The power of the devil is in 'flattery, and much power of speech', trying to convince us that good things are bad and that bad things are better, or at least 'ok'. His methods are many and varied, are pleasing to hear, but in the end they each attempt to convince us to choose a path away from the prophet, from the church, and from the 'iron rod' and from God. For some, he preaches 'all is well – no need to worry or rush, you can do it later', to others he whispers 'you are imperfect, you will never make it – it is best not even try', to some 'that sin is good or there is no sin and no devil', and to even others 'that the church or it's leaders have gone astray – you need to follow more modern ideas and a new path'. The intended effect of each of these many varied assaults is simply to halt us in our progress – to keep us from completing our part in His work.
My talk today might be summarized in a short poem, provided to me earlier this week via my wise brother in law [Arlen].
Prayer: Pray It!
Tithing: Pay It! [and I would add]
Thank you: Say It!
Two weeks ago many of your youth along with ever so many other dedicated stake members, on the trail and behind the scenes, participated in an amazing Camp of Israel re-enactment – Magrath Stake Trek 2014. I was blessed to be able to go, along with my good wife, as one of the 20 'Ma and Pa' families. We were assigned an amazing youth captain and 11 additional 'trek children', a handcart and our family food, water and supplies. We did not find out who was assigned to our 'trek family' until the morning we arrived to depart on trek. One of our young 'trek daughters' later confessed, to her own parents, to thinking to herself; “Oh no, we got the OLD parents!”. I suspect many of her 'trek siblings' initially entertained the same thought. For my part, despite not knowing their names and faces before we started, I experienced an unexpected overpowering feeling of family love and concern for our 'trek family', days before we even met them. That 'trek family' bond only increased as we worked and talked and prayed together along the trail. I suspect that this spirit was a result of the preparation, faith and prayers of our dedicated stake leaders and the stake fast held for our youth that weekend that you all participated in. The entire event for me, while physically challenging, was a spiritual feast at every turn. Getting a chance to get to know just a few of your amazing children was a marvellous experience for my wife and I. It was also telling that almost to a person afterwards, each participant felt that their own 'trek family' had been the 'best family on trek'.
My mom (and my grandkids) couldn't be at all my public speaking assignments, so I post them here for them/her and you to read ..