Our Family in 1981 - Families Come First~Last October in our semi-annual General Conference for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor in the First Presidency gave a beautiful message on the subject, "Of Regrets And Resolutions".
Last month one of our Relief Society Lessons was given on this particular talk. As I listened to this wonderful lesson it brought to my mind a few thoughts about Regrets that I have had in my life and also Resolutions to change some of those regrets.
President Uchdorf stated the following: "The path toward fulfilling our divine destiny as sons and daughters of God is an eternal one...We must begin to walk that eternal path Today;
We can not take for granted one single day. I pray that we will not wait until we are ready to die before we truly learn to live."
In my own life I do have regrets. This talk caused me to ponder upon some of those regrets and analyze how I resolved some of them and how to prevent having regrets.
President Uchtdorf gave the following three resolutions.
1. Resolve to spend more time with those we love.
During the years of raising my children I had to work off and on. I am a nurse by profession. I usually worked shifts and other assignments that allowed me to be home with my children during the crucial moments when I felt my family needed me. My last position was in Hospice Home Health Care. Most of the time I could schedule around my children's activities. In the summer of course this was more difficult because they were home more. Also, if one of my patients were dying or had died; I needed to go and be with them and their family. Sometimes, this caused an interruption in my mothering care. Later on I became the Director of the Hospice Home Health and my hours to be home were more restricted. At the time, I felt that I was doing OK. However, later on after I quit and became a more full time mother; I realize that my working did have an affect upon my children. Working at that time was a necessity and I didn't have much choice. I learned later on that my one daughter felt like I wasn't there for her very much. One of my younger daughters couldn't remember me being home very much. One of my son's had some big challenges and I didn't know about some of it because I was at work. I really have some regrets and often have wondered how I could repair that damage. For my last four children I was able to be a full time mother during most of their teenage years. This was such a blessing in my life. All of my children came through this period of time with a few scars but basically they have remained true to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.They have served missions for our church and been married in the temple .However, I do regret that I wasn't home with them more. I know I did try to be a loving mother; but I also feel I failed in giving them the time they needed with me.
Back then Family Home Evening was very inconsistant for our family. I have a testimony of that program and recognized that it can bring great blessings into your home when you have regular Family Home Evenings each week.
Another quick regret is that I didn't have time to see or call my parents as often as I should have. Now both of them have passed away. I miss them so much.
We also didn't have family reunions with our extended families so that has been sad. Now that we live near our brothers and sisters; we do see them a little more often.
Treasure family relationships and provide time in your life for them.
President Uchtdorf gave the following thoughts; "When Jesus Christ interacted with those around Him, they felt important and loved. He knew the infinite value of the people He met. He blessed them, ministered to them. He lifted them up, healed them. He gave them the precious gift of His time."
If we fail to give our best personal self and undivided time to those who are truly important to us, one day we will regret it.
"Let us resolve to cherish those we love by spending meaningful time with them, doing things together, and cultivating treasured memories". ~ Pres. Uchtdorf.
So ask yourself, how can I encourage quality family time in my home?
For now I can just hangout and enjoy each of my sweet Grandchildren - This is the biggest blessing of being grandparents instead of parents.
2. Resolve to strive more earnestly to become the person God wants us to be.
I must say on this one that I try very hard to be the kind of person Heavenly Father wants me to be. Of course,I am far from accomplishing this. I do realize that we are here on earth to learn and grow in our testimony of the Savior. We are here to make choices every day; we have agency a true gift. I and we are all imperfect. However, I believe that I can work on attributes that will bring me closer to my Savior and closer to my goal of becoming the person God wants me to be.
I am now in the retirement years of my life without children at home. I have more time to delve into the scriptures and other good books. I have always been one to pray alot; but now my prayers are more intense and meaningful. I understand what prayer can bring to my life to help me on a daily basis. I frequently get answers to prayers through the scriptures and other things I read. I find more time to provide service to others which has broadened my experiences and taught me many lessons. Going to the temple more often and serving there weekly has opened my eyes to many truths.
My regrets would be that I didn't realize that the scriptures are the prime source for raising children and solidifying marriages. I tried to be a good mother; but I would have been a better one if I had studied the scriptures more intently while raising children. I didn't realize that they had the answers to every problem that came up through those child raising years.
Although we did go to the temple fairly often through the years; if I would have been more consistant; I would have found greater strength and revelation through temple service.
Now I see the blessings from doing those things mentioned above. Sometimes we get so busy that we do not do those things that will bring us closer to the person God wants us to be.
In Pres. Uchtdorf's message he said: "Discipleship is the pursuit of holiness and happiest
Let us resolve to follow the Savior and work diligence to become the person we were designed to become. Let us listen to and obey the promptings of the Holy Spirit. As we do so Heavenly Father will reveal to us things we never knew about ourselves. He will illuminate the path ahead and open our eyes to see our unknown an perhaps unimagined talents.
The more we devote ourselves to the pursuit of holiness and happiness, the less likely we will be on a path to regrets. The more we rely on the Savior's grace, the more we will feel that we are on the track our Father in Heaven has intended for us.
How will following the Savior help me to discover the woman God wants me to become? What can I do to be a better disciple of Christ?
3. Resolve to find Happiness, regardless of our circumstances.
I have a little clause in my partriartical blessing that states that I am to be optimistic and cheerful. I must say that I usually am the one in the family to be the most optimistic. I also through the years have tried to be cheerful and happy. I told my husband when we were first married that I would go with him and live where ever we needed to live and that I would be happy with him even if we lived in a tent. Through the years we moved a lot. Sometimes in rental homes in the same ward and homes that we bought and sold. We lived mostly in three bedroom homes and had our three boys in one room and three girls in another. I always felt happy in whatever home I have lived in. Each of these moves and homes bring to mind many sweet memories along with a few sad ones. In later years we were fortunate to have more living space; but it also brought more rooms to clean. I just know I have been greatly blessed by having a good attitude through the years of raising children and moving into different states and homes. We have moved a total of 22 times and have lived in four different states.
Through life experiences I have always tried to be happy. I have tried hard to live in the present. I can't say that I haven't been depressed over different experiences; but I never remain that way for very long.
A closing thought by President Uchtdorf: ".....No matter our circumstances, no matter our challenges or trial, there is something in each day to embrace and cherish. There is something in each day that can bring gratitude and joy if only we will see and appreciate it.
Perhaps we should be looking less with our eyes and more with our hearts. I love the quote: "One sees clearly only with the heart. Anything essential is invisible to the eyes."
What can I do to see and acknowledge the good things in my everyday life?
Pause for a moment and answer those questions??You will be greatly blessed if you do~