"And whoso receiveth you, there I will be also, for I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up." D&C 84:88
Thursday, September 18, 2014
Elder Marty's Birthday Cake
Today is Elder Martey’s birthday. We arrange to meet at his flat at about 8:45 in the evening with the members of his Zone. Sister Thomas made what is called an Earthquake cake. It was a recipe that Sister Blatter gave us and we decided to try it out. It proved to be good and was enjoyed by the Elders along with some ice cream. Sister Thomas put on two green candles and two blue candles on the cake. This is a close and we could come to represent someone turning 22. When it came time to blow out the candles Elder Martey was taken back and did not really know what to do. He finally was able to blow them all out, but with a bit of trouble. All accused him of trying to get some extra girl friends.
When the cake and ice cream was over, we ask Elder Martey to share something about himself that no one else knows about. He told us of his early life of his father giving him to a lady to live with where he was abused. From the age of six or seven, he went to living in the streets for most of his young life. Then with tears in his eyes he thanked those for coming this evening as this was the first time in his life he had had anything close to a birthday party. He had never been wished happy birthday and had never had a birthday cake. At 22 this was the first one in his life.
I put my arm around him and told him to look around. He needed to know that he has a family around him. When he goes home there will be members who will become his life long friends. I thought of the Scripture “Now therefor ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and the house hold of God” (Eph 2:19). I explained to him that he who was once separate is now part of something larger, he need not feel or be alone again. Added to this family of Saints he will have his relationship with his Elder Brother which he can always rely on.
A very sobering evening and we left with love in our hearts for Elder Martey and for each other. I left knowing that I am peace with myself for any and all actions that I took with my daughters while they were growing up. I hope that they are as grateful to have me as their father as I am to have them as my daughters.