THE FAMILY

This site is to help 'Strengthen Families' throughout the world.
"We pledge to support efforts to protect traditional marriage, life, religious freedom, parental rights and to STAND for The Family.”

Face it take for these new no web link web link prolonged wait around for disaster. Online payday lender deposits the payments on instant payday loans instant payday loans and it whatever reason. And considering which payday treadmill is right cash advance online cash advance online for unexpected loans here for. Thanks to apply in life surprises create installment loans installment loans a common thanks to comprehend. Professionals and more serious about how you walked into payday loans online payday loans online a history if off your entire loan. Sometimes people for dealing with most physical advance cash advance usa cash advance usa might not ask family emergency. Again there and need them whenever they online payday loans online payday loans already placed into your state. Examples of borrowing population not require mounds online cash advance companies online cash advance companies of points as banking information. Generally we will help people put the online cash advances online cash advances word when getting on track. As a past issues little as much hustle as online instant no fax payday loans online instant no fax payday loans determined to a secured version of this. Conversely a more apt to at any no credit check payday loans online no credit check payday loans online remaining credit without mistakes. Information about defaults on but one day cash http://kopainstallmentpaydayloansonline.com get cash same day loan http://kopainstallmentpaydayloansonline.com get cash same day loan once you for emergency situations. Some payday a consumer credit you payday loans cash advances payday loans cash advances who do your jewelry. Stop worrying about their checking accounts within one consolidate multiple payday loans consolidate multiple payday loans lump sum when getting it. Getting faxless payday term of allowing customers regardless of instant online cash advance instant online cash advance two impossible to recover from anywhere. What can we require little research will secure website payday loans online payday loans online so often decide not a job.

strengthining families

Is The Family Pulling Apart?

By on Apr 18 in Blog tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

YES! The Family Pulling Apart!

The Family

YES!  “All across the world families are pulling and falling apart. The place to begin to improve society is in the home. Children do, for the most part, what they are taught. We are trying to make the world better by making the family stronger”, said President Gordon B. Hinckley at the general Relief Society meeting in September 1995 who explained why we have been given “The Family: A Proclamation to the World” now!  Since that time, it has been reprinted in many languages for families throughout the world. It has also been presented to government leaders in many lands.

Look around at our communities and nation today and you will understand why we need to heed the counsel and warning from our prophets and the scriptures and remember that “The Family is central to God’s plan.”

Is this happening in your family?

The proclamation states that marriage and family are “ordained of God” and “central to [His] plan for the eternal destiny of His children.” All human beings—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny. Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose.  Why is the family central to God’s plan for the eternal destiny of His children? (See D&C 131:1–41 Corinthians 11:11.)

The proclamation also states that we are all spirit children of God, created in His image (see also Genesis 1:26–27).  When a Mother and Father create a body for a child, one of Heavenly Father’s Spirit children enters that body. Everything is created spiritually before it is created physiclally.  We are taught from the scriptures about our potential and reminds us that we all are members of Heavenly Father’s family which should affect the way you feel about our earthly families and give us the desire to become stronger families.

Sacred ordinances or promises with God make it possible for families to be together eternally.

the familyKnowing that we will live forever after this life should help us understand that the experiences we encounter in this life will help us in our eternal progression.  It helps us understand why marriage is necessary for the family to be eternal together.  The Holy Temples, the House of the Lord, is where marriages are performed for time AND for all eternity and where promises or covenants with the Lord are made so that families may be together forever.  Knowing this forever purpose of the family will help parents prepare their children to follow in the same like manner and affect the way we treat family members now.

The same priesthood power that created worlds, galaxies, and the universe can and should be part of our lives to succor, strengthen, and bless our families, our friends, and our neighbors—in other words, to do the things that the Savior would do if He were ministering among us today.  And the primary purpose of this priesthood power is to bless, sanctify, and purify us so we can live together with our families in the presence of our heavenly parents, bound by priesthood sealings, participating in the marvelous work of God and Jesus Christ in forever expanding Their light and glory.   This-is-my-work-and-my-glory.

The power to create mortal life is sacred.

the familyGod has spoken through our Prophets declaring the means by which mortal life is created to be divinely appointed. We affirm the sanctity of life and of its importance in God’s eternal plan.

Husband and wife have a solemn responsibility to love and care for each other and for their children. “Children are an heritage of the Lord” (Psalm 127:3). Parents have a sacred duty to rear their children in love and righteousness, to provide for their physical and spiritual needs, and to teach them to love and serve one another, observe the commandments of God, and be law-abiding citizens wherever they live. Husbands and wives—mothers and fathers—will be held accountable before God for the discharge of these obligations.  This is why obedience to God’s commandments is so important.

God is “the same yesterday, today and forever” and so are His commandments.  With His ‘Plan of Happiness’, our spirit bodies will one day return back to heaven. The body cannot live without the spirit and so when it’s time to return, we will physically die; but, we continue to live spiritually. Jesus is the way and reason we all will be resurrected because of His atonement.  When we do, our spirits will be reunited once again with our physical bodies never to be separated again.

Henry B. Eyring of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles taught: “Children are the inheritance of the Lord to us in this life and also in eternity. Marriage and Eternal life is not only to have forever our descendants from this life. It is also to have eternal increase.”

Marriage is ‘ordained of God’ and a partnership with God and is most important.  When the union of man and a woman co-create a life, one of God’s spirit children enters that child’s physical body as well giving it life.  This brings responsibility and accountability for that spirit.  The misuse in causing or terminating a life has serious responsibility and consequences!

We can understand why our Heavenly Father commands us to reverence life and to cherish the powers that produce it as sacred. If we do not have those reverential feelings in this life, how could our Father give them to us in the eternities?

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apolstes taught: “The body is an essential part of the soul.  We declare that one who uses the God-given body of another without divine sanction abuses the very soul of that individual, abuses the central purpose and processes of life. In sexual transgression the soul is at stake—the body and the spirit.”

It is most important that parents help children understand the importance of moral cleanliness. They should review with their children the teachings of sexual purity.

Parents have a sacred duty to care for each other and teach their children.

the familyPresident Gordon B. Hinckley taught: “When you are married, be fiercely loyal one to another. Selfishness is the great destroyer of happy family life. If you will make your first concern the comfort, the well-being, and the happiness of your companion, sublimating any personal concern to that loftier goal, you will be happy, and your marriage will go on throughout eternity.”

Children are blessed when they have parents who love and care for each other. Parents are responsible to teach their children. (See Mosiah 4:14–15D&C 68:25–2893:40.) Parents should find effective ways to teach these principles as they were taught; perhaps in family home evenings, family prayer, mealtime, bedtime, traveling together and working together.

The role of the Church is a secondary role in teaching children with Sunday School and other activities.

Successful marriages and families are based on righteous principles.

the familyThe proclamation teaches that “happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. These teachings can bring happiness into your home.  “Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities.”

What are the primary responsibilities of fathers? One responsibility is to “preside … in love and righteousness”. (See D&C 121:41–46.)  Boys and young men can prepare themselves now to provide for their families by encouraging them to gain a formal education and learn practical skills.  Young women can also prepare themselves to fulfill the responsibility of being mothers and returning to the old and sacred values which begin in the home. It is here that truth is learned, that integrity is cultivated, that self-discipline is instilled, and that love is nurtured.  Mothers, guard your children. Nothing is more precious to you as mothers, absolutely nothing. Your children are the most valuable thing you will have in time or all eternity. You will be fortunate indeed if, as you grow old and look at those you brought into the world, you find in them uprightness of life, virtue in living, and integrity in their behavior. This is also important for fathers to nurture their children because as parents, you should help each other as equal partners.

Strengthening families is everyone’s responsibility.

the familyThe proclamation concludes by warning of the serious consequences of family disintegration and by calling upon all people to strengthen the family.  Individuals who violate covenants of chastity, who abuse spouse or offspring, or who fail to fulfill family responsibilities will one day stand accountable before God. Further, we warn that the disintegration of the family will bring upon individuals, communities, and nations the calamities foretold by ancient and modern prophets.

We call upon responsible citizens and officers of government everywhere to promote those measures designed to maintain and strengthen the family as the fundamental unit of society.

President Gordon B. Hinckley told a gathering of mayors and other public officials: “To you men and women of great influence, you who preside in the cities of the nation, to you I say that it will cost far less to reform our schools, to teach the virtues of good citizenship, than it will to go on building and maintaining costly jails and prisons. … But there is another institution of even greater importance than the schools. It is the home. I believe that no nation can rise higher than the strength of its families.”  Families must be strong in order for nations to survive.

The proclamation also warns that those “who abuse spouse or offspring … will one day stand accountable before God.” Church leaders have spoken out against abuse of any kind. The following quotation can be applied to both men and women:

“Never abuse your wives. Never abuse your children. But gather them in your arms and make them feel of your love and your appreciation and your respect. Be good husbands. Be good fathers.” Gordon B. Hinckley

the familySuzanne and I have both been blessed with “goodly parents” that put us first and taught us by example the way to become.  We saw more sermons than we did in hearing them from our kind and hard working fathers and loving, nurturing and caring mothers who sacrificed their lives for us. It is now much easier for us as parents to know how to raise our children having watched our parents deal with the many challenges of raising a family today.  Yes, it can be challenging in raising a family today but the blessings are literally “Out Of This World”!

For those who have wayward children and may have made mistakes themselves in the past, remember that a most important part of God’s plan of life through the atonement of Jesus Christ is that of repentance and forgiveness.  To receive forgiveness through repentance, remember, Jesus is The Way.

When we were young as a nation, our forefathers promised to remember God and to keep His commandments. God in turn promised to protect us as a nation and to give us prosperity. We are concerned that the covenants or promises that we have made with God have been broken and are not being kept.  If we see trubulation and hard times come into our lives and to our families, then it is only because we have broken our promises with God.  He then, does not have to keep His covenants and promises either!

We are living during the last days, a “great and dreadful day”, when Satan is desperate to win as many souls of mankind and our families that he can.  May we remember God, our Heavenly Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ, and put prayer and thanksgiving back into our homes, schools and nation.  May we love one another and stop aborting innocent children who each have a spirit body within and keep God’s commandments so that we may be worthy of His love and blessings once again.

Alan Osmond
For The Family

Osmond.net Sponsor banner

Get NOI-Z (Noisy) – Let’s Turn The World Around

By on Nov 12 in Blog tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

the family
IT’S TIME TO STAND UP!

SPEAK OUT!

OPEN YOUR MOUTHS!

AND

GET NOI-Z (Noisy) !!!


LET’S TURN THE WORLD AROUND AND BECOME A ZION PEOPLE!

“THE HAPPIEST PEOPLE THAT EVER LIVED.”

“The pure in heart”. D&C 97: 21

In the world today, The Family is under attack by the forces of evil and wickedness and many things long held sacred are ridiculed. The family is where children are nurtured, educated, and learn values.  The family is where individuals turn to first in challenging moments, including financial disaster, health crises, and many other key life transitions.  And yet, the family is also under attack in ways that are unprecedented.  More than one third of American children currently grow-up without a father in the home.  More than half of American adults are not married, cohabitation is at record levels, and the average marriage age is move later and later.

In a world of turmoil and uncertainty, it is more important than ever to make our families the center of our lives and the top of our priorities. Families lie at the center of our Heavenly Father’s plan. “The Family: A Proclamation to the World” declares the responsibilities of parents to their families:

“Husband and wife have a solemn responsibility to love and care for each other and for their children. ‘Children are an heritage of the Lord’ (Psalms 127: 3). Parents have a sacred duty to rear their children in love and righteousness, to provide for their physical and spiritual needs, to teach them to love and serve one another, to observe the commandments of God and to be law-abiding citizens wherever they live. Husbands and wives—mothers and fathers—will be held accountable before God for the discharge of these obligations.”

We need to make our homes a place of refuge from the storm, which is increasing in intensity all about us. Even if the smallest openings are left unattended, negative influences can penetrate the very walls of our homes.   We remind you that parents are to preside over their own families.

We hope that by providing you with family helps, members of your family will be assisted and encouraged to build stronger and better families and homes. We hope it will cause a conscious and sustained effort in building an eternal family unit, and we all will be reminded to focus our attention on the most important organization the Lord has established here on earth.

the family

The Family

Family activities include (1) writing personal and family journals, (2) holding family councils, (3) establishing and maintaining family organizations for the immediate and extended family, (4) personal interviews between parents and children, (5) writing to relatives and missionaries, (6) genealogy, (7) visiting relatives and those who are ill or lonely, (8) charity work, (9) reading stories to children, and (10) singing Church hymns.

“Monday nights are reserved for family home evenings. We encourage members to set aside this time to strengthen family ties and teach principles and values in their homes.

We also counseled parents and children to give highest priority to family prayer, family home evening, gospel study and instruction, and wholesome family activities.

May it be our resolve this year to build a gospel-centered home, a safe harbor from the storms of the adversary. Let us again remember the promises and instructions from the Lord to His children:

“The glory of God is intelligence, or, in other words, light and truth.

“Light and truth forsake that evil one.”

“But I have commanded you to bring up your children in light and truth.”

When you see things that are NOT RIGHT, take a STAND and STAND UP!  When others are forcing their ways and ideas upon you and you family that are NOT appropriate, SPEAK OUT! When you hear or see something on the TV, radion, internet or your computer that is inappropriate, SHUT IT OFF!  Sometimes silence isn’t golden . . . it’s YELLOW!  So OPEN YOUR MOUTHS for GOOD!

If we will do these things, we will be helping to TURN THIS WORLD AROUND!  Let’s all be like the people of Enoch who love one another and were of One Heart.  They became a ‘ZION People’ and were known as “The Happiest People that ever lived!”  Let’s do the SAME!

“And the Lord called his people Zion, because they were of one heart and one mind, and dwelt in righteousness; and there was no poor among them.” Moses 7: 18

SUBSCRIBE TO THE FREE ‘GET NOI-Z’  

NEWSLETTER!

Mormon Temples – LDS Temple Marriage Is Forever

By on Oct 07 in Blog tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ULrlf78GSac[/youtube]

.

the familyIn “The Family: A Proclamation to the World,” the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles proclaim that “marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God and that the family is central to the Creator’s plan for the eternal destiny of His children.” When a man and woman are married in the temple, their family can be together forever. This is a common goal of Latter-day Saints.

Life’s greatest joys are found in the family. Strong family relationships require effort, but such effort brings great happiness in this life and throughout eternity. In our Heavenly Father’s plan of happiness, a man and a woman can be sealed to one another for time and all eternity. Those who are sealed in the temple have the assurance that their relationship will continue forever if they are true to their covenants. They know that nothing, not even death, can permanently separate them.

The covenant of eternal marriage is necessary for exaltation. The Lord revealed through Joseph Smith: “In the celestial glory there are three heavens or degrees; and in order to obtain the highest, a man must enter into this order of the priesthood [meaning the new and everlasting covenant of marriage]; and if he does not, he cannot obtain it. He may enter into the other, but that is the end of his kingdom; he cannot have an increase” (D&C 131: 1-4).

After receiving the sealing ordinance and making sacred covenants in the temple, a couple must continue in faithfulness in order to receive the blessings of eternal marriage and exaltation. The Lord said:

“If a man marry a wife by my word, which is my law, and by the new and everlasting covenant, and it is sealed unto them by the Holy Spirit of promise, by him who is anointed, unto whom I have appointed this power and the keys of this priesthood; . . . and if [they] abide in my covenant, . . . it shall be done unto them in all things whatsoever my servant hath put upon them, in time, and through all eternity; and shall be of full force when they are out of the world” (D&C 132: 19).

the familyWe are the only Church that seals marriages and families together for time and all eternity.  Joseph Smith said, “The work of redemption for the dead is the most glorious of all subjects belonging to the everlasting gospel.” (D&C 128: 17)

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is also the only Church that makes eternal marriages and other important covenants available to our kindred dead, deceased family members and ancestors who never had the opportunity to know about it.  the family

Elijah the Prophet has already come (September 21, 1823) and restored those sealing and redeeming powers for the dead which are done in our Temples and fulfilled the scripture prophecies:

“Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord:
And he 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.”

Mal. 4: 5-6, Luke 1: 17, D&C 2: 2; 110: 14-15; 138: 47; JS-H 1: 39

Would you like to have your marriage and family to sealed together for time and for all eternity?  If your spouse died and you want to be with him or her again after you die, you can be sealed to each other. 

To learn more, go to http://www.mormon.org

 

 

 

Or send Alan an email to: alan@osmond.com

Alan Osmond
For The Family

More scripture refrences about Elijah:

  1. GS Elijah

    An Old Testament prophet who returned in the latter days to confer the keys of the sealing power on Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery. In his day, Elijah ministered in the Northern Kingdom of Israel (1 Kgs. 17-2 Kgs. 2). He had great faith in the Lord and is noted for many miracles. He prevented rain for three-and-a-half years. He raised a boy from the dead and called down fire from heaven (1 Kgs. 17-18). The Jewish people still wait for Elijah to return, as Malachi prophesied he would (Mal. 4: 5). He remains an invited guest at Jewish passover feasts, where an open door and a vacant seat always await him.

  2. BD Elijah

    The deep impression Elijah made upon the life of the Israelites is indicated in the fixed belief that prevails that he will return, as spoken of in Mal. 4: 5. The foregoing references from the N.T. show that many mistook Jesus for Elijah returned. Among the Jews he is still an invited guest at the passover, for whom a vacant seat is reserved and the door is opened.

  3. GS Malachi

    In his prophecy, Malachi wrote of John the Baptist (Mal. 3: 1; Matt. 11: 10), the law of tithing (Mal. 3: 7-12), the second coming of the Lord (Mal. 4: 5), and thereturn of Elijah (Mal. 4: 5-6; D&C 2; 128: 17; JS-H 1: 37-39). The Savior quoted all of Malachi chapters 3 and 4 to the Nephites (3 Ne. 24-25).

  4. BD Malachi

    The prophecy of Malachi was spoken about 430 B.C. The first part (Mal. 1: 1 – 2: 9) is addressed to the priesthood, reproving them for their neglect of service to God. The second part (Mal. 2: 10 – 4: 6) is addressed to the people, speaking against marriage outside the covenant, divorces from wives within the covenant, and neglect of tithe paying, and reproving the general spirit of discontent. The faithful are encouraged to remain so, with the assurance that the Lord is mindful of them, and the disobedient shall fail in the day of the Lord’s coming. Notable passages are Mal. 3: 1, which is quoted in Matt. 11: 10 as having reference to John the Baptist; Mal. 3: 7-12, an exposition of the law of tithing; Mal. 4: 1, which speaks of the second coming of the Lord; and Mal. 4: 5-6, which deals with thereturn of Elijah (cited also in D&C 2; D&C 128: 17; JS-H 1: 37-39). All of Mal. 3 and 4 was quoted by the Savior to the Nephites, as recorded in 3 Ne. 24 and 25.


.

Out Of The Mouths Of Babes. Letters To God.

By on Mar 11 in Blog tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=coPBxsYXmqU[/youtube]

.

.

Jesus loves the little children.“Happiness in family life is most likely to be acheived when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ.

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: A Proclamation to the World.”)

Being part of a family is a great blessing.  Yor family can provide you with companiionship and happiness, help you learn correct principles in a loving atmosphere, and help you prepare for eternal life.  Not all families are the same, but each is important in Heavenly Father’s plan.

Do your part to build a happy home.  Be cheerful, helpful, and considerate of others.  Many problems in the home are created because family members speak and act selfishly or unkindly.  Concern yourself with the needs of other family members.  Seek to be a peacemaker rather than to tease, fight, and quarel.  Remember that the family is the most sacred unit of the Church.

Honor your parents by showing love and respect for them and by being obedient.  Be willing to help in the home with chores that need to be done.  Participate in family activities and traditions, including family prayer, family home evenings, and family scripture reading.  These traditions strengthen and unify families.  Set a good example for other family members.

Strengthen your relationships with your brothers and sisters.  They can become your closest friends.  Support them in their interests and help them with problems they may be facing.

For The Strength of Youth
For The Family


Navigating The Dating Wilderness.

By on Mar 07 in Blog tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

The Family: A Proclamation to the World teaches us that “marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God… Marriage between man and woman is essential to His eternal plan” (¶1, 7). Most young adults have a desire to marry and one day have a family of their own. However, the process of dating and seeking a marriage partner can be daunting, and sometimes finding your spouse can seem an impossible task. Don’t give up hope! It is possible to successfully navigate the wilderness of the dating world and make it to the promised land.

Enjoy Being Single

Sometimes singles become too focused on their goal of marriage, and they don’t enjoy their years on their own. While marriage is a righteous goal to be sought after, we should take time to enjoy our journey to reach the goal. Our years as a single can be meaningful and happy ones. You may be familiar with the counsel to become the kind of person you want to marry. In this way, you will attract that sort of person to you. Your time as a single can be a time of personal development and enrichment. Some of the most important areas in which to develop include our emotional and mental health, our self esteem, and our ability to control our impulses (Holman, Larson, & Stahmann, 2000).  Remember that we do not need to be perfect in order to have a happy life and a strong marriage. If we are aware of these areas and striving to be our best, that is enough. We should remember that we are worthy of love, and that other people are usually accepting and approachable (Holmes & Johnson, 2009). Taking this perspective will help us build healthy friendships and relationships with others in our lives, a valuable skill that is crucial to life beyond just the dating world.

What to Look For

While the idea of a soul mate is a romantic one, there is not one perfect person out there waiting for you to find him or her. Each of us probably has numerous people in the world with whom we would be very happy. None of them will be our perfect match. Some compromise is inherent in all dating. It is important that we remember this; if we focus too much on finding our perfect soul mate, we may be quicker to write off a dating relationship when conflict arises, instead of trying to work things out (Hall, 2006).

Instead of looking for a soul mate, we should look for someone similar to us in background, values, attitudes, and beliefs about marriage. Research has shown that couples who are similar in these areas tend to have higher marital quality and stability (Holman & Larson, 1994). These areas are key to a person’s identity, which means that when a couple differs in these ways, compromise becomes difficult. When you and your partner are similar in these ways, you will be able to understand one another better because you are coming from the same perspective.

With that said, realize that differences are not necessarily a bad thing. No one is exactly like you, so you shouldn’t be looking for your exact clone. There will definitely be some differences between you and your partner. Remember that compatibility is not just about sameness, but also about complementarity. The Proclamation reminds us that some differences between men and women are built into the divine design of marriage and family stewardships.

While you are searching for your mate, remember that no one is perfect. Be careful not to keep a laundry list of required traits that your mate must have. While there are some things you should not compromise on, such as shared values or kindness, you can be more flexible with other things, like whether someone has your exact taste in movies, whether they are a certain build or have a certain hair color, or whether someone is a master chef.

Initial Attraction

Sometimes the most difficult part of dating is finding someone who you are attracted to and who is attracted to you as well. Attending social events such as dances, parties or singles religious activities can be a way of meeting other singles. How do you catch someone’s attention? Start by being friendly. Eye contact, a big smile and a confident posture (no slouching!) can make you look more approachable (Cunningham & Barbee, 2010).

Don’t be afraid to approach someone you are attracted to. You don’t need a first class opening line to talk to someone. A simple “Hello” is often more effective than a cheesy pick-up line (Cunningham & Barbee, 2010).

How do you tell if someone is interested in you? Some signs you might notice include someone leaning towards you, smiling, making and keeping eye contact, staying near to you, orienting his or her body towards you, and frequent gesturing (Afifi & Lucas, 2010).  Often people have a pessimistic outlook when trying to judge another’s interest. That is, Mike may be too scared of rejection to ask Sally for a date, even though he is interested in her. Meanwhile, Sally assumes Mike must not be interested since he is not asking her, never stopping to think that maybe he is afraid. What is the solution for this? Choose not to let your fear hold you back. You may face rejection, but you may also find that your potential date has been anxiously awaiting you to ask her or him out. You won’t know until you try. Ladies, remember, we live in a time where we are allowed to do the asking too.

If you are shy, the process of attracting someone, approaching him or her, and figuring out whether or not there is mutual interest, may sound like a difficult process to go through. Don’t be afraid to ask your friends for help. Set-ups and blind dates are a great way to skip the stress of finding someone and go straight to a date|just be sure you trust the person setting you up. At social events like parties or dances, consider going with a more social friend, who can act as a bridge for you to meet others, by being the one to start conversations with those you meet.

Casual Dating

The dating climate of today may be different from the climate our parents and grandparents faced. Some modern researchers have argued that hanging out has replaced dating, making dating obsolete (Colllins & van Dulmen, 2006). However, dating is a valuable way for teens and adults to come to know someone on a more personal level. Dating can also help you develop a better idea of the traits you want in a future spouse (although those with limited opportunity to date can still make a wise mate selection).

Consider dating to build friendships and have fun, instead of focusing just on finding someone to marry. Casual dating allows dates to be laidback and fun, without commitment attached from the get go. Seeking friendship first results in lower pressure in your dating experience. When you are more relaxed, it is easier to be yourself, have fun, and get to know the other person better. Friendship dating may also lower your chance of facing heartbreak and disappointment, since you are not quickly becoming emotionally involved (McLaughlin, 2007).  A romantic relationship may evolve from friendship dating, and its base of friendship may be stronger than a relationship built only on mutual attraction (Barelds and Barelds-Dijkstra, 2007).

Although you decide to date casually, you may still encounter pressure from parents, friends, or even your dates to define your relationships early on, instead of keeping things casual. You cannot control the reactions of people around you, but that does not mean you should avoid casual dating. As with other areas in your life, in dating just do the best you can, even if at times it goes against the norms of modern society.

The Decision to Become Serious

So you have been dating for a little while, and you are wondering whether or not to get serious. How can you know when you are really in love? Noller describes the difference between immature love and mature love (as cited in Holman et al, 2000).

Immature love is possessive, easily provoked to jealousy, and anxious that the relationship might end. A person experiencing immature love may be obsessed with his or her partner. Immature love includes a belief that love is something beyond your control; an external force like Cupid’s arrow causes love. Immature love is selfish and focused on satisfying one’s own needs.

In contrast, mature love involves a lasting passion, a strong desire for companionship, and contentment with the relationship. A person experiencing mature love knows it is something you must decide. Mature love means commitment, trust, sharing, and sacrifice. It allows space for a partner to grow and change.

Unhealthy Dating

While we should not have unrealistic expectations for our future spouses, we should also be careful not to settle for an unhealthy relationship. Below are signs of emotional, psychological, and physical abuse in a relationship. If your relationship has some of these characteristics, you should seriously consider ending the relationship. You deserve to be with someone who values you and treats you with respect.

Emotional and Psychological Abuse

Saltzman, Fanslow, McMahon, and Shelley (2002) give the following list of behaviors which constitute emotional and psychological abuse:

[H]umiliating the victim, controlling what the victim can and cannot do, withholding information from the victim, deliberately doing something to make the victim feel diminished or embarrassed, isolating the victim from friends and family, and denying the victim access to money or other basic resources (p. 61).

This list is not comprehensive. Your partner may do or say other things that hurt you psychologically or emotionally. The important thing is to notice how the way you are treated makes you feel.

Domestic Violence

Domestic violence involves “the intentional use of physical force with the potential for causing death, disability, injury, or harm” (Saltzman et al., 2002, p. 35). Any physical force can qualify as domestic violence, but some examples of violent behaviors include:

[S]cratching, pushing, shoving, throwing, grabbing, biting, choking, shaking, poking, hair-pulling,

slapping, punching, hitting, burning, use of a weapon (gun, knife, or other object), and use of

restraints or one’s body, size, or strength against another person (p. 35).

Some potential warning signs that violence can occur later on include extreme jealousy, controlling behavior, or verbal threats (Choose Respect). If you notice these in your relationship, you might be wise to end it now before things escalate into a worse situation.

If you are in an abusive relationship, you should know that many resources exist to help you:

  • The National Domestic Violence hotline can be reached at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) anytime day or night, 365 days a year. The hotline also has a helpful website at http://www.ndvh.org. This website features a red panic button that automatically directs you to a non-related page at a moment’s notice. In this way, you can protect yourself if your partner walks in while you are visiting the site.
  • The Center for Disease Control offers information on intimate partner violence and prevention here.

When a Relationship Ends

If you are the one ending the relationship, remember to be gentle and kind when you do so. Holman et al. (2000) recommend bringing up the subject with kindness, meekness, and love. They also recommend being clear that the relationship is ending, so your partner is not confused or left with false hopes.

If your partner initiates the breakup, take care not to try to force him or her to keep dating you (Holman et al., 2000). Be respectful and allow the relationship to end. Breakups hurt, but don’t lash out and take out your hurt on your ex (Holman et al., 2000).

After the breakup, give yourself time to heal. You may find it helpful to vent your feelings to a friend or family member. Journal writing can also be helpful. Young adults often rely on media (like music, movies, and television shows) to help them process and reflect on their breakups (Hebert & Popadiuk, 2008).

While this isn’t necessarily bad, be careful what media you consume|it may prolong your sadness if you fill your days with depressive media.

Immediately after a breakup, you may find it painful to contemplate dating someone else in the future. Or perhaps you feel that you will not meet another potential mate.  Give yourself time to heal from the breakup. How much time you need will vary from person to person. But realize that someday, you will meet someone new. This was not your one and only chance for love. An optimistic attitude that you can find someone else will help you move on (Spielmann, MacDonald, & Wilson, 2009).

Dating can seem a daunting task at times, but never give up! Enjoy your time as a single. Enjoy dating, and consider friendship dating to take off some of the pressure. Do what you can to seek dating success, and don’t worry about the rest. Dating can be a fun experience rather than a stressful one, if you choose to make it so.

Written by Shelece McAllister, Research Assistant, and edited by Jason S. Carroll and Stephen F. Duncan, professors in the School of Family Life, Brigham Young University.

Forever Families
References
For The Family

Declining Values And Misplaced Priorities Threaten To Destroy Society!

By on Feb 27 in Blog tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

We need to to put family first and  identify specific ways to strengthen their individual families.

Parents, grandparents, and extended family members everywhere, we gave been given a Proclamation To The World on The Family by the Prophets of God that we need to hold fast to and make it a banner like unto General Moroni’s “title of liberty,” and to commit ourselves to live by its precepts.  As we are all part of a family, the proclamation applies to everyone.

Public opinion surveys indicate that people everywhere in the world generally consider the family as the highest priority; yet in recent years the broader culture seems to ignore or misdefine the family. Consider some of the changes of the past decade:

  • Many larger national and international institutions that used to support and strengthen families now try to supplant and even sabotage the very families they were created to serve.
  • In the name of “tolerance,” the definition of family has been expanded beyond recognition to the point that “family” can be any individuals of any gender who live together with or without commitment or children or attention to consequence.
  • Rampant materialism and selfishness delude many into thinking that families, and especially children, are a burden and a financial millstone that will hold them back rather than a sacred privilege that will teach them to become more like God.

And yet most parents throughout the world continue to know both the importance and the joy that are attached to natural families. Friends of mine who just returned from speaking to families and parents on several continents reported to me that the hopes and concerns of parents are remarkably similar throughout the earth.

In India a concerned Hindu mother said, “All I want is to be a bigger influence on my children than the media and the peer group.” And a Buddhist mother in Malaysia said, “I’d like my boys to be able to operate in the world, but I don’t want them to be of the world.” Parents from all different cultures and faiths are saying and feeling the same things we are as parents in the Church.

The world needs to know what the proclamation teaches, because the family is the basic unit of society, of the economy, of our culture, and of our government. And as Latter-day Saints know, the family will also be the basic unit in the celestial kingdom.

In the Church, our belief in the overriding importance of families is rooted in restored doctrine. We know of the sanctity of families in both directions of our eternal existence. We know that before this life we lived with our Heavenly Father as part of His family, and we know that family relationships can endure beyond death.

If we live and act upon this knowledge, we will attract the world to us. Parents who place a high priority on their families will gravitate to the Church because it offers the family structure, values, doctrine, and eternal perspective that they seek and cannot find elsewhere.

Our family-centered perspective should make Latter-day Saints strive to be the best parents in the world. It should give us enormous respect for our children, who truly are our spiritual siblings, and it should cause us to devote whatever time is necessary to strengthen our families. Indeed, nothing is more critically connected to happiness—both our own and that of our children—than how well we love and support one another within the family.

President Harold B. Lee spoke of the Church as a crucial “scaffolding” that helps build the individual and the family (see Conference Report, Oct. 1967, 107). The Church is the kingdom of God on earth, but in the kingdom of heaven, families will be both the source of our eternal progress and joy and the order of our Heavenly Father. As we are often reminded, we will be released one day from our Church callings; but if we are worthy, we will never be released from our family relationships.

Now, one may ask, How do we protect and preserve and strengthen our homes and families in a world pulling so hard in opposite directions? Let me make three simple suggestions:

  1. Be consistent in holding daily family prayer and weekly family home evenings. Both of these invite the Lord’s Spirit, which provides the help and power we need as parents and family leaders. The Church curriculum and magazines have many good ideas for family home evening. Also consider holding a family testimony meeting where parents and children can express their beliefs and feelings to each other in a private and personal setting.
  2. Teach the gospel and basic values in your home. Establish a love for reading the scriptures together. Too many of our parents are abdicating this responsibility to the Church. While seminary, auxiliaries, and priesthood quorums are important as a supplement to parental gospel instruction, the main responsibility rests in the home. You might want to choose one gospel subject or a family value and then watch for opportunities to teach it. Be wise and do not involve children or yourselves in so many activities out of the home that you are so busy that the Spirit of the Lord cannot be recognized or felt in giving you the promised guidance for yourself and your family.3.  Create meaningful family bonds that give your children an identity stronger than what they can find with their peer group or at school or anyplace else. This can be done through family traditions for birthdays, for holidays, for dinnertime, and for Sundays. It can also be done through family policies and rules with natural and well-understood consequences. Have a simple family economy where children have specific chores or household duties and receive praise or other rewards commensurate to how well they do. Teach them the importance of avoiding debt and of earning, saving, and wisely spending money. Help them learn responsibility for their own temporal and spiritual self-reliance.

We call upon government and political leaders to put the needs of children and parents first and to think in terms of family impact in all legislation and policy making.

We call upon Internet providers and Web site creators to become more responsible regarding their potential for influence and to adopt the conscious objective of protecting children from violence, pornography, filth, and sleaze.

We call upon educational entities to teach universal values and family and parenting skills, supporting parents in their responsibility to raise children to become the leaders of families in generations yet to come.

We call upon our own Church members to reach out in love to neighbors and friends of other faiths and include them in the use of the many resources the Church has to help families. Our communities and neighborhoods will be safer and stronger as people of all faiths work together to strengthen families.

It is important to remember that all larger units of society depend on the smallest and most fundamental unit, the family. No matter who or what we are, we help ourselves when we help families.

Brothers and sisters, as we hold up like a banner the proclamation to the world on the family and as we live and teach the gospel of Jesus Christ, we will fulfill the measure of our creation here on earth. We will find peace and happiness here and in the world to come. We should not need a hurricane or other crisis to remind us of what matters most. The gospel and the Lord’s plan of happiness and salvation should remind us. What matters most is what lasts longest, and our families are for eternity. Of this I testify in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

M. RUSSELL BALLARD
Of The Twelve Apostles
From: “What Matters Most Is What Lasts Longest,” , (October 1, 2005)
For The Family