Sunday, July 11, 2010

Blessings

Last Saturday, we went for a walk. We meandered through the neighborhood toward the park, ready to take the kids for a swim. We strolled in only to discover that all hell had broken loose. A young woman stood sobbing on her friend's shoulder. Her 53-year-old father had collapsed in the park. Someone had the presence of mind to run into the city pool and find a lifeguard to do CPR. The teenaged guard was doing chest compressions while sirens wailed in the distance and the family wailed over his shoulder.


It was devastating. The victim wasn't breathing. Everyone stood around feeling helpless. It reminded me of the several times the paramedics had to come get my dad in the two months before he died. That made me cry. I wanted to help. More than anything, I wanted Kenny to give the man a priesthood blessing. In our faith, we believe that through the priesthood, a person can be healed according to their faith and God's will. I've witnessed it happen many times in my life and I've experienced it myself. Knowing that Heavenly Father has provided us with this power has been a source of incredible comfort to me many times. Asking for and receiving priesthood blessings for myself or my family is also empowering; it helps me feel like I'm doing something when I would otherwise feel utterly helpless.


That's how I felt at the park. Helpless. (And really stupid for crying.) Kenny couldn't offer that family a priesthood blessing because they don't know about the priesthood. He said that instead we could say a prayer in our hearts. So I did. I prayed really, really hard. I slipped over and offered the young woman a bottled water and then crept closer to her father, keeping an ear open to see if there was anything else I could do. The EMTs showed up and began working on him. They called for damp cloths and every male there, young and old, immediately whipped off their t-shirts and wet them in the drinking fountains, anxious to hand them over and help. Other people stood over the paramedics with beach towels held up to create a sun shade. Other people ran to the road to guide in the other emergency vehicles racing toward the park.


Everybody tried to do something. It made me happy to live in my new neighborhood, where strangers will literally give the shirts off their backs to help a stranger. It made me sad that the one thing that could help the most wasn't something I could extend at the moment. But it made me feel blessed to know that my husband strives to live honorably to be worthy of the priesthood. And it made me determined to open my mouth and share what I have and know.


Anyone can get a priesthood blessing, LDS or not. They only need faith to be healed. I want to be sure that I have relationships with all my friends and family that are strong enough that they would feel completely comfortable getting a blessing like that from Kenny or anyone with the proper authority. I'm excited to share new restaurant discoveries, or tell everyone about a sale. Why wouldn't I share the one thing in my life that makes everything better?


I am grateful for the restored gospel and the blessings of comfort and healing given through the priesthood.


The man regained consciousness before they loaded him into the ambulance. His wife stood near him and called his name over and over again, with words of love and encouragement. "Hold on!" she said. "I love you! I'm here! I love you!"


It was so simple. And so great. Say it to someone you love today, okay? It'll make both of you feel better.

17 comments:

Karen said...

I grew up in a house where the priesthood wasn't readily available. When I moved in with my married roommates, I was excited to finally be living under the same roof as a worthy priesthood holder.

I don't always feel comfortable turning to my roommate for help, but I'm grateful for good friends that are only a phone call away when I really need the priesthood. Blessings are amazing things and I'm so grateful for them.

Kristina P. said...

I have been taking advantage of priesthood blessing, more from Adam in the past year. Never really utilized them before. But they have been such a comfort.

Kazzy said...

That must have been really traumatic! I am with you about finding courage and opportunity to share my beliefs. I need to get better at it.

LisAway said...

What an neat story. I cried. I miss America and that attitude of wanting to help each other. I really miss it. I'm glad the guy regained consciousness. And I appreciate your thoughts on the One Thing that makes everything better.

Kelly O. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MommyJ said...

Love the reminder of how truly wonderful priesthood blessings are. When we brought Ivy home from the hospital, I had a really strong impression that Josh needed to give her a blessing. With four other kids in the house, three of them attending school, I worried about all the germs and what not they could bringing home and showering all over the baby. So my teeny tiny three day old baby got a blessing that her health would be well, that she would be strong. I remember being so awed and amazed and really, really grateful for the priesthood. I've had lots of blessings, my kids have received lots of blessings, but that one in particular has stayed with me, as of late.

DeNae said...

My neighbor's 11-year old son developed a virus in his heart last year that has completely upended their lives. Every time he is scheduled for a biopsy, or is rushed to the hospital, she calls and asks that I get "the Mormons" praying for her.

And every time she calls, I offer to send my husband and son over to give her little guy a blessing. And she always has to say, "My husband would never allow it."

It really breaks my heart. I've even offered to send them over to give HER a blessing. But her husband is adamant.

So we pray and pray. And get all those other Mormons praying. I guess that has to be enough.

Valerie said...

I love having a worthy priesthood holder in my home. I feel very blessed. Thank you for sharing.

Steph @ Diapers and Divinity said...

Love this post. Thanks.

Susan said...

Thanks for sharing, Melanie. A priesthood blessing literally saved my life. I am so grateful for a husband who lives the gospel and blesses our lives with that power. And I am thankful that my husband has the opportunity to hold the same priesthood the Savior holds. Amazing.

Braden said...

That was a really great post, Melanie. I'm so glad you wrote it. I have that same frustration. There are so many people I know and love who I want to give blessings to, but they don't want them or don't know enough (because I haven't told them, usually). It really is a wonderful power that has been given.

Carolyn V. said...

Wow, such a powerful post Melanie. Thank you for posting it. I need to get better at sharing my beliefs too. But I'm glad you were there to say a prayer.

Amber said...

Wow. This is beautiful. Reading your testimony here, has strengthened my testimony.

The Priesthood is something I honor and cherish. It is an amazing tool of God that we are able to have on earth. I have called upon my husband many many times to administer to me when I am in need. It has always brought me comfort.

wendy said...

That was quite a powerful post.
As an LDS person, I know and understand the power behind the priesthood....it is , well, there are not words that come to me to describe the value and sacredness

I am glad the man was ok. It is wonderful to see people reaching out to try and do what they can.

I think, as a whole, despite the few 10% of really crappy people in the world.....we all want to help

Christiane R. Woerner said...

Thanks for sharing, Melanie.

There was a time in my life where I didn't think having quick access to the priesthood made any difference in my life; however, I now realize I was a willful child who didn't understand the true nature of the blessings of the priesthood. Now, I'm grateful for it for all that it has brought into my life.

It's wonderful to be in the presence of a worthy priesthood holder who can serve others (but not himself). Through his service, he and his family are blessed because of the selfless act that he performs.

Thanks for sharing this. You made me cry. As much as I miss you, I'm coming to realize that RSM and the Jacobsons are a perfect match.

becca said...

we had a very great priesthood experience this weekend at family reunion. we should discuss this. because i love your tender heart.

香昱信張君林 said...

A friend in need is a friend indeed...................................................................