What Did You Do That For?

Stephen is ahead of him coming back into the house from playing basketball in the driveway. As they reach the front room, Ruthanne comes from the hallway leading to the bedrooms. She is bawling and holding up her thumb. A sewing needle is sticking straight through it. “What did you do that for?” Stephen bellows.Continue reading “What Did You Do That For?”

Revelations Communicate Divine Intelligence

What the man would like to know is if the dreams are revelatory. He has read about Joseph and his interpretation of dreams. He has studied Lehi’s dream. He has studied Daniel and the stone cut out of the mountain without hands. In his stewardship interview with the stake president, he asks, because after all,Continue reading “Revelations Communicate Divine Intelligence”

I Know Just How You Feel

November 19, 1996 Dear Gordon, We got your letter and I wanted to throw my arms around you. I know just how you felt, and I hope you have learned already that it does get better. When I reached Tokyo to start my mission, I had been on and off airplanes for about 18 hours.Continue reading “I Know Just How You Feel”

I Am So Excited to be Here

November 12, 1996 Arcadia, California Dear Mom and Dad, I am sitting outside the office of the mission president waiting to be interviewed. I have a splitting headache, I’m starving, and I’m totally exhausted. I have been awake since 4:30 in the morning, and we haven’t eaten since around 11 mountain time, and it’s closeContinue reading “I Am So Excited to be Here”

What This Neighborhood Needs

They have parked the car and just finished praying together. The young man looks at Elder Davis. “So we’ll check this media referral and if no one is here, we’ll tract this street.” “Sounds good.” The street they have come to is the outside edge of the snake pit—a two-mile area on the west sideContinue reading “What This Neighborhood Needs”

You Can’t Just Give Me a Bible

The young man taps on the sliding glass door. “Who dat?” “Elder Laws and Elder Davis. We’re looking for Ernie.” “Oh, Ernie. Why you want Ernie?” “He ordered a Bible off the TV.” “Oh, ok. He out back in the trailer home.” The young men turn and start across the driveway, but before they canContinue reading “You Can’t Just Give Me a Bible”

He Does Work in Mysterious Ways

He is sitting on the stand with President Doughty, President Myers, and his newly sustained counselors. Here comes the first sister. “I never would have imagined the Lord calling someone as young as Bishop Laws as bishop. But there’s a good Spirit here.” Now comes Bill Fullmer. “I sustain Bishop Laws. And I will supportContinue reading “He Does Work in Mysterious Ways”

Oh Lord, Won’t You Hear Me?

His father is lying in his childhood bed in the room where the previous owner died. The boy is sitting on the bed next to his father. “How do you know when the Holy Ghost tells you?” “The scriptures say it is a burning in the bosom.” “What does that mean?” “You feel warm andContinue reading “Oh Lord, Won’t You Hear Me?”

Now They Always Say Congratulations

It is 9 pm. He is still in his white shirt and suit pants but has removed his tie. He sits in the dimly lit kitchen of their 800 square foot condo. Before him are two piles—on the left are the unedited pages and on the right are the reedited pages. He messed up theContinue reading “Now They Always Say Congratulations”

I Will Come to You

The man is standing at the door to the chapel greeting people as they wander in. He has already held bishopric and ward council and has been at the church since 6:45 am. Today, his smiles are weak, and his gaze is far off. It has been eighteen months since his father’s death. Five daysContinue reading “I Will Come to You”