The time has finally come.
Our church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is a lay ministry. No one is paid for their service. We believe we are called by revelation from our church leaders to serve in various capacities in our local congregations. These ‘callings’ (what we call these service opportunities) can range from being a nursery leader over the 18 month-3 year old children, to working with the women, to being in charge of making sure the church building is cleaned, to being the choir director. It’s actually an amazing thing to witness as people serve one another, everyone lifting where they are to help. We all know our current callings won’t last forever. Sometimes they are only for a few months. Sometimes they last for several years. Whatever the length, we serve because we feel that our serving our fellow man is also serving the Lord. It is through ordinary men and women and children that the Lord performs His work.
Seven and half years have come and gone. The twice weekly evening meetings at church will no longer be a norm. Being gone all Sunday, receiving phone calls for help, the stressing and worrying over members will all subside. But not the love. Oh, the love for people has grown so much!
Joseph was released last Sunday as the bishop of our ward. For those not familiar with my LDS faith, a bishop is similar to a pastor or minister. He was responsible for leading, teaching, guiding, and counseling the members of our congregation. Now his service as the bishop is done. And my time as a bishop’s
wife widow is done too!
But our service at church is definitely not done! New callings will come. New opportunities to learn and grow and stretch will be given.
One of my husband’s favorite stories from Church history illustrates all he has ever wanted, whether serving as a father, a husband, a friend or a bishop. It the story of a man named Joseph Millet. Here is the account from Joseph Millet’s own journal:
“One of my children came in and said that Brother Newton Hall’s folks was out of bread, had none that day.
“I divided our flour in a sack to send up to Brother Hall. Just then Brother Hall came.
“Says I, ‘Brother Hall, are you out of flour?’
“‘Brother Millett, we have none.’
“‘Well, Brother Hall, there is some in that sack. I have divided and was going to send it to you. Your children told mine that you was out.’
“Brother Hall began to cry. He said he had tried others, but could not get any. He went to the cedars and prayed to the Lord, and the Lord told him to go to Joseph Millett.
“‘Well Brother Hall, you needn’t bring this back. If the Lord sent you for it you don’t owe me for it.’”
That night Joseph Millett recorded a remarkable sentence in his journal:
“You can’t tell me how good it made me feel to know that the Lord knew there was such a person as Joseph Millett.”
That’s what we are daily striving for too. To stand ready and willing to do whatever the Lord asks, to be His hands for someone else.