My first experience with the power of prayer came at the tender age of about 4 or 5. My parents had always taught me to pray and we had many family prayers but, this is the very earliest I remember of having such a direct correlation of a prayer and a significant answer to that prayer. It formed a testimony of prayer in my heart. I knew I had a loving Heavenly Father that cared for me!
I would often accompany my mom when she went to a dress shop in our small town. I still remember the name of the shop (Mode O' Day) and the visual of a female mannequin in the back of the store. I always thought that mannequin was the creepiest ever! One particular time the mannequin had a black gown and black hat. This was about the time I saw some of the Wizard of Oz. I was convinced that the wicked witch of the west herself had made her way to our small town. I began to have a reoccuring nightmare where this mannequin was chasing me. I still remember the terror I felt and the moment she'd eventually catch me and I'd wake up sweating bullets. I just kept having this dream for a while. It got to where I didn't want to go to sleep it felt so real. Then, the teachings of my parents came into play. They taught us we can always pray to our Heavenly Father for help. So...that is exactly what I did. I earnestly prayed that I could stop having that dream. That night the dream never came. In each of the following nights the nightmare never returned. The fear of that mannequin and that horrible dream (to a 5 year old) faded away. My testimony of the power of prayer officially blossomed and has grown ever since. I thanked Heavenly Father for helping me. I've discovered since that experience that prayers are not often so quickly answered, that God knows what is best for us and that we need to show gratitude for his guidance in life...even if the answer is a trial to humble us. I will forever have engrained in my memory that Heavenly Father heard that prayer of a small child and helped me out of a troubling situation. He loved me! He knew my needs! If we can just ALL remember that, and have the faith of a child.