“Driven to Prayer,” New Era, Sept. 2005, 15
Driven to Prayer
As it got darker, I became more frightened. My fear of driving at night was out of control. I had to do something and quickly.
When I was a senior in high school I was excited to be called to serve as a member of the Amarillo Texas Stake’s youth conference committee. Most of the planning for the conference was left up to an enthusiastic group of about a dozen young people. Our committee met a few Sundays a month for almost a year at our stake center, an hour’s drive from my home. We also dedicated several hours in between meetings to researching ideas and praying for inspiration. I could see that serving on the committee was bringing me closer to the Lord. Although I had to travel an hour each way to the meetings, I felt good about what I was doing.
Generally, I enjoyed having uninterrupted quiet time to myself in my car on those Sunday afternoons to ponder the items we had discussed at our meeting or just to think. However, as the seasons changed and the hours of daylight shortened, I found that more of my drive home was in the dark. Even though I had had my driver’s license for about a year, something about driving on the highway alone at night made me uneasy.
One night was particularly distressing. Although the roads were relatively straight and safe, I was paralyzed by fear. I managed to go only half the speed of the other cars on the highway. My knuckles were white from gripping the steering wheel. I poured every ounce of my consciousness into focusing on the road ahead of me and, after a few miles, was nearly exhausted by the effort. I realized that by driving so slowly I was only prolonging my terror, but try as I might, I could not make myself go any faster.
Keeping my eyes open and my hands on the wheel, I said a fervent prayer aloud, asking that I might be comforted. I thanked the Lord for the opportunity that I had to serve Him while I was on that committee and asked that He would grant me the ability to fulfill my calling—which included traveling to and from my meetings.
Immediately after I finished my prayer, a scripture I had studied in seminary came to my mind. I had heard the words a hundred times: “I, the Lord, am bound when ye do what I say; but when ye do not what I say, ye have no promise” (D&C 82:10).
Simple as it may seem, those words were an answer to my prayer. Immediately I felt the comfort of the Holy Ghost reassuring me that as long as I did the things the Lord expected of me, I would be taken care of. I also knew that if I was obedient to the laws of the land by wearing my seatbelt and not speeding, I would be doing all I could to allow for Heavenly Father’s protection.
Relief swept over me following my appeal to the Lord. I am grateful that my seminary teacher encouraged me to learn the scripture mastery scriptures. That night I learned firsthand what a blessing familiarity with the scriptures can be.
These scriptures talk about prayer: Enos 1:15; 3 Ne. 18:19–20; D&C 88:63–64. So do these articles in the Gospel Library at www.lds.org: “Sweet Power of Prayer” (Ensign, May 2003), by Elder Russell M. Nelson and “Prayer and Revelation” (Ensign, May 1978), by President Marion G. Romney (1897–1988).