Book of Mormon Notes– How deep can you dig?

2009, June 10

“Solutions to LDS/ Mormon Missionary Work Problems: Part 2” by grego

“Solutions to LDS/ Mormon Missionary Work Problems: Part 2”
by grego

Part 1

I would like to present another look at the problems, the situations, and some proposed solutions (some which are known and even officially published but rarely used).

Here’s a conversation:
A: Help me! I’m bleeding!!
Doctor: Get him a blood transfusion, immediately! (Later, in your hospital bed…) You’re all hooked up, lots of blood coming in, you’re going to make it.
A: Um, my wounds still hurt, and there’s… some blood on my blankets.
D: No worry, I’ll get housekeeping and the orderly in here to help out.
A: But aren’t you a doctor? Can’t you like, sew me up?
D: Yeah, but I like to use blood transfusions better. Habit, I guess. Besides, it costs more and we have money to spend, and it makes us all feel like we’re doing more to save someone’s life. Not every day someone needs a blood transfusion, you know!
A: Um, doc, thanks for saving my life, no doubt about it, but there’s a small pool on the floor, and it seems to be increasing in size.
D: Well, you’ll just have to help clean it up, then! Don’t worry, work is good for you, it makes you appreciate your life having been saved.
A: But if it goes on like this, that’s a lot of wasted blood, time, etc. And I’ll probably have to spend the rest of my life here in the hospital, depending on you for my blood and life.
D: Well, well. Your blood just doesn’t want to stay in your body, you know? Like Jesus said, “If your eye is evil, pluck it out”—your blood is following the words of Jesus, I guess, just fulfilling prophecy.
A: Could you like, try sewing my wound up?
D: I’d love to, but that’s not really my job. That’s for a surgeon.
A: Can you have the surgeon do it?
D: We’re not really great at working together.
A: But you’re on the same team in the same hospital!
D: Yeah, pity, ain’t it? Some like to sew, some like to transfuse—but we have the same goal of saving your life, ya know?
A: (Under breath, watching blood flow out…) Why don’t I believe that?


Another conversation:
A: Hi, welcome. Here’s some water.
B: Thanks, wow, this is a big glass of water. (Takes a sip.) Whoops, looks like the water’s leaking from a hole in the side of the cup.
A: No problem! We’ll just tell our maids to mop it up.
B: But it’s all over the floor, it’ll get messy and someone might slip.
A: Don’t worry, if the maids were just a little better and faster, there wouldn’t be any problems.
B: Where are they now?
A: Oh, they have a few other jobs first. Want some more water?
B: Sure, but how about pouring me a half-glass.
A: No need! We have plenty of water, we need to drink it all, here’s a full glass again.
B: But it’s just leaking on the floor again…
A: Right. That’s what the maids are for.
B: Any chance of just plugging the holes?
A: Naw. We’re just worried about getting the water all drunk.
B: What about my clothes? My new tie?
A: Part of the job, I guess! Sacrifice draws us closer to God!


Let’s say there’s a race.
Objective: Move as many balls from box X to box Y within two minutes, by putting the balls from box X in a wheelbarrow, pushing it along a narrow bumpy road on a hill, emptying the balls into box Y on the other end. A point is given for each ball in box Y. There are three penalty points for every ball that is put in the wheelbarrow but doesn’t end up in box B, even the ones that fall out and roll down the hill (however far away they may end up).
Each team has three people: one to put the balls from box X into the wheelbarrow, one to push the wheelbarrow from box X to box Y, one to empty the balls into box Y.

What’s your game plan?
(“My answer” further down)


Shepherd A: Let’s get the sheep into this fold.
Shepherd B: Rah, rah, rah!
A: Drive them all in!
B: Wait, we just drove a bunch in, how come the number of sheep in the fold is the same?
A: Oh, there’s a big hole in the wall, and the sheep run out the hole.
B: Should we fix the hole?
A: Nah, if the sheep want to go there’s nothing we can do about it.
B: But that hole is really big, it’s tempting to go through it, even if you felt like staying. Maybe we should plug it?
A: Well, if we just keep driving the sheep in, enough will eventually stay to fill the fold right up.
B: What if we get the sheep that want to stay, and fix the hole so it will fill up much faster, and the sheep will be safer?
A: Well, that’s the danger of life, my friend. Some sheep just won’t stay in the fold.
Besides, I don’t know how to fix the hole well, and even then, it would take work. I think I might even sweat. Further, if we took the time to fix the hole, well, no sheep would be coming in!! They might get eaten by a wolf or something!
B: (Watching a nice plump sheep run out the hole…) Oh, ok.


Have you ever played catch? If someone throws well, it’s easy and even fun to play. But if someone never gets a good grip on the ball and then throws it, it goes all over the place. If they throw ball after ball like this, especially at a fast rate, how long before you get tired of playing and quit?


(My answer to the game plan:
Put as many balls into the wheelbarrow as can be safely pushed across the hill without having any balls lost. Go quickly, but don’t rush, and be careful. Wait patiently at box X while the wheelbarrow is being loaded, and wait patiently at box Y while the wheelbarrow is being emptied.)


Making Cake
Let’s say that your bakery has a daily limit of 20 wonderfully-done cakes. So, how many will you cook? 21? No–just 20.
If 100 people usually call in to order, what do you do?
A. Shout “yes, yes, yes!” and tell everyone: “Ok, no problem.”
B. Get more trained workers and equipment, find the bottlenecks, etc.
C. Say: “Thanks for calling, we appreciate it, but sorry–we cannot do it this time. We already have too many orders. Would tomorrow or another time still suitable?”

If you choose A, you’ll be extremely tired and running all over the place. You’ll also have 80 dissatisfied customers. Whoops–you’ll actually have even more, because those 20 wonderful cakes won’t be so wonderful, either!

Unless you know who these customers are, apologize profusely, and offer them a free cake, they will probably never buy from you again. (However, as long as you’re not ready to make good on your offer, don’t offer.) They’ll also likely tell their family and friends. Or, even more likely, they won’t have to, because their family and friends will have eaten your cake, and learned for themselves…

If you choose C, you’ll have 80 disappointed customers that day who might wanted to have ordered but couldn’t get a cake from you anyway, but they will still be able to order later without having had a negative experience of having bought something horrible from you the first time. (Also, it might be that only those who are really willing and make the effort will be joining, which means member quality might go up.) Those 80 people will also have realized, hey, they must make really good cakes! I had better order a few days ahead of time next time to make sure I get in. Your reputation goes up, business does well, word of mouth spreads… There will also be a very good chance that 20 customers who bought will be very satisfied and be willing to buy from you again, and willingly refer you to others.

B, of course, would be the best, if you could. So, we stay at C until you could increase production by the amount of + P; then, you could cook “20 + P” cakes every day.


The Olive Tree (Jacob 5)
This allegory can be likened to many things, one of which is the following:
Branches and roots must be balanced and both nurtured to have the ability to produce good fruit.

Tree=ward; tree branches=new members; tree roots=old members.

If there are too many new branches, they either draw all the strength out of the roots and the tree dies, or they (and the tree) produce evil fruit (v.37, 48).

If there aren’t enough branches, the tree will not produce fruit, the roots don’t serve their purpose, and the tree dies anyway.

In verse 18, the addition of new members actually strengthens the old members; the tree is in balance; both are nourished; the tree produces good fruit.


The Leaning Tower of Pisa
If a structure is built on an unsure foundation, the higher and bigger it gets, the more chance it will fall, and how much of the work will be wasted!


Playing Stacking Blocks
How do you win? Start out with a good, strong, wide base. If you stack too fast, it will fall. Wait until it’s balanced well and stopped swinging around, then stack another block on top. Keep going. Steadily stack as fast as you can.


Do you know of anyone who has had eight babies in three years (twins each time, 9 months apart!)? Too fast, you say? Too taxing on the mother’s body, you say? Too much work for the mother, you say? Too much work for the father, you say? Too little attention for the children, you say? I agree!


Ok… President Monson spoke about damming the pond wall before taking water from it, if you want to empty it. While he was talking about helping prospective elders who are already members instead of looking for new ones, I suggest concentrating on one step before that—never letting new members even get stuck at “prospective elders”!


So why do they get stuck? On to Part 3.

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