Dear Elder and Sister Scott,
This has been a FULL day for a 92-year old youngster. My daughter Coral picked me up to attend a 9 A.M. sacrament meeting where her daughter played a piano solo with her neighbor. I was so proud of their lovely rendition of an LDS hymn. Then we went to my daughter's ward, where her daughter-in-law accompanied a friend from her mission. He did a cello solo arrangement of "A Poor Wayfaring Man of Grief," which was one of the best I have ever heard. Also, my son Blaine represented the high council in speaking in their ward--a real treat for me. Coral brought me home for the two final meetings of our ward conference, which were among the best ever. Tonight I will be attending a viewing for the widow of a man who had served as my ward clerk 'way back when I was bishop of the Farr West Ward. I think I will sleep well tonight!
During the final session of our ward conference the stake president arranged for the showing of results of a survey he had conduted among the youth of the ward in an earlier session (confidential answers). The general result of the survey indicated excellent results for the youth's attitudes and performance on gospel teachings, but a little less exciting results for parents' performance. We were all challenged to LIVE as we have been taught. As you would expect, most of us do well in some respects, but we have room for improvement. Such meetings are great to have us all decide where we are going to start on demonstrating for the Savior that we want to follow Him--seriously.
During the week I read a story about a man who had been called to serve as a bishop. One of his friends, a former bishop, related that early in his term of service, he would see a new family in the audience and think, "Oh, those must be newcomers in the ward. I wonder what we can call them to do. After a year or two, the arrival of a new family in the ward brought the thought, "I wonder what problems they are going to bring us."
Not all challenges that arrive with new families are caused by open rebellion against the Church or broken marriages. As Mormon taught in the Book of Mormon, sometimes when the Lord blesses and prospers people, that is when they harden their hearts and turn away from spiritual matters. One good man made the statement that we must learn to endure faithfully even in times of peace and prosperity. A former mission president and later a member of an area presidency cited an example of a missionary who wanted to go home because missionary work "is not fun." Many families are surrounded with such affluence and luxury that it is difficult for their youth to really "seek first the kingdom of God." One case was cited where the missionary who wanted to go home was asked what he intended to do if he left his mission early, and he replied that he intended to achieve level 7 of a video game he had been playing before accepting the missionary call. Of all the shallow reasoning!!!
I know that none in the group who receive this letter has been guilty of such negative thinking, but you can be grateful to Heavenly Father for the things in your life that have helped you make the right choices. Really, we should have reason enough in knowing that the Savior, who brought about the Atonement, is relying on us to bring about a marvelous work in our day. I'm proud of you for being a part of it!
God bless you for making those right choices for the right reasons.
Love, G-pa Taylor