The Parable of the Scout Uniform
Grow Into the Uniform
I attended an Eagle Scout court of honor not too long ago. One of the young men, barely turned 12, was carrying and posting the flag was wearing his Boy Scout uniform. The shirt was about 10 sizes too big, obviously purchased with the intent to “grow into it.” Those uniforms are not inexpensive, making it perfectly understandable why his parents would want to make this a one-time investment.
I looked at him, practically swimming in the oversized shirt. Since he just turned twelve, the shirt is mostly undecorated, with the exception of the troop number sewn onto the sleeve. There are as of yet no awards or other badges to sew onto his uniform. And I wondered if in five or six years when he is getting his own Eagle Scout, will the shirt fit him yet?
All the Merit Badges
What uniforms or responsibility have we been given to bring with us to this earth that we don’t quite fit into? I thought about how each of us come to earth with our own oversized uniforms, so to speak. We are given a giant shirt to wear. We get our troop number – our nuclear family – that identifies us. Then the rest of the awards and badges, well, those are up to us to earn.
“We are sons and daughters of an immortal, loving, and all-powerful Father in Heaven. We are created as much from the dust of eternity as we are from the dust of the earth. Every one of us has potential we can scarcely imagine.
“Create of your life a masterpiece.” (Joseph B. Wirthlin, “The Abundant Life,” April 2006.)
Create of Your Life a Masterpiece
A masterpiece! What will your life’s “uniform” look like when this brief time in mortality is done? Will you decorate it with every merit badge you can? Do not let it be plain and unadorned; but celebrate your life and your unique, God-given talents and abilities to generously adorn your uniform.
Just in case you’re stumped about what masterpiece to create, or pursuits to seek, refer to Doctrine and Covenants 58:26-28. You get to choose what masterpiece to create, what colors to use, and what to paint.