Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Paragraph missing... and a few more thoughts

I was just glancing at the post I published late last night and noticed a paragraph was missing.  Oops.  Not sure how that happened because I know I wrote it.  Anyway, if you've read the post (which I don't expect many have because it's long and void of pictures), and wondered if something was off or missing, you are correct!  It's the paragraph starting with, "Not two days later..." that was inadvertently removed.  Sorry about that. 

I also had an afterthought, which I might as well share now since I'm going to the trouble of writing this post anyway.  There is a particular scripture in Doctrine and Covenants 121 that has brought me comfort in recent months as I have tackled the various challenges of parenting with patience, and which greatly applies here.  Section 121 consists of prophecies written by Joseph Smith when he was in Liberty Jail, specifically, the responsibilities and attributes of the Priesthood.  Many prophets and other church authorities have referenced this section and have dissected some of its verses in great detail. 

41: No power or influence can or ought to be maintained by virtue of the priesthood, only be persuasion, by long-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned;
42: By kindness, and pure knowledge, which shall greatly enlarge the soul without hypocrisy, and without guile--
43: Reproving betimes with sharpness, when moved upon by the Holy Ghost; and then showing forth afterwards an increase of love toward him whom thou has reproved, lest he esteem thee to be his enemy;
44: That he may know that thy faithfulness is stronger than the cords of death.
45: Let thy bowels also be full of charity towards all men, and to the household of faith, and let virtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly; then shall thy confidence wax strong in the presence of God; and the doctrine of the priesthood shall distil upon thy soul as the dews from heaven.
46: The Holy Ghost shall be thy constant companion, and thy scepter an unchanging scepter of righteousness and truth; and thy dominion shall be an everlasting dominion, and without compulsory means it shall flow unto thee forever and ever.

These words so beautifully describe the attributes that holders of the Priesthood should seek and practice, as well as parents.  Verse 43 in particular hits hard every time I read it.  We are human, and as parents we sometimes lack patience and tolerance.  We react on impulse and allow outside frustrations to influence our temper and the manner in which we discipline our children.  That's not to say our children don't need to be corrected, sometimes in a sharp, firm manner.  But just as we should scold them (sensitively) when necessary, we should also show "an increase of love" afterwards.  This is so hard to do sometimes when we may not feel so warm and fuzzy inside, but so imperative for the sake of our children and our relationships with them.  Truly, the way we act around and treat our children is the way they will learn to act around and treat others. 

President Gordon B. Hinckley's talk, Behold Your Little Ones, from October 1978's Conference Report is just incredible and encompasses this whole idea.  I would recommend any parent read it and take heart to his wise council about raising children.

I am so grateful, amidst this crazy, evil world in which I live, to have the gospel in my life, and for the prophets, past and present, who offer guidance and comfort to members of the church.  A part of me is terrified at the thought of Chloe being out there now where I can no longer control her surroundings, encounters, experiences and friendships.  But another part of me, a bigger part of me, feels reassured that she will be just fine.  Because as her parents, Neil and I have the power and privileged to teach her every day, both by word and example.  Just as the scripture says, we have with us the Holy Ghost to help us, so long as we're living in a manner that is worthy of His presence.  Sometimes our "teaching" is unpleasant but necessary, and sometimes it's pleasant and fulfilling.  Whichever it may be, I am trying much harder to think before I react and always, no matter what, end things on a positive, loving note.  If this concept isn't enough to motivate me to be a better person then I don't know what is.


mistyb said...

I love reading your posts with or without pictures! We have all been where you are right now. It gets better. You are an awesome mom and you are doing a great job Valeri!

Lizzie said...

i think mama's (and dad's for that matter) who are always seeking to be better parents, to learn more about raising these little ones are the best kind of parents. my mom always said "once you feel like you know everything is the moment you know nothing." :) so seek on, and find comfort.

Dinsmoor Momma said...

We sure miss you guys! And Chloe too. :) Hope kindergarten continues to go well. Abby is LOVING it, & I am so grateful (at least for now) to be at Banning Lewis w/ the lovely uniform policy. It was a beast getting everything ready, but wow are our mornings great! Even/especially w/ Brennan & his "eccentric" taste in style. You'd never know... :)

Just wanted to let you know I've been thinking about you. I think you're doing a terrific job!!

Leslie said...

thank you for sharing what you did on my blog.

i liked that poem that you shared the link to. it goes pretty well with the posting i have formulating for my next posting about pain and the importance of it in our lives.

anyway, you are such a sweet person and its amazing how our blogs have connected us as friends... neil was such a fun friend when i lived in provo and i didn't realize at that time that his friendship would bring a new friend into my life... YOU! :)

i wish i had known you better (via blogging) when we met several years ago at cafe rio. :)

your postings are inspiring... and your family is so beautiful.