QUESTION and STORY 5th Day Christmas Past

Posted by on Dec 16, 2012 in Christmas Past 2012 | 0 comments

Question 5th Day of Christmas Past: What did pioneer Lydia Knight learn about paying tithing?

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When first moving into their little home in Utah, Lydia [Knight] had put all the cows but one upon the range. The following very remarkable instance is an example of what God will do for those who gladly keep his laws:

The one cow left at home stood out in the open air, staked a little way from the house. One morning in December Lydia awoke to find herself surrounded by a mountain of snow.

“Oh, the cow!” said Lydia, as she sprang from her bed. “Boys, something must be done.”

Hurriedly dressing, she went to the door, and there stood the faithful beast, cold and shivering, and there was not a spear of feed to give her.

“Boys, take this blanket,” said Lydia, taking a heavy, warm, homemade blanket from her bed, “and go down to Brother Drake, who lives in the Second Ward. I knew him in the Ponca camp, and something whispers to me that he will have some feed for the cow. Tell him I would like to get enough of some kind of feed to last until this storm is over, and we can turn the poor thing out. This blanket is a good, almost new one, and should be worth part of a load.”

The boys hastened down to Brother Drake’s, and in a little while Lydia was pleased and surprised to see them returning in a wagon, which was well loaded with feed.

You may be sure Lydia thanked and blessed her kind friend; the boys went to work and made a pen of poles that they had hauled for wood, and they soon had “Bossie” in a warm place.

In the course of a day or two, Lydia was able to churn, getting just about a pound of butter. When it was all worked over, she said to the children who had watched the operation with much interest, “Now, children, what shall we do? Here is just about a pound of butter; we may not be able to get the tenth from the cow, and shall we pay this, the first pound for tithing, or will we eat this and trust to luck to get the tenth?”

“Pay this for tithing,” answered all the children with one breath. “We can do without, mother, till you churn again.”

So the butter was taken to the tithing office. That cow was a “stripper” (had no calf for two years), and furthermore, the cow never got a spear of feed but what Brother Drake had brought, it having lasted until the grass grew in the spring.

As Lydia has since told me, she has made it a firm rule to pay the first instead of the tenth of everything for tithing, commencing always with New Year’s Day. “And,” added she in relating this circumstance, “I have never been without butter in the house from that day to this.”

Taken from – Susan Young Gates, Lydia Knight’s History, 93-94.

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