Monday, March 15, 2010

A Call to the Rising Generation

This entry is part of my general conference application series.

A Call to the Rising Generation, by Elder Brent H. Nielson
Of the Seventy

My eldest child is in kindergarten. At the beginning orientation meetings, we were told that the children would be learning things that we (the parents) weren't introduced to until first or second grade. I thought just an exaggeration, but am learning more each day how true that statement was. For example, when we took a bike ride this last weekend, David would read all the signs that we would see, including billboards that weren't "Dick and Jane" simple words.

I was reminded of how advanced children and youth are becoming as I reviewed Elder Nielson's address. He told that when he was a full-time missionary, he and other missionaries would pray for the work to progress in a specific area, and "wonder who those brave young men and young women would be and when they would cross that border to take the gospel to the people there." The surprise came, you may recall, when his own son wrote to report that his first area of labor as a missionary was in the very city that he had prayed for so long ago.

I wonder if my little future missionary will likewise fulfill specific prayers I offered as a missionary in Idaho and Oregon. Whether or not he serves in those specific areas, I understand the responsibility that I have as his father to prepare him now to be a good missionary then.

Here is a picture of him at a recent concert he had at his school. He wanted to wear his "Future Missionary" tag so his friends could know that he wants to be a missionary.

For this post, I invited my future missionary son to answer a few questions about missionaries and missionary work:

What will you do as a missionary?
"When I'm a missionary, I would teach stories about Jesus."

Where do you think you'll serve as a missionary?
"In Japan, because Mommy went there." (Perhaps Idaho is out...)

What do you think will be the most fun thing you'll do as a missionary?
"Go eat at people's houses."

What will be the hardest thing?
"Traveling to the islands, because it took a long time to get to Utah when we went there."

Unfortunately, it became his bedtime, so our interview was cut short. I had intended to ask him more probing questions about missionary work, but will settle for these wonderful ideas.

I look forward to seeing my sweet little children rise up and prepare for the work that is in store for them.

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