As children, we learned about joy. True joy can be found in loving and serving others. We pulled our red wagon around collecting Sub for Santa donations for years. One year, we collected enough for three station wagon loads!
My sister has been battling cancer for ten years. One family took soup to her every Monday night for a year. Heather told them she was feeling a bit better and didn’t “need” it at one point. Her neighbor said that her own family “needed” to do it because she noticed a lack of charity in her own family. Each of her four teenagers was in charge of buying ingredients, making, and delivering soup one week a month, boys included. Grumbling turned to joy as they served, and they actually looked for others to serve as well. One neighbor towed his trailer with a fully stocked fridge to Willard Bay so Heather’s family could have a three-day vacation after one of her many hospital stays. Even my sister found a way to serve. After her four-hour chemo sessions (five days a week for the first week of every month for three and a half years), she would often take a ward member in for a chemo session immediately after her own. Her doctor was astounded.
My brother Bryce always served others with his many talents and friendship to those seeming to be left out by others. Our family motto was “All for one and one for all” and our family truly lived it. My dad once bought tires for a down-and-out family we met on vacation, knowing they couldn’t pay him back. Bryce was like my dad. So many people have helped me because they say they could never pay Bryce back. They will pay him back by fixing my car or things outside. As sick as he was, Bryce still served me. I found his bucket list. Every line on two pages was for me. He supervised while his friends did for me what he could not do.
Through this time, I have been the recipient of the pure love of God – charity. Moroni states in Ether 12:33-34 that Christ loved us even to the laying down of his life for the world. Then he states, “Now I know that this love which thou has for the children of men is charity; wherefore, except men shall have charity, they cannot inherit that place thou has prepared in the mansions of thy Father.”