Scrolls should be important to all Latter-day Saints. Anciently, revelations from God to his prophets were recorded on scrolls; Joseph Smith translated the books of Abraham and Moses from Egyptian scrolls to include in the Pearl of Great Price, and most recently the Dead Sea scrolls have corroborated some tender gospel truths. Last Sunday, however, the Mormon Third Eye personally witnessed another impressive, inspirational ancient 15-year old scroll- I’m calling it the Joanie Scroll. It was the coming forth of the Joanie Scroll itself, not its content, that makes it so meaningful.
15-odd years ago, in a ward building far, far, away, young Joanie walked into her first LDS church building. She was an earnest teenage girl on a lonely search for truth, and was hoping to find it there. She was somewhat anxious and apprehensive, but forged ahead with the faith that she would find food for her soul.
Meanwhile, on that very same Sabbath day morning, an earnest Young Women’s leader was preparing her four little boys for church. In between scrubbing faces and finding shoes that matched, she quickly rounded up visual aids she had prepared for her lesson- seven small paper scrolls for seven young women in her class, all bearing the following scriptural admonition: “Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery.” (1 Timothy 4:14). Suddenly she was overwhelmed with the spiritual impression that she needed to make one more scroll. Rather than questioning or ignoring the prompting and herding her tribe out to the minivan, she acted on the impression, stole a moment of her life that really wasn't there, and made one more scroll.
Joanie just happened to attend her first Young Women’s class that morning, and was the recipient of the eighth scroll. One baptism, a temple marriage, and several kids later, Joanie still keeps the scroll she received her first Sunday in the back of her scriptures. She showed it to me this morning; I was impressed. She maintains it as a reminder of the ripple effect of choosing to slow down and listen and act on spiritual promptings.