Sunday, October 23, 2011

Offerings (Anne)

When I transferred from BYU to a Midwestern university, I enrolled in Institute. I was 22 at the time, and was returning to church activity after a horrific engagement to a boy who did not share my faith (and was an all-around awful person). I loved the Institute teacher, and I always felt like he “got me” in a way my religion professors at BYU did not.

Three years later, I returned from my mission, and a boy who I thought had waited for me broke my heart in rather devastating fashion. When Institute classes started, and that same teacher asked me questions about my mission and how I was adjusting, I told him about the boy and my fear that I would never get married.

My teacher said, “Maybe being single is going to be your Abrahamic trial.”

I wanted to punch him.

That was 13 years ago, and apparently, that Institute teacher was somewhat clairvoyant.

But I think of his analogy every so often, especially when I do things that I consider sacrifices. Trying online dating: an offering. Going to a single adult conference, where I am the youngest person in attendance by at least 25 years: an offering. Continual church attendance despite feeling like a complete freak: an offering.

Offering after offering on the Altar of Please-Don't-Let-Me-Die-Alone.

Last weekend, I attended one of those single adult conferences. I could only make it to parts of it, and really didn't have a chance to mingle much, but I went. And in the opening prayer of one of the speaker events, the pray-er asked that we would be blessed for our faith in attending.

I was so touched by that idea—that by going to the conference, by myself, knowing not a single soul could even be considered an act of faith.

I enjoyed the speakers (Barbara Thompson was one of them) and the one workshop I was able to attend before I had to leave for another obligation. I didn't see anyone close to my age. And yes, I know I probably shouldn't be age-ist, but I'm just not ready to date men closer to my father's age than mine.

I did not have enough faith to attend the dance.

But I laid down an offering just the same.


Anonymous said...

I agree with you that all those things you mentioned at offerings and show great faith and obedience. You are a great example of that.

LDS Mid-singles in KC said...

I love your thoughts. I think that at times too. Secondly to that, if you are close enough to go to that conference, you should be close enough to come to mid-single events we have in Kansas City. I head up the mid-singles stuff here and we have a pretty darn good group. It helps with the hopelessness sometimes. Its not a guarantee but it helps not feel so lonely. If you want I can give you more info to come have fun with us.

Peg said...

I love the way you write! And think!