President Benson was the 13th prophet and president of the restored Church. Members of the Church believe that a prophet is God's spokesman on the Earth here for us. In our third hour meetings this year, we will be studying some of the topics that President Benson discussed during the time he was an apostle and prophet. An apostle, like those of old, are special witnesses of the Savior. I will be spending a lot of time getting to know President Benson as I teach these lessons to the sisters of our congregation. I am especially excited for this year because I actually remember a bit about President Benson. He is the first prophet that we have studied that I was actually alive for!
The beginning of the book always starts with a biographical sketch of the prophet and that was what our lesson was on today.There are so many stories I could share. Here are three inspiring quotes and facts about this Idaho farmer boy for today and I will share more on a different day.
- He was born 11 3/4 lbs.--that is huge! They weren't sure if he was going to live because of his size either.
- His father was called away to a mission when he was 12. As a result, young Ezra kept up with the family farm. He later reflected,
|He really does look like a big baby! This was taken in 1900, he was born in August 1899.|
I just loved that quote because it really shows how one event--especially particularly trying events--can bring so many blessings and sometimes blessings we don't even know are possible until we see the after affects.
- Another story from President Benson that I loved was his account of working with the young men and with Scouts. He commented,
“One of the joys of working with boys is the fact that you do get your pay as you go along. You have an opportunity to observe the results of your leadership daily as you work with them through the years and watch them grow into stalwart manhood, accepting eagerly its challenges and responsibilities. Such satisfaction cannot be purchased at any price; it must be earned through service and devotion. What a glorious thing it is to have even a small part in helping to build boys into men, real men.”This is a real reason that I love work with the youth--you really feel like you can shape their lives and they are so receptive to it! President Benson visited the ward again much later in life and asked after the 24 boys that he instructed. 22 of them had remained in the Church--he tracked down the other 2, helped them come back to the Church, and sealed them to their spouses--how cool is that!