Honest With Yourself?
By Alan on May 09 in Blog tagged about it, atonement, be honest, born, death, degrees of glory, devil, do something, Do's, Don't Think, Don'ts, easier wrong, from within, harder right, heaven, Jesus, lived before, moon. sun, obvious, paradise, physical body, physically, Plan of Salvation, punishment, resurrection, right thing matters, spirit, spirit body, spiritually, star, The Family, the way, Thomas S. Monson | No Comments on Honest With Yourself?
Honest with Yourself?
Should I eat this?
What’s wrong with our marriage?
Who says I’m not organized.
I want to be a business man.
My kids NEVER listen to me!
You don’t trust me?
You NEVER answer my prayers!
Who do you really want to become?
If we are honest with ourselves,
we already know the answer, from within!
It’s NOT the works of God that are frustrated,
but the works of man!
We all lived before this life as spirit children of God yet, we don’t remember for a wise purpose! We came here via earthly parents to get a physical body and to choose to be all that we can become! We are actually two beings! Our physical body of flesh and bones and a spirit body within. At death, we NEVER really die! The body may will end temporarily, but the spirit lives on. HONESTLY!
Death is an essential part of Heavenly Father’s plan of salvation (see 2 Nephi 9:6). In order to become like our Eternal parents, we must experience life and death and later become resurrected with a perfect, resurrected body. The reuniting of the spirit with the body in an immortal state, no longer subject to disease or death and we live forever.
Physical death is the separation of the spirit from the mortal body. The Fall of Adam brought physical death into the world (see Moses 6:48). Because of the Atonement and Resurrection of Jesus Christ, all mankind will be resurrected and redeemed from physical death.
God first created us spiritually. We then came into this world and were born of an earthly Mother and Father who gave us a physical body to house the spirit body within.
“The Lord created all things spiritually
before he created them physically.
“And I, the Lord God, formed man from the
dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils
the breath of life; and man became a living soul,
the first flesh upon the earth, the first man also;
nevertheless, all things were before created;
but spiritually were they created and
made according to my word.”
We are here because we made good
choices in our pre-existence before this life.
So, let’s “Get Real” and
make the MOST of this life!
If you are trying to drive somewhere in your car and need directions,
GPS is THE WAY!
In life, if you are seeking to know THE WAY
to get back to your Heavenly Home,
you must live your life in order to return to our
Heavenly Parents by following Jesus Christ.
HE IS THE WAY!
“And now, behold, my beloved brethren,
this is the way;
and there is none other way nor name given
under heaven whereby man can be saved in
the kingdom of God.
And now, behold, this is the doctrine of Christ,
and the only and true doctrine of the Father,
and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost,
which is one God, without end.”
2 Nephi 31:21
So take charge of your life and “choose ye this day
whom ye will serve”. Decide how you will live your life!
DOING THE RIGHT THING MATTERS!
No-one may know all the good things you do for others.
But, your Heavenly Father does!
Therefore, I would that ye should be steadfast and immovable,
always abounding in good works, that Christ,
the Lord God Omnipotent, may seal you his,
that you may be brought to heaven,
that ye may have everlasting salvation and eternal life,
through the wisdom, and power, and justice,
and mercy of him who created all things,
in heaven and in earth,
who is God above all. Amen.
“And this is the gospel, the glad tidings,
which the voice out of the heavens bore record unto us—
That he came into the world, even Jesus,
to be crucified for the world, and to bear
the sins of the world,
and to sanctify the world,
and to cleanse it
from all unrighteousness;
That through him all might be saved
whom the Father had put into his power
and made by him;
Who glorifies the Father,
and saves all the works of his hands,
except those sons of perdition who deny
the Son after the Father has revealed him.
Wherefore, he saves all except them—
they shall go away into everlasting punishment,
which is endless punishment, which is eternal punishment,
to reign with the devil and his angels in eternity,
where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched,
which is their torment—”
If we all live again and inherit the kingdom of heaven,
why shouldn’t I “make merry” and do whatever I wish?
“And I say unto you again
that he cannot save them in their sins;
for I cannot deny his word, and he hath said that
no unclean thing can inherit the kingdom of heaven;
therefore, how can ye be saved, except ye
inherit the kingdom of heaven?
Therefore, ye cannot be saved in your sins.”
When the physical body dies, the spirit body goes to Paradise or Spirit prison for the wicked. Paradise is that part of the spirit world in which the righteous spirits who have departed from this life await the resurrection of the body. It is a condition of happiness and peace.
So what happens to my parents and ancestors who have died and did not accept or even know about Jesus Christ? What will happen to them?
They all go to a waiting place called Paradise. The Elder missionaries are also there who will teach them about Jesus Christ and the gospel so they can accept it or not.
“I beheld that the faithful elders of this dispensation,
when they depart from mortal life,
continue their labors in the preaching of the gospel
of repentance and redemption, through the sacrifice
of the Only Begotten Son of God,
among those who are in darkness and under the bondage
of sin in the great world of the spirits of the dead.
The dead who repent will be redeemed, through obedience to the ordinances of the house of God,
And after they have paid the penalty of their transgressions,
and are washed clean, shall receive a reward
according to their works, for they are heirs of salvation.”
Through the Atonement of Jesus Christ,
all people will be resurrected.
After we are resurrected,
we will stand before the Lord to be judged
according to our desires and actions.
Each of us will accordingly receive an eternal
dwelling place in a specific kingdom of glory.
The Lord taught this principle when He said,
“In my Father’s house are many mansions”
There are three “mansions” or kingdoms of heaven.
The telestial is the lowest of the three degrees or kingdoms of glory in heaven. The scriptures compare the glory of the telestial kingdom to the glory of the stars.
The terresterial is the middle degree or kingdom of the three degrees of glory in heaven. In the scriptures, the glory of the terrestrial kingdom is compared to the glory of the moon.
The celestial is the highest of the three degrees or kingdoms of glory in heaven, where one is in the presence of Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. The glory of the celestial kingdom is compared to the glory of the sun in the scriptures.
What if I choose NOT to repent and NOT follow Jesus Christ?
Isn’t that my choice?
It always has been and always will be, but . . . !
“But behold, your days of probation are past;
ye have procrastinated the day of your salvation
until it is everlastingly too late,
and your destruction is made sure;
yea, for ye have sought all the days of your lives
for that which ye could not obtain;
and ye have sought for happiness in doing iniquity,
which thing is contrary to the nature of that
righteousness which is in our great and Eternal Head.
O ye people of the land, that ye would hear my words!
And I pray that the anger of the Lord be turned away from you,
and that ye would repent and be saved.”
Agency is the gift to choose for ourselves.
“Therefore let your light so shine before this people,
that they may see your good works
and glorify your Father who is in heaven.”
3 Nephi 12:16
Fight The Tendency!
By Alan on Apr 22 in Blog tagged Alan & Suzanne Osmond, better people, children of God, fighting, God's kingdom, heaven, higher mansion, order, strengthening, tendencies, The Family | No Comments on Fight The Tendency!
Fight The Tendency!
Suzanne and I are dedicated to the cause of “Strengthening The Family”, at TheFamily.com.
We invite you to comment, reason, participate, suggest, challenge, and adopt as well as “FIGHT THE TENDENCY” if it applies to you in order to become better people and members of your family and God’s family! We are all God’s children here on earth!
We will be publishing various TENDENCIES we all have in order to become a more perfect people. Isn’t that why we came to this earth? It is what will help us get to a higher mansion in God’s kingdom when we return home to Him!
“In my Father’s house are many mansions:
if it were not so, I would have told you.
I go to prepare a place for you.
Alan & Suzanne Osmond
“Strengthening The Family“
With Strings Attached
By Alan on Mar 23 in Blog tagged Alan R. Osmond, church, covenants, direction, Elijah, eternal life, eternities, Family History, fly higher, genealogy, God, gospel, heart of the children, heart of the fathers, heaven, holding it down, hope, House of the Lord, immortality, Jesus Christ, Key, kingdom of God, kite, many mansions, obedience, perfect, priesthood, salvation, strings, temple, The Family, The Plan, wasted, with strings attached, work and glory | Comments Off on With Strings Attached
(With Strings Attached!)
THE FAMILY, with Strings Attached, like a KITE,
Key Into The Eternities!
“This Is My Work and Glory”
“God has freely given His power to those who accept
and honor His priesthood, which leads to the promised
blessings of immortality and eternal life.”
Boyd K. Packer
“Let the string go, so that the kite can fly higher”, said the little boy. His father is his wisdom said to his son, “We may think that the strings of the kite is holding the kite down, but in actuality, it is what keeps the kite flying up in the air!” After some more pleading from his son, the father released the string, and the kite soon fell to the ground.
Sometimes when we are young, we may feel that the restrictions our parents have placed upon us and the commandments the gospel requires of us “ties us down” when in actuality, they are what keep us alive and soaring safely skyward. Obedience to those laws brings us peace, hope and direction.
The same is in the heavens, for all eternity.
As the Bible reads, “In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.” (John 14:2) To reach those heavens after this life, we need the atoning sacrifice of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” (1 Corinthians 15:22)
How could Heaven be Home, without The Family?
The family, is the basic unit of society and the kingdom of God on earth. The Church can be no healthier than its families. No government can long endure without strong families. Eternity cannot be, without families.
Salvation could not come to this world without the mediation of Jesus Christ. How shall God come to the rescue of the generations? He will send Elijah the prophet. The law revealed to Moses in Horeb never was revealed to the children of Israel as a nation. Elijah shall reveal the covenants to seal the hearts of the fathers to the children and the children to the fathers. The anointing and sealing is to be called, elected, and the election made sure.
Why should he send Elijah? Because he held the keys of the authority to administer in all the ordinances of the priesthood, and without the authority that is given, the ordinances could not be administered in righteousness.
Elijah the prophet returned to the earth with the priesthood keys that bind families together forever, and with ordinances made in the House of the Lord, or Temple which “…shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.” (3 Nephi 25:6)
That is why they came to the Prophet Joseph Smith, and the Lord said, “I will send you Elijah the prophet before … the great and dreadful day of the Lord.” (Mal. 4:5.)
That priesthood that Elijah held, and the prophets Peter, James, and John also, is the same priesthood that we hold today. But without the sealing power we could do nothing, for there would be no validity to that which we do. That’s the thing that counts. That is why Elijah came. That is why Moses came, for he conferred upon the head of Peter, James, and John in that dispensation these privileges and these powers, these keys, that they might go forth and perform this labor.
In the House of the Lord, families who who are found worthy, can enter and be sealed together as families for time and for all eternity by those holding the Holy Priesthood of God. which binds them together forever. That’s why we search out our relatives and do genealogy, so that they too, as families, can be bound with us together forever.
“If it were not so, the whole earth
would be utterly wasted at his coming.”
Doctrine and Covenants 2:3
I wrote a song for an album called, The Plan which sings:
“It could all end tomorrow where would I be
Does life go on or will it be the end of me
Seems a bit unfair to think that all I’ve learned and done
Belongs to no one
Why should I cherish living if there’s no so called plan
Why, I would have no future if it were left to man
I can’t believe that we just happened and don’t know what for
There must be more
Why should I trust in a love that I can’t have forever
Does it seem right to live a game of take away
Should I want for children if there isn’t anymore for them to live for
Maybe I’m a pessimist, then maybe I’m not
One thing that I like to know is what I got
I don’t want a miracle or see you in the air
But are you up there
Are you everywhere
Do you really care
Are you up there, Are you up there, Are you up there”
Well, there is A PLAN! God lives! and He said, “Behold, I give unto you power, that whatsoever ye shall seal on earth shall be sealed in heaven; and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven; and thus shall ye have power among this people.” (Doctrine and Covenants 132:46)
That is why we like to “have strings attached”, just like on our kites, so that we might fly higher together forever as families throughout all eternity! May we ‘as kites’ prepare for “A Safe Landing” in our Eternal Family Reunions when we finish our ‘flight’ in this life!
“God having provided some better thing for us,
that they without us should not be made perfect.”
“And thou saidst, I will surely do thee good, and make thy seed
as the sand of the sea, which cannot be numbered for multitude.”
A Tug Boat
By Alan on Feb 18 in Blog tagged Alan Osmond, book of life, children, choose, doctor, endure, evil one, Father, future, hearts, heaven, home, keys, last chapter, last days, light, One, out to sea, pay, posterity, returns again, right, secretly designed, signs of the times, sirens, The Family, The Plan, the way, truth, tug boat, wheat and tares, wickedness, willing | Comments Off on A Tug Boat
A Tug Boat
“And he who is faithful shall overcome all things,
and shall be lifted up at the last day.”
Doctrine and Covenants 75:16
Counting Our Blessings!
By Alan on Sep 15 in Blog tagged Alan & Suzanne Osmond, all things, blessings, changed, cheat, children, choices, debts for sin, die, do, forever, gone before us, guardians, happiness, heaven, His children, His hands, instrument, Jesus, joy, judged, lie, marriage, opposites, physically, recorded, scriptures, spirit, spiritually, steal, time, Today, truths, two choices, unborn, woman & man, works, write, yesterday | Comments Off on Counting Our Blessings!
Counting Our Blessings!
Alan & Suzanne Osmond – Sundance Tree Room
I always want to do and write what the Spirit would have me say;
That I might express the will of the Lord and be as an instrument in His hands.
The world keeps turning around but what it’s turning into needs to be changed.
We must return to the truths that the holy scriptures have always taught.
We were first born spiritually before physically into bodies of flesh and blood.
God’s the same yesterday, today and forever; we are His children with heavenly kin.
Remember, you always have two choices; there are opposites in all things.
Jesus knew we would make mistakes; He died to help pay our debts for sin.
To lie, cheat or steal never goes unnoticed but is recorded in heaven.
We came here to learn and will be judged by our choices and our works.
Those who have gone before us are our constant guardians from on high.
Guard the unborn who’ve been waiting as spirits for their chance to live.
Let’s quit looking beyond the mark for the latest things to bring us joy.
Stuff won’t bring us forever happiness; only what’s created between a woman and a man.
Spend time talking and playing together, put first your marriage and the children you love.
It’s important for they are the only things you take with you when you die.
For The Family
BRING ON TOMORROWS!
By Alan on Jul 09 in Blog tagged Alan Osmond, author, beginning, book of life, bring on tomorrows, decided, dreams come true, heaven, last chapter, pages, perfect ending, Reason, The Family, trust in God, write, wrong and right, you | Comments Off on BRING ON TOMORROWS!
BRING ON TOMORROWS!
It’s the Last Chapter in the Book of Life.
From the Beginning we knew wrong and right . . . would
Have to be decided, would have to be made clear.
Maybe that’t the reason we’re both standing here.
In the Last Chapter, I will make my life
Fill all the pages, the Author said to write.
To make a perfect ending, to make all dreams come true.
That’s why He gave me heaven. That’s why He gave me you!
Marriage – An Institution For Bringing Up Children
By Alan on Jul 11 in Blog tagged A Proclamation To The World, abortion, Adam and Eve, adoption, attitude, bear children, before created, bonds of matrimony, born, children, commandment, complete fidelity, confused, equality, eternal families, evil called good, family council, first created spiritually, foretaste of godhood, gender, God, God's purpose, good called evil, heaven, home, husband and wife, image of God, institution for rearing children, intelligences, Jesus Christ, life, listen, Lucifer, male and female, man and woman, marriage, multiply and replenish the earth, my glory, my work, obey, organized, physical body, physically, planned in advance, powers of procreation, pray, predetermined, principles, reading the scriptures, righteous fathers, Satan, sin, spirit body, The Family, the unborn, vows, war against the family, work | Comments Off on Marriage – An Institution For Bringing Up Children
Marriage – An Institution For Bringing Up Children
The first commandment that God gave to Adam and Eve
pertained to their potential for parenthood as husband and wife.
We declare that God’s commandment for His children
to multiply and replenish the earth remains in force.”
This ONLY happens between
a MAN and a WOMAN
who should be legally and lawfully married.
All Things Were First Created Spiritually – INCLUDING YOU AND ME!
We each were predetermined a man or a woman, before we came here.
God created all things spiritually before they were naturally upon the face of the earth. He created man, the first flesh, upon the earth—Woman is a help meet for man. Moses 3:2
To be created “spiritually” appears to have at least two meanings: to be planned in advance, and to be formed as a living being with individual identity and a spirit body.
“And every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew. For I, the Lord God, created all things, of which I have spoken, spiritually, before they were naturally upon the face of the earth. For I, the Lord God, had not caused it to rain upon the face of the earth. And I, the Lord God, had created all the children of men; and not yet a man to till the ground; for in heaven created I them; and there was not yet flesh upon the earth, neither in the water, neither in the air;
But I, the Lord God, spake, and there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground.
And I, the Lord God, formed man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul, the first flesh upon the earth, the first man also; nevertheless, all things were before created; but spiritually were they created and made according to my word.” Moses 3:5–7;
“Now the Lord had shown unto me, Abraham, the intelligences that were organized before the world was; and among all these there were many of the noble and great ones; And God saw these souls that they were good, and he stood in the midst of them, and he said: These I will make my rulers; for he stood among those that were spirits, and he saw that they were good; and he said unto me: Abraham, thou art one of them; thou wast chosen before thou wast born.” Abraham 3:22–23
For by the power of my Spirit created I them; yea, all things both spiritual and temporal—First spiritual, secondly temporal, which is the beginning of my work; and again, first temporal, and secondly spiritual, which is the last of my work— D&C 29:31–32 See also Moses 3:19; 6:51).
Children Are Becoming Less Valued
There is a “shift in attitude” about the purpose of marriage. More and more young people view marriage ‘as a couples relationship, designed to fulfill the emotional needs of adults, rather than an institution for bringing up children.’
Sadly, the family continues to be assaulted relentlessly throughout the world. You only need to read a newspaper, internet, or turn on the television to see how openly and viciously the war against the family is being waged. Gender is being confused, and gender roles are being repudiated. Same-gender marriage is being promoted in direct opposition to one of God’s primary purposes for His children to experience mortality.
Another disturbing challenge to the family, is that children are becoming less valued. In many parts of the world, people are having fewer children. Abortion is probably the clearest sign that couples do not want children. An estimated one-quarter of all pregnancies worldwide end by induced abortion.
A Devastating Practice
Abortion is a two-edged sword. Not only does it encourage selfishness and the promiscuous use of the powers of procreation, this widespread practice often makes adoption more difficult for married couples who are unable to bear children of their own.
While recognizing certain “rare cases in which abortion may be justified,” they emphasized that “these are not automatic reasons for abortion” and “counseled people everywhere to turn from the devastating practice of abortion for personal or social convenience.
Bringing children into the world is certainly not convenient. Most often it involves physical pain followed by great sacrifice and selflessness. But the blessings of keeping God’s command to rear children are some of the sweetest blessings He offers. Indeed, in many ways parenthood gives us a foretaste of godhood.
The family is not just the basic unit of society; it is the basic unit of eternity. We lived as Heavenly Father’s spirit sons and daughters before this mortal existence. In that grand premortal family council, our Heavenly Father’s plan for the eternal happiness and peace of His children was presented. We understood that we would come to this earth to live as families, and through the sealing authority of the Melchizedek Priesthood we could live throughout the rest of eternity as families.
It is alarming to see how intensely and openly the family is under attack in contemporary society. The proclamation is very clear:
We declare that God’s commandment for His children to
multiply and replenish the earth remains in force. We further declare
that God has commanded that the sacred powers of procreation
are to be employed only between man and woman,
lawfully wedded as husband and wife. . . .
. . . Children are entitled to birth within the bonds of matrimony,
and to be reared by a father and a mother who honor marital vows
with complete fidelity. Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. [“The Family,” 102]
As important as the commandment to multiply and replenish the earth is, the Lord has made clear that we must demonstrate our obedience only within the marriage relationship. There are numerous reasons for this restriction, but two of the most significant are to discourage sexual promiscuity and to provide a stable and healthy family environment for children.
In most societies, bearing children out of wedlock has traditionally been considered an embarrassment and a disgrace. But in today’s world, where good is called evil and evil good (see Isa. 5:20), the stigma of nonmarital childbearing has largely vanished. Not only is this practice a sin in the eyes of heaven, but researchers have found out-of-wedlock birth to be associated with several risks for the baby. For instance, compared with children born to married couples, children born out of wedlock are more likely to die of sudden infant death syndrome, suffer death due to injury, or eventually become juvenile offenders.
Children born to unwed parents and placed for adoption fare significantly better than those who are not adopted. They experience fewer learning problems, achieve higher vocational levels, and are less likely to receive government assistance as adults. It is obvious that bringing children into the world and raising them the Lord’s way results in spiritual and temporal blessings.
Replenishing the Earth
“And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness:
and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air,
and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him;
male and female created he them.
After the Lord commanded Adam and Eve to “be fruitful, and multiply,” He commanded them to “replenish the earth, and subdue it” (Gen. 1:28). The Hebrew word translated as replenish means “to fill.” For many years we have heard warnings about overpopulation and the devastating effects it can cause. While some areas of the world are experiencing a negative impact from extreme population density, the world as a whole is actually moving in the opposite direction. Indeed, research indicates that by the year 2040 world population will peak and begin to decline.
Probably a more relevant issue than population density is how we use the resources God has given us to support the population now and in the future. “For the earth is full,” He said, “and there is enough and to spare. … If any man shall take of the abundance which I have made, and impart not his portion, according to the law of my gospel, unto the poor and the needy, he shall, with the wicked, lift up his eyes in hell, being in torment” (D&C 104:17–18).
“The enemy of human happiness as well as the cause of
poverty and starvation is not the birth of children.
It is the failure of people to do with the earth
what God could teach them to do
if only they would ask and then obey.”
Henry B. Eyring
We must stand firm at this time when the adversary is using differing lifestyles in an attempt to replace the marriage of one man to one woman. It would be well for all people of the world to read the full text of the proclamation.
The attacks on the family also undermine the value of life—particularly the life of the unborn. Life is being trivialized and subjected to the vacillating whims of convenience and political correctness. Indeed, some estimate that induced abortions end one-fourth of all pregnancies.
Far too many people view marriage as a “couples relationship,” designed to fulfill the emotional needs of adults rather than an institution for rearing children. Children are considered a choice rather than a blessing. About 1 million children per year experience parental divorce and its aftermath, and about one-third of all children in America are born out of wedlock. Almost every trend indicates that we are on a slippery slope downward from God’s plan for His children. The family, once universally hailed as the cornerstone of society, is losing its essential role.
When you stop and think about it, from a diabolically tactical point of view, fighting the family makes sense. When Satan wants to disrupt the work of the Lord, he works to drive a wedge of disharmony between a father and a mother. He entices children to be disobedient to their parents. He makes family home evening and family prayer inconvenient. He suggests family scripture study is impractical and not doable. That’s all it takes, because Satan knows that the surest and most effective way to disrupt the Lord’s work is to diminish the effectiveness of the family and the sanctity of the home.
Look at what he accomplishes when he does that. Couples unhappy in their marriages tend not to give appropriate gospel instruction in the home, both through formal family home evening lessons and through exemplary living. They are less likely to be committed to gospel principles in their own lives. And the Internet, when not properly used, is a vicious influence in the home. So we know, without question, Lucifer is the enemy of the family!
Our youth need steadfast, courageous mothers—
and they need true, faithful and righteous fathers.
Full and Equal Partnerships
Men and women joined together in marriage need to work together as a full partnership. However, a full and equal partnership between men and women does not imply the roles played by the two sexes are the same in God’s grand design for His children. As clearly stated in the proclamation on the family, men and women, though spiritually equal, are entrusted with different but equally significant roles. These roles complement each other.
Family stewardships thus must be understood in terms of obligations and responsibilities—of love, service, and interdependence. Men who attempt to dominate their wives, who seek to exercise unrighteous dominion without regard to spousal counsel and sensitivities, simply don’t understand that such actions are contrary to God’s will.
“Some men who are evidently unable to gain respect by the goodness of their lives, use as justification for their actions the statement that Eve was told that Adam should rule over her. How much sadness, how much tragedy, how much heartbreak has been caused through centuries of time by weak men who have used that as a scriptural warrant for atrocious behavior! They do not recognize that the same account indicates that Eve was given as a helpmeet to Adam. The facts are that they stood side by side in the garden. They were expelled from the garden together, and they worked together, side by side. Gordon B. Hinckley, “Our Solemn Responsibilities,” Ensign, November 1991, 51]
It is within the family that divine potential is best realized for both men and women. The blessings and responsibilities of parenthood permit mothers and fathers to act, albeit imperfectly, in a new physical and spiritual relationship that draws them within God’s purposes for their lives.
The proclamation states: “Fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families” (“The Family,” 102). They teach their families the gospel and lead in kindness. They pray for and with family members, collectively and individually. They set an example of respect and love for their eternal companion and the mother of their children. In all things they follow the example of the Savior and strive to be worthy of His name and His blessing. Fathers should seek constantly for guidance from the Holy Ghost so they will know what to do, what to say, and also know what not to do and what not to say. They serve the family and the Church in the spirit of love and enthusiasm, by example preparing family members to serve others.
Part of the father’s role in presiding in the home involves learning about each individual’s needs and aspirations. Fathers are expected by God and His prophets not only to provide for their families but also to protect them. Dangers of all sorts abound in the world in which we live. Physical protection against natural or man-made hazards is important.
Moral dangers are also all around us, confronting our children from their early years. Fathers play a vital role in protecting children against such snares. It is sad to note that children in single-parent families are more likely to drop out of high school, to get pregnant as teenagers, to abuse drugs, to be physically or sexually abused as children, and to be in trouble with the law than are those from families with both biological parents present.
We know that a father’s role does not end with presiding, providing, and protecting family members. On a day-to-day basis, fathers can and should help with the essential nurturing and bonding associated with feeding, playing, storytelling, loving, and all the rest of the activities that make up family life. And grandfathers continue their shepherding role as long as they live.
The proclamation teaches that “mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children” (“The Family,” 102). Nurturing refers to parenting behaviors such as warmth, support, bonding, attachment, recognizing each child’s unique needs and abilities, and attending to children’s needs. Nurturing in and of itself is more important in the development of a child than is any particular method or technique of child rearing. It hardly needs saying that nurturing is best carried out in a stable, safe family context. Motherhood is near to divinity. It is the highest, holiest service to be assumed by mankind. It places her who honors its holy calling and service next to the angels.
A mother’s nurturing love arouses in children, from their earliest days on earth, an awakening of the memories of love and goodness they experienced in their premortal existence. Because our mothers love us, we learn, or, more accurately, remember, that God also loves us. One cannot forget mother and remember God. One cannot remember mother and forget God. Why? Because these two sacred persons, God and mother, partners in creation, in love, in sacrifice, in service, are as one.
Today there is significant pressure in our materialistic world to have and to spend more money. Unfortunately this draws married mothers to work outside the home to provide a second family income. As husbands, wives, and children recognize the difference between basic necessities and material wants—as manifest in the choice of house, household furnishings, car, entertainment, travel, etc.—they lessen family financial burdens and contribute to helping mothers be at home. Decisions about working outside the home are difficult ones and need to be made prayerfully, keeping ever in mind the counsel of the living prophets on this complex issue. It is well-nigh impossible to be a full-time homemaker and a full-time employee. I know how some of you struggle with decisions concerning this matter. I repeat, do the very best you can. You know your circumstances, and I know that you are deeply concerned for the welfare of your children. Gordon B. Hinckley
President Hinckley’s counsel raises significant questions about time pressures on mothers. Taking care of small, dependent, and demanding children is never-ending and often nerve-wracking. Mothers must not fall into the trap of believing that “quality” time can replace “quantity” time. Quality is a direct function of quantity—and mothers, to nurture their children properly, must provide both. To do so requires constant vigilance and a constant juggling of competing demands. It is hard work, no doubt about it.
Sometimes you mothers may feel like the fathers do not appreciate you and the important contribution you make to your families and to the work of the Lord. Never doubt, mothers, that you are the heart of the home. Your attitude—whether happy, sad, positive, or negative—will likely be reflected in the feelings of your husband and your children.
Women today are being encouraged by some to have it all—generally, all simultaneously: money, travel, marriage, motherhood, and separate careers in the world. . . .
Doing things sequentially—filling roles one at a time at different times—is not always possible, as we know, but it gives a woman the opportunity to do each thing well in its time and to fill a variety of roles in her life. A woman . . . may fit more than one career into the various seasons of life. She need not try to sing all the verses of her song at the same time. James E. Faust
And grandmothers continue their nurturing role as long as they live.
Principles for Marriage and Families
Let me quote again from the proclamation: “Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities” (“The Family,” 102). Parents should work to create loving, eternal connections with their children. Reproof or correction will, to be sure, sometimes be required. But it must be done sensitively, persuasively, with “an increase of love” thereafter, “lest [the child] esteem [the parent] to be his enemy” (D&C 121:43).
It can be equally destructive when parents are too permissive and overindulge their children, allowing them to do as they please. Parents need to set limits in accordance with the importance of the matter involved and the child’s disposition and maturity. Don’t make mountains out of molehills, and don’t produce what to a child seems an interminably long list of rules. Help children understand the reasons for rules, and always follow through with appropriate discipline when rules are broken. It is important as well to praise appropriate behavior. It will challenge all of your creativity and patience to maintain this balance, but the rewards will be great. Children who understand their boundaries through the consistent application of important rules are more likely to do well at school, to be more self-controlled, and to be more willing to abide by the laws of the land.
Parents need to be consistent and loving, taking into account each child’s unique nature and disposition; setting appropriate limits to acceptable behavior, including modest dress, clean language, and dignified appearance; and then allowing each child his or her needed autonomy. Children are better prepared for the inevitable day when they leave home if parents “teach them correct principles and they [learn to] govern themselves”.
Helping children learn how to make decisions requires that parents give them a measure of autonomy, dependent on the age and maturity of the child and the situation at hand. Parents need to give children choices and should be prepared to appropriately adjust some rules, thus preparing children for real-world situations. To do this, parents must listen—really listen—to what their children are saying. They must know what is important to each child. I learned this lesson years ago from one of our daughters. She was only four or five at the time. She came into the room all excited. I was reading the newspaper, and she had something very much on her mind that was important to her. I was responding, “Yes. Uh-huh. Uh-huh.” All of a sudden the newspaper came crashing down under her two little hands. She grabbed my face between her hands so that she could look me right in the eye. This was a little four- or five-year-old teaching her father a great lesson: “Daddy, you’re not listening to me.” And she was right.
Parents, let’s listen and know what is important in the lives of our children. If we fail to listen, if we don’t try to understand their point of view, how can we expect them to come to us for guidance in making important decisions?
One of the best tools we have at our disposal as parents is the family council. I cannot emphasize enough its importance in helping to understand and address challenges in the family. When members of one family began to feel unusual contention invading their home, they called a family council to discuss the situation. The father and then the mother explained to their children what they had observed and asked how each felt about it. The mother and father learned that since their two oldest children had left home—one to be married and one to go to college—an unfair burden of responsibility had been unwittingly shifted to the two oldest children remaining at home, and they were becoming resentful. By counseling together and listening to what their children were feeling, a more equitable distribution of responsibility was made among the children, resolving much of the frustration and tension in the home.
I recognize that there are as many kinds of family councils as there are different kinds of families. Family councils can consist of one parent and one child, of two parents and several children, of just two parents, or of just siblings, etc. Regardless of the size or makeup of the family council, what really matters are loving motivation, an atmosphere that encourages free and open discussion, and a willingness to listen to the honest input of all council members—as well as to the whisperings of the Holy Spirit.
Family councils can be a blessing in the lives of families and individual family members in this life and through the eternities. Through them we can draw closer to our families and closer to God. They provide a unique opportunity for fathers and mothers to extend their loving influence in important ways.
As our families counsel together with the understanding that we are the family of God, we come to know that He loves us. We are precious to Him. He cares. He wants to help us. He wants to give us the support and help that we need in times of crisis. Much of that support and strength comes through counseling with one another.
We need to remember that our families are imperfect because they are made up of imperfect people. Still, there are things we can do to improve our families and each individual who lives within them as we move forward together toward fulfilling the Creator’s eternal plan for us. In all that we do, we must always remember that the voice of the Spirit is an essential component—and it is a still, small voice. God’s most significant messages come quietly, softly, sweetly. You cannot teach nor cradle nor weld together a celestial, eternal family if there is contention in the home.
If any of you are struggling with contention in your homes, you can change this. Talk to your family. Ask for their help. Tell them you don’t want a contentious spirit in the home anymore and discuss what each family member can do to prevent it.
Let the spirit in the home reflect the attitude of the still, small voice. It is this spirit that will imbue us with sufficient spiritual strength to feel confident and patient in our family relationships.
If we would avoid adopting the evils of the world,
we must pursue a course which will daily feed our minds
with and call them back to the things of the Spirit.
I know of no better way to do this than by daily reading the scriptures.
We have spoken together today about fundamental, guiding principles for our homes and families—about full and equal partnerships, roles of fathers and mothers, principles for marriage and families, and family councils. Remember, also, there is great power in prayer. I strongly encourage personal and family prayer—which are important in building strong families—but I want to emphasize something else as well. I’m wondering if many of you parents—you couples—have lost that essential moment of kneeling together at the end of the day, just the two of you, holding hands and saying your prayers. If that has slipped away from your daily routine, may I suggest you put it back—beginning tonight!
This is a great time to thank the Lord for your companion and for your children and for one more day together. I do not believe Lucifer can penetrate a marriage, or cause discord and misunderstanding within a marriage and the family, when parents take time to pray together. Don’t try to work through the daily challenges of life without kneeling together and calling down the blessings of heaven into your marriage and your family, letting Heavenly Father help you get from where you are to where you would like to be.
This article is primarily focused on the sacred roles of fathers and mothers. Please do not think I am unmindful or uncaring about the many married persons who have been denied the blessings of parenthood through no fault of their own. I am also well aware of the heart-wrenching sorrow of so many who walk the paths of life alone without a faithful companion at their side. We have been promised that no meaningful blessing related to marriage and family will be denied you in the eternities if you will be strong, be loving, and stay faithful. Pray always. He will hear and answer your prayers “in his own time, and in his own way, and according to his own will” (D&C 88:68). And never underestimate the influence for good you can be in the life of a sister, a niece, a brother, or a nephew.
In conclusion, please get a copy of “The Family: A Proclamation to the World.” Read it and strive to align your marriage and your family to its inspired, revealed direction from the Lord. Then, be the very best and act the very best you can. God will give you strength beyond your own as you strive daily to fulfill the most sacred mortal responsibility He gives to His children. Listen to the voice of the Spirit and the counsel of the living prophets. Be of good cheer. God did not place you on earth to fail, and your efforts as parents will not be counted as failure unless you give up.
May our Heavenly Father bless each and every one of you. May the peace of the Lord abide in your own hearts and overflow into your homes and families. I leave you my testimony that God lives. We are His children. Jesus Christ is our Lord and Savior. They love us and want us to be faithful and happy. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
“For behold, this is my work and my glory—
to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.
For The Family
Many of these words and thoughts expressed come from
Latter-day Prophets, Apostles and educators on the family.
© Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserve
Family And Faith – Reinforce Norms Of Right And Wrong
By Alan on Apr 24 in Blog tagged Alan Osmond, alone, born, bridges, church, community, connection, descendants, earth, faith, Family, Family History, forebears, future, genealogy, generations, heaven, kin, love, past, responsibility, right, self, Strengthen, Suzanne Osmond, who we are, working together, wrong | Comments Off on Family And Faith – Reinforce Norms Of Right And Wrong
Family And Faith – Reinforce Norms
Of Right And Wrong
The pull of the present is strong, but so are the tugs to the past and the future. Family and faith — our two great bridges beyond the here and now — stretch far past 100 years, in both directions, and expand the purpose and meaning of our lives.
None of us is born a mere individual. We come to this world with a network of pre-existing ties, bonds and obligations. These family relationships shape our worldviews, instil our values and form our identities. And families of all kinds thrive when they join a community of believers. The benefits go both ways — churches strengthen families, and families strengthen churches.
Working together, family and faith reinforce norms of right and wrong, teach us how to love our neighbors and provide a support base where children and parents navigate life’s challenges. In other words, family and faith keep us from being alone. They enlarge our circles of responsibility beyond the self and help us turn strangers into friends. Families then pass this spiritual and social capital across generations.
The sacred relationships between kin and church, church and kin, tie us to the past, present and future. Such continuity helps us situate ourselves in this big universe. We find out who we are.
“The marriage of two lovers joins them to one another,
to forebears, to descendants,
to the community,
to Heaven and earth.
It is the fundamental connection without
which nothing holds.”
The fortunes of family and faith will continue to ebb and flow, as they have in various periods throughout history, but experience shows they will do so joining hands. As the one rises or falls, so will the other. The course of history is not predetermined; it is chosen. And those choices have long trajectories — much too long, indeed, to fit into a 100 years.
“Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works:
shew me thy faith without thy works,
and I will shew thee my faith by my works.”
Let YOUR Light So Shine
By Alan on Apr 13 in Blog tagged brighter, buzz, comprehendeth, comprehendeth not, darkness, enlighteneth, eyes, familiar, Father, fullness of truth, glorify, glory, glow, good works, heaven, Jesus Christ, laughter, light, light mindedness, light speeches, Lord, love, lustful desires, more light, more truth, not, perfect day, power, power of God, Pride, quickeneth, receiveth, scripture, shine, shineth, spirit, stars, sun, The Family, true, truth, understandings, wicked doings, world | Comments Off on Let YOUR Light So Shine
IN A DARKENDED WORLD…
Let YOUR Light So SHINE!
Do you know people who just seem to have a glow about them?
When you read scripture or express a letter or phone call with love,
you feel as if the room seems brighter.
…That “buzz” you feel when someone
tells you something that seems so familiar…
and you just know it is true?
Well, truth is in reality, light!
Most religions have some truth, or light.
But, the ‘fullness of truth’ will be recognized by
the one that shines ‘brighter than the others’.
This is because they have
MORE TRUTH… or MORE LIGHT and
have the “precious parts” that were
taken out of the Bible.
So be IN the world but NOT OF the world.
By Alan on Apr 04 in Blog tagged angels, death, escorts, Father, Glenn Beck, God, God Lives, greeters, heaven, life, life after, The Family | Comments Off on God Lives!
Glenn Beck’s father died. Yet he lives!
“My father slipped in and out of consciousness for a while,” Beck recalled. “And then he sat up in bed, looked up at the ceiling corner as if someone was there, and he said, ‘Yes? OK. I understand. I’m ready. Take me with you.’ And he closed his eyes.”
Beck fought back tears as he continued: “[My father] told me once, ‘Son, I’ll keep an open mind but I will tell you this: I don’t think there’s going to be angels that are going to come down and greet me.’ I told him at the time I begged to differ.”
Beck said he believes his father didn’t just see “greeters;” he saw “escorts.”
(Excuse the Commercial!)
“God lives,” Beck said. “And it is all true. Thanks, dad, for teaching me how to work, for not teaching me what to think, but how to think, and when you were dead tired, thank you for driving your boy to the radio station to pursue his dream.”
“Let your so shine before men, that they may see your good , and your Father which is in heaven.” Matthew 5:16
“And if their works are evil they shall be unto them for evil. Therefore, all things shall be to their proper order, every thing to its natural frame— raised to , to incorruption—raised to happiness to the kingdom of God, or to endless misery to inherit the kingdom of the devil, the one on one hand, the other on the other—” Alma 41:4