I waved goodbye to Zula one last time as she and her “Mimi,” my mother-in-law, went inside Mimi’s house to play with the toys. I said another quick prayer for safety for her and me and everyone we loved. I’d had several promptings to do so that morning, but I wasn’t overly concerned. I had a quick errand to run in Salt Lake City and both Mimi and I had tight schedules so I checked the time so I could accurately determine how long it took me to get from Mimi’s to my errand. That way I could leave myself enough time to drive back. 9:41 am. Okay. I remembered that my mom’s cell phone number starts with 941, so I’ll just remember that my mom was here when I left.
Then I heard a very quiet voice say, “No, not mom. Ma.”
I didn’t understand exactly what this still, small voice was saying. I didn’t know anyone who went by “Ma.” I began to drive, but before I could even turn off the small neighborhood street, I had to pull over. Ma was clearly a spirit from the other side of the veil who did not want to be dismissed. Her presence was so real that I had to clear away my purse and papers from the passenger seat so that she could have a place to sit. That apparently appeased her and I continued my drive to Salt Lake, albeit a little behind schedule.
The traffic was pretty thick on the freeway; it seemed a lot like rush hour even though it was in the middle of the day. Cars were driving the speed limit, but it was very much bumper-to-bumper. About halfway to Salt Lake and about a mile away from the next exit, my car started acting strangely. The speedometer and RPM needles started to swing back and forth – it looked a lot like the cars in the movies right before they get abducted by aliens. I quickly got into the right lane and took the next exit.
As I got to the end of the off-ramp, I turned right onto a very empty street. It was a big road, but the closest oncoming car was about half a mile away. This was a very good thing because, for reasons totally unknown, the steering wheel spun out of my hands and the car lunged forward into the oncoming traffic lane. My car seemed to completely have a mind of its own and I quickly turned onto a tiny side street and shut off the ignition.
In the quiet of the car, I started to cry. I wasn’t sad or scared, but the relief I felt was so intense that it caused tears to fall as I prayed and thanked Heavenly Father for the promptings to pray for safety I’d had earlier that day. I thanked Him for sending Ma, who I later learned was my husband’s great grandmother and a very big personality. Big enough to be very much known in my car and cause me to clear a seat for her. Had I not done that, I would have been past the exit on the freeway when the speedometer and RPM needles went berserk and still in the bumper-to-bumper traffic when my car jumped lanes.
I’ve heard that one of President Monson’s favorite scriptures is Doctrine and covenants 84:88…
I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up.
I found this wonderful picture that illustrates this beautifully. I believe missionaries get this special blessing, but I can easily see teenagers at school, dads at work, or regular moms on errands walking – or driving – with the Savior and surrounded by angels.
I’ve always believed in angels, but I’ve never had such an intense personal experience with angels from the other side of the veil so concerned about me. That day in the car, I felt those angels bear me up, and slow me down, and keep me safe.
As this year starts fresh, I’ve been hearing about peoples’ resolutions, and goals, and promises. But maybe, in addition to all the reconfiguring we try to make in our lives, let’s keep one thing set. Let’s be constant in our efforts to rely on the Savior and have faith that as we keep Him the center of our lives He will make good on His promise to go before us and be on our right hand and on our left. Then we’ll be able to better recognize His angels who surround us and bear us up (or slow us down…and keep us safe).