Who would have thought a simple reflex action could unveil so much to me? I realized something about myself last night as the clock struck 3:27am... that time of night had a pretty good thunderstorm directly overhead and it happened to wake all three of us Elders up with one particularly awesome roll of thunder.
As I woke up startled by the storm, I immediately slid out of bed onto my knees into the prayer position.
Now let me just say, some missionaries go their entire mission without effectively getting to the point where as soon as they wake up they automatically get into their morning prayer. Its a tough groove to get into! Last night though, just as soon as I woke up, BAM! onto the floor I went! I didn't recognize it at the time, but once I started to reflect upon it I realized what an accomplishment that was to wake up and hit the floor.
But still, the longer I pondered on last night and the more my mind started to penetrate the fog that shrouded the memory of it, the more profound I understood it to be. Unlike some mornings, I remember the actual prayer I offered last night. Where usually they can prove to be mundane or wrote or unimaginative, this time I had slid to my knees and prayed that we would be safe.
I had prayed that no harm or accident would befall any of my companions or people in the area who we knew. I prayed that I would be okay, and that everything would be okay. Shoot, I even got a little overdramatic at the time (we all know how crazy it is being between dreaming and waking) and asked to make sure no tornado's came and blew us all away!
Its good that I'm in the groove to get outta bed... but that's not what really caught me offguard. I'm one of those people who sometimes feels his prayers are bouncing off the ceiling, and plenty of times I look for guidance and feel as if I somehow come up short or didn't receive an answer in any measurable way. But last night as I kneeled somewhere between awake and dreaming, I knew without a doubt that every thing was going to be alright. I just felt warm all of a sudden, like somebody had thrown a fleece blanket straight from the dryer onto me. I recieved in a very real way the comfort that I had prayed for as I awoke like a little child scared of the big bad storm in the night.
It has surprised me as I started looking on how much I've come to rely on God and the Savior in just this short time ive been out here. My first response to being scared was turning to prayer, calling for my Shepherd. Now don't get me wrong... I still got a long way to go (im hard headed), but I would like to think im slowly gaining ground on, "becoming as a little child" as Jesus talks about in Matthew 18:3-4. Maybe its going to take a couple more storms for me to really get it, but im hoping sooner rather then later.