Today I was sustained as a member of the High Council in the Los Lunas Stake, here in New Mexico. Brother Hamilton from our ward, a High Councilman himself, presented my name before the congregation during our Sacrament meeting.
Thus begins a new chapter in my church life. I just hope I’m up to the challenge. This calling is much more demanding than my previous calling as Sunday School President. It frequently requires travel to other wards, although it looks I will be assigned to the Ladera Ward on most Sundays which shares the same building as our ward and meets two hours later. I am required to attend Stake High Council meetings twice a month. I will be required to conduct regular ward audits, and will have speaking assignments monthly in other wards. The latter responsibility will probably be the biggest challenge of all. In addition to the difficulty of preparing talks and speaking in meetings that often, it will probably also force us to buy another car, something I’m kind of dreading.
A little background to this calling: Jerry Clark, our Stake President, wanted to meet with Susan and me back in mid-June. It turned out to be nothing more than a short social visit, which seemed rather odd. A few days later we left on our 3-week road trip and pretty much forgot about the meeting. Then a few days after returning, I received an email from the Stake Secretary asking if we could meet with Pres. Malarsie, one of Pres. Clark’s Counselors.
This time, I knew for sure that one of us was being called to something. I had heard that the Fred and Joyce Anderson would be released soon as BYU Pathway missionaries so thought that might be it since Susan is a Pathway graduate. Then I accidentally ran into Griffin Pope at the Temple. I knew that he had been released as Stake Sunday School President in mid-May (2 months ago) and when he told me that they had still not called anyone to fill that position, my immediate assumption was that I would be called to fill it. It made sense since I was currently serving as Sunday School President in our ward and that seemed like a logical next step. I felt fairly confident that I could handle that calling, and was feeling pretty good about the prospect when we met with Pres. Malarsie last Wednesday evening.
But when he called me to be on the High Council instead, I was not prepared. It was a humbling thing to say the least. Being on the High Council is reserved for only the most spiritual, the wisest, and the most experienced men in the Stake — or so I thought. After some hesitation, I told him that if that’s what the Stake President and the Lord really wanted, I would accept.
So now I go to my first High Council meeting on Thursday to get set apart and begin learning my duties. I’m praying for the Lord’s guidance and help. Thankfully, I have a wonderfully supportive wife.