It was a hot, still summer day.

Grandma said it was a perfect day to spray some weeds, so we set about gathering the supplies for the first time that season.

I don’t know how so many storage spaces got so full after only a couple years of living there, but we could not find the plastic jug that the weed spray went in. We checked the upstairs and downstairs garages, the carport, the shed, and the barn. It was nowhere! We looked and looked again.

Grandma was getting frustrated, so she decided to go back inside to make some lunch.

My eight-year-old self wanted to help so badly!

“Hold on Grandma, I’ll be right back.”

I ran around the corner of the house to a shady spot and said a little prayer. “Heavenly Father, I want to help Grandma. Please help me find the jug!”

Then I opened my eyes and started walking. I felt the impulse to visit the shed again.

It wasn’t large. Maybe six feet deep by eight feet wide. It was full of gardening supplies and building materials.

I remember scanning the space starting on my right side. I slowly moved my eyes across the shed. As my eyes came to the back left corner, something inside me said “STOP!” I just knew the jug was in that corner. It was an overwhelming feeling in my chest that drew me closer. I couldn’t see a jug from the spot in the doorway where I stood, but nevertheless I knew.

I carefully climbed over filthy and sharp-edged things.

In that back corner was a thin piece of aluminum, like roofing material. I pulled it back, and… there was the plastic jug!

I grabbed it and carefully climbed back out of the shed.

“I found it!” I told Grandma, clutching my side from running so hard back up to the front of the house.

“Where did you find it? How…?”

I never did tell her that I said a prayer. I just shrugged my shoulders and said it was in the shed. (Oh, the innocence and lack of ego of a young child!)

Later I would come to realize how profound an experience that was for me. In those few minutes I learned for myself that God was real, that He knew me, and that He heard and answered prayers. Becoming intimate with the Spirit had also begun for me.

My experience in “the Church” was still very new— only a couple years, but my relationship with a loving, kind God was forever cemented inside of me.

That relationship would sustain me for years to come when the pain and loneliness of a chaotic home life would threaten to overwhelm me at times.

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