I felt impressed to ask someone for a blessing. I felt that I could ask my Institute teacher, Brother Water Fife, with confidence. I went to him intending to ask him who it would be proper to ask a blessing from. He said he would be happy to, which was why I asked him who it would be proper to ask. I half wished he would. He did and thus I am recording the experience for future self reference, and if the Lord willing, and if the record is fit, to hopefully help some future posterity.
As background I recently finished the “Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin.” I recommend that everyone read it, for it does show an overview of life from a God-fearing man, and does show the eminent blessings of good deeds and good nature.
In his book I read about Franklin’s project of virtue which he called the art of virtue. I will not go into the details, but the project would not leave my mind. Neither would much of what he had said about reading books, publishing papers, and associating with good like-minded people. These four things - virtue, books, papers, and people - seemed to be of utmost importance. I knew the spirit of the Lord was keeping them on my mind so as to ensure my acting upon it. And were it not for the grace of God I might have read over it and passed up great opportunities that would much multiply, increase, and bring joy to my life.
Such I related to Brother Fife, who then promptly laid his hands on my head and gave me a blessing. He spoke, or rather the Lord did through him, much about balance. He mentioned memento mori, and reminded me that I have constraints within mortality. He made a suggestion to read the biography of prophets. There was revelation given concerning pride and then blessings to increase the joy in my marriage and blessings as a young father. I found great pleasure and hope in the blessings on my marriage. I wondered how it could get any better for I am already deeply satisfied with my dear wife. Although, I know it can get better and I greatly anticipate that increase like a giddy school boy laughing about the spring outdoors.
After the blessing I motioned to leave having accomplished what I intended. Brother Fife began to discuss more about the blessing, so I sat down. I am glad I did.
He spoke at length and great depth on the topic of pride. I saw much of what he said in myself. I wish it were not so, thus I listened more intently. He taught me that I should not “inhale” compliments as was said to Pres. Uchtdorf. He quoted a poem he had memorized. It was of a torchbearer who learned that people followed the light and not himself. I fancied myself extending the story and hopefully effecting another as it had me. This principle stuck. I recognized that the people in fact only found my light attractive, which is not lit nor maintained by myself, but rather the Lord. I didn’t make a determination when I left the room, but I will do so now, to focus much on pride and study it so I can make defenses against it.
I am grateful for the timing of this blessing and council. I can see that I was headed down that thorny path, but thanks to the goodness of God any depth in that path have been repaired and averted. Needless to say I might see myself again in the briars.