Monday, March 16, 2009

Phoenix Sundays

Yesterday in Sacrament meeting our friend John spoke. He talked about a man who was too scared to share the miracle of penicillin to a group of his peers. He then talked about how working in commercial real estate his colleague would tell his team, "you don't have to call all your land lords, just the ones you want to keep". It's like the flossing one... "you don't have to floss all your teeth, just the ones you want to keep".

He related it to sharing what brings us joy, peace and safety. We don't have to share the gospel with all our friends, just the ones we want to keep. That sort of hit it home for me.

Then in Sunday School our fantastic teacher Greg, talked about the Priesthood. Usually lessons about the Priesthood are one-sided. He was able to bring it to all of us. As he taught us about the history, the order that has been set up, I thought about how while there is this great authority bestowed on those that are worthy, it actually is still a tool the Lord gives to teach us. Just because a man has that authority, doesn't make him perfect. It means, he's still learning, the Lord trusts him.

As a woman and mother I think of this often. That having the power to create life doesn't make me an all powerful being (in a teeny, tiny little lamp - sorry Aladdin reference). This gift of motherhood makes me feel a little inadequate...ok fine, a lot inadequate (I know...not grammatically correct...but I'm not asking for a grade on this one). I realize how little I know, and how much I learn as I go, and how much I have to learn over-and-over again. There's never time to sit back and rest on my laurels and say, "yep, I'm all powerful and I know it all, muahahahaha". When I start acting like that, it's time to commit me to a mental home.

My favorite part of the lesson was where we read in D&C 121 about how the Priesthood should be used, and the blessings from it. I think we glean a lot from this that we can apply to Motherhood, and Fatherhood.
40 Hence many are called, but afew are chosen.
41 No apower or influence can or ought to be maintained by virtue of the bpriesthood, only by cpersuasion, by dlong-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned;
42 By akindness, and pure bknowledge, which shall greatly enlarge the csoul without dhypocrisy, and without eguile
43 aReproving betimes with bsharpness, when cmoved upon by the Holy Ghost; and then showing forth afterwards an increase of dlove toward him whom thou hast reproved, lest he esteem thee to be his enemy;
44 That he may know that thy faithfulness is stronger than the cords of adeath.
45 Let thy abowels also be full of charity towards all men, and to the household of faith, and let bvirtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly; then shall thy cconfidence wax strong in the dpresence of God; and the doctrine of the priesthood shall distil upon thy soul as the edews from heaven.
46 The Holy Ghost shall be thy constant acompanion, and thy scepter an unchanging scepter of brighteousness and truth; and thy cdominion shall be an everlasting dominion, and without compulsory means it shall flow unto thee forever and ever.
These verses teach us how we are to treat those we have stewardship over. Greg, our teacher asked us, what our "dominion" was. He said as parents, our children are our dominion, and if we practice gentleness, charity, kindness, and make sure virtue garnishes our thoughts, we shall have the Holy Ghost as a constant companion. Our dominion, our children will flow unto us without being forced, coerced... they will willingly follow our examples of righteousness. Gentleness, begets gentleness.

I sat there in the meeting looking at these verses in a way I'd never seen them before. It was like finding the most simple answers to all of my parenting questions. I sat there thinking... it's so simple... and yet, also so hard.

I realized I need to do better, work harder to make myself more pure, more gentle, more persuasive in kindness as a mother. The answer is there. The choice is mine, will I do it... and reap the blessings, or will I make excuses and act weak and foolish.

Then in RS my fabulous friend Carrie taught about Peace. I love that word, Peace. It's like how Peter, Susan and Lucy felt when the Beavers told them about Aslan... I feel all warm and comforted when I hear the world Peace.

I feel Peace in the temple. The reverence, the quiet. And... it was like the Lord was telling me, "If you want peace in your own home, follow the example of mine." So, I'm going to start, again, I'm going to try harder on Monday to be more patient, kind, persuasive and more pure in my thoughts. I'm going to try to be softer in my tone of voice... I'm going to try a little harder to be a little better for my girls.

I am not expecting perfection. I am miles and miles from there. But I know the Lord will appreciate my tiny, little efforts... because I'll give all I've got. And when I fall short, which I know I will - he will accept me, and cheer for me when I pick myself up and try again. You know why? He loves me, just as I am.

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