Nudged to Help
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“Nudged to Help,” Ensign, Aug. 1994, 57

Nudged to Help

While I served as Relief Society president in our ward, I learned of one of our young mothers who was having some problems.

One morning after I got the kids off to school, I just couldn’t get this woman out of my mind. Finally I knelt and prayed about her. During and after the prayer, I felt that I needed to go see her. On impulse, I put some brownies on a plate and wrote a little note listing several things I admired about her and saying I really valued her friendship.

At the time, I didn’t feel I was acting under inspiration. I just felt a little silly as I took the brownies to her door and she reluctantly asked me into her house. She didn’t seem to want to talk, and it was rather obvious in her expression that she hoped I wouldn’t stay. On the way back home, I felt I had intruded and even felt embarrassed with my “do-gooding.”

Years later, after I had one of those bad days when I felt no one liked me, there was a knock at my door followed by the sound of running footsteps. By the time I answered the door, no one was there—but on my porch sat a canister of my favorite caramel corn and a brief but very special note.

After a little detective work, I was pretty sure the popcorn had been delivered by the young mother I had taken brownies to several years before. By this time she had worked out many of her problems and seemed happier. Soon afterward I had the opportunity to thank her, telling her how much her thoughtfulness had meant on that particular day; I told her I thought she had been nudged by the Spirit.

I was dismayed when she started to sob. After a bit, I found out that my brownies and note had been a similar inspiration to her. On that day several years earlier, she had planned to put her two young children down for naps and had thought out all the details for taking her own life before her husband came home from his work. I had come that day just as she put her children to bed, and I had not been a welcome visitor. But she couldn’t resist reading the note after I left—and after reading it, she decided life might be better tomorrow.

So much of the Lord’s work is done in small ways. We don’t always know when a subtle inclination to do something good—however insignificant it may seem to us—may be an inspiration of importance to someone else.