Saturday, December 19, 2015

Angels Among Us - Called to Serve, Going the Second Mile

This post isn't about Santa Claus, but in essence about the many giving men out there in the world today, men of faith, who do what they do without monetary compensation, because they've been called of God, to serve their congregations as bishops or in other leadership positions. Most importantly, they do what they do because they carry the light of Christ in their hearts.

One such man was my in-law's neighbor. He has been bishop several times over the years, most recently of a young single adult congregation. At the time he still had a full time job, yet he was also in charge of a a group of young adults of probably around 300 members. He and his two counselors not only saw to the spiritual needs of the congregation, but their physical and emotional needs as well. Our church has a unique leadership organization in that there are never just one person taking care of a group of people. Each leader typically has two counselors, and each organization whether over the women, priesthood, children or youth, have designated positions to help the bishop in his role as "father" of each ward, or branch, our terms for each congregation.

While this particular man was tending to his "flock" and working full time, caring for a wife who suffers from a debilitating illness, he still took the time to do things such as install guard rails for my in-laws after dad took a tumble. He would clear their driveway after each snowstorm, along with their sidewalks and the neighbors around him. Any time mom and dad needed something, he was there, and you can be assured that he kept his eyes open to their needs as they didn't ask for help unless it was an absolute emergency. What a blessing for us as we lived over 100 miles away at the time and couldn't be there all the time to help.

He is one example of the many men I've known, and known of throughout the years who don't get paid to serve their church, yet there they are, whether they live in Australia, or Iceland, Malaysia or Africa, sacrificing their time, their talents, their means to lift others. They are men, rich and poor, who will see a need and fill it, not caring about race, or religion or economic background. They work their full time jobs, they tend to their families, they serve in their communities, and they serve their congregations. They go beyond what is asked of them, because they care. They truly go the second mile.

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