Thursday, January 14, 2016

Better than Articles from Marriage Counselors

In the past year I've been a little obsessed with reading articles written by marriage counselors. Its not that my marriage has problems, I adore my husband, and I seems to be as happy as a clam, its just babies and toddlers are proven to lower satisfaction in a marriage, and you add depression in one of the spouses and we have a lot pilled on us. Yesterday as I listened to conference talks I thought forget those marriage articles I just need to follow this advice. (I can't forget marriage articles I'm obsessed, but I will be more mindful of the Lord's servants.)

The first talk I listened to was what came on next on my phone feed. 

My Heart Pondereth Them Continually By Devin G. Durrant
Another idea you might try is sharing your verse with a sibling, a child, or a friend. My wife, Julie, and I help each other. We choose our verses each Sunday. ... We then share thoughts about our verses throughout the week. We also like to discuss our verses with our children. As we do, it seems to make it more comfortable for them to share their thoughts with us about the word of God.
I'm not honestly that concerned if my husband decided to "ponderize" a scripture each week. But I keep reading about the importance of rituals in your marriage, and when I was listening to that talk I realize that is what we need to add to our marriage. The ritual of talking about conference talks and scriptures more often. So I asked my husband to share a few times a week with me something that stood out in his studies.

I was also listening to

With All the Feeling of a Tender Parent: A Message of Hope to Families by Robert D. Hales
In it he says, we need to 1. Hold Family Councils
What really stood out to me was, we need to have individual councils with our children. I thought 4 kids, one kid each sunday for 20 minutes with both their parents.
Without this one-on-one counseling together with our children, they are prone to believe that Dad and Mom, or Grandpa and Grandma, don’t understand or care about the challenges they are facing. As we listen with love and refrain from interrupting, the Spirit will help us learn how we can be of help to our children and teach them.
2. Sometimes when our teachings aren’t heeded and when our expectations are not met, we need to remind ourselves to leave the door to our hearts open
Lately, I've been terrified of my children growing up and disappointing me. This stems from my fear that they will grow up and be disappointed in me. I know so many adults who thought their parents did a really crappy job and I just hope my children don't feel like that one day but I don't have much hope because so few adults I know have positive things to say about their parents. But the only way for them not to disappoint me is if I leave the door to my heart open. They will never make all the choices I would have, because we are all different people.
In the parable of the prodigal son, we find a powerful lesson for families and especially parents. After the younger son “came to himself,” 12 he decided to go home.
How did he know his father wouldn’t reject him? Because he knew his father. Through the inevitable misunderstandings, conflicts, and follies of the son’s youth, I can visualize his father being there with an understanding and compassionate heart, a soft answer, a listening ear, and a forgiving embrace. I can also imagine his son knowing he could come home because he knew the kind of home that was awaiting him. For the scriptures say, “When he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.” 13
I testify that our Heavenly Father leaves the door open. I also testify that it is never too late to open the door between us and our children with simple words such as “I love you,” “I am sorry,” and “Please forgive me.” We can begin now to create a home they will want to return to—not only now but in the eternities.
We can also help our obedient children leave the door of forgiveness open by expressing our love and appreciation to them and by helping them rejoice in the repentance of their siblings.
That last paragraph is a HUGE one for me. I felt like that whole thing should be bold. I'm not exactly sure why, but it is screaming to me I am important. Do this as a mother!
What a joy and blessing to have the Spirit in our homes! And what a blessing it is to invite it through prayer, studying the scriptures, speaking kindly, and showing appreciation to one another! Let us prepare our teaching moments by praying as Alma prayed for his son, “with much faith” 15 and all the energy of our souls; by fasting, searching the scriptures, repenting of our sins, and allowing the Holy Ghost to fill our hearts with love, forgiveness, and compassion. And then it will fill our homes. Then, let us trust the Good Shepherd.

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