As many of you know, we participated in our first Time Out for Women a few weeks ago in Ogden. Unlike the other presenters, who speak for 35 minutes at one point and are done the rest of the day, we sing for 10-20 minutes, three different times throughout the day. Our second set starts right after lunchtime, and in that set, I share a story that for me is very personal. It was a really rough time in my life, and I learned some major lessons that are very near and dear to my heart. I was excited to share that experience, and the things I had learned with the women at Time Out.

Enter Mariama.
Right before the lunch break, it was Mariama's turn to present. She told us her incredible life story. Raised in South Africa, she was forced to flee for her life several times during a terrible war. She witnessed her parents' death, her sister's torture, and was abused in ways I can't even imagine. Her story was one of strength, triumph, sheer faith, endurance. This woman is a saint. She joined the church, helped countless people in her country, and is now inspiring people around the U.S. with her story.
Enter my shriveling confidence.
Wow. This is what I had to follow? I turned to Whit, Soni, and Emily Freeman, who happened to be standing next to us. "How in the world can I share my story after that?" I cried. "My problem seems so small compared to hers!" I felt panicked. Then Emily said something that hit me like, well, something hard.
She grabbed my hands, looked me right in the eyes and said, "Never doubt what you have been inspired to say."
Something clicked my mind. That's right! I DID feel inspired to share my story! I knew there was someone in that audience who would gain something from it. Emily's words have been with me since then. How often do I doubt what has been inspired? Recognizing it as true inspiration from God is the first step, but it's up to me to move forward with it, void of fear and doubt. And not just in the things I say. Have I been inspired to bring dinner to my neighbor, teach my children, compliment my spouse, call a friend, forgive a family member? Yes. Do I always act on it? Noooo...But when I do, I can feel those giddy butterflies in my stomach and my heart seems extra warm. Duh Brooke! (Who says "duh" anymore?) THAT'S INSPIRATION! It doesn't matter if your story is different than someone else's. It's YOUR story. It's YOUR inspiration!
This post is rambling-long, but real quick. One of my fave scriptures to go along with this. Found in Alma 48:11-
And Moroni was a strong and a mighty man; he was a man of a perfect understanding; yea, a man that did not delight in bloodshed; a man whose soul did joy in the liberty and the freedom of his country, and his brethren from bondage and slavery;
Then in verse 19-
Now behold, Helaman and his brethren were no less serviceable unto the people than was Moroni...
Mariama's story is definitely of Captain Moroni quality. But it doesn't mean I can't be a Helaman. We can't all have amazing stories of leading armies, conquering huge tragedies, and overcoming insane obstacles. But, we can ALL be inspired. And we all have the capacity to use that inspiration to do God's work. So I'm repeating Emily's words-for me, and for all of you.

Never doubt what you've been inspired to say.

Now go follow that inspiration! :)