I been trying on posts all morning, but none of them seems to fit quite right. I’ve already written about President Hinckley on both my other blogs and his name continues to generate numerous hits in the news, on all sorts of blogs and be heard on a growing number of special programming on radio and TV (and have you seen our sidebar?). But I find I’m not quite ready to move on.
You likely heard about the tribute quickly planned and swiftly communicated by deftly texting fingers among jr. high and high school students in many locations. “Wear your best dress to school tomorrow in honor of President Hinckley.” That sweet and simple gesture touched my mother heart even more because just the day before my sixteen-year-old son had expressed to me his extreme discomfort at being choked by a buttoned up white shirt and tie. So as he bounded out the door on his way to early morning Seminary on Monday, dressed in a shirt and tie again, I commented on how nice he looked and asked him what was the occasion. “It’s out of respect for President Hinckley,” he replied. It was kind of unexpected and didn’t really sink in. Later I heard mention of the planned tribute on the news and it struck me–this is their prophet. He’s been their leader ever since they can remember.
In addition to the many poignant written expressions of love, appreciation and sorrow I’ve read over the past few days, I’m also aware of the other ways made available to us to pay our respects to a beloved prophet whose simple act of being himself made him seem more like a life-long friend. In lieu of flowers, donations are being taken in his name for the Perpetual Education Fund. A two-day long viewing will be held at the Conference Center. And the coverage of his funeral is completely unprecedented. The services will be broadcast on several media outlets and the Internet will make them available worldwide.
On a personal level, however, I feel the need to do more. I want to do something a little more long-lasting. I’m remembering and rereading some of his conference addresses and revisiting some of his teachings. Laughing again at some of his jokes (General Conference will never be the same). Considering what it means to really stand for something. Perhaps the best way I can pay my respects to President Gordon B. Hinckley is simply to do what he asked of me. In particular, I keep thinking about his frequently issued invitation for us to be just a little better.
Perfect is beyond me. But better I can do.