Skating Lessons

    “Skating Lessons,” Ensign, Aug. 1992, 59

    Skating Lessons

    We were all eager to attend stake conference. Our regional representative, Earl C. Tingey, was going to report on the disastrous floods and mud slides that had recently hit our area, as well as the massive volunteer efforts that the Church and its members had been involved in.

    Although we had never been in any danger, we lived close enough to view the destruction. My husband, my eldest son, and I had helped with sandbagging and flood patrol efforts. I ached for those who had lost homes and belongings.

    At conference that day, Brother Tingey shared the parable of the rich young man (see Mark 10:17–23) and then issued a challenge to the youth, encouraging them to become more involved in service and sacrifice.

    I resounded to his challenge. On the way home, I bore my testimony to the children and asked them to be prayerful as they considered what they could sacrifice.

    But my ten-year-old daughter had already decided. “Mom,” she said. “I’m going to take the thirty-six dollars I’ve saved for skating lessons and give it to the flood victims.”

    I recognized what this meant to my daughter. Earlier in the year, I had talked with each of the children about working toward goals they selected; my daughter had chosen to save money for ice skating lessons. I knew how diligently she had saved and how long it had taken her to accumulate that thirty-six dollars. But I also knew that the Lord would reward her in ways I never could. Tears flowed freely as I told her that I was certain the Lord was pleased and would bless her with many more opportunities to earn money. She might have to wait awhile, but she could have those lessons eventually.

    And the Lord did bless her. She ran a small preschool two mornings a week and spent many evenings baby-sitting. She earned some money, but not enough for the lessons. However, one day she received a letter in the mail:

    “Dear Tammy,

    “The Lord loves you! Enjoy your ice skating lessons.”

    Enclosed was a check for fifty dollars. We don’t know who sent it, but we do know that the Lord does open the windows of heaven (see Mal. 3:10) to bless those who are willing to sacrifice of their means to help others.

    Illustrated by Doug Fryer