A few weeks ago, I was invited to speak to a Young Women Girls Camp group from Idaho. It was a total fluke how I came to be asked. Long story short, I'd never met the camp director but in trying to answer a question on a FB group, I ended up being asked to be the guest speaker. It was pretty awesome how it all came to be. I felt blessed and humbled to be asked because of the circumstances. It had gone from a woman posting a random question on a Facebook group about Soda Springs, Idaho to me being the guest speaker.
I spent every spare moment and every planned moment that I could squeeze in preparing this forty-five minute talk to a group of young women that I'd never met. I was humbled, I was focused, I was concerned because I felt that, under the circumstances, there must be a reason that I'd been asked to speak. And then, I was blessed. As I prepared the talk, I would think of stories to share and I would know, almost instantly, yes or no, share that, don't share this. I stayed away from tv for days, I listened to great music and really tried to stay in tune with the Spirit, as I prepared.
Three days before, I still felt like there was one thing that I needed to share. I wasn't done. I knew it. But, I had no clue what it was that I was supposed to add. I read books, I read old blog entries, I looked through scrapbooks, I did everything I could to recall whatever it was that I was supposed to share. And I prayed. A lot. Nada. Then, on the night before, I was sitting staring at the laptop screen, reading the talk to myself for the fiftieth time and the story just popped into my head and I knew that it was the last thing that I was supposed to share!
The night came and we packed up for the cabin since we were less than 40 miles away. The girls and Doug joined me, which made me happier than words could say. We arrived at the camp and were greeted with hugs and loves and lots of welcoming smiles! What a wonderful reception! These girls were so enthusiastic but that took no time to see why because of their awesome leaders. A man comes to girlscamp every year to lead them in some fun campsongs, which absolutely blew me away! He was so full of energy and made more funny faces than Quayd! WOW! There was just instant love with everyone there. Our girls couldn't get over the warm welcome and just fit right in immediately with them all.
Shortly after a wonderful dinner with the group and lots of introductions, the girls gathered together around the campfire. They sang a beautiful song which I was unfamiliar with and the time was turned over to me. I spoke for 45 minutes about choice. I shared stories about the forks in my life's journey and how I never realized at the time, that that very day would be the day that would change my life forever and that very decision would be the decision that would change my destiny. I was blessed to feel the Spirit guide me as I shared stories and thoughts, which I'd spent weeks preparing and some that came to me at that moment, causing me to eliminate a few that I'd prepared. It was just an incredible experience.
When I was done speaking, I was in awe. The hugs and tears that were shared were awesome, but better than any gratitude expressed was this... Almost instantly, the YW president came up to me and said, "You don't know this but you were inspired to share this or that because did you see the gal over on that side of the fire with the yellow jacket on? Well, your words were exactly what she needed to hear. I'm certain that you came to speak to her." A few minutes later the YW Camp Director came to me with tears and said, "You don't realize this, but now I know why you were supposed to speak to our girls. Did you see the girl with the braids sitting right by you? Well, she has grown up under similar circumstances and your stories were just what she needed to hear. She needed to know that she can do this without family support and be strong on her own." Then, the Bishop came up to me and said, "Sister Corbridge, thank you. You'll never know how much your words meant. Did you see that couple sitting over there? Well, they have just reactivated in the church and everything you said, it was like it was directly meant for them." This happened several times. I was in tears. Apparently, I had said what I was supposed to say.
I was in awe. Literally. I'd sincerely tried to let the Spirit guide me for two weeks. I'd truly tried to focus on listening to the still, small voice speak and encourage me on what to say. I was thankful for that blessing that came! It was truly one of my most humbling experiences ever, in public speaking. All I can say is "I love it when that happens!"
We were invited to stay for the rest of the evening but we declined and headed to the cabin. We had a great night, just visiting and relaxing until 11ish and we went to bed. No movies. No games. Just visiting and hitting the hay after, what had been, a wonderful perfect day!
In the past few weeks, I've given that talk, taught two lessons in Young Womens and spoke in Sacrament Meeting. I have loved the time spent studying and preparing for these happenings. I love teaching the gospel. It's selfish because I am always the one who gains the most from the preparation and study time! Life is good! And have I mentioned that I love being at the ranch?