Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Count Your Blessings

After Parker died I remember having this insane longing to go to the temple and to church. I was aching to feel close to my Heavenly Father and His love. So although I wasn't physically healed well enough from the delivery to be leaving the house, I decided to brave through the pain and at least attend Sacrament meeting. I sat on a couch out in the hall and listened to the meeting.

We had already had the funeral for my son and I was trying to piece my shattered life back together. Our bishop had attended the funeral and had been a great support to us.

After the sacrament was passed, the bishop got up and expressed his desire to share a few words. He said he felt incredibly prompted to read the words to the song, Count Your Blessings. He read:

Count Your Blessings:

When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings; name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.

Count your blessings; Name them one by one.
Count your blessings; See what God hath done.
Count your blessings; Name them one by one.

Count your many blessings; See what God hath done.

Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings; every doubt will fly,
And you will be singing as the days go by.

So amid the conflict, whether great or small,
Do not be discouraged; God is over all.
Count your many blessings; angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.

As he read the words, I broke down crying. No, not crying. Bawling.

I felt such a strong connection to that song. Although I can't be certain, I do believe that the bishop was prompted to read these lyrics for my sake. I felt just as the song described: tempest-tossed, discouraged, lost. I felt that my load was too heavy to bear. I knew that this song was giving me direction. It was telling me what to do! Although I was having an incredibly difficult time in my life, this song reminded me to "count my blessings" and so I did just that. My heart was overwhelmed with comfort and peace as I thought of the many blessings in my life.

Lately I have been going through some incredibly difficult struggles. Struggles that are racking at my soul and hurting my heart just like when I lost Parker. Before church a few Sundays ago I had prayed and prayed that I would feel peace during the meeting and that something might speak to me to help heal my heart.

Once again, my bishop (a different bishop than the one before - and a different ward), stood at the pulpit and expressed his desire to share the lyrics to the song, Count Your Blessings.

As he read the words, I wept again. I knew this time without a doubt that these words were for me.

At the two most difficult times in my life, the Lord spoke to me through His messengers. He gave me the same advice both times: Count Your Blessings. How amazing that the Lord really cares about little old me! How comforting to know that He is aware of my problems and that He truly does love me. If I will count my blessings, "every doubt will fly" and "angels will attend" to give "help and comfort" until my "journey's end." How comforting!