To listen as you describe
Reality for your week outside
Even now sends chills down my spine
Knowing this was in remembrance of ancestors mine.
My niece went on Trek this past summer (she was able to go last summer as well, so this was her second time which isn’t something always available to the youth of our church). I was never able to go on Trek and was always really sad about that because I’d watched most of my elder siblings and even my younger siblings prepare and then go on Trek.
For those that don’t know, Trek is when a Stake in our church prepares handcarts and dresses in the appropriate style of clothing and then drives out to a part of the Mormon Handcart Trail and walks, while pulling handcarts, parts of the Trail. It’s long and grueling (I’ve been told), but I’ve also been told how worth it, it is, how much closer it can bring you to your ancestors to know even a little bit of what they went through.
My niece hadn’t wanted to go this year after how difficult it was last year, but in the end she decided to go. When she returned I asked her if she was happy that she’d gone after all.
“Yes I’m glad I went, but no I’m not glad.” Was her answer. She’d enjoyed it, she said, but she wasn’t going to miss pulling a handcart in a skirt.
Something new I did learn about Trek this year was that each person can choose who they are going to ‘participate as’ in their Trek families. (Trek families are the ‘Ma and Pa’ that are called along with a bunch of teens who are the ‘kids’ in the family who all trek together.) My niece chose to trek for her great grandmother, Marie Barbara Luker. Both she and I received our middle names from her; she had received it from her mother or grandmother and the name actually goes back for a bit in her line like that for a while.
Listening to my niece talk about Trek and what it was like to walk in the footsteps of those who were followed their faith even into weather and conditions that most would call the height of foolishness, yet they lost no more than any of the others that left during the best of seasons. For some, the trial of their faith is a great stress upon their bodies, for others it is one upon their minds and still others it is upon their ability to provide for themselves and/or their family. We never know what our trial will be until it has either come or already gone.
“The Good Lord would not have given me anything that He knew I couldn’t handle.”
That was something my mom often would say, but she would just as easily follow it up sometimes with, “But sometimes I wish He didn’t have such faith in me.”
But if He didn’t have the faith that we could do something, even something so incredibly difficult that we believe it is forever out of our reach, how will we ever complete our time in this life? After all, He had the faith that we could come down here and learn what He wanted us to learn in the first place and we trusted in that faith enough to agree to come here. Why should we lose faith in the His own faith in us?