“Worthiness is not flawlessness. Worthiness is being honest and trying.”

art by Megan Lindsey

It was a cold and stormy day when Mary Ann Young and her seven children—suffering from malaria—ran out of food. This was two months after Brigham left to serve a mission in England. 

She wrapped up her baby in an old worn blanket and paddled across the Mississippi River in the storm.

A friend wrote, “Sister Young came into my house …almost fainting with cold and hunger, and dripping wet.”

Mary refused to stay the night because there were children at home who needed her.

Soon after, they moved into a horse stable.

Finally, she BUILT A LOG CABIN for her family in Nauvoo with blankets for windows and doors. 

Through it all, she never complained to Brigham. In her final letter before his return, she said,

“While I wish to have a better house to recieve you into, I am thankful for a comfortable shelter from the Storm. […] it has been so differcult to obtain work that what I had done is not done as I wanted it.

“I’ve done the best I could, […] and I thank Heavenly Father for all the blessings I recieve and pray the Lord to continue his mercies with us.”

“It is a great thing,” she said, “to trust in the Lord.”

What a faithful woman!

I thought of this story as I sat during sacrament this last week, completely overwhelmed because sacrament meeting, kids, and Halloween didn’t mix well in my family.

I thought, I’m struggling just to have three kids at church! How did Mary Ann do it all so flawlessly?! I was so discouraged by the comparison.

I felt the spirit whisper, “She cried, too.”

She even said, “What is done is not done as I wanted it. But I’ve done the best I could and I thank Heavenly Father.” The most relatable phrase I’ve ever heard as a mom.

It was a beautiful reminder to me that “Worthiness is not flawlessness. Worthiness is being honest and trying.” (Brad Wilcox)

So I looked around my pew and thought,

What is done is not done as I wanted.

But I have done my best.

And I thank God.

Truly, it is a great thing to trust in the Lord.

Don’t give up.

Always look up in gratitude.

If there is anything I want to emulate about Mary Ann Young, it’s that.

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