Sabbath Learning – Forgiveness

“Holding a grudge is like drinking poison and expecting someone else to die.”

Today I am in Denver, and in Elders Quorum we reviewed Elder Uchtdorf’s talk entitled “The Merciful Obtain Mercy” which talks about forgiveness of others and ourselves. What a beautiful talk.

Some of the golden nuggets of thought that really stuck out to me are after the break.



The Parable of Big Tom

“Years ago there was a little one-room schoolhouse in the mountains of Virginia where the boys were so rough that no teacher had been able to handle them.

“A young, inexperienced teacher applied, and the old director scanned him and asked: ‘Young fellow, do you know that you are asking for an awful beating? Every teacher that we have had here for years has had to take one.’

“‘I will risk it,’ he replied.

“The first day of school came, and the teacher appeared for duty. One big fellow named Tom whispered: ‘I won’t need any help with this one. I can lick him myself.’

“The teacher said, ‘Good morning, boys, we have come to conduct school.’ They yelled and made fun at the top of their voices. ‘Now, I want a good school, but I confess that I do not know how unless you help me. Suppose we have a few rules. You tell me, and I will write them on the blackboard.’

“One fellow yelled, ‘No stealing!’ Another yelled, ‘On time.’ Finally, ten rules appeared on the blackboard.

“‘Now,’ said the teacher, ‘a law is not good unless there is a penalty attached. What shall we do with one who breaks the rules?’

“‘Beat him across the back ten times without his coat on,’ came the response from the class.

“‘That is pretty severe, boys. Are you sure that you are ready to stand by it?’ Another yelled, ‘I second the motion,’ and the teacher said, ‘All right, we will live by them! Class, come to order!’

“In a day or so, ‘Big Tom’ found that his lunch had been stolen. The thief was located—a little hungry fellow, about ten years old. ‘We have found the thief and he must be punished according to your rule—ten stripes across the back. Jim, come up here!’ the teacher said.

“The little fellow, trembling, came up slowly with a big coat fastened up to his neck and pleaded, ‘Teacher, you can lick me as hard as you like, but please, don’t take my coat off!’

“‘Take your coat off,’ the teacher said. ‘You helped make the rules!’

“‘Oh, teacher, don’t make me!’ He began to unbutton, and what did the teacher see? The boy had no shirt on, and revealed a bony little crippled body.

“‘How can I whip this child?’ he thought. ‘But I must, I must do something if I am to keep this school.’ Everything was quiet as death.

“‘How come you aren’t wearing a shirt, Jim?’

“He replied, ‘My father died and my mother is very poor. I have only one shirt and she is washing it today, and I wore my brother’s big coat to keep me warm.’

“The teacher, with rod in hand, hesitated. Just then ‘Big Tom’ jumped to his feet and said, ‘Teacher, if you don’t object, I will take Jim’s licking for him.’

“‘Very well, there is a certain law that one can become a substitute for another. Are you all agreed?’

“Off came Tom’s coat, and after five strokes the rod broke! The teacher bowed his head in his hands and thought, ‘How can I finish this awful task?’ Then he heard the class sobbing, and what did he see? Little Jim had reached up and caught Tom with both arms around his neck. ‘Tom, I’m sorry that I stole your lunch, but I was awful hungry. Tom, I will love you till I die for taking my licking for me! Yes, I will love you forever!’”

To lift a phrase from this simple story, Jesus, my Redeemer, has taken “my licking for me” and yours for you.

Declared the prophet Isaiah:

“Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: …

“… He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed” (Isa. 53:4–5).

This is re-posted from the following address – Talk by President Hinckley


He Heard My Prayers

My last thought as I pulled back the covers and flattened myself into the mattress in hope of some respite was that I couldn’t see any other option but, the reality was that I couldn’t. I would have to call Sam and cancel the meeting the next morning. I just felt too sick. Every part of me ached and my head felt like a cannonball ready to explode with sinus pressure.

I had promised the CEO on Monday that I would have a completed book-launch-marketing-plan and budget numbers for him by Friday at the executive retreat. In my state of disrepair I couldn’t imagine a way to keep this promise. I could barely keep a coherent thought with all the pounding in my head. I didn’t see a way to keep it together long enough to complete a full marketing plan. A hot bath earlier in the day helped with the aches but the decongestant I took had little affect on the intense pain around my eyes. I usually don’t get sick but when I do it is sinus infection and it puts me out for several days. I resigned myself to the fever and sickness and let it overtake my resolve as I lay in the dark bedroom.

Then the realization that I wouldn’t be keeping my commitment started to sink in. And when I say sink, I mean SINK. The overwhelming feeling of despair was becoming more painful than the illness. I just had to get this plan done. I had to figure out the budget numbers. I had to keep the meeting tomorrow. I had to spend hours completing the details. And yet, there was no way possible to accomplish the task in my current condition. And then it struck me – I knew someone that could.

I slid back out of bed and knelt in the same position I had occupied minutes before. This time instead of a rushed conversation spoken out of duty, I said a simple yet pure prayer asking for His help to heal me and to take this overwhelming feeling from me. I knew that the only way to alleviate the pain both physically and the emotionally was with His help.

I climbed back into bed with the pounding still in my head but the pit in my stomach removed. Around 3:00 a.m. I was sweating like a piece of bacon on a hot griddle. My fever had worsened and the sweat was pouring off of me – and then – my fever broke. It felt as if the illness was draining from me, starting at the top of my head, washing down my body, out my feet and off the edge of the bed. The following hours I slept so deep and relaxed that it made up completely for the previous unrest. The next morning I felt fantastic and made it to the office on time for the meeting.

I know that Heavenly Father heard my prayer and I know that He answered it. I know that without Him I would have been sick in bed for another several days. I know that He cares for me and all of His children.

Written by curtism in: My Experiences | Tags: , , , , , , ,

We’re So Glad When Mommy Comes Home



We are glad that Mom had fun in Washington but we are even happier that she made it safely home to us.


Shoulder Slobber


As I sat in Sunday school, I watched my friend Jonny Moon pull out a burp cloth from his diaper bag and wipe baby slobber from the shoulder of his nice black suit. His beautiful red-headed new-born, with dimples that never end, had just left a memento of the bond they share on his shoulder. After putting her gently back in the baby carrier, he ardently tried to remove the blemish from his Armani. Although he was trying to look nice by scrubbing his shoulder, I found myself longing for a spot of spittle myself. I wished for a goober of my own. My youngest is now three and because she is mobile I don’t get the same number of opportunities to hold her as I used to, which means not as many spots.

I didn’t always have this longing for crusties on my  clothing. When Nicole and I were first married, I would wear my suit to an “important” meeting with “important” people only to find out after the meeting was over that I had smears of slobber streaked down my shoulder. I would feel embarrassed and a little frustrated that the blob of baby blubbering made me look less professional. I would get tired of sending my suit to the dry cleaners repeatedly.

My tune has changed. Instead of embarrassment and frustration I see reminders of a sweet baby that shares a special bond with me. I have to admit that I have left a few less conspicuous patches of love on my dress clothes longer than a “professional” should. Spots left on my clothes as a reminder throughout my day that there is a little girl at home eagerly waiting to run into my arms with screams of excitement when I walk through the door. When I see PB&J that was transferred from her cheeks to my clothes it reminds me that each of my kids also ran into my arms until they grew to big.  Each time I see a dab of dried drool it reminds me that every night I have a package of love bundled up in pink piggy pajamas who smiles as I move her head from my shoulder to her pillow. It reminds me that I need to take every opportunity to hold her tightly before she grows up. It reminds me that I don’t have much time left to pick her up and squeeze her tight, give her “Ba-Dumps” up the stairs, and rest her sleepy head on my shoulder…

…even if it means a smear of slobber on my suit.

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