Eight years ago from this last weekend a mother woke up her only boy before the sun rose and dragged him off on what she called a “priesthood sunrise hike.”
It was his twelfth birthday.
And although I’m sure that boy rolled his eyes a little and dragged his feet, he followed that crazy mother of his up a mountain. She wanted so much to make that birthday different. To have the chance to explain why that birthday of his was extra important. He would be getting the Priesthood. And that was a big deal.
I’m sure in his newly 12-year-old brain he was a little fed up with that mother of his. He complained of his shoes filling with rocks. He was bugged that there was some steep climbing at the end. But he trudged up there with that crazy lady, something inside him knowing that if it was important to her, then it was important to him, because that’s the kind of boy he is, and they both made it to the top.
And low and behold, that mother had even brought along a little book about the priesthood. And they had a good little talk up there on top of the world.
On that beautifully hot birthday morning on June 3rd.
….and being surrounded by all girls for so long.
I remembered so many milestones.
So many pictures he endured because he loves me:
His determination on the volleyball court:
And his humility when we told him how great his Chinese was on Mother’s Day and he smiled and told us he still had so much to work on.
And I thought about how all those things combine and make him the missionary he is in the mission field.
And OH! How I longed to have him here to endure his traditional birthday cheek-kisses and give us that slow smile.
With that smile and that big heart.
Putting to great use that priesthood power he and that mother of his celebrated on the top of that mountain all those years ago.
So grateful for that favorite son of mine and how he makes my heart want to burst.