MR says: This story reminds me of President Monson's story about matches, fire, and learning the importance of obedience the hard way.
A few days ago, my 11-year-old son and I explored the forest behind my mother's home in Albemarle County, Virginia. It's the same land I navigated as a young explorer years ago.
The deeper we disappeared into the dense woods, the more I sensed we weren't just walking into the trees. We were walking into the past.
When I was my son's age, I had a good friend who spent many summer days at my house. He had a single mom and, it seemed to me then and now, a complicated life. We made good co-pilots and enjoyed our adventures together.
One afternoon, we set out to conquer the edges of our property — and beyond. We packed all the essentials: Moon Pies, a thermos of Country Time lemonade, drawing paper and troopers with plastic parachutes secured to their blue backs with rubber bands. We also tossed in a package of matches — just in case.
An hour into our expedition, after we'd crossed our property lines into the acres of mysterious forest, we arrived at a small clearing that years later would become someone's front yard.