Blueberries and the Book of Mormon

Suellen S. Weiler, Georgia, USA

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    A few years ago our family moved from a fast-paced, congested metropolitan area to a small, rural property outside a quiet little village. Nearby was an abandoned blueberry farm, and through friends of the owner, we obtained permission to pick all the blueberries we wanted.

    Several mornings each week that summer we piled into the car with buckets and bags and spent a delightful, delicious hour gathering blueberries. One morning our youngest son, Hyrum, seemed reluctant to accompany us. He was sure we had picked every blueberry and that it would be a waste of time to go again. How surprised he was to find as many blueberries as ever. There were clusters in places he had overlooked, and some of the juiciest berries were growing on branches he was sure he had explored earlier.

    At this same time, ward youth leaders challenged our teenagers to read the entire Book of Mormon before school started that August. Our children brought the challenge home, and our family committed to join them in their efforts.

    No sooner had we finished the Book of Mormon when our August 2005 Ensign arrived, with the challenge of President Gordon B. Hinckley (1910–2008) to read the entire Book of Mormon by the end of the year. Hyrum and his brother Joseph were thrilled—to think that we had already obeyed the prophet! Then their older siblings, Seth and Bethany, reminded them that President Hinckley had asked us to read it again, regardless of how many times we had already done so.

    “But why?” the boys asked. “We have read every word, and what else is there to learn besides what we have already read?”

    After a few moments of silence, somebody mentioned the blueberries. “Remember when we thought we had picked every blueberry? But when we went back, there were always more blueberries—always! No matter how many times we went, no matter how recently, there were always blueberries by the bunches.”

    We quickly recognized the connection. Like the nearby farm and its abundant supply of delicious blueberries, the Book of Mormon is a constant source of spiritual nourishment with new truths to be discovered. So we began once again to read the Book of Mormon.

    As I accepted the prophet’s challenge, I read things in the Book of Mormon that I had read many times before, but I saw them in a different way or understood them as they applied to new circumstances or challenges. I know that each time we sincerely read the Book of Mormon, we can receive new insights and come closer to the Savior.