to Aaron, Annette, Tracy, Preston, Brad, Reid, RANDALL.WOOLSEY, me, Toni
Elder Jeremy sent word about his departure from the MTC to begin his
labors in Naga Mission, Philippine Islands. I'm sure that most of you
who are now serving have gone through that feeling of being anxious to
begin, but a bit apprehensive of what you will be experiencing. In a
few months he will be settled in and "anxiously engaged." I hope all
of you in the mission field will reflect very often on the great
support team you have in your homes and wards and all over the Church.
And I repeat that even the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve
remember you in their prayers--even their meeting in on Thursday
mornings in the Temple.
Today I would like to share with you a story that was related by
Elder David A. Bednar. The story begins with a young father who had
been active in the Church as a boy abut had chosen a different path
during his teenage years. After serving in the military, he married
a lovely girl, settled down and began raising a family.
One day without any warning, their little four-year-old girl became
critically ill and had to be hospitalized. For the first time in
years the father dropped to his knees and pleaded with the Lord to
spare his little girl's life. Still her condition worsened. Soon
this father sensed that he might lose his precious daughter, and his
prayers changed. He began asking that the Lord's will be done;
shortly the little girl went into a coma. Then the young couple
prayed for the opportunity to hold their precious daughter in an
embrace one more time while she was awake.
The daughter's eyes opened and she reached out her frail arms for
that prayed-for final embrace. And then she was gone. This father
recognized that their prayers had been answered. A loving Father in
Heaven had comforted their hearts.
You and I can imagine the rest of the story (although it was not
given in print). For parents to have come so far that they were ready
for the Lord's will to be done just speaks volumes. I feel
comfortable in assuming that this father lost no time in making the
stride to become temple-worthy. Deepest love for our dear ones can
change our loves.
It has been a few decades since I was in your position. I still
recall the deep feelings I had for members and non-members alike. Oh,
I wish I could know whether some of those faltering members and
"undecided" prospectives had been fired by the Spirit to make the
right decisions and avail themselves of the blessings of the temple.
Because of my bad fall the week before Thanksgiving, I have been
unable to attend the temple. Today my son Dave said he would be able
to help me through a session this week at the new temple in Brigham
City where our ward is having a session together. You'll probably
never know how deeply grateful I am for this opportunity again. Oh,
how blessed we are!!!
God bless you in this wonderful work. You're in my thoughts and prayers.
Love, Grandpa Taylor