Saturday, June 14, 2014

This is a Gift That, As Sisters, We Claim

I’ve been given a few hints that my calling as Compassionate Service Leader is about to come to an end. As long as my new calling isn't in Young Women, or Scouts, I'm happy about any change. Compassionate Service Leader has been by far the most stressful calling I have ever had. I feel like I'm never doing enough and it's always on my mind. At the same time, I know God has looked after me this whole time. I know he has directed me. I only hope I've done enough.

I wanted to share this last story:

As Compassionate Service Leader I feel a need to serve the sisters in the ward and protect them from asking too much. The chain of service is this: First to help is Self, then family, then visiting teachers, then Compassionate Service committee and only if there is still more help needed that no one in that chain can handle, I  send out an email to everyone asking for more help.  This has worked really well for me, and a lot of that is because we have some really great visiting teachers in my ward.

But, there is always that one companionship. We had an emergency a few months back, and the visiting teachers not only didn't know about it, they didn't care. They were too busy, too tired, too...unwilling? When I asked them to provide a meal they wanted me to send out an email to the sisters in the ward asking someone else to do it. After several emails back and forth of me trying to explain the chain of responsibility  I finally gave up. I took on their burden on myself  and saw the emergency through to its happy ending. I came away from the experience with some resentment and a feeling of having to do everything myself.

It was right after that a new Relief Society presidency was called, and the one person on my committee  on which I relied so heavily was called as the Relief Society president. Her position on my committee was not replaced, and I was left with an even bigger feeling of having to do it all myself.

A few weeks later I was supposed to take dinner to two different families in the ward on the same night. It seems in the year I have had this calling there is rarely a week that goes by when I am not making a meal for two families, but rarely is it on the same day. Anyway, of course that is the day Alexa fell and we went to the ER for stitches. As I watched the time pass, I realized I might be stuck in the ER all day and not have time to make the dinners. As I thought about it, I decided to text the new Relief Society president that I was in the ER with Alexa, and I might not be able to take dinner to these two families, but I didn't yet know. After a few more hours, I hadn't gotten a response. It was then I decided to call a sister on my committee. She is a single mother who works during the day. She took on herself the responsibility of calling the widows in the ward every single month to check up on them. Because she does that, I had never asked her to do anything else until this emergency. She didn't answer, so I left a voice message. As soon as I hung up I realized she probably couldn't hear a word I said because Alexa was screaming the whole time. Feeling there was nothing else to do, I just waited.

We got home from the ER around four in the afternoon. I started the dinners and then texted the Relief Society president that I was home, Alexa was fine, and I was starting on the dinners. She instantly texted back that another sister was on her way to deliver one of the dinners. She said she didn't register that there were two dinners. I told her it wasn't a problem and I that I was delighted to only have to take one dinner. Surprised that the one dinner was already done, I then texted the sister on my committee to ignore any voice mails she got from me. She instantly called me. She said she had been in Wal Mart when she got my message and couldn't understand anything I was saying, but could tell I was under some stress. At that moment, she saw someone else in our ward wandering through the store and had her listen to the message. The only thing they could pick out was a name. She assumed I was asking her to take dinner over to this family so she picked up a frozen dinner in Wal Mart and drove it over to their house!

The amazing thing was that in both the text and the voice message, I mentioned BOTH families that needed dinners, but both the sisters only picked up on one of the names. Both families got dinners without any coordination. I was amazed. It was a true miracle. It was God telling me I am always looked after. I don't have to do everything myself, and after I am not the Compassionate Service Leader, other people will take up the burden and everything will be fine.

I am so grateful for this whole experience, but I will be very relieved when I get my new calling, even if it is in Young Women. Just as long it has nothing to do with Young Women camp. Or Scouts.

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