We are "setting our house in order."
Doctrine & Covenants 93:43.
This last weekend we traveled to Eugene, Oregon. Beautiful, simply beautiful. If a place is beautiful in the winter you know its gorgeous in the summer and fall! Well, while visiting we were invited to my cousin Marie's home for dinner and then attended church with her family the following day. Gav was having his usually difficult time during church because napping was difficult and it seemed maybe it'd be easier to just leave early, but I decided we should stay. Boy howdy am I glad. I can't say that I had this crazy revelation or amazing moment where this bright light appeared or even went on in my head, but it was more of being where you're supposed to be on Sunday, worshipping God. The third meeting was a combined meeting because of Ward Conference and the topic was "Bringing up your Children in Light and Truth". The speakers did a great job of sharing their personal experiences raising children and helping us to understand counsel given recently by an apostle of the Lord, Elder Bednar. His talk was given during our church wide conference this past October. He referenced the scripture in D&C 93 and talked about being "More Diligent and Concerned at Home." I have to admit, I have much need for repentance and this week we have been trying to apply this talk and those things shared in the lesson to our home life. What stuck out to me the most at this time in my life is how much the "seemingly small things" matter so much. I realized that my neglect in these "small things" was keeping me from experiencing greater peace, happiness, and joy in life that I desperately need. They are essential if I want to draw on the much needed power of God to make certain decisions in life that face us and to be the wife and mother I have been praying to be. Elder Bednar suggests that, "as we are more faithful in LEARNING, LIVING, and LOVING the restored gospel of Jesus Christ" we can become more diligent and concerned at home. Questions have come into my mind like:
Do I "love" the gospel? What am I doing on a daily basis to learn, live and love the gospel of Jesus Christ? What things am I not doing? What things am I doing that are contrary to being diligent and concerned at home? Is Christ the center of our home? Is He the center of my life? Do I love him the most? If not, what do I love more? What is the center of our home? Is it materialism? Media? the distractions of the world? What do I spend my time doing if I'm not learning about and living the gospel of Jesus Christ? What is the center of each of my days?
This reminds me...I sat down at the piano earlier today and as I was playing my mind wandered to thoughts of the much needed setting in order we are undergoing. I experienced the following epiphany: I was leading my life much like someone who carelessly throws their laundry into the washer and dryer, setting the dials to whatever they chose, maybe mixing all the clothes in for convenience sake, completely disregarding the care instructions found on the clothing. These instructions came from the manufacturer, the creator of that item. We too have a Creator. I have a Creator! He lovingly sent me here with my own care instructions. He has given them to me in the form of scriptures, prophets of God, priesthood leaders, and personal revelation through prayer and meditation. In neglecting their counsel and not putting it as the priority in my life, I risk losing everything that I hold dear to myself. I can destroy the happiness and joy in life that I desperately desire.
Some things don't seem to make that much of a difference. You rationalize that even though the instructions say to hang dry, if I just dry the article on the "delicate cycle" it will be fine. And in fact, it may come out appearing unharmed and perfectly fine. But, what if over time and with each careless act it weakens the fibers and slowly breaks down the integrity of that garment? We too can go along thinking it doesn't make a difference if we have family home evening, or nightly prayer together? Because it sure seems that the kids don't pay attention. I realize now it is in the obedience to that counsel, in the consistency of doing these small things that it will lead to the strengthening and building up of our home and family, not the subtle breaking down of such a beautiful gift, OUR FAMILY!