Monday, August 30, 2010

Mormon Monday: Family Examples

Ronald darling and I were with our daughter, her husband and their two sons a week or so ago. We drove down on a Saturday and were able to attend church in their ward the next day. It was a great day, but I missed the most special part of it. Our youngest grandson was all dressed for church in his white shirt, tie and dress pants. He noticed that his grandpa was wearing the same color suit as the youngsters trousers. He remembered that he had a jacket the same color, so he went and put it on. Then he noticed that grandpa had a handkerchief tucked in the breast pocket of his coat. Young one asked why, how do you get it in there with the pointy parts up, can I have one? So Ronald darling showed him how to grab it, tuck it and fluff it. They went to church identically dressed and I missed the significance. Drat!
While we were visiting, we had breakfast each morning and read the scriptures with them. I would love to say that my daughter learned that families should read the scriptures together from the wonderful example set by her parents. Can't say it, 'cause it isn't true. I was so impressed with that little morning study. Everyone read in rotation, the youngest always getting to read the last few verses in the chapter. He was so excited on the last day because they were finishing Helaman. "Tomorrow we get to start Third Nephi!" What great parents, that their children are excited to read that special part of the Book of Mormon.
Every prayer included a request that Heavenly Father "help us not to fight". My grandchildren have learned that certain behaviors are not right, and that Heavenly Father will help us overcome our problems.
So yesterday I was chatting with my daughter and she told me about the boys getting ready for church. Young one put on his clothes, laid out his handkerchief, picked it up just so, tucked it and fluffed it just right. Just like grandpa did it. I wish I'd seen it!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

You've Been In The South When...

Ronald darling and I recently visited our daughter and her family in the Carolinas. Ronald darling did not want to go because it would mean he couldn't sleep in his own bed, he couldn't drink out of the jug in the refrigerator, and he couldn't snack on whatever he wanted, whenever he wanted. We bought him his own jug of chocolate milk and put it on the top shelf of the refrigerator and let him buy his own snacks. We couldn't do anything about the bed, but promised he could sleep with the same great lady he slept with at home. He settled.

You see definite differences in the south. These are some of the ones I love most. It is not a comprehensive list, it may not be accurate for all of the southern states and/or neighborhoods and is seen through the eyes of a woman who doesn't always notice every detail.

Fewer tatoos, especially on the ladies.
Trousers and jeans on young men are worn at the waist!
Women in the grocery are wearing make-up and have their hair styled, even first thing in the morning.
Men's hair is shorter and less often in pony tails.

It's better. Okay, too vague.
Hush puppies are served with butter for dipping. Yumm.
Barbeque sandwiches are served with cole slaw on top of the meat. Yumm.
Fat back is next to the bacon on the breakfast bar. Hmmm.
Deep fried corn on the cob. 'Nuff said!

Fifty foot Southern Pine trees tower over everything.
The Appalachian Mountains - gorgeous.
Family... always helps make everything look good!
More flowers, more flowering shrubs - gorgeous.


Monday, August 9, 2010

Mormon Monday

In the past week, I've seen two families lives turned upside down. Not only don't we know what will happen tomorrow, next week or next year, we don't know what the next moment holds. Good news, bad new, joy or tragedy. And when tragedy is there, what can we do? I've seen it hit three families this week. Two had sudden tragedies with no forewarning; the other saw the escalation of a debilitiating, fatal disease that is slowly destroying the mind and body of a family member.
What could I do? "Sorry for your loss?" "I hope the tests come back negative." "She'll be in a better place soon?" "Is there anything I can do to help?"
Obviously there are things that can help, things that we do on a routine basis. Watching the kids, making funeral potatoes, visiting the sick and afflicted. My desire is to take away the burdens, but burdens were what we signed on for when we came to the earth. Everyone will have these issues in one form or another. Everyone in the family may be healthy, but the family members may be wayward. Everyone may be faithful and hard working, but still remain single, or infertile, or deaf, disabled or unemployed.
So what can I do?

The only answer is prayer. While my actions may make things a little better for a little while, it doesn't take away their burden. So I pray. I pray for insight, that I will recognize the things I can do. I pray that they will be comforted, that the doctors will be wise, that they will recognize the hand of God in their lives. That they will be strong enough to carry the burden given and that the Lord will make the burden seem lighter. That the trials they go through will draw them closer to God, that they will cast their burdens upon him and allow him to sustain them. Sometimes it doesn't seem like enough, but prayer is the best, but not only, thing that we can do.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Mormon Monday

Following the example and recommendation of a friend, I am instituting a recurring, themed post on my blog. Mormon Monday. Welcome to the first.

I have favorite scriptures; not just one, but many. And they change depending on my need at any given moment. But some of them are constants. Like this one.

"And now behold, I ask of you, my brethren of the church, have ye spiritually been born of God? Have ye received his image in your countenances? Have ye experienced this mighty change in your hearts?
Do ye exercise faith in the redemption of him who created you? Do you look forward with an eye of faith, and view this mortal body raised in immortality...?"
- Alma 5:14-15

It's kind of nervous-making to have the Lord, through his prophets, ask you specific questions like that. Or, it can be. But these make me smile. I love this one. "Have ye received his image in your countenances?" Sometimes you can just tell by looking that someone is good and sweet and Christlike.