• “Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple. Dr. Suess

Monday, January 2, 2012


My mind has been churning around a little the past week or so - ever since I read Lesson 32 in the Brigham Young, Teachings of Presidents of the Church manual, 'Temporal Wealth and the Kingdom of God'.

I suppose you are a bit like me. 
I wouldn't really mind a little more wealth. 
More might be kind of nice ...

We are almost finished reading ALL these lessons and they are affecting David and I a lot. This one has really, really stirred up my mind. I suppose that is because when I read this statement below I did not really believe I personally can (or do) 'organize elements'. 

Then I got to thinking - if I cut cloth and make clothing am I further organizing elements that someone else already organized into cloth; if I take beads and make a bracelet am I organizing elements? or what about building a house, writing a blog, preparing garden soil and planting seeds or bulbs or trees or making a meal of what grows there (or what someone else grew) ...

I began to think of all the various ways we build, and act, and live our lives.  Are the things we do of worth? what kind of worth? 

How many ways do we organize native elements?
What are native elements anyways?

Can you think of any ‘elements’ you organize?

Here is President Young's quote from page 236:

There is … gold and silver in the earth and on the earth, and the Lord gives to this one and that one—the wicked as well as the righteous—to see what they will do with it, but it all belongs to him. 

… it is not ours, and all we have to do is to try and find out what the Lord wants us to do with what we have in our possession, and then go and do it. If we step beyond this, or to the right or to the left, we step into an illegitimate train of business. Our legitimate business is to do what the Lord wants us to do with that which he bestows upon us, and dispose of it just as he dictates, whether it is to give all, one-tenth, or the surplus (DBY, 305).

Instead of looking for gold and silver, look to the heavens and try to learn wisdom until you can organize the native elements for your benefit; then, and not until then, will you begin to possess the true riches (DBY, 305).

... True wealth consists in the skill to produce conveniences and comforts from the elements. All the power and dignity that wealth can bestow is a mere shadow, the substance is found in the bone and sinew of the toiling millions. Well directed labor is the true power that supplies our wants. It gives regal grandeur to potentates, education and supplies to religious and political ministers, and supplies the wants of the thousands of millions of earth’s sons and daughters  (DBY, 309). Lesson 32