Bennett Borden, North Star President

This month as we celebrate our pioneer heritage, I have thought a lot about how that heritage extends far beyond the Saints who made their way from Nauvoo to the Great Salt Lake valley in 1847.  It extends to the early Saints in New York making their way to Kirtland and then Nauvoo.  It extends to the Nephites who struck out and found Zarahemla, the Mulekites and Jaredites, and the people of Moses.  It extends to Abraham and Noah.  That heritage extends to our first parents, Adam and our great and courageous Mother Eve who consciously chose to leave the comfort of the Garden so that her children could learn good and evil by engaging in this mortal experience.

It seems that striking out into the unknown and unfamiliar is a key experience in our growth as children of Heavenly Parents and in achieving our ultimate potential to be like Them.

We in the North Star community are, in some ways, blazing new trails and walking in paths that are unique.  There aren’t Sunday School lessons, Ensign articles or General Conference addresses that talk about how to navigate this path.  There aren’t a lot of examples of people who have walked this path before us that we can look to and learn from.  We are the ones the Lord has trusted and chosen in this day to find the safe way forward and to make a path for others to follow.  Just like Orson Pratt and William Clayton in 1847, we are part of the vanguard company who are finding our way forward, wearing a path by our experiences and examples for others to follow.  In this effort we have a great responsibility and a great stewardship entrusted to us by the Lord.

Fortunately, we aren’t alone on this path; because our path is no different in many ways than anyone else going through this mortal experience.  “I am the way, the truth and the life,” said our Savior.  Just as all of our forbearers did, we will find our way forward every day by seeking and following the inspiration of the Spirit, by keeping ourselves worthy of receiving that inspiration, by loving and serving those around us, and by trusting that the Lord will show us the way.

My dear brothers and sisters, I know that sometimes this path is difficult, and the way can seem obscure.  But our Heavenly Parents have entrusted us with this great work; to blaze a path and to help others along the way and who will follow us.  We have illustrious examples of those who have gone before us in our great pioneer heritage. May we benefit from their example and become an example of perseverance and hope for those who follow us.