“Is This What You’d Give Me?”
One day my mother, Linnie P. Gold, related an experience to me that has shaped my life ever since.
She said that after World War II Church members were asked to donate clothing for the destitute people in Germany. My mother was therefore collecting from our drawers and cupboards well-worn discarded clothing that was too good to throw away. Suddenly she heard a voice say, “Is this what you would give to Me?”
“Oh no,” was her immediate cry. And she quickly began gathering the best clothes in the house. As editor of the ward newspaper to be printed the next day, she quickly penned a poetic appeal for clothes. Readers were deeply touched by the appeal and responded in abundance.
I know now why my mother gives so very freely and is always doing things for others. She gives to Him.
You Can Do It
Several years after World War II was over, our family (consisting of my husband, two sons ages four and two, and myself) moved to Spanish Fork, Utah. We had been in our home about six months when I was asked to teach the Nursery Class in Primary.
I was a very shy person.
Although I had been a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints all my life, I had never held a position in the Church. So I talked with the Primary president (Rebecca Christensen), whom I knew rather well. “I could never teach the Nursery Class I told her, “I have never taught before.”
The Primary president knew I was shy, but she also knew that I loved children. She expressed her love for me and told me she knew I would love the work, if I would just give it a try. I declined the offer. But when she arose from the chair to leave, she told me she would expect me to teach this group of children the next Primary day.
Not until after she was gone did I find the lesson book she had left on a chair. I thought I must return it, but instead I opened it and read the beautiful lessons. Each day I told myself I would return the book. And each day it became harder for me to think what I might say to the Primary president. Primary day soon arrived. I knew I had to give the lesson or find someone who would. So I studied and prepared. I said to myself, “I will give the lesson just this once, then return the book.”
I taught that class for three years. Then I taught another Primary class for five years. When our ward was divided into two wards, I was called to serve in the Primary presidency.
Over the years I have held many leadership positions: Beehive Class leader, president of the Young Women, counselor and then president of our ward Relief Society and secretary of our stake Relief Society. These callings have helped me become a more fulfilled and happier person, for they have helped me overcome my shyness and learn to love my fellowmen. All this, because a dear, trusting leader showed she really cared and would not let me say “no” to a calling.