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Sunday, December 2, 2012

Ward Unity

For the past few months, I've tried to find the words to express the love that Ryan and I feel for our new ward...

Slightly weary from previous experience, Ryan and I attended our current ward when we were first looking at buying a home in Blackhorse Run, before we even decided we wanted to buy within the ward.

The first person we met was Brother Mendenhall. He introduced himself, asked whether or not we were new, and made sure we had any and all information that we might need about the ward. We enjoyed the experience and decided that we liked the ward and that if it was the right decision for us, it would happen naturally.

Then we found our home. On the market and under contract within 48 hours. It was meant to be.

The first day we attended our ward as actual members of the ward was nerve-wreking. What would the dynamics be like? Was it going to be an inclusive ward? Would we fit in? Would we be accepted?

I can't believe I ever doubted.

From the very beginning we have felt loved and included. But, it's not just us. It's everyone. From the single sisters to the newlyweds, from the retired couples to the students, there is a genuine love and acceptance of everyone in the ward.

Last year, service became a stinging word when someone insinuated that I hadn't served others as well as some because I was a working mom. It was hurtful and I felt that my contribution went unnoticed, unaccepted.

While having a full-time profession does have it's scheduling challenges, I have come to love the service rendered to and from those close to us in our new ward. 

Ryan and I have felt needed. We have served, we've been served. Our contributions have been noticed, accepted, wanted.

This ward is very special. The ward is very close. Temple night, girl's nights, book clubs, break the fasts, and everything in between is done together, as a ward. Service is done together.

Today I knew why, I experienced why.

This ward has experienced far more than its fair share of heartache. But, in the face of trials, this ward unites in a way that can only be described as Christ-like, to fast and pray and serve those who are suffering.

Last week, Sister Mendenhall, one of the sweetest women in the ward, went into pre-term labor at less than twenty weeks. She was instructed that to give her little girl a fighting chance she would need to be on strict bed rest. Within hours, her name was on the prayer roll, meals were scheduled, and visits were arranged to mention the very least.

This morning, Ryan and I fasted for the safety and growth of both mother and baby.

This morning, a small piece of my heart broke when the bishop mentioned that this weekend two families in our ward had lost still-born babies.

One was the little girl of the sweet Mendenhalls. It was their third still born.

My heart pleaded to Heavenly Father. Why? Why did they have to endure this three times?

And then, I saw the miracles. Each and every prayer today asked for strength and comfort for these two families. What's more is that each prayer asked that we as a ward might be able to know and provide for their needs.

Their trails (and those of many others) are just beginning, but the ward will unite. And, although Ryan and I have only been members of this ward for six months, we unite alongside these wonderful Saints--for Saints is what they are--to traverse the challenges of life.

We are grateful for this ward, our home teachers, visiting teachers, leadership and our ward unity that emulates the Savior and exemplifies the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ.


Jessica said...

That's beautiful!

Our Family

Our Family
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