Sunday, March 6, 2016


Throughout my life both Kathleen and my mother often found occasion to remind me or make an appropriate comment about the behavior of others concerning what I will be referring to as ‘Caring for one’s Capital.’ For Kathleen these comments were very fitting, because by her natural DNA makeup she is very frugal. My mother was not all that frugal, but she just had a lot of little sayings for almost any situation. When I was young and we didn't have much in the way of stuff I thought my mother was very frugal, but once my father started making a very good wage along with a generous end of year bonus, her needs and wants seemed to flip flop or magnify which ever seems right.

Anyway the ditties which I have heard throughout my life include, but are not limited to the following:

A penny saved is a penny earned

You can’t have your cake and eat it too

Even when you buy something on sale you have still spent money (I suspect this applied to wants and not to needs)

Waste not, want not

You can only spend your earnings once

Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without

I suspect you have already become weary of the point I am trying to make. Therefore, let me put a little twist on the subject of ‘Caring for one’s Capital.’

I believe besides the spending and saving of money we also have limits on other capital resources:

Love and Friendship

Dedication and Diligence

Spirituality and Service

I hope that before you finish reading this Thought you will have added some of your own areas of life which may have caused you stress and frustration because the capital you have available in some part of your daily routine has been exhausted or depleted.

I am grateful for my mother’s early encouragements to be more conscientious about saving than spending. I am more than grateful for the aid Kathleen has been in transforming me (there are times when I am sure she still considers me a work in progress) into a person who has enough squirrel in him to be concerned about putting away some nuts for the winters, times of scarcity or lean times which will surely come to all during our lives.

Kathleen and I are able to spend what will be our last phase of mortality in comfort with sufficient for our needs because I was able to learn and apply to some degree the counsel she and my mother gave. I suspect most, if not all, have heard the phrases referred to earlier many times during your lives, I will spend the remainder of this Thought thinking about some of the other areas of our lives where ‘Caring for one’s Capital’ is of vital importance.

During the second year of jumping the hurdles on the way to achieving my goal of gaining a Doctorate Degree, I had to complete a PROJECT. Since I was getting my doctorate in the area of Educational Administration the PROJECT had to be in the area of leadership training. I had a very natural collection of leaders with whom I was involved in the various Stakes and Wards in Northern Nevada and Northeastern California. I sought and was granted permission to present this leadership training PROJECT throughout that area by our Regional Representative, Elder Leonard Robinson.

I felt I had done a very good job in the creating and organizing of my PROJECT, but after the first or maybe the second leadership training meeting I held, I learned a very powerful lesson about the amount of time, talents and resources which we individually are able to spend, depending on the available Capital we have in reserve in the areas of our lives which do not involve coins.

I made a quick revision with a few additions to my leadership training PROJECT, and ended up with what to me was a surprising conclusion to the training sessions. After either the first or second training meeting which was being held for the Ward and Stake Leaders of the Quincy, California Stake, one of the Ward Relief Society Presidents came up to me and with tears flowing from her eyes, sobbed ‘I don’t think I can do any more.’ I must add that my presentation in its first edition was heavy on motivating leaders to do more and better in their callings. I suspect we have all attended such meeting.

Anyway, it was after a comforting hug and departing for a long drive home through the beautiful Sierra Nevada Mountains that the thought came to me that we all have only so much Caring Capital available to us. Like resources, we all have varying amounts of Capital at our disposal in our accounts of time and talents. Likewise, if we are not given the opportunity to restore used up resources in these other areas of our lives, the stress and exhaustion which attends being bankrupt in these areas will cause us to attempt to escape or shut down our productive activities.

One of the things I discovered during the year I was presenting my Leadership PROJECT was that as a leader, if we do not realize and recognize when a person is reaching the limits of the Capital they might have in their Love, Dedication or Spirituality Capital Treasuries, we may soon find a person under our stewardships who seeks relief through escaping or shutting down.

To be sure there are women who can juggle all 16 balls required to keep the ship at home afloat, still manage to do their visiting teaching the first week of the month, and be President of the Primary. BUT NOT EVERY WOMEN HAS THAT MUCH CAPITAL IN THEIR CARING TREASURIES. If we are not vigilant in our Caring for those under our stewardships, we may find ourselves with another problem rather than someone to help us with solutions.

To be sure there are men who can spend 60 hours a week building a successful career, do their home teaching the first week of the month and be the Scout Master. BUT NOT EVERY MAN HAS THAT MUCH CAPITAL IN THEIR CARING TREASURIES. If we are not vigilant in our Caring for those under our stewardships, we may find ourselves with another problem rather than someone to help us with solutions.

And see that these things are done in order; for it is not requisite that a man should run faster than he has strength. And again, it is expedient that he should be diligent, that thereby he might with the prize; therefore all things must be done in order. (Book of Mormon – Mosiah 4:27)

I suspect that my greatest contribution that year, for both myself and those who attended my PROJECT, was learning that I needed to continually take inventory of the Capital I have available, as well as the Capital which all under my Stewardship might have available, and make sure not to spend or demand resources of time and talent when the cupboard has become bare.

Howbeit that he made the greater star; as, also, if there be two spirits, and one shall be more intelligent than the other, yet these two spirits, notwithstanding one is more intelligent than the other, have no beginning; they existed before, they shall have no end, they shall exist after, for they are gnolaum, or eternal. (Pearl of Great Price – Abraham 3:18)

I didn't learn it during that year, but I have come to understand or at least I think I am coming to understand that the limits of ‘Caring for one’s Capital,’ although it certainly involves their faith and belief quotients, also has many other factors which will determine when their resources have been exhausted.

Besides the obvious point that Abraham was being taught, that none of us are alike, and, therefore, we should never judge another based on the resources in our own Capital treasuries, I hope we also catch the importance of there being no end to our existence, which to my understanding opens the possibility that there will be no end to seeking and gaining an increase in our Capital holdings of Love and Friendship, Dedication and Diligence and Spirituality and Service.

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