Saturday, February 20, 2010

A Softening Heart

The above painting is titled "Angels Welcome"

I joined the LDS Church in March 1972. In November 1980, Steve and I asked to be excommunicated. We felt we could no longer be associated with the LDS Church due to some very unsettling experiences we had while living in Salt Lake City.

Fast forward to December 2009. Steve and I are now attending Sacrament meeting. I find myself looking forward to going to church.

It is odd because I have not sought to be rebaptized, yet I feel I belong in the church. I haven't felt this way for a very long time.

When we lived in SLC, I felt I was not one with the Saints because I was a convert. It seemed to me that if you were not born into an LDS home, you weren't truly LDS. This was disturbing to me because Steve and I held numerous callings back in New York. It did not matter that I was a convert because I was in a ward comprised mostly of converts.

Today I've been wondering if there are other LDS converts who moved to Utah and felt they were not welcomed. I found this talk by President Hinckley from 1999 and realized that perhaps my feelings had merit. This is part of what President Hinckley said:

Find the Lambs, Feed the Sheep
Gordon B. Hinckley, “Find the Lambs, Feed the Sheep,” Ensign, May 1999, 104
From a satellite broadcast given at the Salt Lake Tabernacle 21 February 1999

Strengthening New Members

Having found and baptized a new convert, we have the challenge of fellowshipping him and strengthening his testimony of the truth of this work. We cannot have him walking in the front door and out the back. Joining the Church is a very serious thing. Each convert takes upon himself or herself the name of Christ with an implied promise to keep His commandments. But coming into the Church can be a perilous experience. Unless there are warm and strong hands to greet the convert, unless there is an outreach of love and concern, he will begin to wonder about the step he has taken. Unless there are friendly hands and welcome hearts to greet him and lead him along the way, he may drop by the side.

There is absolutely no point in doing missionary work unless we hold on to the fruits of that effort. The two must be inseparable. These converts are precious. Every convert is a son or daughter of God. Every convert is a great and serious responsibility. It is an absolute imperative that we look after those who have become a part of us. To paraphrase the Savior, what shall it profit a missionary if he baptize the whole world unless those baptized remain in the Church? (see Mark 8:36).
Maybe one day I will be rebaptized and return to full activity. Time will tell.

Monday, February 15, 2010

The Good, The Bad and The ...

can I do today over?

The day started out pleasant enough. Steve pulled out two "Dick and Jane" books to share with Jim. Steve read some stories and we all had a good laugh. "See Dick. See Dick run." "Oh, see Dick. Oh, oh, oh. Funny, funny Dick."

Think I'm making this stuff up? Take a look at these pages:

That was the "good." Now for the "bad."

I've written before that I'm a total techno-virgin. I found out this morning that it's not a good idea to push buttons on a digital camera that "delete" photographs without knowing what you're doing. This is how I felt after I learned I had deleted all of the photographs stored on the memory card.

Okay ... so the woman's not holding a digital camera, but you get how I felt and still feel. Christmas photos of Steve and Jim ... gone! Photos of one of Steve's brothers and his wife from their visit to us last weekend ... gone! Blasted digital camera!!!!

But all was not lost this weekend. I learned we have a duck in the trunk of our car. No ... really!! On Saturday I was putting grocery bags in the trunk when a man parked next to us asked "Do you have a duck in your trunk?" I didn't have a clue what he was referring to, until Steve told me that he ... well ... how can I put this delicately? He let one rip. He didn't know the man was by us, so he tooted his horn. The man thought for sure he heard a duck. Even as I write this, I'm still laughing. So here's my husband, Steve the duck.

So how was your weekend?

Steve did give me an adorable Valentine ... one without ducks.