Monday, September 26, 2011

First Step: Faith.

Throughout high school I always had the same friends. Jennifer, Jessica and Morgan. It was always us four-- no one really came in our little group or no one left. They were the best support system in every situation possible. I also had a friend that I would always talk to about almost anything; Rachel Aiken. We never really hung out at school or outside of school but I knew she was always there for me to talk to. I wasn't raised a religious person. I was raised with the ethnicity of being Greek-- which means I was always convinced I would get baptized in the Greek Orthodox Church. Every time I would go talk to Rachel, she would never bring up her religion but she would always bring up Faith and how she knew everything works out for a reason. Even if I would talk to her about a boy that I have been wasting my time on but knowing he was the only one who understood me to my family problems and their choices that ultimately damaged me and my sisters lives. She would always reassure me that things work out for a reason; trials are what make you the strongest and help you realize what you can do. 

Being a junior and not knowing who I was becoming terrified me. My parents were never really there for me, I didn't know how to talk to my friends about my problems, and I was afraid my sisters would think I was being a baby. I was lost. I soon grew a strong relationship with my adviser from school; Annie Draper. One morning I remember I went to school early. I would always go visit her (yes, I was one of those annoying students) when I went early. She was always so welcoming and was (still is) such a good listener. I have never been so open to talk about my struggles. One afternoon, I was having family issues, I didn't know what to do. I, once again, was lost. I went to her classroom after school to talk to her and she handed me a book. It read The Book of Mormon. I was stunned at first, why would she give me this? She told me that I have mentioned I felt lost. She assured me that this simple book would help me find my way. I took it and put it in my backpack. No way I'm reading that. 

A few months later, I remember I got in a fight with my parents. I locked myself in my room and started cleaning. I was going through my desk and came across The Book of Mormon I received months prior. I locked the door and opened it to a random page. I read it for a few minutes before slamming it shut thinking what am I doing? 

Roughly, about six months later, I moved in with my Grandma. My mom and step dad needed time apart apparently. My mom reacted in a way that hurt me more than anything (I'm choosing not to go into detail about this). We got in a huge fight that left me devastated. 

While I was doing my nightly "Myspacing" I came across my friend Alyssa. I haven't talked to her in forever so I decided to add her. We were best friends in Elementary school and then living on different sides of the city, she went to Cedar High and I went to Canyon View. So we drifted apart. To my surprise, she accepted right away. We just started talking and getting caught up on each other's lives. We were best friends immediately. We swapped phone numbers and the next day she asked me if I would want to come to the Parade of Homes with her and her family. At first, anti social Mary, I was nervous. I accepted the invite though. We were inseparable. We would stay up night after night just talking into such depth about our lives and what we have both gone through. After about three weeks, she invited me to go to Mutual with her. Her, too? What's up with these Mormons? Again, I accepted. It wasn't bad. We just went to Dairy Queen and had Ice Cream. It was fun. After that, she kept asking if I would want to go to Young Women's with her on Sunday. Immediately, I rejected this invited. My family would not approve of this. 

After many attempts, I agreed on going. But only to Young Women's. No more. The lesson was on bringing your non member friends to Church. Did someone pay this teacher to teach on this subject? I felt this comforting feeling. Nothing I have ever felt before. Peace? True happiness? Acceptance? I didn't know. But I liked it. 

I don't have to tell my family I'm going to Church, right? I gave in and went to Sacrament and Sunday school. I felt that feeling again. What was it? 

Elder Malcom and Elder German came up and introduced themselves. "We're missionaries through the Church. Would you mind if we came and got to know you sometime this week?" Uh oh. I replied, "Sure."

They came over like they said. Only for a few minutes though. Hmm that was interesting. They would rarely come over and when they did it was only for a few minutes. Then one day, two other missionaries came. Elder Carver and Elder Trubey. That feeling came back again that I felt in Church when I was talking to them. Needless to say, I started taking the Missionary Discussions.  

Faith (bible dictionary): Faith is to hope for things which are not seen, but which are true. 


  1. Aww, that is such a sweet story! I'm so glad that you let the spirit into your life. Isn't it amazing the comfort it can bring? Even in the darkest times.

  2. This is beautiful, Mary! You are such an amazing woman. So glad I got to read this this morning.