To Argentina With Love!


I always root for Argentina and probably will till the day I die!  Why?

It was over forty-five years ago that my father came down the stairs at our house and handed me a letter.  This was no ordinary letter; it was “the letter.” It was postmarked, “Salt Lake City,” and it was from church headquarters informing me of where they wanted me to serve for the next two years.  I couldn’t wait, so I immediately opened it where I found out that I was being called to ‘serve’ the people of Argentina. Specifically, Buenos Aires and south.

And so it was that I spent the next two years in Argentina where I first learned to place others in front of myself. It was there in Argentina, that I learned the true meaning of service. It was there that I saw poverty, and lived among the poor who I learned to not only care for, but love.  It was there that I found out what was required of someone who wanted to become a true servant of our Savior, Jesus Christ. It was there, among that wonderful people, that I became acquainted in a most personal way with Deity. It was also there, that the people treated me with such love that I have never forgotten the feeling.  Tears streamed down my cheeks when the plane lifted off after those two years as I watched my beloved Argentina slowly fade from sight.

Marvin J. Ashton once said:

“A sure way to set our guidelines for that which we choose to serve and learn to love is to follow the admonition of Joshua: “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Josh. 24:15.)… We serve that which we love. If we sacrifice and give our love for that which our Father in Heaven asks of us, it will help us set our footsteps upon the path of eternal life. Again I conclude, what we serve we learn to love, and what we love takes our time, and what takes our time is what we love.” (“We Serve That Which We Love”, April GC, 1981)

And so it is that every time I see anything in the news on Argentina, I stop and read it.  I somehow felt some pride in the fact that the new Pope hails from there. I cheer for them every World Cup. I cheer because that country and their people remind me of good things.  They remind me of a day when I was at my best in serving others. I cheer for Argentina because I love their people and because they love me. I love Argentina because the saying really is true; we really do learn to love those we serve.

And so be it the people of Argentina, a stranger, or the neighbor next door, the embers of God, which we all carry, are flamed when we serve others. It is selfless service that ignites the flame of eternal Godly love, which in turn warms the soul and soothes the human heart.

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