Dear Sister F,
I just got home from Poplar, MT. I flew up there & picked up a young man with down's Syndrome who also has heart trouble. It is raining & cold, feels like winter is fast approaching.
I wanted to share something with you that I have learned about the nature of our Heavenly Father. He is so loving and Kind, and especially patient. On thursdays I serve as an ordinance worker out at the Temple. The ordinances need to be preformed accurately & correctly, yet we don't get any "practice runs." We study what we need to do & then go forward with Faith. We all make mistakes at one time or another, but our Infinite Heavenly Father (who is infiniately loving, kind & patient) understands that we are not perfect & accepts the best we can do. He also helps us to preform beyond our normal abilities.
The other night we were getting ready for dinner & I asked J. to go get the ketchup. So, of he goes running into the kitchen and tells (my wife) "I'm getting the ketchup mommy!" He is not big enough to open the Fridge door so I told him to ask mom for help. Instead, he runs up to the the fridge & knocks on the door, puts his ear to it to listen, and then holds up his hands & shrugs while saying "Nobody coming!"
Saturday evening (my wife) & I got to go out on a date (rare event but very nice). J. saw (my wife) putting on some lipstick & asked "Mom, are you & Dad going to get more babies?" He is such a character.
I was really angry at one time in my life. I stopped going to church, didn't want to serve, didn't want anything. It all started back when I was the Elder's Quorum President. Some one said something to me that offended me. It festered & snowballed. I came really close to losing my family over it. It was so EASY to be mad & find offence. Pretty soon I didn't know anything else but that. It was so HARD to stop being angry & to stop looking for offence. I have discovered that the path that has the least resistance usually leads away from the straight & narrow path.
Back in 1995 my parents, who had been married for 25 years divorced. I was 22 and we had joined the church when I was 4. At first I was really upset. "Mormons aren't supposed to get divorced." I kept telling myself. I was mad, hurt, sad, upset. My parents had been un-happy for a very long time. My mother never had anything good to say about my dad. She would yell a lot. I remember hearing "Bob N, I have never..." or "You are so...." Fill in the blank and you get the picture. My dad was not perfect. He was a closet Drinker & abused pain pills be cause of a back injury. So, after being upset I really thought about it & in my parents' case, they really were better off being divorced. My mom, for a number of years after, always refered to it as "Bob's divorce." She would always come over & just go off on my dad, & always end with "But I'm not bitter." She was so bitter she made lemons seem sweet. My dad used to be in contact a lot. He remarried about a year later & his new wife took him to the cleaners & then divorced him. I bailed him out of that & then he got involved with a lady from Minnesota. Sold everything & moved back east. It lasted about 6 mos & he came back, lived with us for about 6 mos. Now I haven't heard from him in a long time. It was about 2 yrs & we heard he was in the hospital. Drove to Helena to visit. Another 2 yrs. passed with no contact & so off to Helena we go & we tracked him down. I had written him a letter & he sent it Back! We found him. It's been about 2 yrs with no contact. You probably didn't really want to know all this & are probably thinking "Whoa dude, too much information." I can't say as I blame you. Although, I find my disfunctional LDS family funny, insane, sad & maddening all at the same time. Back in 1985, we were on a church float trip down the Jefferson River in Three Forks to the Missouri headwaters. My middle brother, K. (14) drowned at the headwaters. I was the last to see him alive. Why am I telling you this, I don't really know. I just sort of feel we have trodden down familiar paths. Please write me & tell me your thoughts. You can tell me I'm crazy, pathetic, or what ever. I'm pretty easy to talk too. Here's my e-mail: *****@bresnan.net. We truly missed seeing your family at Church today. I remember the last time you bore your testimony & I felt the spirit when you did.
Have a great day!! (with smily face below the exclamation point dots for eyes)
(Phone # inserted in margin)
So, my first reaction is the desire to send him a single sheet of paper in the mail, with this in big, bold letters: