|does he look older to you?|
I have known our stake was splitting since they read a letter in Sacrament Meeting a couple of weeks ago. Greg has known longer but didn't tell me anything (as a good Bishop should). I have been (maybe facetiously) praying for a while that Greg would be called as a counselor, because all reports that I get are that stake presidency counselors spend less time than a bishop, and the weight is lighter.
He was on the interview list, along with all of the other bishops and high councilors and etc. He came home from his appointment and said, "well, we are off the hook!" Then he and my dad talked for a while about how the process usually works. There are a few hours of interviews, 5 minutes each, and then a new president will be called sometime between 1-2 p.m. Then he takes a few minutes to pick counselors (10 minutes to an hour) and then the counselors are called.
With Greg's thought that his day was done, I headed down to the Stake Library to try and finish up my music stuff. I wanted to have it organized to a point that I could easily hand it off, since I knew I would be automatically released by not being in the West Stake anymore.
My phone rang at 1:27 p.m. and Greg asked how fast I could be home. I knew immediately that this was it and he would be called. (He did, too.)
We were meeting with Elder Whiting and Elder Lund around 2. I was interviewed first, and the questions were interesting to me. Elder Whiting asked me how Greg was as a husband and as a father, and if he provided well for us. He asked if I had a temple recommend and if we used it as a couple. We talked about my life, and the girls, and what I like to do. Then I was excused and Greg was called back in. After a few more minutes, I was asked back in, and Greg was officially called as the stake president of the Lehi Utah Pheasant Pointe stake.
It was an emotional time. The Spirit was very strong in the room, almost a palpable presence. I knew unequivocally that the Lord wanted Greg to serve and had prepared him to accept this call.
Then came an interesting 45 minutes. Greg was given a list of names of brethren who would be in the new stake boundaries, and then Elder Whiting and Elder Lund left to go eat lunch. I was invited to stay with Greg while he picked his counselors. Elder Whiting said this is a unique experience for stake presidents' wives, to be a part of the process this way.
It was so interesting to watch the process and see Greg discover who the Lord wanted as the counselors. We prayed a lot, and looked over the lists, and listened to the Spirit. After about 40 minutes, Greg thought he had the answers, but was still a little unsettled. We prayed again, he made a change, and there was peace. The answer was there. One of the men is someone we had never met before, but it was clear he was the man for the job.
We met with Elder Whiting, Elder Lund, and President Yaden one more time, and then our part was done. We were instructed to get seats close to the front Sunday morning and we left.
On Sunday, Greg attended the youth fireside at 8 a.m. and the girls and I went to be there when it was over at 9. Greg's parents and Pops & Nana also came. As the youth were exiting we were able to get in, find Greg, and save an entire row for all of us and the Morrows. Then it was time to wait.
I was not sure exactly when the announcement would come, and I knew there was a lot of business to read first. A few minutes in, while Elder Lund was reading all of the boundary changes for the wards, Lynlee wanted to go potty. I didn't want to take her in case Greg's part was coming up, so Hailey graciously offered to take the girls out (Ellie of course wanted to go as well). Lynlee wasn't feeling very well (and if it had been any other day I probably would have taken her home) and so she just wanted mama. But Hailey soldiered through and walked out with the girls, while Lynlee was hollering. Elder Lund made a funny comment along the lines of, "yeah, some of us aren't too happy about the changes, are we." That got quite a chuckle!
After the meeting was over, I was touched by how many people came up to shake Greg's hand and offer their support. I have continued to be touched by the outpouring of love and support to both of us since the announcement. People are amazing!
It was nice to go to the Relief Society room and be able to meet the counselors and their wives. Then came time to be set apart, and that was good as well. Except that Lynlee was done with church and just wanted to talk. I was holding her in the back and trying to get her to whisper, and she very loudly counted to 15. Normally this is an excellent thing (the little smartie!), but I kind of missed Greg's blessing in my efforts to help her be quiet.
Greg's parents and Daniel took the girls home after the blessings and we stayed for some lunch and more training with the visiting authorities. The thing that struck me most at the training:
we need to be better than we are.
Elder Whiting said a few times things to the effect of: you are good men, but you need to be better; you are good women, but you need to be better; be better in your personal worship, be better in how you treat others, be kinder, be more loving.
Elder Lund shared a funny story, about a lawyer who was making a good living but wanted to quit to be a professor. One day he came home and was complaining to his wife about students and papers and etc. She stopped him and said, wait a minute--I'm happy to live on a teacher's salary and make do with less, but you better be the happiest law professor ever. If you are going to be miserable, I would rather be rich.
He shared the story to make the point that there will be hard things, but it is important to be the happiest stake president ever (or the happiest wife of a stake president ever).
|Gary Keck, Greg Spencer, Kenny Bunnell|
|Elder Lund, President Keck, President Spencer, President Bunnell, Elder Whiting|
What an amazing 24 hours, and what a difference a day makes! Greg and his counselors have a lot to do in the coming months to get this new stake staffed. Plus, Greg gets to be bishop and stake president for a while. He will have the unique opportunity to release himself as bishop.
I am writing this only a few days after the calling was given, and I am amazed at how many people have checked in with us or called/texted/emailed/dropped off things to show their support. What a blessing to be joined in a common purpose, to further the work of the Lord and to minister to each other.
I have been asked a lot how I am doing, and honestly I don't foresee my life changing that much. Greg's life will change, a lot, but really the changes in my life will come from the challenge from Elder Whiting to be better and do better.
Time to dust off those scriptures and be better in my personal worship habits!