Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Onion Tears? I don't think so...

Once a week the LDS church encourages each person/family to have Family Home Evening. It is a special night set aside for families to spend some time together talking about the Gospel of Jesus Christ, singing songs, playing games, eating snacks and growing closer together. The temptation to let this weekly event slide can be strong with the busy schedules of today's world. It is like anything that is of eternal significance - continually attacked by satan's firey darts. I've noticed that if he can't talk me out of actually having FHE, then he tries to get me to succumb to my crazy life and just play games and eat snacks thinking that our family just needs some fun time together. I will admit to a few of these arrows making it past my defenses a time or two or five. :)

Gratefully, as I work at keeping other commandments like reading scriptures, praying with more intent etc., the Holy Ghost is able to help me keep my shield up so that I won't be hit by satan's "Destroy Family Home Evening" arrows. Again, as with anything of eternal significance - when we take the time to make them happen, our lives are blessed immeasurably. Our Father in Heaven and our Savior Jesus Christ "delight" (Doctrine and Covenants 76:5) to bless us, remember?

Case in point:
I spent some time yesterday searching out great Family Home Evening ideas about fathers, in honor of Father's day on Sunday. It occurred to me that our lesson  should be about our Father in Heaven. I found a good lesson plan on some brilliant woman's blog - so grateful there are women out there willing to share their talents through blogging! (check out my profile - I have listed many of them there)

As I was preparing dinner a little thought from the Holy Ghost entered my mind "You should personally invite Heavenly Father to join you for Family Home Evening tonight. The lesson is about Him." I knew that thought was from the Holy Ghost because why would I think of that on my own? The God of the universe with so many creations they can't even be counted? Why would He want to join our little FHE?

I was cutting an onion.

Tears came to my eyes at the thought of our Eternal Father coming to our humble little FHE and touching the hearts of my children with love and an understanding that He is REAL.

I kept cutting the onion and said a silent prayer that went something like this:

"Father, in honor of Father's Day this week, I've decided to teach our Family Home Evening lesson about You tonight. I thought You might like to be there. You know it won't be the most amazing lesson ever and [my 4-year-old son] will probably do something that will make us have to cut it short, but...if You can be there, I just want You to know that You are invited.Oh and if You do come, could You help us know You are there?"

I kept cutting the onion. Tears kept running down my cheeks.The thought of God our Father joining us that evening was almost more than my little heart could hold.  I was grateful to have had a moment quiet enough in which I had been able to recognize that though from the Holy Ghost.

After dinner we had our simple lesson. As expected, it lasted for about 10 minutes before the wiggles took over.

During that short little lesson I felt so much love for our Father in Heaven and from Him, I just had to assume He had accepted my invitation. I could tell my children were feeling something special as well. He came. He cared enough about my little family to come and let us know and feel of His love.

That wouldn't have happened if I had just decided to play games. We must talk about the Gospel of Jesus Christ with our children. I don't believe there is much need to dilute it either. My 6-year-old is capable of great depth and I'm discovering the same thing about my 4-year-old. Satan doesn't dilute much these days, neither should we.

My Family Home Evenings are not spectacular. I almost always have to look for ideas in other places. I really struggle in the visual aid, handout type of areas. It is just not my forte. I do my best. :) Of the utmost importance, my children (all children) need a mom who will share her testimony with them. That is the most important "handout" they need and it will stay with them eternally.

Happy Father's Day to the Father who has been by my side forever. When I was 5-years-old my earthly father passed away, but somehow I knew, deep in my little girl heart, that I still had a Father watching over me. The best Father any girl could hope for.

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