Especially since I've been on my mission, Heavenly Father has shown me daily how well He knows me. But there is one particular story that will always stay with me to the day I die. You see, God has His ways of showing me His love and concern, and He usually works through other people.
I was a freshman at Brigham Young University and was living in an apartment with three other roommates. This was the very first time I was living on my own away from home, and up until my birthday, I was loving it. I enjoyed freedom from nagging parents that wanted me to do my homework or clean my room, no real curfews...life was great! But I missed my family. My birthday's on December 7th and it was on a Friday that year. My roommates had a study group for a final that night, so we couldn't celebrate together. We made plans to go into Salt Lake City the next night when they were all free. I was totally fine with that. I mean, just because it's my birthday doesn't mean that I'm the center of the universe! At least, I really don't think that way. And I knew how important it was for my roommates to go to this study group.
Don't get me wrong- I was NOT alone on my birthday. My mom's family all live pretty close to Provo, Utah and my aunt came and picked me up for lunch on Friday, my grandparents picked me up for lunch on Saturday and another aunt and uncle came with my cousins came and took me to dinner the next week. I felt really spoiled! It was so much fun! I'm pretty sure that was the most partying I had ever done for my birthday in one year! So I really couldn't complain.
Saturday night came, and my roommates and I carpooled into Salt Lake City to see the lights at Temple Square.
I pretended to be asleep while I cried silently to myself on the drive back to our apartment. Even though I had people around me who loved me, I felt alone. This was my first birthday away from home and all of a sudden, I just wanted a mom hug. I wanted to be with my family.
When we got home, my roommates all piled out of the car and started getting ready for bed. I took my time and dragged my feet in getting to bed. I didn't feel like doing anything. Then, I felt my phone vibrate. I looked at the small screen to see my brother, Dayle, calling me.
This is Dayle. Dayle is one of my best friends. I never know when to take him seriously and he loves to be adventurous. He's so much fun to be around! It wasn't always like that with us though. Growing up, we always clashed. I'm pretty sure it's because both of us have really strong personalities and we don't really see eye to eye. When I went off to college, I was under the impression that he was glad that I wasn't going to be around any more because all we did was argue. I knew he loved me, and I did what I knew how to make him aware that I loved him, but we weren't always the best of friends.
I picked up that phone and heard, "Hi Julie." That's all I needed to hear. Immediately I ran outside the apartment so my roommates wouldn't see or hear my embarrassing sobs as I tried to communicate with my brother how much he meant to me. We had a simple conversation. He asked me how my day was and if I had a good birthday. I asked him about school and what classes were giving him a hard time. I had never before felt so much love from my younger brother than in that moment. He handed the phone off to my mom, and I broke down even more. I asked her how Dayle knew he should call me in that moment and she replied, "Well honestly, I think he was just trying to get out of going to bed on time." I thought that was hilarious! I realized that he might have been using me as an excuse to get out of the bedtime routine, but his phone call could not have had better timing. However the thought came into his mind to call me, I know it came from God. There was no way that Dayle could have known how homesick and upset I was. My roommates didn't even know. But Heavenly Father knows the inner desires of my heart, and He used my brother, who I had before struggled to get along with, to tell me that I was loved and that I wasn't alone.
I went back home after a few weeks for Christmas break, and I had so much fun spending time with my siblings. We stayed together as we served with the community boy scouts with a program called Toys for Tots.
This was taken in the Toys for Tots parking lot. Dayle's goofy guy, and I love him so much. God knew that Dayle wanted to get out of going to bed, or maybe he really just felt like he needed to call me, and He also knew that I needed to hear from my family at the exact same time. Heavenly Father brought me and my brother closer together. This experience might seem silly, but it really means a lot to me.
Because God knows me, I know that He knows you too! He is in the very details of our lives. We are His children, and He is our Father who loves us all more than we can comprehend.