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As I was doing my reading for my weekly General Conference post, I had many thoughts come to mind as to where this could all go. I thought of embracing charity, talking about some awesome growth moments I had a few years back, or even ‘spiritual souvenirs’. However, I think I’ll leave these to another day.
I decided to talk about miracles.
In Sister Becky Craven’s recent talk titled ‘Keep the Change‘, she spoke of what we can give back to an infinitely charitable God. I was touched by her words:
Just this morning, my family huddled in the living room and shared the miracles that each of us had personally experienced. I listened to their stories and even shared some of mine while I nestled into my salt and pepper, chenille couch.
It soon occurred to me that the miracles I’ve had truly influenced me to change. Some were big changes and some were small. But nonetheless, I changed. I gave that gift back to God, as Sister Craven said. And even though I won’t be able to repay the entire amount of love and life my Savior provided for me, I gave Him something. I sacrificed something.
So, instead of talking about the other topics I mused over, I’ll stick to sharing a bit of my miracle and how I changed.
At this time, I was working at the Grand Canyon, North Rim in 2017. It’s much prettier here, by the way, I recommend it 100%.
Anywho, I lived in the little ‘village’ just behind and beside the lodging area where tourists would come and go.
At the time I was preparing for my mission and needed to finish some paperwork. I was called in from the hospital to go pick my papers up in a town 2 hours from where I lived. So, right after work, I made my way down there, arriving at about 5. After a short dinner at 8, I left.
On the way back, a few very mysterious things happened.
Once I began my drive, I started to grow very tired. I found this odd since it was only 8 pm (despite it getting dark rapidly) and I’m usually a night owl, but I had to get home and work the next day so I dealt with it.
While driving up the winding slopes that overlooked the distant land of the Native American reserves, a policeman sped past me with his lights flashing. I hadn’t seen another person on the road that night.
I decided to stop at the Inn not even 30 minutes from my destination to pick up something for a friend. I distinctly remember seeing that the vacancy sign said ‘0’. I picked up my stuff and left.
Not too far from my stop, I noticed that the police officer that sped past me earlier was helping a couple who had hit a deer on the side of the road. I waved as I passed by, thankful that wasn’t me.
The funny thing is, I saw that accident and said, “Aw, man…that sucks.” And sped up to hurry home, but just after that- BOOM…. I crashed into a small black cow the color of the night sky. I saw his eyes first, mistaking them as a distant car and didn’t pay any mind…until I stopped moving.
The officer happened to be close enough to hear me crash and ran up to me to see if I was okay.
I was so incredibly grateful for this! If I had been badly injured or worse, then I could have bled out. I had no signal but he just happened to be there at the right time, in the right place.
He called me a tow truck that dropped me off at the Inn I mentioned before. When I walked in, the sign suddenly said ‘1’.
I remember looking at the sign, and assessing my luck said, Who would check out at 9 at night? I don’t know. But I do know that that vacant room was meant for me. The people inside checked me in and somehow, everything else miraculously worked out. Everything.
My point in saying this is that I became much more aware of God’s awareness and love for me that day. There is no way I should have survis veryved that car crash, or been even within 20 feet from any police officer, and I definitely should not have been lucky enough to find a room that late at night. But I was, wasn’t I?
This miracle, or string of miracles, rather, changed my entire mindset. I saw life and my current circumstances very differently. I mean, I had a near death experience for goodness’ sake! Someone was watching over me. And over time, my relationship with that Someone strengthened quite a bit.
I learned how to have complete trust in my Heavenly Father and in Jesus Christ. I learned how to pray- really pray- and talk to Him in vulnerable and honest conversations. I understood the value of life. I learned that God is there and always will be.
The priceless gift I received from the accident that day was newfound knowledge of God and a different lifestyle because of that. At that time, I wasn’t really sure if He cared, if He loved me, or if He was going to make everything alright. But this experience was almost like He was saying, “Can’t you see? Of course I love you. Of course I will. My promises don’t fail. “
True conversion depends on seeking freely in faith, with great effort and some pain. Then it is the Lord who can grant…the miracle of cleansing and change.
President Henry B. Eyering
That was just one experience, too. But that change was amazing. And I plan to keep it to the end of my life.
What is a change that you want to keep?