Age adjustments, phone calls and answered prayers

Anyone who follows me on Twitter (@LDSTroy) or my blog knows that I love to tweet during General Conference (#LDSConf). I admit, with some nerdy embarrassment, that I have been a part of the #TwitterStake since its beginning. Not only is it a way for me to take notes but I get to see everyone else’s notes. There are more “notes” than anyone could ever read but at the very least, it keeps me awake and alert through all of conference.

So when Conference started and President Thomas S. Monson offered his opening remarks, I was listening and tweeting – for a few seconds. When his comments switched to missionary work and the age adjustment for both young men (18) and young women (19), I was stunned.

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No really. Change IS good.

One of the buildings where I teach seminary.

Ok, I’m back. I know, I know. “Where the heck have you been?”

It has been an eventful several months and the common theme has been “change.” The Parkers have truly entered into a new chapter of life. As I have mentioned before, change is  part of life. And frankly, it aint for sissies!

Christian, our oldest is off to BYU-I. Josh, our youngest is loving his freshman year of high school. I have started teaching, full-time, for Seminaries & Institutes and am still adjusting to my new calling. Jill’s father (and boss) has retired and Jill has started working for her brother Steve. Jill’s father has just finished his second round of chemo therapy and Bronco Mendenhall crushed my over-the-top confidence in the BYU coaching staff with his ludicrous play call at Boise State. Indeed, life is changing.

But with new experiences comes new fodder for blog posts. I have struggled with my new schedule. Finding time to do everything I need to do, let alone things I want to do, is very difficult. You all know the feeling.

But, I’m going to give it a try. So bookmark the page, stay tuned and forgive for brief spurts of silence. Know that I’m probably trying to deal with the newest life change or that Bronco just decided to go for two.

Lessons Learned – Part 2

"Family Council" Debriefing after activity.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is Part 2 of a two part post. Click for Part 1

4. Give them a seat at the table. An opportunity to lead.

One of the most impactive ingredients for our youth conferences was allowing, even empowering our youth to help plan and carry them out. They had real input into what would be taught and discussed. I have multiple examples of going into planning meetings thinking I knew exactly what I wanted done for a specific event only to leave the same meeting having changed or at least adjusted the event because of the input of the youth. They know what they need, we just need to listen.

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Lessons Learned from “Our Quest” for the Family – Part 1

The Tribes of "Our Quest"

In June of 2010, I was privilege to be involved in our Stake’s youth conference. We do “stake” youth conferences every two years to give our wards an opportunity to do their own; to build their own identity and unity. Two years prior, we had embarked in our first pioneer Trek. Many youth throughout the church have gone on these pioneer reenactments and I still have yet to hear major negative comments about any of them.  They are always spiritual feasts where our youth not only learn about pioneers, sacrifice, testimony and the love of God but they get to experience it. They are spiritual highlights for both youth and adults.

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