With Pioneer Day coming up tomorrow we had a couple of people speak on Pioneers.
Both speakers found the story of a Sunday school class long ago where the class was talking about what a mistake sending out the Martin handcart company was. There was a brother in the room, who apparently had heard this sort of talk before and had had enough of it.
He was in that company and told of how close the people in that company had come to God after that experience.
He said that he had heard a lot of people complaining about sending out that company so late, but he had never heard a complaint from those who were in that company.
He told of having had occasion several times to be so exhausted and sick that he looked out ahead of him at a patch of sand or grass and determined that he could go only that much further and then he would have to stop. Once he got to those spots he could then feel the cart start to push him. He tried several times to see who was pushing and could never seen anyone.
The speakers also talked of first generation members being pioneers.
There was talk of how Joshua told the children of Israel that they live in cities they did not build and eat crops that they did not plant. In some ways we are like that as we look at those that went before us. Pioneers, Founding Fathers, and so forth. Do we forget the work that they did and what they went through? Do we forget the ways that God watched over them?
There is a story related by Thomas S. Monson 1st councilor in the First Presidency in the teacher's manual about a young man that was preparing to go on a mission. He said that Spencer W. Kimball received a letter about the young man stating that the mission would be a great financial burden for his family and he has only one possession, which was a stamp collection. He indicated that he was willing to sell the collection if necessary. President Kimball told them to tell him to sell his collection. He then set forth that all of the stamps from the thousands of letters that come into church headquarters each month should be collected and presented to the young man at the end of his mission. He would then have the finest stamp collection of any young man in Mexico.
We talked about that Elijah was told to go live by the brook and that birds would feed him. I wonder what that was like.
We also talked about the woman who had only a handful of meal and a little oil in a cruz who Elijah asked to feed him. The barrel didn't waste and the cruz didn't fail until the drought was over.
We talked about Elijah's competition against the 850 priests of Baal to make fire. I often wonder about the taunting Elijah did. Was it just a human weakness or was it to get the people's attention?
The lesson was on Elder Bednar's April 2006 conference talk on always having the Spirit to be with us.
If one is only baptised with water that is only half a baptism. “Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God” (John 3:5) If one is baptized by water and has not received the Gift of the Holy Ghost then you have not completed the ordinance and have not entered the kingdom of God.
It was brought up that we separate ourselves from the Holy Ghost by our choices. He may still call after us, but the further we are away, the harder it is to hear him.
We talk at times like spiritual experiances are rare experiences, but the promise is "that they may always have his spirit to be with them.