This Thursday evening is my first speaking assignment. The theme of the night is "Turning Lemons into Lemonade." I truly hope they have Lemonade at the event. It's my favorite!!!
I thought I would share a bit of insight on what I think I may speak on. When I wrote my book, I simply wanted to be able to inspire people. Don't give up and keep pushing forward. I have learned the very hard way, that life is a journey. There are those however, who see it as a competition and a check off list.
When I heard words like, "My life was so much harder than yours" it makes me sad, I wonder if I got my point across?
I used to think that if you had a trial or struggle it was because you were being punished. That is what my mom taught me. So that is how I looked at my life struggles. I didn't understand why I was being punished so long and I didn't understand what I had done that was so horrible. Then one day a friend said to me, "Laura I don't know about you, but the God I believe in is a very loving God. One who forgives us, loves us and teaches us." They are words I will forever be grateful for.
I now see a trial or a struggle as a blessing of some sort. Maybe I don't see the blessing at once, but in time I do. When I first moved back to Utah a year ago, my housing fell through and all the apartments and rooms for rent were full. Friends had no room for me. I ended up staying in a hotel and it quickly was eating through my money. Shortly after coming back, I was visiting friends one night and felt truly rejected. Especially when I heard, "You should go back to Texas where you were happy." I went to my car feeling as though I had been thrown out with the trash. I felt dumb and stupid and humiliated and thought, "What did you do this time Laura?" I said a little prayer and asked for Heavenly Father to indeed let me know this is where I needed to be now. I felt like I had before many times in my life all alone in life.
Then my phone rang. It was my friend Nancy in Michigan. She told me she was just calling to tell me she loved me like a sister and reminded me we were--in the Gospel. She has always been my biggest rooter, always believing in me. When I got off the phone that night, I knew everything was going to be okay. I went to a hotel and prayed again. But this time I prayed to find the right ward for me. The next day, I was at a health food store, and an old friend walked in. I had not seen her in years. We talked and long story short, she was the instrument that guided me to where I needed to be.
So when it comes to trials in your life, how do you overcome them? I no longer look at them as mountains to climb. My trials and struggles are now just obstacles in my path I must continue to chip away at. And when I look back I can only be grateful because I realize now there was a lesson learned in my life.
I believe I have figured out a small formula that I will be sharing on Thursday evening with the sisters of Relief Society. If you want to know what it is before my next blog, check out the book in Chapter 4 -- Putting Aside the Running Shoes. Read Tim's essay. That little essay not only got him selected to run with the Olympic Torch, it is now a formula for turning Lemons into Lemonade!!!