January 25, 2013

Thoughts On Light …


Wow. Yesterday was filled with drama and tears and courage and prayer. The events of the day prevented me from writing about “The Experiment” I mentioned on Wednesday. Now it is Friday and I have to write about the things that weigh on my heart before they are gone and I have forgotten the way I feel.

Forgive me for not going into all the details, but I feel the need to protect some aspects of the situation. I will say this much: in the past few days my sweet daughter has been the subject of religious discrimination at our Middle School. This discrimination was the work of adults in positions of authority.

My daughter, despite all that has gone on, has maintained her integrity. I am amazed by her beauty and grace. When faced with a situation where she could have easily cast aside a sacred and cherished belief in order to remain with all of her friends doing something she loves, she chose God first, even though it was at great cost.

A sweet friend brought Hannie a quote yesterday that said, “Just wait until you see what is possible when you shine your little light on the world.” This friend knew the situation my girl was in and supported her in her time of sorrow. This quote moved my daughter to tears. She hadn’t thought about it that way – that standing up for what she believes is a way of shining her light on the world.

Friends lined up to defend her, offering to protest or leave like Hannie had. Parents emailed me offering to write letters to the school. Grandparents prayed, brothers comforted, and friends of mine researched and offered advice.

In the end, a call came to our home from the principal of the school at 8:50 last night. He was responding to an email I’d sent him about the situation. He was completely unaware of what had transpired and immediately set forth to make it right. His call to me was to confirm that our daughter is valued and respected for her beliefs.

I hung up the phone and shared a teary hug with my daughter. God is mindful of us. He gives us light and truth and love. We must share that light with the world to make it a better place.

Just like this picture from Hawaii, when we share even the tiniest portion of our light, darkness flees and all that is around us is illuminated.

Yesterday we felt like we were in a dark place. Hannie’s light, however, helped us to know we were doing the right thing. As the day went on, darkness left us and we felt illuminated by God’s love and the support of our friends and family.

I am so grateful for this hard experience. It has taught me much. My daughter has learned, too and I believe her faith and trust in God’s will has expanded. That is a blessing beyond my imagining. From trials come blessings.

Today is a new day and there is much to see and do. The light is everywhere and I feel happy.


Apis Melliflora said...

I'm so glad you are a person of the light. Continue to walk in the light dear ones.

MelancholySmile said...

I've been thinking a lot about Eve asking, "Is there no other way?" And how it still applies to our lives. Oh, that there was another way to learn and be Godlike! I'm so glad that both you and sweet Hannie know that it is better that we walk through sorrow that we might also know joy. :)

JulieB said...

That is so terrible and wrong. And I'm guessing the discrimination was from people who claim to be more "open minded". I'm glad you such a good advocate for your daughter, and that she stood so strong.

brendag said...

Thank you for sharing this experience and the testimony that you and Hannie have. You both are lights to all who see (or read) you. I love the quote your friend gave and MelancholySmile's thought about Eve, I will think on these today.

Anonymous said...

Clearly Hannah and her loving family and friends and those who take note of injustices and think clearly and fairly have prevailed over a dark moment. May all who brought this about now also notice the light and become better for that.

Tracie Carter said...

Loves your way!

Aiketa said...

Wow I'm so sorry that Hannie B. had to go through that. I didn't imagine it to be that serious when I read you facebook status yesterday... It's even worse that were adults who were discriminating.

But I'm happy that you got to experience the love of your friends and family.

All my love to you and your sweet and awesome Hannie B.

Stacey Gerlach Moe said...

Sounds like it has been a difficult time for Hannie B. You should be so proud of how you raised her to stick up for what she believes in. Way to go, Hannie B (and the entire Lee family!!!!)
-Stacey Moe

AllisonK said...

I saw your fast book post yesterday, but didn't want to pry. I was thinking about your all day. I'm so happy to read this beautiful testimony tonight. What a magnificent family you are!

Discrimination is horrible. I have experienced enough to know I do not want more, but unfortunately I'm sure we will see more. Thank you for your beautiful example!

Heather Lindsey said...

Thank you for sharing this beautiful thought. It's been tough here in Puerto Rico for my daughter. She is the only member of the church at her school and it's hard to be the only light in so much darkness. But, I'm grateful to know that even when we feel alone, if we are on the Lord's side, He will stand with us. Love to you and your sweet girl.

Heather Lindsey said...

I meant to say in my last comment, that she is the only member of the church at her school, except for her little brother in Kindergarten. =)

Sue said...

I love Melancholy's comment. And I am reminded of our experiences growing up in the military when we were often a huge minority being LDS. But I think it forced us to define our faith and decide to what degree it was important to us. Hannah is learning that lesson the hard way, but it will serve her well throughout her life. Great parenting, Sammy.