My Daughter’s Prayer
    Footnotes

    “My Daughter’s Prayer,” Ensign, Sept. 2003, 65

    My Daughter’s Prayer

    After a year of extreme financial burdens, I was feeling hopeful that things were beginning to look up for my family. Then came fresh setbacks. For an entire year I had trusted the Lord that everything would work out and we would one day see our trials as growing experiences. But with the new setbacks, I stumbled in my spiritual footing. I felt abandoned and lost and soon stopped feeding my spirit. Though I never stopped attending church, I stopped praying, fasting, and reading the scriptures. I no longer went to the temple. I did the bare minimum for my calling as a Primary teacher. I felt hopeless and wondered why I should try to live righteously if it wouldn’t protect me from getting hurt.

    One night as I was watching television in my bedroom, my 10-year-old daughter walked in carrying her Book of Mormon. She had been trying to read it, but she said she couldn’t pronounce a word. I helped her and then sent her out of the room.

    In a few minutes she was back, saying she was having a hard time understanding what she read. Feeling sorry for myself, I was in no mood to spend time in the scriptures. In an irritated tone, I said, “Samantha, go pray to Heavenly Father and ask Him to help you understand what you are reading.”

    My daughter didn’t move. She looked at me steadily and said quietly, “I did pray. I have a really strong feeling that I need to read scriptures with you.”

    I stared at her in surprise and then clicked the television off. I patted the bed beside me, she climbed up, and we read a chapter from the Book of Mormon together. I didn’t pay much attention to what we were reading because I was marveling at Heavenly Father’s reminder to me that I needed to seek Him as I dealt with my trials.

    After that night I started saying my personal prayers again and spending time in the scriptures daily. I set a goal to attend the temple at least once a month. Amazingly, everything I read in the scriptures and Church magazines seemed to apply to me and the problems I was facing. Once again my soul was being fed, and I found I was able to bear my burdens. I often got down on my knees and asked forgiveness for not trusting the Lord as I should have. I will always be grateful for the spiritual sensitivity of a 10-year-old and a gentle reminder from a loving Heavenly Father.