Thursday, August 15, 2013

The Sabbath Day

As the universe was organized, on the sixth day, Adam and Eve were placed in the Garden of Eden. God the Father and Jesus Christ then "rest from their labors for a season" and leave Adam and Eve to tend to the Garden. It was a peaceful time, free of the cares of the world yet to come and full of quiet comtemplation.

This "day of rest" is of course today our Sabbath Day, or Sunday. I love that we have the example of the Garden of Eden as a model for our Sabbath Day observance and that it can be quiet and wonderful and spiritually strengthening.

We've created a list of Sabbath-friendly activities as our children look for things to do with their day. These come after "go to church", which is always the day's first priority, in order to partake of the sacrament, which we feel is the most important thing we do with our Sunday - renewing our baptismal covenants.

The rest of our list includes journal writing, Personal Progress, watching or reading a conference talk or session, taking a walk, and helping to plan FHE. I should also say that "take a nap" is on the list, and that is often a favorite!

Your list of activities may differ from mine. And these aren't the only things on our list, but a representation of the list overall.

My point in sharing some of the things on our list is only to help to find things that are restorative and strengthening, so that our Sabbath day observance is one that is beneficial to us.

How have your Sundays gone recently? With small children, "quiet" isn't usually a good word to describe the day, but we can make sure that the common e-mail-checking things that occupy our time during the other six days of the week aren't taking over and not leaving time to renew and refresh ourselves.

The Sabbath is such a blessing if we let it be.


Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Follow Dad

We have a variety of sizes of little people in our family, with the youngest being a very energetic 2-year old. I noticed recently when we're walking together as a family how often I say "follow dad" to any number of my short ones. Because he has longer legs, he'll typically take the lead and I will bring up the end of our little group.
From one of the first times that I said it, I've always been grateful at how fabulous it is that the instruction I give my children to "follow dad" doesn't just apply to physical things. He is a great role model and example and worthy to be followed in so many ways.
But last night, as we were walking to the van from the water park, I realized there's a little more to this sweet observation than I'd noticed before.

Dad was carefully making sure those precious little people were following after him, too.

It was a simple gesture and I'm sure he's done it most every time we fall in to this pattern. But last night as I told them one more time to "follow dad" (thus getting their attention back to crossing the parking lot safely), he turned around and made sure they were behind him, with a quick "come on guys" to keep them moving in the right direction.

In addition to my heart swelling at little at this amazing man I married, I can't help but think that this is how our Heavenly Father works as we follow after Him.

We have to listen to the teachings of His prophets and our other leaders to follow after Him, but of course he is ever-checking in and concerned that we are where we are supposed to be. And because, like my children can trust their dad to lead them to safety, we can trust our Heavenly Father to lead us safely, following after Him always brings blessings and peace to our lives.

Are you in the right place today, following after the One who promises peace and joy?


Wednesday, August 7, 2013

The Rolls We Play

Each of us represents certain groups: as a Being, we represent the human race; as a woman, I represent womanhood; as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I represent the Church. Not in an official capacity, but as a member.

Just yesterday I found a list of actors who were Mormon. Some were obvious - the Donny Osmond's of the group. But there were others that were a surprise. There were those whose body of work didn't exactly lead me to think that by their work their membership was obvious.

And it got me thinking about how well I represent the groups I am a part of. Am I a productive member of society, guarding humanity and my fellow humans? What does the world see in me regarding my femininity and how I represent womanhood? Is it obvious to those I meet that I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints?

I hope so.

Of course there are things I want and need to do to improve in all of these areas, but my hope is that as each of us looks at and examines the rolls we have to play ~ human, woman, church member, wife/sister/daughter/mother/aunt/grandma etc. ~ we will do our best to represent those rolls well. To do good by the titles we have been given, or that we've taken on ourselves.