This blog is mostly about having the courage to move on after losing my daughter Laney. But I wanted to mention my other blessings. My other kids. I have four other daughters and a son who are amazing in their own right.
They are all struggling in their own way over losing Laney. But they, too, look forward to the future when we will all be together again. They have faith that if we trust in Him, we will be ok. We can even be happy again. His promises are sure.
So, I am going to introduce you to my family. Alyssa is my oldest. She and Laney did everything together growing up. We had Laney as soon as we did because Alyssa needed a friend. They are 18 months apart. They played sports together until Alyssa graduated from high school.
Kaden is my only boy. Laney was his champion. I wonder if his disability is helping to shield him from some of the pain of losing his sister….
Brynna has been Laney’s best friend for the past several years. They did everything together. Laney’s friends were Brynna’s friends. They still are.
Ally is just like Laney. She not only looks like her, but she acts like her, too. She loves the same things Laney did. Her sisters tell her that she even laughs like Laney. And she loves every second of it.
Addisyn is Ally’s twin sister. She is very witty and likes to help make rough situations light. She is probably doing the best of everyone. She misses her sister, but is also very quick to point out that we will see her again.
See what I mean when I say my kids are amazing? I love them very much!
It is so important that we look for the blessings in the trials we find ourselves in. This is not an easy task when we are discouraged and feel so down trodden. But, if we look for the blessings, we will see that the Lord does indeed delight to bless us. He knows us. He loves us.
One of the ways He blesses us and helps us to strengthen our testimonies and faith in Him is through tender mercies. In his book Divine Signatures, Gerald Lund says, “Sometimes, the blessings come with such a unique combination of circumstances that it becomes very clear they are from the Lord.” Lund calls them divine signatures. He not only gives us tender mercies, but He also “signs” them in such a way that we have no doubt that the blessings come from him.
Elder David A. Bednar describes tender mercies in this way:
I testify that the tender mercies of the Lord are real and that they do not occur randomly or merely by coincidence. Often the Lord’s timing of His tender mercies helps us to both discern and acknowledge them. …The Lord’s tender mercies are the very personal and individualized, strength, protection, assurance, guidance, loving-kindnesses, consolation, support, and spiritual gifts which we receive from and because of and through the Lord Jesus Christ. … Faithfulness, obedience, and humility invite tender mercies into our lives, and it is often the Lord’s timing that enables us to recognize and treasure these important blessings…I testify that the tender mercies of the Lord are available to all of us and that the Redeemer of Israel is eager to bestow such gifts upon us…each of us can have eyes to see clearly and ears to hear distinctly the tender mercies of the Lord as they strengthen and assist us…
I have experienced many tender mercies throughout my life. One of the tender mercies that rises to the level of a Divine Signature is how, shortly before her death, Laney wrote her testimony directed TO us. Whether or not she knew it at the time, she was inspired to leave us with one of the greatest treasures of our lives, which has been shared with many, many people.
Looking for the blessings in my life gives me hope for tomorrow. May you find a way to look for the blessings in your own life. Because they are there.