Emily Belle Freeman
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THIS IS MY JOY

AND MY GREAT REJOICING

As He Was Thus Pondering

Summer of Many Mercies Helaman 10:6 - Helaman 13:7

The other day I was doing some work in my front yard.  I paused for a break and saw my Niece quietly sitting next to her toy puppy.

She didn't move for a really long time.

She sat just like that...quiet.

I couldn't help but wonder what she was pondering about so quietly there with her arm wrapped around her puppy.

Wouldn't you like to know?

Where is it that you go when you need some time to ponder?

Do you have a favorite spot?

I have so many favorite pondering places.

A certain route I like to walk. Mowing the front lawn. Driving in the car.

Places that give me uninterrupted time to think.

Today I learned that pondering can bring tender mercies.

In the book of Helaman we read about Nephi...

"And it came to pass that Nephi went his way towards his own house, pondering..."  (Helaman 10:2)

"And it came to pass as he was thus pondering in his heart, behold, a voice came unto him saying:  Blessed art thou, Nephi, for those things which thou hast done..."  (Helaman 10:3-4)

It was as he was pondering that Nephi experienced the great blessing of hearing the voice of the Lord.  A tender mercy.

One morning last week I began to pray and felt completely overwhelmed by everything that needed to be conquered.  Then I jumped into the day.  It was a crazy day.  Lot's of places to go and things to do and it seemed as though once it started it never stopped.

Until the afternoon.

I was driving home.  No more places to go, no more things to do.  I turned on a favorite song and began to ponder.

It was in that moment that I realized it...

In the course of the day the Lord had directly answered three of the four questions I had prayed about that morning.

But the answers would have gone unnoticed if I hadn't stopped to ponder.

Two of the three would have worked themselves out either way.

But one answer would have been missed completely had I not allowed time for pondering.

I love a line several verses down in the chapter, "Behold, thou art Nephi, and I am God."  (Helaman 10:6)

The Lord knew Nephi.

Nephi knew God.

And Nephi knew God could accomplish great things, answer prayers, send blessings.

And God knew Nephi would declare his word with unwearyingness, and would keep his commandments, and seek His will.

That is why the blessings came.

That is how Nephi became mighty.

But I also think Nephi was greatly blessed because he spent time pondering.  In those moments he came to recognize the voice of the Lord.

And that is the greatest blessing of all.