1. An Inner Struggle.
This hotel was not any hotel, there was a huge convention going on. The first floor was covered with animal skins and hundreds of people everywhere. I was with my teammates for our state soccer competition. My family was back home and I was completely alone. One of the older teammates of mine let me know, “I could do anything and no one would even know.” She was one of the girls that was the star of the game. I felt like I could call her my sister we were so close. She looked after me in each decision I made. As the convention went on and as our state competition went on, the team was doing so well that we made it into the finals. One of the four days we were there, we did not have to compete against any teams or play in any games. We were waiting for the final competitions. The coach at that time told us, “It was our time to rest and recover.” My coach went to her room and was occupied the whole day with the TV going on. Another dearest friend that I am close to was with me during this exciting “resting” time. We were called us twins even though she was a different race. We played the positions of center midfield and right midfield. The older teammate I was also close to reminded us one last time that, “I could do anything and no one would even know.” The other teams were settled at this same hotel but they were of the opposite gender. They were planning a large party and made sure to let my teammates and I know. I felt like I was obligated to go because my teammates would all be there. As I contemplated more and more my sister of a friend and I decided that we would not go. Instead we had a blast together being the elevator operators at the massive hotel we stayed at for our state competition.
2. Scripture, Personal and Powerful.
I was preparing for this exciting state tournament all year and could not wait. My last class to go to before I left was my religion class, Seminary. During the class we read a verse in 2 Nephi chapter 2, I had really pondered this verse and enjoyed the simplicity reminding me, “And they are free to choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil; for he seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself.” After this experience at state I was lucky to remember this scripture. I saw that the next day none of my teammates that had gone to the party were doing well, and they all were sick or had “hang overs”. I noticed that in that verse it said “For he seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself.” Just as my other teammates wanted me to join them, I felt grateful to have contemplated and to have re-evaluated their question to turn down the invitation. Although I did not participate in the activities with that crowd that night or the “fun” as they called it, I was lucky to form a greater bond with my incredible friend. Most especially, I was at peace knowing that in the midst of the mist of darkness, I had found the path to follow that was the correct path. The peace that comes from a good choice far outweighs the momentary pleasure and is worth the cost. As an additional bonus, I noticed that I had not felt miserable the next day like they had, and I was able to play my best. We lost the game, but I won a great personal battle.
3. A Wilderness Quest.Each year I go to the Wind River Mountains and enjoy every moment embracing the beauty of the world. It is a tradition to go on a long hike. One year as we were on our way back to our campground, I was the leader, and I realized that I had walked so fast that no one was behind me anymore. I was alone with my dog. I was frightened because I did not know the exact fork in the path to take. I kept trudging through the beautiful wilderness but got frightened because it had been longer then I thought it should have been. At that time I recalled that I could talk to God in a prayer. I felt silly at first but as I spoke, I noticed that I was no longer alone. I was no longer scared of finding my way back. I felt like Heavenly Father was helping me through this little struggle. I finally found the right path, and my dog and I were led straight back to camp. That very moment when I prayed out loud to God, I noticed that He was there, He was real, and He knows me and loves me. I was so thankful to get back to camp but expressed more gratitude as I became closer to my Father in Heaven