I still remember the first time I received a text from you. You were telling me about an activity that was being hosted by the church and you were inviting me to come along with you. I was shocked that a girl like you would even know who I was, let alone want to go to a gathering with me. But I was at a point in my life where my social anxiety was at an all-time high, so I probably gave you some generic answer about how I already had plans but thanked you for the invite. The truth was my plans were most likely to sit at my apartment by myself, lonely, because that was a typical night for me. But I want you to know, even though my short response didn’t convey this, that first text meant a lot to me despite the fact that I declined the offer.
Then you started texting me on Sunday’s, inviting me to go to church with you and to sit by you during the meetings. My usual Sunday routine was to arrive at church a couple of minutes late to avoid the pre-meeting chatter, and then to jet out as soon as the last ‘amen’ was said to avoid post-meeting conversations. You must have noticed this habit, because you wanted me to come early with you, and stay for the second and third hour of church as well. For the second time, I politely declined your invite, but thanked you for the text. And I was once again taken aback by the fact that you cared enough to notice my Sunday habits, and that you were trying to make me feel more comfortable at church.
After a few more texts, you finally caught me. You saved a spot for me right next to you in the aisle, and the second you saw me walk into church late you waved me down to sit by you. I sheepishly sat down, unsure of what to say, but actually surprisingly thankful to finally have someone to sit next to. You gave me a warm smile and whispered “how are you doing?!” while the Bishop went over announcements. For some odd reason, I felt like you really cared about me, and I had no idea why you did.
We continued this routine of periodic texting, which typically resulted in me declining your invites but you persevered nonetheless. Every once in a while you would catch me off guard and I would have to chat with you in person. After these conversations I always felt loved. I felt like I actually wasn’t alone, even though I really didn’t have many friends. You reached out to me at a time when I needed it most.
I have no idea what you are doing today. I don’t know where you live, I don’t know if you’re married or single, and have children or not. Most likely, you don’t even remember who I am. And while nothing ever really came of our texting, and while I never really opened up to you or started accepting your invites, I need you to know how much you meant to me at that point in time. I was at one of my lower points. My life choices weren’t the best and I very rarely had anything to look forward to. It pained me to go to social activities. Just making it to Sacrament meeting every Sunday was an anxiety battle for me. You didn’t know any of this, but you were inspired. The Holy Ghost told you that I needed help. I needed a good friend. And it needed to be someone unexpected, so that I could more fully understand that Heavenly Father would never forget about me.
You were the epitome of what I wanted to be. You had a lot of friends, you were very active in church, you were just as beautiful on the inside as you were on the outside, but most of all you were just so sure of yourself. You were constantly surrounded by people, so you didn’t need to reach out to me. You didn’t need me as a friend, but Heavenly Father wanted you to be my friend and you didn’t hesitate to follow His promptings. You played a very important role in my life. The fact that I still think about you today just further proves my point. So I want to thank you. Thank you for showing me the love of our Savior. Thank you for looking outside of yourself and focusing on someone who was in dire need of a friend. But most of all, thank you for never giving up despite my resistance. You have shown me that I have a loving Father in Heaven who will never give up on me, no matter how many times I ignore Him and disregard His love and guidance.
And to everyone, please never give up on the people you feel inspired to befriend. Please just keep on inviting that person to church, keep on sending the texts asking how they are doing. Never stop showing someone that you care, even if you get nothing in return. The ones who need our help the most are the ones who are the hardest to reach. Know that what you are doing is not going unnoticed, even if it seems to be that way. There is a reason that we are guided to specific people. We all play a very important role in each other’s lives, and we should never downplay just how vital that role is. Everything we do is orchestrated by our Father in Heaven, and He knows exactly what we all need and who we need to reach out to.
We can’t physically see God. Even though He is with all of us on a daily basis, we can’t see His body and He is unable to give us a literal hug when we are down. That is our job as people on this earth. We have to lift each other up and do God’s work, spreading His light to people who don’t yet know Him. You know that name that keeps popping into your head day after day and you don’t know why? Call or text that person. They need the light of Christ, and they can feel it through your love and care for them.
Let’s all commit to be more aware of each other. We all have our highs and we all have our lows. When you are in a place to help those around you, by all means spread your love freely! The only way this world will ever become a better place is if we are all much more focused on lifting each other up. I am so very thankful for that girl that never gave up on me.
Bright Blue Stone