I was late getting back from Lambert Park yesterday, so I missed most of the opening session of General Conference. I did catch President Henry B. Eyring’s talk, and I felt like it was written for me. President Eyring has always been one of my favorites. He quoted Spencer W. Kimball who asked the Lord to give him mountains to climb. He wanted to grow and be stretched in this life. Adversity gives us understanding and experience. Elder Eyring talked about Joseph Smith and his trials, and the response the Lord gave him in Liberty Jail. In Doctrine & Covenants 122:7 we read:
And if thou shouldst be cast into the apit, or into the hands of murderers, and the sentence of death passed upon thee; if thou be cast into the bdeep; if the billowing surge conspire against thee; if fierce winds become thine enemy; if the heavens gather blackness, and all the elements combine to chedge up the way; and above all, if the very jaws of dhell shall gape open the mouth wide after thee, know thou, my son, that all these things shall give theeeexperience, and shall be for thy good.
President Eyring was the last speaker in the morning session. Once the session was over I went for a planned 24 mile ride with Kevin and his 10-year old son Ben. We started in Saratoga Springs and headed north on Redwood Road. At 12600 South we turned east and stopped at Beyond Glazed for a donut. On the way back the wind became fierce, and it blew Ben in to a parking lot. I looked back and could not see Kevin or Ben. Once the got back to the road I could tell something was wrong. Kevin got a flat tire when he followed Ben. Once we fixed the tire we decided to take the Jordan River trial to try and avoid the wind. It was mostly successful. We got back on Redwood Road and made our way toward Camp Williams. The wind become too much for Ben, so I rode ahead to get the truck. I pushed as hard as I could against the wind, and it was a long 5-6 mile endeavor. I ended up at 26 miles, and Kevin and Ben were over 20 miles, plus a mile on foot wearing biking shoes. I had never ridden anything close to 20 miles when I was Ben’s age. He has the potential to be a great rider as an adult if he sticks with it. He is a good kid.
As I was pushing for the truck, I reflected on President Eyring’s talk about climbing mountains. I realized the irony of my situation- I love to push myself on my bike or when I climb Mt. Timpanogos, but when it comes to spiritual and emotional struggles I prefer foothills to mountains. I am hoping that I am close to the top of my current spiritual mountain. It has been very difficult at times over the last two years, but just like the climb to the Mt. Timpanogos saddle, once you get to the top you find that it was worth the hike. There may be pain along the way, but it is always worth it. I hope I can keep that perspective as I continue to climb the remaining mountains of my life.