Great article! Thanks for sharing
This isn't an uncommon situation missionaries face, and is easily one of
the most challenging. Naturally someone seeking to be like Christ and to
further the Father's work would want to know "why?" We can't
see what's in other people's minds or hearts, but we still try to
understand these things when we associate with others, and being unable to do so
in a circumstance like this is always disappointing.When one is in a
position in which receiving baptism would effectively change or limit nothing in
their social or physical life, yet makes all the difference of eternity
hereafter... I wonder "why?" Logically it doesn't make sense;
nothing to lose and everything to gain. What else factors into a decision like
My former Mission President, Charles Didier, was once a perpetual investigator.
But he only resisted for about seven years. Once baptized he gave it his
all...after his calling as our Mission Pres. he was called to the Quorum of
Seventy, and with his ability to speak multiple languages fluently was a great
asset to the Church. Hope this good coach will follow suit.
Just for the fun of throwing my opinion out there.... my opinion is if people do
not join the Church in this life, they won't join the Church of the Lamb of
God in the next. The only hope is that those who learn about the Gospel in this
life is they are baptized in this life. Those that never heard the word while in
mortality are the only ones that may desire to join. It's not that the Lord
wont give them the option to "join" in the next life, it's just
they won't because it's their character. I took 3 years. Brother Lamb
obviously will take longer (maybe). Others have. I've known some that have
died and never joined (and I don't believe will) and others I've known
for 30+ years and they won't be baptized but they come to Church and serve.
I don't get it. It's like wanting to live together but not tie the
knot. It must be a character thing and that character thing is not a God-like
Interesting story, but I take exception to your description of his calling to
Scouting as "small." To begin with, it's hugely important in the
lives of young men, and secondly, we are constantly reminded that no calling is
"small." You might want to reconsider your language.
It grates on me to see the the wording "...and other small callings."
Small callings? Is working with a Scout who you are shaping for the future a
"small" calling? This good brother is serving a vital role in the
Church and is being recognized for this. Why couldn't the writer have just
said "and other callings" rather than making a judgment of what might be
a small or large calling? As we were taught in drama classes, "There are no
small roles, only small people." In the Church, the saying reads "It is
not where you serve but how you serve."
James: You ask why, but he tells you exactly why. "Over time, I've
been exposed to the culture and have tremendous respect for the religion. This
has been a real example for good in my life. The morals and beliefs are highly
congruent with how I would want to live and how I want my family to live their
lives." He never says he believes it to be the only true church of Jesus
Christ. There is truth and beauty in the teachings of many religions, if you
choose to look and many share many morals and beliefs with the Mormon faith.
That is as far as it goes for him though so there is no mystery as to why. You
can like something and partake in it even if you aren't a member. Many Y
students and other LDS members go to the Sikh festival yearly in Utah without
joining and LDS leaders are now encouraging interfaith cooperation and
friendship based on mutually shared morals and beliefs. I believe that to be a
goodwill gesture of unity and not just an attempt to snag members.
I enjoyed the article, but I would think you may not have sufficiently assessed
scouting to call it a "small capacity" in the Church. Even though it is
not a line calling in the Church a scoutmaster can and should have more impact
on a scout age boy than just about anybody else. Ask any Eagle scout if his
scoutmaster had a small or large influence on his life.My wife is a
convert to the church who held a couple of callings while still a "dry
land" Mormon. People respond to being needed and it is wonderful when the
opportunity can be extended to them. Thanks for the story about a fine coach.
I do not know of any small capacities in Church work. All callings touch
peoples lives. Great article and and interesting "exposure".
Great article! I enjoyed yesterday's as well and look forward to the others
this week. Lamb is great example to the many young people he leads. Re: James,
"logic" should never enter the mix of whether to join the church. That
decision is based on faith. Yes, logic may add to your faith, but faith is
something you feel. Re: maclouie, thanks for saying that is your
"opinion" because your opinion is not based on any doctrine that
I've come across.
The Church has lots of "Eds" (like my uncle Mike)and they are greatly
valued and loved. Good luck this season Coach!
Of course there is absolutely NO pressure regarding his job, is there?
Deseret News: Shame on you "small" callings like scouts. Good luck
with that my husband has been both Bishop and Scout master. I think bishop was
the "smaller" of the calling.
What do you mean by job pressure, Lilly? Many if not most football coaches at
Utah's state schools have not been LDS. Kyle Whittingham is the first in a
long time at Utah. Matt Wells at USU is not, nor was Gary Anderson. Jay Hill at
Weber State might be, but McBride was not. So, I'm not sure what you mean.
Levin,For informational purposes; Gary Anderson is Mormon (no idea
if he's active). Jay Hill is Mormon as well (is a returned missionary).
Coach Lamb looks to be a class act regardless of his religious affiliation.
Good luck this season coach.
@maclouie"my opinion is if people do not join the Church in this life,
they won't join the Church of the Lamb of God in the next. ""It's not that the Lord wont give them the option to "join"
in the next life, it's just they won't because it's their
character. "Well that just insults a massive swath of people...
so what exactly is wrong with the "character" of people like me? The
reason I'm not a member is I don't believe in it and the reason I
don't believe is there's not enough evidence. That wouldn't be
the case in the spirit world if the church were true and I think most people
would accept it then. At least I would. "It must be a character
thing and that character thing is not a God-like characteristic."One can believe the church does good things and is a positive influence,
without believing the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith. Would you rather someone
without a belief in the BoM or Joseph Smith being a Prophet lie their way
through a baptism interview?
Having served in the scouting program of our ward while our boys were members
was a great opportunity for me. I never thought of any "calling" as
"big" or "small," just something the Lord wanted me to do.My sons are both Eagles and several of the young men in our ward in that
time frame are also. Having accompanied them on long hikes, service projects,
annual camping as well as regional and national gatherings, I felt honored and
proud of our boys and their accomplishments.There was nothing small
about it. Coach Lamb is a great role model, and that's what young men need
growing up. May the Lord bless him and his work.
@ Schnee:Why do you let one person's opinion allow you to
become so insulted and up in arms? He's simply expressing an opinion...
just like he mentioned. Isn't he entitled to one? Along that same vein,
I've noticed a certain group of people in society who often go out of their
way to look for things to be insulted about regarding the Church. Doing so does
no harm to anyone but themselves. Learn to take differences in opinion in stride
without giving such things a second thought. You'll be happier.@ Tutanikai and Mark C:The term "small" in describing Mr.
Lamb's scouting church callings could've been his own and so
don't warrant getting all excited about. Believe it or not, some scouting
positions are smaller than others and take a whole lot less time to fulfill.
I've been in some wards where there are basically assistants to assistants
as the Bishopric strives to find positions for everyone and get them involved.
All positions are important, but some definitely take a smaller time
commitment to fulfill. Perhaps that was the authors intent in the usage of his
words. Not a big deal.
@ Schnee:One other thought to consider. The Lord has pointed out
that He wants people to be able to take and accept many gospel truths on faith,
rather than always seek after signs. He disparaged sign-seekers multiple times
in the New Testament. Using faith can truly be an personal character builder.Christ admonished his apostle Thomas for not believing that He had been
resurrected unless Thomas could see for himself. He told Thomas he was blessed
for finally believing. But that those who believe without seeing are more
blessed. Generating personal faith by being able to believe by the power of the
Holy Spirit is truly character building. We're not supposed to have full
proof about everything we've been asked to believe in. Otherwise, God
Himself would always be here on earth to prove His existence to all of us. But
He's not and yet most still believe in Him."By their fruits
shall ye know them", is what Christ said when telling us how to determine
true from false prophets. You need to sincerely read the Book of Mormon with
genuine intent. I have confidence you'll get your answer. Millions have.
@SchneeSalt Lake City, UT"The reason I'm not a member
is I don't believe in it and the reason I don't believe is
there's not enough evidence."I appreciate your honesty and
frankness regarding your situation! But I just don't believe there's
a lack of evidences or not enough of them for that matter. I think there's
plenty enough evidences that supports the truth of what Joseph Smith brought
forth into the world. It's only a matter of us willing to honestly seek
answers from the Lord himself through humble and sincere prayer whether the
things he claimed were true or not. To me, the key is the BoM. If that book is
true then all else falls in place. If it's false, then Joseph Smith was a
fraud and everything he claimed happened was a lie, eg...God the Father and
Jesus Christ didn't appear to him, and Moroni, Moses, Elijah, Elias, John
the Baptist, Peter, James, and John all never came to him either. But then why
was he willing to suffer so much persecution, even death, to perpetuate a lie?
Every calling is important! there is no such thing as a "small calling."
@SchneeFirst, I was corrected by you and someone else that maybe he
has not come to know of it's truthfulness and you are right, lying to get
baptized is hypocritical and unacceptable.Second, you made my point,
though, when you said this:"The reason I'm not a member is
I don't believe in it ... I don't believe there's enough
evidence. That wouldn't be the case in the spirit world if the church were
true and I think most people would accept it then. At least I would."My opinion is there will not be any more evidence in the Spirit World
than there is now. That is why missionaries are serving in the Spirit World.
When you go you will meet friends and others of your same ilk and all of you
will continue to laugh and scorn the message because there still will not be
enough evidence.I do not know you so do not be insulted by my recent
choice of words. My opinion: you wont change your mind in the next life. You are
beyond your probation.
Instead of using the word "small" in referring to the coach's
calling, perhaps it would be more appropriate to say: "callings that do not
require Church membership of the person called."
@Brio"The Lord has pointed out that He wants people to be able to take
and accept many gospel truths on faith, rather than always seek after signs.
"Sure, but there's still gotta be enough of something else
beyond faith that makes us decide which set of spiritual claims we believe while
at the same time we personally don't believe the others. I am a Christian
so it's not like the concept of faith is an issue for me. "You need to sincerely read the Book of Mormon with genuine intent. I have
confidence you'll get your answer. "Tried it, didn't
get the result you'd expect. Tried to force the issue anyway. I know
personally that joining without belief is not a good thing. @thebigsamoan"But then why was he willing to suffer so much
persecution, even death, to perpetuate a lie?"Hypothetically, if
it were all a lie, and he admitted such, I think his own followers would've
killed him after they sacrificed so much. Perpetuating it at least keeps him in
a position of power even if that has it's own persecutions and problems.
@maclouie"That is why missionaries are serving in the Spirit World.
When you go you will meet friends and others of your same ilk and all of you
will continue to laugh and scorn the message because there still will not be
enough evidence."But if missionaries are serving in the Spirit
World, and the whole Spirit World thing itself exists and is set up the way the
LDS church said it would be, then that would actually be more evidence of an
"oh... heh, I guess they did get it right, well now I feel silly for
rejecting it before" nature and a rather important one since that'd
mean verifying details of the afterlife which would be extremely difficult to do
accidentally."My opinion: you wont change your mind in the next
life."Well... maybe we can make a deal, if the LDS church
happens to be correct, if you find me in the spirit world feel free to tell me
"I told you so" regarding the church being true, so that I can answer
with "I told you so" when I accept it.
Scout callings are as big or as small as the ward (Bishop) and the leader wants
them to be. In some units, it's two weeks each summer (scout camp for
12-13 YOs & high-adventure camp for 14+ YOs), one troop meeting a week, plus
two overnights a month - and all the planning / logistics that those
necessitate. And that doesn't count all the time doing fund-raisers,
food-drives, etc. Some units have the weekly meetings, and occasional
overnight, and part of a week in the summer (splitting time with other adults in
the ward).If done properly and to the full-extent that the callings
generally demand, the order of difficulty/time requirements of the callings in
the ward are something like this: 1) Bishop, 2) Early Morning Seminary Teacher
(if you have one), 3) Relief Society President, 4) Elders Quorum President 5)
LOL . . . I'm sure the editors are regretting connecting the word
"small" with a scouting calling. Any head or assistant scoutmaster will
laugh at the idea that these callings (if done correctly) require anything other
than a major commitment.
maclouie makes a profound statement in his opinion and scripture will back him
up. "And now, as I said unto you before, as ye have had so many witnesses,
therefore, I beseech of you that ye do not procrastinate the day of your
repentance until the end; for after this day of life, which is given us to
prepare for eternity, behold, if we do not improve our time while in this life,
then cometh the night of darkness wherein there can be no labor performed. Ye
cannot say, when ye are brought to that awful crisis, that I will repent, that I
will return to my God. Nay, ye cannot say this; for that same spirit which doth
possess your bodies at the time that ye go out of this life, that same spirit
will have power to possess your body in that eternal world."There is more so if you think you can wait until you get to the Spirit World
to find out once it has been taught to you in this life, you may be on the
outside looking in.
Unless this article was edited, I don't understand all the resentment about
the scouting comment. It doesn't use the word "small" it says
"Scouting and other capacities." You can't have certain callings
in the Church as a non-member. I think the article was inspiring and applaud
him for recognizing good and trying to be a good person and have a good,
Christ-centered family. Of course there are no "small callings."
That's why Elder Oaks of the Twelve was a Sunday School teacher after being
the President of BYU. All callings are important, especially the so-called
"small" callings of home and visiting teacher.
Next time I take a week off work to shepherd a couple dozen young men on a
30-mile hike in the Uintas, make sure they are fed, sheltered, and return home
to their families safe, I'll keep reminding myself what a "small"
calling it is.
Coach Lamb is a class act. Each year he gets the most out of talented players
that others overlook. He is an assett in his home community with or without his
influence as head football coach at SUU. He is a very evoted family man inspite
of the demands placed upon him by his football responsibilites. Cedar City is
fortunate to have Coach Lamb.
One of my grandfathers investigated the church for over 14 years and served in
many Church callings while not a member of The Church. One day he surprised his
family when he invited them to his baptism. It takes a lot of humility to pray
to know if the Gospel has been restored in these latter days and then to enter
the waters of baptism to begin the journey of covenant making and keeping. It
is all worth it. The best part is when the family is sealed in the temple for
time and for all eternity.
Lily Munster: "Of course there is absolutely NO pressure regarding his job,
is there?"Why would there be? Southern Utah University is a
state institution of higher learning, so if there were a provable claim that its
officials engaged in religious discrimination in the hiring (or firing)
process, a U.S. court likely would find such action to be a violation of the
First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, as well as a potential civil rights
violation under U.S. federal law. Southern Utah University officials likely
knew what they were getting when they hired Coach Lamb, so if religious
differences weren't a factor when they hired him, I fail to see how they
would become a factor in his keeping his job. Religion is irrelevant: he will
be evaluated (as he should be) based on his performance as a football coach.
I've known the man for years and had no idea he wasn't LDS.
That's neither here nor there though. He is a great man, class act and an
awesome coach. To turn the team around in such a short time is amazing. He has
been a close friend since we both first came to SUU and I am glad to know him as
a person as well as the best coach SUU has every seen. I'm surprised an
Aggie said what he did. May be hope for them yet.
For all of you offended at the comment about the "small" calling. Get a
grip. I have spent many years in scouting, including as a scoutmaster and as a
commissioner at the District level. I was not offended. Perhaps that designation
is based on the average tenure of a scoutmaster along the Wasatch Range of being
approx. 12-14 mos. Perhaps the constant turn-over in scouting is what the writer
was referring to.
I don't understand all the sensitivity about referring to "other small
callings". Read the article carefully...the author never uses that
terminology. Please read what is written before allowing your insecurities to
Was this article edited or what? Will the light bulb "come on" in the
Spirit World? Is baptism a HUGE commitment? Yes, probably no, YES!
Maclouie and several others, for the life of me I don't understand what you
are trying to do here. Would you rake someone over the coals in the mission
field or a neighborhood. Stop. You wouldn't have any baptisms if you did.
This is a decent man and you are making him look like something else. We all
have our agency and we have been told that all will have a chance in the
hereafter. The General Authorities preach this over and over and over. Please
-- you are making people think there is no hope and that is not true. We must
all be careful not to judge people, even using scriptures. It kind of puts one
up on a pedestal and that just is not true. I appreciate that the coach is
being such a great example to others. Good job coach!
I don't understand. Why not get baptized, at this point, after so much time
involved with the Church, and with so much of his family already in it? What is
stopping him? A lack of desire to be with his family for eternity? Fear of
making covenants that he won't be able to keep? Word of Wisdom issues? I
don't get it. Investigating the Church is a process that can
really only lead in two directions: either a person gets baptized, or they drop
the missionaries and move on with their lives. Normally this process only takes
a few months at the most. 22 years? Something is going on there.