Sitting here, temporarily homebound since my supernally successful surgery last week, has been frustrating as well as productive for me in many ways.
There has been a purpose and a pattern manifested to me in all of this about the lessons God has been so patiently trying to teach me for such a long, long time now.
(I'm also very much aware of His repeated intervention on my behalf while He continues to try to get my attention)
In the midst of all of this, I perceive a preparatory caution of another great event (choice?) forthcoming soon in my life.
No, I don't yet know it's nature or circumstances - only that it will be soon, as well as an important personal decision and challenge.
This has caused me much reflection and wonderment.
Last night, as I prayed for guidance and then also thought about all the folks in my life, especially those who have made such a positive impression and a difference in it (not many), you were at the top of that "A" list.
A friend told me once that I "don't suffer fools gladly".
He just was being kind, and trying to put a positive spin on my impatience, arrogance, mule-headed and often irreverent demeanor.
Perhaps Don Fishel said it better when he once told me that I "am as subtle as a train wreck".
That's true, and I've never much felt inclined to soft-pedal my opinions, nor to long endure the company of those whose opinions are inconsequential (or even "stupid") to me.
You, however, are one of those (I can count all of you on the fingers of my hand) who have earned my profound respect and admiration.
More so than even those select few, you have been privy to parts of my personal history, opinions, and fears that I have kept locked away from the rest of the world and even my own family.
Even some of my local and Stake Priesthood leaders once abandoned me when I was most in need of help, and, while that hurt most of all, it also was a precious lesson for me about judging others, tolerance, patience, compassion, and forgiveness (most especially on my part).
It taught me that, regardless of our callings and position in the Church and life, we all just are doing the best we can, and we sometimes come to imperfect conclusions.
How fortunate we all are that "it is by grace we are saved, after all we can do" (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Book of Mormon - 2 Nephi 25:23), and that God takes our well-meaning but often clumsy efforts and decisions, and molds them to His own purposes for our ultimate good.
Such was and always has been the case with me.
And yet, you have put up with all of this from me without complaint, and always have been so wondrously supportive of and positive to me.
If you and I were Roman Catholics, I would petition to have you elevated to Sainthood.
Is it any wonder why I always have included the welfare of you and
yours in my personal prayers and also on the Temple Prayer Roll?