"No obstacles are insurmountable when God commands and we obey"
- - Heber J. Grant
October 15, 2012
Listening to the Still, Small Voice
by Kathryn H. Kidd

A few weeks ago in the temple, one of the temple workers came up to me and sat down for a visit. This doesn’t happen very often, because temple workers usually have places to go and things to do. But I was a hostess and I wasn’t going anywhere, and the other temple worker must have been between assignments for a minute or two, so I got a rare visit.

Although she didn’t say anything specifically, it soon became apparent to me that she was feeling down. I asked what was wrong, and she hesitatingly told me stories about family crises and money woes. I immediately knew two things that would cheer her up, both of which I have recommended here before. One was my favorite talk of all time, Bread or Stones: Understanding the God We Pray To. The other was a book, Yearning for the Living God.

I wrote down the name of the talk so she could get it off the internet. The book was a little harder. I have it on Kindle, and I can’t lend it out because I use my Kindle every day. The hardcover goes for the obscene price of $29.99, and with my budget I couldn’t afford to give it to her. I at least wrote down the name of the book and the name of the author, telling her that the book was expensive, but it was important enough to her that she needed to read it even if she had to skip a few lunches to do so.

I thought I’d done my work, so I let it go. The next week I looked up this friend, and she looked as dispirited as before. I asked her if she had read the talk, and she said no because she hadn’t been able to get to the library to get access to a computer. If she couldn’t afford a computer in her home, there was no way she had ordered a thirty-dollar book, so I didn’t even mention that.

There are a couple of temple computers that have access to BYU talks, and I spent that week trying to get in touch with one of the workers who uses them. She and I had assignments in different areas, so that didn’t work. I didn’t think to print out the article from home and take it to my friend the following week, either. When I got to the temple last week her condition hadn’t changed. I felt guilty about that.

Then I heard President Monson’s talk in the Sunday morning session of General Conference. In this talk, he reminded us to go out and perform service when we see the opportunity, rather than waiting for a convenient time to do so.

As I listened to this talk, I knew he was talking to me. It wasn’t enough for me to track down somebody to print out the talk for my friend at the temple. And it certainly wasn’t enough for me to tell someone with huge financial burdens that she should go out and buy a very expensive book. No — it was my responsibility to print out the talk. And it was my responsibility to use my budget money to go out and buy the book.

Chastened, I went upstairs and ordered the book from Amazon. Even though the purchase of that book took a big chunk out of my monthly budget, I knew I was doing the right thing. In fact, I even knew the inscription I was supposed to put inside the book.

This week when I go to the temple, I will be able to give that temple worker what she needs — the things I realized three weeks ago that would help her. If I had taken the incentive when I first heard her plight, I could have spared her a few weeks of misery.

The story doesn’t end there, though. On Monday, just a few hours after I had reluctantly parted with my hard-earned money to order the book for the temple worker, a long-time friend dropped by for a visit. He asked me to help him write his mother’s autobiography. After I agreed, he pulled out a thousand-dollar check to get me started on the project.

I can’t help but wonder at the timing of this blessing. Dale had been thinking for months that I was the one who needed to do the work, but he didn’t do anything about it until I made that small sacrifice of my own.

Even though we are not promised financial reward for listening to the promptings of the spirit, I can’t help but think that in this case, a reward was given to remind me immediately that the sacrifices we make are not in vain.

One of my favorite scriptures comes from 2 Nephi 2:2: “He shall consecrate thine afflictions for thy gain.” I think the same holds true for the sacrifices we make.

We don’t always see immediate rewards when we make those sacrifices, but the rewards are there. This week when I take the book and the talk to the temple, I will remember once again that the Lord keeps His promises — even the ones that are hidden in 2 Nephi for nobody to see.

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About Kathryn H. Kidd

Kathryn H. Kidd has been writing fiction, nonfiction, and "anything for money" longer than most of her readers have even been alive. She has something to say on every topic, and the possibility that her opinions may be dead wrong has never stopped her from expressing them at every opportunity.

A native of New Orleans, Kathy grew up in Mandeville, Louisiana. She attended Brigham Young University as a generic Protestant, having left the Episcopal Church when she was eight because that church didn't believe what she did. She joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as a BYU junior, finally overcoming her natural stubbornness because she wanted a patriarchal blessing and couldn't get one unless she was a member of the Church. She was baptized on a Saturday and received her patriarchal blessing two days later.

She married Clark L. Kidd, who appears in her columns as "Fluffy," more than thirty-five years ago. They are the authors of numerous LDS-related books, the most popular of which is A Convert's Guide to Mormon Life.

A former managing editor for Meridian Magazine, Kathy moderated a weekly column ("Circle of Sisters") for Meridian until she was derailed by illness in December of 2012. However, her biggest claim to fame is that she co-authored Lovelock with Orson Scott Card. Lovelock has been translated into Spanish and Polish, which would be a little more gratifying than it actually is if Kathy had been referred to by her real name and not "Kathryn Kerr" on the cover of the Polish version.

Kathy has her own website, www.planetkathy.com, where she hopes to get back to writing a weekday blog once she recovers from being dysfunctional. Her entries recount her adventures and misadventures with Fluffy, who heroically allows himself to be used as fodder for her columns at every possible opportunity.

Kathy spent seven years as a teacher of the Young Women in her ward, until she was recently released. She has not yet gotten used to interacting with the adults, and suspects it may take another seven years. A long-time home teacher with her husband, Clark, they have home taught the same family since 1988. The two of them have been temple workers since 1995, serving in the Washington D.C. Temple.

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