America the Beautiful

Thursday evening I was asked to go to a regional Boy Scout meeting. Because of my calling in the bishopric, I am involved in some of the scouting in our ward. Actually, the counselor who was supposed to go had a work conflict, so I went in his place. I didn’t have a bad attitude, but scouting isn’t my favorite thing and I was by no means looking forward to this meeting. As expected, the meeting was pretty dry as they went over the details of how to do the Friends of Scouting fundraising. Most of it could have been handled in an email. Elder Monk spoke at the conclusion and he did a good job. I was listening and trying to take some notes. The meeting closed and I was anxious to get home. It was now 8 p.m. and I hadn’t had a chance to eat after leaving work. We sang a closing hymn, “America The Beautiful.” In this room were several men in scout uniforms, the true die-hard Scouters, bless their soul, some men dressed in shirt and ties, and then many like me, in business casual who had probably come directly from work like I did. As we sang this hymn, it sounded like we were in a men’s choir. I sing pretty well, but everyone sounded amazing. I could hear the various parts. I am amazed how music can touch my soul in ways the spoken word sometimes can’t. I had the thought as we were singing, that we were all there trying to do the same thing, to help young men to grow into leaders as many of us had been mentored by men in our youth. Elder Monk had mentioned something about this as well. But it seemed clear now. We were paying it forward.  Maybe that is what the scouting program and the youth program of the Church is all about. Paying it forward. Teaching the youth how to lead. I was proud to be an American, grateful to live in a land where we could gather together like this, grateful for my church organization and the good it does as well as the good people who give up their personal time for various service and callings, and grateful for music that stirs my soul.

I believe in miracles

Xavier had a good appointment with his ophthalmologist this week and it was good news; No need to wear glasses for now! We go back in 5 months for a follow up. He may still need glasses later. Everything else is going really well. He’s under weight but eating pretty well. He starts preschool on Wednesday where he’ll get some special attention on speech, but he is speaking fairly well so we aren’t too worried. They will also work on his fine and gross motor skills, but those are minor delays. Considering everything, he is doing extremely well. We’re feeling very blessed to be where we are now. Every now and then I remember vividly standing in the ER at Primary Children’s Hospital when Xavier stopped breathing in my arms and the chaos that ensued as we were pushed out of the little room and doctors and nurses were frantically scrambling to save his life. It still brings me to tears thinking about how close we came to losing him. We’ve been so very blessed and I believe in miracles. He’s a special little guy who has already touched many people. He’s got an amazing life ahead. God has big plans for him.

Originally posted to Facebook August 22, 2015

Pray before spiritual nourishment

In my life, I’ve done a lot of reading—books, newspapers, professional magazines, and scriptures. For a long time, I read them all the same. But when I was about 50, I learned a lesson that has shaped my life.

My mother taught me not to eat without asking a blessing on my food. One day I said to myself, “I pray before physical nourishment. Shouldn’t I pray before taking the spiritual nourishment I seek when I read the scriptures?” Since then, I have learned to never read the scriptures without praying first.

I ask the Lord to illuminate my mind and my heart. I ask Him to teach me what He wants me to know to guide me. I believe there is great wisdom in the principle of reading the scriptures and seeking revelation.”  Dallin H. Oaks


Originally shared on Facebook a year ago. 

Fill ‘er up and check the oil

I worked at the Texaco on 7200 So. and Highland Drive in Salt Lake City

I’ve always loved cars. When I was young I had an impressive Matchbox & Hot Wheels car collection. I liked the Mustangs, Camaros, Cougars, Impalas, Chevelles, Chargers, Challengers, and Bel Airs.  I really took good care of them. My family would laugh because at a pretty young age I could tell what the make and model were of other cars that we’d see.  

When I was 16 I bought my first car, a 1975 Chevy Nova for $500. My car was not super flashy, but I slowly started fixing it up. I took auto mechanics all three years of high school and even got a job at a Texaco service station pumping gas and working on cars.

I learned that the automobile is an amazing machine, but you have to take care of it. Particularly important is taking care of what is under the hood. As the internal combustion engine runs, it pulls in outside air which is needed to burn the fuel and keep the pistons firing. We would have cars come into the express lube on a regular basis. I was always surprised at how dirty some of the air filters were when they’d come in. I would hold it up to the sun and if I could see light coming through, I knew that there was air flowing. If you couldn’t see light, the car was not getting enough air through the filter and it wouldn’t run properly. Next we’d change the oil. This too would sometimes be very dark from contaminants & pollutants.  If the oil and oil filter were not changed, the protection to the engine parts would be diminished and it would eventually damage the engine and would ultimately stop running altogether. Maintenance is a big deal for cars.  Do proper and frequent maintenance, and your car will last a very long time. We would check the fuel filter when it was visible.  Sometimes it would be discolored or plugged up from putting bad gas in. It’s important to put good fuel into your car. Lastly we’d make sure all the other important fluids were full such as washer, transmission, brake, power steering, and antifreeze. We would then put a sticker in the window to remind them to come back in 3 months or 3,000 miles. I noticed that most often, those who ended up stranded on the side of the road had become casual at checking under the hood and had neglected regular maintenance.

I’ve thought a lot about the comparison of maintaining your car and maintaining faith. We live in a world with a lot of spiritual pollution.  There are things that we see and hear every day in person or on social media that can start to cloud our spiritual vision and drain or contaminate our spiritual fluids. Satan is working hard to plug up the air filter and keep us from feeling the influence of the Spirit. Satan is trying to tear down families and confuse us with other values, opinions, and outright criticism of our faith. As we pick up pollutants it can cause the protection of the Holy Ghost to leave us. Lastly what we put into our gas tanks needs to be clean and of a high quality. We need to be careful what we put into our minds whether this be movies, TV, books, computer games, podcasts, magazines, blogs, or anything we see or read on the internet or social media. Satan delights when he can put things into our mind that will cause the Spirit to leave us and which will cause our faith to fade.

Faith can only be developed and nurtured by obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ. We need to be obedient. We must follow Christ. Faith requires us to follow the Lord’s chosen prophet, who today is Thomas S. Monson. It is necessary to sustain our local leaders. We can check under the hood to do our “faith maintenance” with daily prayer, repentance, reading the Book of Mormon, We fill our cup and spiritual fluids with weekly sacrament meeting, frequent temple attendance, reading the Ensign & conference talks, listening to others bear their testimony, and bearing our own testimony.

I hope you have accepted President Kent’s invitation to read the Book of Mormon in 100 days. I know it will bless your life. It will bless you two-fold; One because reading the Book of Mormon will increase your faith and will bring the Spirit into your life, and two because you are being obedient and that will bring blessings upon you and your family. We have the opportunity to watch General Conference soon. Do not neglect this extremely important scheduled maintenance of your faith.

I bear you my testimony that the Atonement of Jesus Christ can purify us of any pollutants no matter how long we’ve neglected maintenance. We need it more often than every 3,000 miles or 3 months. We need to maintain our faith daily. We live in the last days. We cannot let go of the iron rod and be casual in the maintenance of our faith.  

Love, Brother Bringhurst

This was originally published April, 2017 as the Highland 14th ward Bishopric message which I wrote.

Similar to my 1975 Chevy Nova

Sales, Missions and Grit

Jason’s thoughts on sales, missions, and grit…..

Sales is an interesting thing. I arrived late last night in Boston, MA. I spent a few hours ironing my shirt, getting last minute details prepared, going through my presentation, double checking my samples, and setting 4 alarms on my phone for 6:15 a.m. so I wouldn’t accidentally shut them off and sleep through my meeting.

After a restless night, I woke up, showered, dressed in a nice suit and went to the hotel restaurant for breakfast. I tried to pick some healthy things from the buffet (skipping the yummy bacon) and watching several other business people quietly eat breakfast by themselves. I then ran up to my room, grabbed my bag and suitcase full of samples and went into a conference room. I set up my samples, and before I knew it, it was showtime. I put on a smile, shook their hand, handed out my business card and a copy of my presentation. I introduced our company and went through every reason why our products were just what they were looking for, how they would enhance their current store selection, the benefits, features, prices, profit, etc. all along while trying to sense if there was interest in anything I’d shown.

I feel that I can read people well, but sometimes they are pretty stone faced and you just don’t know. I wrapped it up. They pointed to some samples they’d like sent to their office and said they’ll discuss and make a decision. I packed everything up into a box to be sent to them.

As I left the conference room, there was a long line of other nicely dressed sales people with their suitcases and boxes full of samples, hopes, and dreams. I smiled and nodded to a few who made eye contact. Most of them were trying to see what I had been pitching to compare to what they had to offer.

I went up the elevator and came back to my hotel room with most of the product I’d brought with me, and now have a couple hours before heading to the airport to go back home. I’ll arrive home sometime around 1 a.m. and I will repack my suitcase for another trip tomorrow. Rinse and repeat.

Tomorrow I’m off to Canada. Every now and then I’ll have a little win. More rare is a big win. When I do have a win, it’s very exciting. We have a lot of competition, and most often it’s not a win. Sometimes I have to think of the good that happened besides actual ROI or sales from a trade show or meeting, such as something I learned, or a good discussion that happened with a current customer, business acquaintance, or vendor. Occasionally I will get some extra time during my trip to see some sites, but not usually.

I’ve thought about how similar sales can be to my LDS mission and how maybe my mission prepared me for a career in sales. I knocked on doors all day long for 2 years in France. Most often it was met with rejection. Every now and then, we would get to teach someone about the message we had to share and it was fantastic. Even more rare was when they would embrace it, see how it would make their life better, and they would join our church by being baptized. That was really amazing and brought a lot of joy as we saw the gospel of Jesus Christ change someone’s life. Somehow the little wins and the occasional big success makes it all worth it. In both instances, sales and being a missionary, I am passionate and believe in what I have to share.

I’ve wondered what it is that that makes someone good at sales or being a missionary. I really enjoyed being a missionary. I could knock doors all day long. I enjoyed meeting people and finding about them and their life. I am not pushy and I’m always put off by pushy sales people. I am not flashy, and I distrust flashy sales people. I try to be sincere and straightforward.

I think one of the key ingredients to success is grit. Grit is defined as “courage and resolve, strength of character.” Synonyms include: mettle, backbone, spirit, strength of will, moral fiber, steel, nerve, fortitude, toughness, hardiness, resolution, determination, tenacity, perseverance, endurance; spunk.”

I don’t think I’m the best sales person out there, but I think I do have a little grit. So to all the sales people out there going to and from meetings, trying to make things happen, hats off. (unless you are a competitor, then hopefully you don’t have grit, and you should probably go home). 🙂

To all the missionaries and future missionaries, keep it up. Developing grit will help you in life. Real life is not easy and doesn’t have success at every corner. But with grit you can enjoy every day by looking for the good that happened and not getting discouraged. Gordon B. Hinckley said, ““The fact is most putts don’t drop. Most beef is tough. Most children grow up to be just people. Most successful marriages require a high degree of mutual toleration. Most jobs are more often dull than otherwise. Life is like an old-time rail journey—delays, sidetracks, smoke, dust, cinders and jolts, interspersed only occasionally by beautiful vistas and thrilling bursts of speed. The trick is to thank the Lord for letting you have the ride”

Originally Written 9/21/15 and posted to LinkedIn and Facebook

The beginning blog post


I had lunch with my good friend, Shawn Rapier, today who has started a successful LDS themed podcast called Latter-day Lives.  I was telling him how I often have faith-promoting Facebook posts, but they quickly disappear after a couple days, and nobody will ever see them again, whereas his podcast recorded last week, might be discovered a couple years from now. It doesn’t disappear like the Facebook post. It got me thinking, “Maybe I need a blog for those types of posts so they don’t just disappear into the land of forgotten Facebook posts.”  I can’t even go back and find my own post when I want to. So there you have it. I’ll re-post to this blog previous posts that I have shared on Facebook, as well as new original content. This will be my new sounding board.  Welcome! I am Jason Bringhurst, and I will be your blog host.

Here more about this on my podcast!—Rocky-Mountain-Sunshine-elud0c
Rocky Mountain Sunshine Podcast

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