One of the most rewarding things for me, as a mother, is to know that what I try to instil in my children is taking root. I had one such experience this week.
My little boy, Tristan, who is all of six years old, loves the smell of things (to be fair, he loves exercising all his senses). He loves the smell of my perfume, he loves the smell of his favorite foods and so so many other things. One particular day, he found my silicone pastry brush and for some reason decided to smell it. He decided that the smell of it reminded him of his baby milk and started to tell me how much he misses that milk which turned into a long-winded conversation about who knows what. The point being, the pastry brush was forgotten… until I needed it for a dessert I was making for our dinner with the missionaries that evening.
I searched and searched and searched (frantically, I might add because as always, I was running late) but I could not for the life of me find the thing. I finally called Tristan in to see if he had walked off with it to play with or something. He said he’d put it right back that day. He proceeded to search in all five of the utensil drawers over and over again as I had done not too many minutes before him.
Tristan: Maybe we should just pray to find it.
Me: Actually, that’s a great idea.
I said a quick prayer and we resumed our search.
Tristan: That’s what I always do, like when I have a hard spelling test, I say a prayer.
Me: *Proverbial cup freely running over* Really?! That’s amazing! I’m so proud of you for doing that!
And as if that wasn’t enough, the pastry brush was located an instant after I had finished speaking!
Tristan: See. It worked.
And off he ran, leaving me standing in a glorious and triumphant moment of deep fulfillment. I cannot begin to describe the reverence I felt for this precious little boy’s faith. But that’s not it at all. Later in the week, I watched as he played a game with his sister, Larissa. He got to a point where he realized he might end up losing if he didn’t finish on time. Quick as a flash, he folded his arms and prayed in his heart and gave it a solid go and finished his task. His face was aglow – a result of both his victory and his faith being rewarded.
Then, two nights ago, as he struggled to finish his dinner because of his need to participate in all the conversations, get up and do superhero moves complete with sound effects, and just general slowness, he found himself in a position where he would lose all his superhero privileges for three days if he didn’t finish his meal within ten minutes. I had the timer going, working away at my own dinner (which was delicious by the way) when I heard a little voice say to me:
Can you please pause the clock really quickly?
Tristan: Because I need to pray.
So I paused the timer for the few seconds it took him to make his petition. Result: he finished with a minute and a bit to spare. Now if you knew him, you would understand how monumental that was for him. The first words out of him mouth when he heard he had beat the clock:
Yes, it worked! (complete with closed fist of triumph)
As I watched these priceless moments of my little boy’s growing testimony, I was (and still am) filled with awe and gratitude. For one thing, I’ve made a positive impact in his life by modelling to him a life of faith and worship. For another, I am watching a child of God build his own relationship with that being who is the father of his eternal spirit. My only prayer is that this will go on from strength to strength until he has become all that is Father in Heaven has sent him here to be. As any mother knows, to be entrusted with the duty of drawing forth from a child their eternal potential is a daunting task at the best of times.
Please don’t misunderstand from this post that we don’t encounter experiences where our prayers aren’t immediately answered. That is simply not true. Our most frequent and fervent prayer, individually and personally, is that we will be able to be sealed together in the Lord’s Holy House, by the proper authority, and become a forever family. This blessing is not available to us just yet because we are missing a righteous Priesthood holder to complete the equation. We wait for the answer to our righteous petition to come in the Lord’s own time. My children understand this. They also understand that sometimes prayers are answered when we least expect them or in ways we fail to recognize.
In sharing these utterly beautiful moments with you, I am reminded of one of the scriptures which I fervently aspire to. This scripture is my anchor as a mother. It fills my heart with unimaginable peace and abiding joy.
3 Nephi 22:13 And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord; and great shall be the peace of thy children.