Monday, December 2, 2013

Thankful

With my release from my Scouting calling, I wanted to explain how much I have learned from this inspired, if not revealed, system, but I didn’t think it appropriate to share a testimony of Scouting in F&T meeting yesterday.

I’ve learned that Scouting, far from being the “activity arm” is really the Aaronic Priesthood (and the Primary) in action - it is actively doing one’s duty to God, through self-improvement and service to others.

It is leadership training and personal growth – stepping outside one’s comfort zone, literally and figuratively (Klondike camps, soaking rains, blisters, dehydration, stretching one’s mind, spirit and will); it is teamwork and practical preparation for a lifetime of being Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty, Brave, Clean, Reverent - and missionary WORK.

It’s not so much a patch as a process, but the process is in large part accomplished through the patch.

It is, as has been emphasized over and over in this year’s LDS/BSA centennial year, about learning and doing one’s duty to God (though not necessarily one’s Duty to God book – the two are complimentary, not mutually exclusive).

It is a thousand opportunities to serve, to learn, to work; a thousand more personalized lessons that build character, testimony and lasting relationships, through shared experiences.

A Scout learns about the Creator by experiencing His creation. I am thankful for having had the experiences of the last three years: to have had the opportunity to work with your sons, and shared these experiences with them – to observe the complexities of life in a simple pond, and develop a greater reverence for life; to have studied the night sky, and contemplated the stars, galaxies and deep time and find our place in this vast universe; to have seen my - our - own little place in the grand Plan, and to have learned from the Scouts themselves how to think about such grand ideas.

It’s been said that Scouting isn’t really for the boys, but for the adults who work with them, for as we teach the Scouts, to teach, to lead, to trust, to let others do their own work, to grow from failures, and to lead exemplary lives, it’s difficult to teach Youth such things without trying to embody them yourself, as they can spot a fake a mile away. And so we improve our own lives so as to teach by example. Yet there is always a long way to go to reach the end of that trail. The twelve points of the Scout Law aren’t just for reciting on Wednesday night, but are for living each day of our lives: A Scout is.

I am extremely grateful to have had this opportunity of the last three years, and to have worked with each of you. It’s not something I would have asked for, but now it’s not something I wanted to let go of. There are few things in life that leave such an impact. I’d like to thank my Father for having given me this experience.


Prepared. | For Life.™