December 5, 2016
Years ago, I read a story to my children about five firemen who rescued a man from a burning building. At the end, the author referred back to “six brave souls.” Hearing this, the children said in confusion, “but there were only five!”
After discussing what the man did to be rescued — leaping from a burning window ledge, trusting the firemen, and being brought to safety — we concluded that the sixth brave soul was the one who was rescued.
I believe that Pathway students are like the sixth brave soul. Whether they are brand-new students, in the middle of their Pathway year, or have completed Pathway and are pursuing other goals — they have taken a leap toward open arms.
One such sister from Orem, Utah, felt the desire to finish her university degree. But as a mother of seven, the desire seemed more like a dream than a reality.
“For years, I had desired to go back to school, but I was afraid of the traditional classroom. I wrestled with going back and just always came up with some excuse or another.
After speaking with a good friend and finding out her husband was doing Pathway, I decided to find out more and enroll. Now, I am excited to get my degree! I believe my service in the Church has given me the confidence to go back to school. I am beyond happy and am so blessed with a supportive family and Pathway group!”
It takes faith and humility to be the sixth brave soul, and it grows as students rely on those around them while humility comes from realizing that it cannot be done alone.
Another brave soul in Orem found this to be true. Two months after starting a university degree, she was diagnosed with a chronic illness.
“I lost my sense of self-worth and felt unimaginable pain — I thought my disease had robbed me of my life, my dreams, and my passions. I felt I’d never return to school, have a job, or get married. I believed that my disease diminished my potential.
When I found Pathway, it was my first step back to fulfilling my goals and dreams — it allowed me to learn and grow. When I lost my ability to walk because I was in so much pain, I had to humble myself and let someone help me walk. The support I felt in Pathway helped me believe there was hope, and through that strength, I was reminded of my Savior’s strength — and that has made all the difference. My future is indeed as bright as my faith.”
I testify that the Lord is the one who rescues us. His work and glory is to help us move forward. He loves us, and I have witnessed Him help countless Pathway students with their schooling — whether to understand an equation or write an English paper — all through His Atonement. His help is readily available for each of us. No matter how far the leap or how hot the fire, it takes courage to be the sixth brave soul.
Sister Nannette Wiggins and her husband, Elder Marvin Wiggins, have served as Pathway missionaries in Orem, Utah, since July 2014.