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Dear Gramps,

I have a question of a spiritual nature. I just can’t put it in to adequate words. I fear I shan’t give it the power it holds in my heart. But nothing ventured nothing gained, as they say. My wife and I have recently started a small contracting firm. We have been together just about seven months and have taken in my mother who has multiple health issues. I have been away from the Church for quite some time- about 17 years. In such time I have fallen low in my spiritual understanding. Thus my need to ask someone outside myself. The thing is, I am faced with demands at home to provide physical support to my mother. At the same time I have the company to think about. I don’t have the funds to bring in outside help. My wife is pregnant with our first child and is a high risk case. So she has needs, too. I feel I can’t put mother in a home for fear that she has only a number of days among the living. I by no means wish her to pass with the feeling that she is unloved or unneeded. At the same time I do not wish my wife to feel she has taken a back seat. I am at my wits end. Hoping you can give me an understanding ear and some direction to turn. May God be in your heart.

Rick & Belle




Dear Rick,

The problem that you mentioned is not at all uncommon among young (and many older) members of the Mormon Church. Perhaps the most difficult decision that a practicing Latter-day Saint has to make is how to equitably divide his time between his family, his work, and his church. I suffered with this like all the rest, and ended up getting an ulcer. But I did overcome it, and the ulcer went away.

A couple of things to consider. You won’t find any specific advice anywhere; and that is the way it should be. Here is the reason. The keys of the priesthood represent the authority to make decisions in priesthood matters and direct the activities of those for whom you are responsible. The general authorities will leave in the hands of the stake president all decisions relating to the stake. The wise stake president will honor and respect the decisions that are in the province of the bishop. Each officer has the right of inspiration from heaven in using the keys relating to his office.

He who presides over the home by virtue of the priesthood that he holds, has the right of decision (in consultation with his wife, as the bishop consults with his counselors) as to how things are to be conducted in the home. If a general authority were to visit your home, he would expect you to call on family members for prayer, to assign even the general authority, for instance, to administer to someone in your household who was ill.

The allocation of time between these three areas of activity of an individual relate to the keys of the priesthood that you possess with respect to your own home. However, one or two suggestions for your consideration: During the time that you have allocated for your business-it will be so many hours a day, and may vary from day to day-but during that time, you must give it your full attention, AND NOT WORRY ABOUT THE OTHER TWO RESPONSIBILITIES. When you are at home, you must turn the business off, and devote yourself to the welfare of your family. If you have a church assignment-home teacher, or whatever- those assignments should be completed with at least as much attention as the other two. It is important to obey all the laws of the gospel. Then you may appeal to our Heavenly Father for his guidance and direction, and expect to receive it. That doesn’t mean that all your problems will be solved, but you will have a defined direction and a peace of mind, and the Lord will guide and direct you and turn all things to your good. The Lord has said,

Search diligently, pray always, and be believing, and all things shall work together for your good, if ye walk uprightly and remember the covenant wherewith ye have covenanted one with another (D&C 90:24).






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