Something I Had to Do
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“Something I Had to Do,” Liahona, Feb. 2002, 32–33

Something I Had to Do

On an evening in November 1999, when our family home evening was finished and we were going to bed, my mother said, “Don’t forget that next Sunday is fast Sunday, OK?”

I asked her if we were going to fast as a family for a specific purpose.

“I don’t know yet,” she replied.

Suddenly, I felt impressed to fast and pray to prepare to receive my patriarchal blessing.

At 10:00 P.M. I had not been able to go to sleep, so I went to my parents’ room. I felt there was something I had to do that night. My mother told me to read for a while and she would turn out my light later. I went back to my room, picked up a school textbook, and started to read. I found some information I needed for a school assignment that was due the next day, information I had not found in my other books.

When I finished the assignment, it was about 11:00 P.M. I placed the book and the assignment on the desk and went to bed. But even though my body and mind were tired, my spirit was uneasy. I lifted my head a little and noticed that the very wrinkled first page of a First Presidency Message was sticking out from a pile of books. I retrieved the November 1995 A Liahona (Portuguese) and started reading “Serving the Lord and Resisting the Devil” by President James E. Faust, Second Counselor in the First Presidency. The last section of the message was entitled “Fasting and Prayer.”

After finishing the article, I promised myself I would pray and fast about my patriarchal blessing. Then I placed the magazine on the desk and again tried to sleep—but to no avail. So I picked up A Liahona again and turned the page. “My Miracle” was the title of the very next article. I was touched when I realized this article was a young woman’s experience of receiving her patriarchal blessing. She said it is necessary to pray and fast in order to prepare ourselves spiritually for a patriarchal blessing.

I had spoken to my bishop before about receiving my blessing, and he felt I should wait. After I read the young woman’s message, I understood the reason for his reply. I had not fasted or even prayed about this matter. After finishing the article, I knelt and prayed fervently to my Heavenly Father. For the first time in my life, I felt the presence of the Holy Ghost. After this prayer, I put the magazine away and was able to sleep.

I prayed and waited anxiously all week. On Sunday I fasted, and I went to see the bishop. After hearing about my experience, he said, “I think you’re ready for your patriarchal blessing.” It made me very happy to know that the Lord wanted me to learn about fasting and prayer—and to prepare spiritually for my blessing.

I know the Lord loves us. He gives us patriarchal blessings to guide us.

  • Thaiz Martins Leal is a member of the Portão Ward, Curitiba Brazil Portão Stake.