry and blubber and I do and I rush to her. Longing for her, so absolutely amazed and overjoyed that she was placed there, out of the blue like that, to be my rescuer.

She told me as I explained my situation in tears, that she really didn't even want to come to Ross, She didn't really need anything-- she was just there just a few days ago (on Saturday, remember when I told you I saw her at TJ Maxx) and it was totally out of her way from the dentists in Provo to Costco.

Gary and Jane, I totally needed this tender mercy. I was so desperate to feel of God's love and awareness of me, even His existence--.A miracle for me, even in a small, simple way that I can't deny. That Mama would even be there at just the right time. That I could have been wandering around in another store or sitting in the car when she was there. Even how I could have easily been there at the back of the store by the mirrors where I was and not glanced up briefly to even catch a small glimpse of her before she left the store. I just couldn't believe it. This experience has created a softening for me that has brought more of a sense of peace and hope. Creating a desire to pray and plead and try to commune every morning since. It was exactly what I needed to try to hold on and grasp on to hope.

I'm so glad I could share this with you."


  1. How serendipitous, did I spell that right? Thank you for sharing. I'll email soon....

  2. Thank you. I think we would all be strengthened if we shared our struggles. And I am so glad you felt God's love for you. You know that scripture where Nephi says something like 'I know that God loveth his children, nevertheless I do not know the meaning of all things'? I take great comfort in that sometimes. I don't understand everything, or have a perfect testimony of everything, but I feel God's love, and that can be enough.

  3. Hi Emily
    Thank you for sharing. I have been reading, really reading my patriarchal blessing. I was feeling like I needed to hear from Him, and I pulled it out and made a copy and started to go line by line. I was amazed at how some things seemed to be tailored for right now. I am starting to feel better again, and I hope you are too.

  4. This is one of my favorite photos from your poetry book. The encounter with your mother was a miracle; she was the angel that you needed, and your Mother and Father in heaven sent her.