February 03, 2013

Amazing How Far a Little Compliment Can Go

It's really amazing, especially when it's sincere. It makes one feel good about himself. And in most cases, chases away uncertainties about oneself.

When our Stake (Las Vegas South Stake) at Church was reorganized, we were one of the families who were moved to a different ward. The bishopric were - and is - awesome! They actually came out to visit us, all three of them, during the first few weeks of the new changes in boundaries. Their ward (which is then our new ward) lost a lot of families, too, mostly the ones who held bigger callings at Church (not that other callings aren't as important, they all are. I just meant, you know, the presidents in RS, EQ, YW, or something along those lines). They asked us if we are able to help through our callings once we are given them, and my husband and I both said, "Yes."

Fast forward a month later, I was sitting inside the clerk's office with the Bishop's first counselor and was given the calling of a Den Leader to the wolf cub scouts. I have never turned down any calling. I firmly believe that each calling, being given by right authority, is from God, no matter how obscure the calling may seem, or how hard it may seem, or even how unknown it is to me.

Well for this one, it was very unknown. I had never been in scouting before. Well, twice (but I don't count them as being in the scouts). Once when I was a very young girl and I only know one bit of it and I'm pretty sure I didn't stay in cub scouts for a long time (or whatever the name was for the little girl scouts). Then second in high school but I only stayed for a week before I switched to C.O.C.C. (Cadet Officers Candidate Course). It's like the high school version of the college R.O.T.C.

So, since I was never really into scouting from the beginning, I didn't know how I would do my calling as the Den Leader to the young 8-year-old boys. I was clueless about scouting, let alone being a den leader. When I hear the word "scouts," I automatically think about camping and learning different rope ties and what-not. That's all. But still, I accepted the calling even though there were many uncertainties in my head. Tackling the unknown is something I am not good at.

The first few weeks of 2012 was kind of a wing-it thing, because the first people who held those callings before us (who were moved to a different ward) didn't keep a record of what the boys had done. And I didn't have my 8-year-olds, so I was just taggling along the Bear Scouts. But I went to each Den Meeting and Pack Meeting because I know I had to even though I didn't have my own scouts yet.

When 2013 came, the panic began. I still didn't know much, I was still hanging in the air, I felt so lost in everything. I didn't know what the awards were or what the kids had to do to get them (I just know there are a bunch of activities in their book), where to sign their books or what to do with them. I didn't know anything at all, not even the Pledge of Allegiance. I have one scout, and 2 on the way this month. I missed the first Den meeting because I thought we were gonna combine with the Bears, and I didn't feel good so I just stayed at home. But the conversation I had with one of the Scouts leaders (who's in the Primary Presidency) that night made me feel so bad. She didn't make me feel it, I did it to myself. Since then I promised myself I'll try my best to come to every meetings.

The following weeks since then, I tried to come to every meetings and a weekend Stake training that I missed (it was moved to different location which my leader and I didn't know until I got to the old location, and my leader told me to just go back home since she doesn't know where the new place was at either). I asked to be set apart and listened carefully to the blessings the next day. One of them was, "People are willing to help you and those who know are willing to teach you. You are not alone in this calling." How the cheese did he know what I wanted to hear? Having that stuck in my head, I knew I could do this and I will do this. I will try and do this. I skimmed through the books and tried to figure out about awards (and asked the Cub Master about it). I didn't combine with the Bears anymore even though I only had one cub scout with me. Two boys have been joining us even though they aren't going to turn 8 yet until sometime this month, which made our meetings more fun for the one scout I have.

There's a banquet coming up and I was looking at some things my scouts could do before then so they could get some awards, and handed a list to their parents and explained to them that they can do anything else with the boys, the list is just ideas. One of the moms thanked me and told me, "Wow, you are so dedicated."

As soon as she told me that, my doubts about myself flew away. I felt good about how I'm trying to fulfill this calling, no matter how unknown it was to me. At the same time, I thought to myself that I should compliment C's Primary teachers (and J's near-future Nursery teacher), too. Pass-it-on, pay-it-forward kind of thing. A compliment to a church leader can go a very long way. We never know how much uncertainties they have about themselves, or anything else we aren't aware about. But a simple compliment can help them push through.


  1. Wow, I would feel scared to have a calling like that, too! Even though you were nervous about learning everything and doing your best, you're a good example to show how much you want to learn and making the effort to do so. That's the right way to accept and magnify your calling!

  2. Good for you Lois! You are doing your part and the Lord is blessing you:) It is always nice to hear a sincere compliment, in or out of church. Many times I THINK good things about people, but I need to start letting them know. Continued success to you with your calling. P.S. I have never heard the expression "How the CHEESE..." before and it made me chuckle. I may use that in the future:)


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