The candy bar itself becomes an utter disappointment if it does not contain a golden ticket. For some, the golden ticket may be a perfect marriage; for others, a magazine-cover home or perhaps freedom from stress or worry. One woman wanted more than anything else to marry a righteous priesthood holder in the temple and be a mother and a wife. She had dreamed about this all her life, and oh, what a wonderful mother and loving wife she would be. Her home would be filled with loving-kindness. Never a bitter word would be spoken. The food would never burn. And her children, instead of hanging out with their friends, would prefer to spend their evenings and weekends with Mom and Dad.
This was her golden ticket. It was the one thing upon which she felt her whole existence depended. It was the one thing in all the world for which she most desperately yearned. But it never happened. And, as the years went on, she became more and more withdrawn, bitter, and even angry. She could not understand why God would not grant her this righteous desire. She worked as an elementary school teacher, and being around children all day long simply reminded her that her golden ticket had never appeared.
First, forget not to be patient with yourself.
As the years passed she became more disappointed and withdrawn. She even took her frustration out on the children at school. She found herself losing her temper, and she swung between fits of anger and desperate loneliness. The tragedy of this story is that this dear woman, in all her disappointment about her golden ticket, failed to notice the blessings she did have. She did not have children in her home, but she was surrounded by them in her classroom.
The lesson here is that if we spend our days waiting for fabulous roses, we could miss the beauty and wonder of the tiny forget-me-nots that are all around us. This is not to say that we should abandon hope or temper our goals. Never stop striving for the best that is within you. Never stop hoping for all of the righteous desires of your heart. The happiest people I know are not those who find their golden ticket; they are those who, while in pursuit of worthy goals, discover and treasure the beauty and sweetness of the everyday moments.
They are the ones who, thread by daily thread, weave a tapestry of gratitude and wonder throughout their lives. These are they who are truly happy. Sometimes, in the routine of our lives, we unintentionally overlook a vital aspect of the gospel of Jesus Christ, much as one might overlook a beautiful, delicate forget-me-not. In our diligent efforts to fulfill all of the duties and obligations we take on as members of the Church, we sometimes see the gospel as a long list of tasks that we must add to our already impossibly long to-do list, as a block of time that we must somehow fit into our busy schedules.
We focus on what the Lord wants us to do and how we might do it, but we sometimes forget why. My dear sisters, the gospel of Jesus Christ is not an obligation; it is a pathway, marked by our loving Father in Heaven, leading to happiness and peace in this life and glory and inexpressible fulfillment in the life to come. The gospel is a light that penetrates mortality and illuminates the way before us.
It becomes precious and sweet. Let us not walk the path of discipleship with our eyes on the ground, thinking only of the tasks and obligations before us.
Let us not walk unaware of the beauty of the glorious earthly and spiritual landscapes that surround us. It magnifies our small acts of obedience into holy acts of consecration. I wondered if I would be forgotten by my family or by my Heavenly Father. Years later I can look back on that young boy with tenderness and compassion. Sisters, wherever you are, whatever your circumstances may be, you are not forgotten.
No matter how dark your days may seem, no matter how insignificant you may feel, no matter how overshadowed you think you may be, your Heavenly Father has not forgotten you. In fact, He loves you with an infinite love. Just think of it: You are known and remembered by the most majestic, powerful, and glorious Being in the universe! You are loved by the King of infinite space and everlasting time! The Psalmist wrote:. God loves you because you are His child. He loves you even though at times you may feel lonely or make mistakes. The love of God and the power of the restored gospel are redemptive and saving.
If you will only allow His divine love into your life, it can dress any wound, heal any hurt, and soften any sorrow. My dear Relief Society sisters, you are closer to heaven than you suppose. You are destined for more than you can possibly imagine. Continue to increase in faith and personal righteousness.
15 stories of a mother's love
Accept the restored gospel of Jesus Christ as your way of life. Who was I, and where was I in this welter of demands? Should life be as hard as all this? How successful had I been in my several and competing assignments? Or had I muffed them all? The days after my release were about as difficult as the weeks before it.
It was just a few weeks later that my husband had the assignment in Jerusalem to which I have referred, and the Brethren traveling on the assignment requested that I accompany him. On a pristinely clear and beautifully bright day, I sat overlooking the Sea of Galilee and reread the tenth chapter of Luke. The May sun in Israel is so bright you feel as if you are sitting on top of the world. I had just visited the spot in Bethoron where the sun stood still for Joshua see Josh. I would like to pose a question for each of us to ponder.
How do we as women make that quantum leap from being troubled and worried to being women of even greater faith?
One frame of mind surely seems to negate the other. Faith and fear cannot long coexist. Consider some of the things that trouble us. I have served as a Relief Society president in four different wards. Two of these wards were for single women, and two were wards with many young mothers. As I sat in counsel with my single sisters, my heart often ached as they described to me their feelings of loneliness and disappointment. They felt that their lives had no meaning or purpose in a church that rightly puts so much emphasis on marriage and family life.
Yet it seemed to me that the young mothers had easily as many concerns.
They described to me the struggles of trying to raise children in an increasingly difficult world, of never having enough time or means or freedom to feel like a person of value because they were always stretched to the ragged edge of survival. And there were so few tangible evidences that what they were doing was really going to be successful. There was no one to give them a raise in pay; and beyond their husbands who may or may not remember to do it , no one to compliment them on a job well done.
And they were always tired! The one thing I remember so vividly with these young mothers was that they were always so tired. Then there were those women who, through no fault of their own, found themselves the sole provider for their homes financially, spiritually, emotionally, and in every other way. I could not even comprehend the challenges they faced. Obviously, in some ways, theirs was the most demanding circumstance of all. There seem to be plenty of challenges to go around. But, I hasten to add, there are marvelous blessings as well.
Every one of us has privileges and blessings, and every one of us has fears and trials. It seems bold to say, but common sense suggests that never before in the history of the world have women, including LDS women, been faced with greater complexity in their concerns. But one of the most unfortunate side effects we have faced in this matter of agency is that, because of the increasing diversity of life-styles for women of today, we seem even more uncertain and less secure with each other.
We are not getting closer, but further away from that sense of community and sisterhood that has sustained us and given us strength for generations. There seems to be an increase in our competitiveness and a decrease in our generosity with one another. And where am I in all of this? For three-fourths of my life I felt threatened to the core because I hated to sew. I have grown up a little since those days in at least two ways: I now genuinely admire a mother who can do that for her children, and I have ceased feeling guilty that sewing is not particularly rewarding to me.
No mason jar of bing cherries is worth a confrontation that robs us of our compassion and our sisterhood. Obviously the Lord has created us with different personalities, as well as differing degrees of energy, interest, health, talent, and opportunity.
Women S Strength Quotes
So long as we are committed to righteousness and living a life of faithful devotion, we should celebrate these divine differences, knowing they are a gift from God. We must not feel so frightened, so threatened and insecure; we must not need to find exact replicas of ourselves in order to feel validated as women of worth. I was married in , the very year Betty Friedan published her society-shaking book, The Feminine Mystique, so as an adult woman I can only look back with childhood memories of the gentler s and 50s.
But it must have been much more comfortable to have a life-style already prepared for you, and neighbors on either side whose lives gave you role models for your own.
PDF You are a Wonderful Mother: The story of one woman finding her strength within.
However, it must have been even that much more painful for those who, through no fault of their own, were single then, or had to work, or struggled with a broken family. Now, in our increasingly complex world, that earlier model is fragmented, and we seem to be even less sure of who we are and where we are going. Surely there has not been another time in history when women have questioned their self-worth as harshly and critically as in the second half of the twentieth century. Many women are searching, almost frantically, as never before, for a sense of personal purpose and meaning; and many LDS women are searching, too, for eternal insight and meaning in their femaleness.
If I were Satan and wanted to destroy a society, I think I would stage a full-blown blitz on women. I would keep them so distraught and distracted that they would never find the calming strength and serenity for which their sex has always been known.
Satan has effectively done that, catching us in the crunch of trying to be superhuman instead of striving to reach our unique, God-given potential within such diversity. As a sex we are struggling, our families are struggling, and our society is struggling. Drugs, teenage pregnancies, divorce, family violence, and suicide are some of the ever-increasing side effects of our collective life in the express lane.
Too many of us are struggling and suffering, too many are running faster than they have strength, expecting too much of themselves. As a result, we are experiencing new and undiagnosed stress-related illnesses. The Epstein-Barr virus, for one, has come into our popular medical jargon as the malady of the s. We must have the courage to be imperfect while striving for perfection.
We can become so sidetracked in our compulsive search for identity and self-esteem that we really believe it can be found in having perfect figures or academic degrees or professional status or even absolute motherly success. Yet, in so searching externally, we can be torn from our true internal, eternal selves. We become so frightened and insecure that we cannot be generous toward the diversity and individuality, and yes, problems, of our neighbors. Too many women with these anxieties watch helplessly as their lives unravel from the very core that centers and sustains them. Where is the inner stillness we so cherish and for which our sex traditionally has been known?
I believe we can find our steady footing and stilling of the soul by turning away from physical preoccupations, superwoman accomplishments, and endless popularity contests, and returning instead to the wholeness of our soul, that unity in our very being that balances the demanding and inevitable diversity of life. One woman, not of our faith, whose writings I love, is Anne Morrow Lindbergh.
She comments on the female despair and general torment of our times:. For them it was enough to demand the privileges.
15 stories of a mother's love
We are aware of our hunger and needs, but still ignorant of what will satisfy them. With our garnered free time, we are more apt to drain our creative springs than to refill them. With our pitchers [in hand] we attempt … to water a field, [instead of] a garden. We throw ourselves indiscriminately into the committees and causes. Not knowing how to feed the spirit, we try to muffle its demands in distractions.
I have pondered long and hard about the feeding of our inner self amidst too many troublesome things. It is no coincidence that we speak of feeding the spirit, just as we would speak of feeding the body. We need constant nourishment for both. Surely God is well balanced, so perhaps we are just that much closer to Him when we are.
In any case, I like the link between hale, whole, health, heal, and holy. Often we fail to consider the glorious possibility within our own souls. Perhaps we forget that the kingdom of God is within us because too much attention is given to this outer shell, this human body of ours, and the frail, too-flimsy world in which it moves. Permit me to share with you an analogy that I created from something I read years ago. Reigning in majesty and illuminating our soul in this innermost box is our Lord and our Redeemer, Jesus Christ, the living Son of the living God.
In order for her to have free communication with the Lord, she must find the key to and unlock the contents of these boxes. Success will then reveal to her the beauty and divinity of her own soul and her gifts and her grace as a daughter of God. For me, prayer is the key to the first box. We kneel to ask help for our tasks and then arise to find that the first lock is now open. But this ought not to seem just a convenient and contrived miracle, for if we are to search for real light and eternal certainties, we have to pray as the ancients prayed.
We are women now, not children, and we are expected to pray with maturity.
Related You Are a Wonderful Mother: The Story of One Woman Finding Her Strength Within
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