I am unsure as to why I felt to transcribe this journal and my final thoughts on trek in this fashion. For me it was a surprisingly spiritual experience, one that I hope was the same for those we shared it with. I admit to feeling a tiny bit jealous of my daughter as she described how she loved her trek family 'the best' but also see her reaction out of the corner of my eye as I pontificate on how great our trek family was, many of whom are her current classmates and friends. I feel the same feelings for both our trek family and their family(s) as I do for my own flesh and blood. I watch over and for them whenever they are near. My definition of 'family' has been expanded by this experience and hope to continue expanding it in all my callings. Do you love your neighbor? Do you know their names and worry over and for them? Do you watch and wait for them to turn the corner and wave hello just one more time? We do now ..
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.
One reason I felt to share this story with you was that it was Valentines yesterday. The other reason was that we were reminded of the story as we shared it with our youngest daughter this past week. My wife, Shauna, was telling her our story, how we met and got engaged, and that the anniversary of our first date was the 9th of February .. and then stopped, suddenly realizing that we both had forgotten to observe it the day before! And so, another reason for this story, is that my talk today is on remembering and repenting ..
This month we attended the Magrath 1st Ward ward conference. I was assigned to provide some training for the EQ/HP in their Priesthood meeting. Our assigned high council topic for Jan 2015 was on developing faith in Jesus Christ 'in our homes'. President Dudley also asked me to discuss Priesthood Keys. Many of the thoughts below were used in the lesson given.
To All Our Good Trek Family Children,
Daughters: Hope, Faith, Charity, Grace, Mercy, Harmony and Felicity
and Sons: Lehi, Ammon, Mormon, Mosiah and Nephi
This month marks the six month anniversary of our happy trek together! I trust this letter finds each of you in good health and condition. We have watched over your progress from time to time both here in our fair town and in the social media. Whenever we get to see or talk to any of our treklings or their extended families - you or your own family members – it brings us joy and we smile.
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!
.. this is what I imagine it might look like.
Luke 10:25-29 “And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? He said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou? And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbor as thyself. And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live. But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbor?”
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 ..