Welcome to the Talk Of The Week Club. I began this club as a way to share my love of learning and growing in the gospel of Jesus Christ through the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. My hope and desire is for you to learn and grow in your faith and love of the Savior, Jesus Christ. Each Thursday a new talk will be posted, come back, open your heart and mind, allow yourself to receive and I promise you will be spiritually fed.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Week 44: Let Us Rejoice Together

This is the fifth Thursday of the month. Which means it is time to think about all the great talks and quotes you've heard recently and share with the rest of us. How you do that is you either write about it in the comments of this post or you can email it to me at talkoftheweek@gmail.com and I will put it in the comments for you.

Below are some great references in finding articles:
BYU Broadcasting

The opportunity to learn the gospel is just as important as the admonition to teach the gospel. In D&C 50: 22, we read the following: "Wherefore, he that preacheth and he that receiveth, understand one another, and both are edified and rejoice together." Let us teach and receive of one another so we can ALL be edified and rejoice together in the sweetness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ!

I can't wait to be edified by you wonderful friends and family.


Thursday, October 22, 2009

Week 43: Come What May and Love It

I love the advice Elder Joseph B. Worthlin's mother gave to him when dealing with adversity, "Come what may, and love it!" If you've read or received the Talk of the Week for some time you may have realized that I am constantly seeking to improve my home life, my family, and myself. It's a common thread that flows through each of my monthly postings. Often when faced with adversity, or when I am discouraged I tend to be disheartened, saddened, and I fail to remember that we are here to be tried and tested. We ARE here to grow and learn. Elder Worthlin says, "If we approach adversities wisely, our hardest times can be times of greatest growth." We need to remember to make the best of any situation thrown at us, come what may.....and LOVE IT.

MP3 Link of entire talk

To read the full message as given click here

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Week 42: Your Mission Will Change Everything

Hi Friends –

I am sharing this talk with you because I have really been pondering on CHANGE and on my MISSION(s) in life. This talk confirmed to me that my MISSION whether it is a “called” mission or one that is given to me via a Spiritual confirmation, will cause CHANGE to take place – in me and in those that are in my sphere to serve. This talk also reminded me to feel joy in serving. I was again reminded by this talk to continue to raise the bar for myself and for my children so that we can serve more fully and more successfully. I love what President Hinckley said about being happy. "You want to be happy? Forget yourself and get lost in this great cause, and bend your efforts to helping people." There are lots of gems in this talk! I hope you enjoy it!

It has been a year since I was sustained in general conference. I am grateful for this year and for all that I have experienced. I love the Lord and am so very grateful for His sacrifice and for His gospel. I love President Hinckley and sustain him as the Lord's prophet on the earth. Together with faithful Saints everywhere, I testify of prophets and apostles in our time and pledge my life to His cause.
A few years ago, I was interviewing missionaries. A winter storm was blowing in as missionaries came and went throughout the day. The storm changed from icy rain to snow and back again. Some missionaries arrived by train from nearby cities and walked to the church through the storm. Others rode their bicycles. Almost without exception they were cheerful and happy. They were the Lord's missionaries. They had His Spirit and felt joy in His service regardless of their circumstances.
As each companionship concluded their interviews, I will never forget watching them go back out into the storm to preach the gospel and do what the Lord had called them to do. I could see their commitment and dedication. I could feel the love they had for the people and for the Lord. As I watched them leave, I felt an overwhelming love for them and for what they were doing.
Later that night, I attended a priesthood meeting in the same city. The storm had continued and was now mostly snow. During the opening song, the branch president of the smallest and farthest branch and his two missionary counselors, Elder Warner and Elder Karpowitz, came into the chapel. As they got ready to sit down, these two wonderful missionaries took off their winter hats and gloves. They took off their outer coats. Then they each took off a second winter coat and sat down. Like the missionaries earlier in the day, despite the weather these missionaries were happy. They felt the Spirit of the Lord in their lives. Through service in the Lord's cause, they felt a certain love and warmth and joy that are difficult to describe.
As I watched these great young missionaries that evening, I had a remarkable experience. In my mind's eye, I saw missionaries throughout the mission going out into that winter night. Some were knocking doors and facing rejection as they sought to teach the gospel of Jesus Christ. Some were in homes or apartments teaching individuals and families. In spite of the conditions they faced, they were doing what they could to teach the gospel of Jesus Christ to those who would listen, and they were happy. Into my heart came a feeling that I cannot fully explain.
By a wonderful gift of the Spirit, I felt His love, the pure love of Christ that He has for faithful missionaries everywhere, and it changed me forever. I understood how precious each missionary is to Him. I caught a glimpse of what prophets would describe as the "greatest generation of missionaries" the world has ever known (see M. Russell Ballard, "The Greatest Generation of Missionaries," Liahona and Ensign, Nov. 2002, 47). I began to understand why it was necessary to raise the bar so that missionaries everywhere would be entitled to the protection, direction, and happiness that accompany the Spirit of the Lord. I also began to understand why—as parents, bishops, stake presidents, and other leaders—we must do everything we can to help the young people of the Church become worthy of the blessings of missionary service.
President Hinckley described what happens to the heart of every missionary who commits his or her life and work to the Lord when he talked about his own missionary experiences. It was early in his mission, and he was discouraged. The work was hard, and the people were not receptive. However, there came a time when discouragement turned to commitment. For him, the beginning was a letter from his father in which he read: "Dear Gordon, I have your letter. . . . I have only one suggestion: Forget yourself and go to work." In describing what happened next, he said: "I got on my knees in that little bedroom . . . and made a pledge that I would try to give myself unto the Lord.
"The whole world changed. The fog lifted. The sun began to shine in my life. I had a new interest. I saw the beauty of this land. I saw the greatness of the people. . . . Everything that has happened to me since that's been good I can trace to that decision made in that little house" (in Mike Cannon, "Missionary Theme Was Pervasive during Visit of President Hinckley," Church News, Sept. 9, 1995, 4).
President Hinckley continued by saying: "You want to be happy? Forget yourself and get lost in this great cause, and bend your efforts to helping people" (in Church News, Sept. 9, 1995, 4).
To every young man I would say, do you want to be happy? If so, come and join with us, 52,000 strong and counting, and serve your fellow man as a missionary for the Lord. Make the commitment to give two years of your life to the Lord. It will change everything. You will be happy. The fog will lift. You will come to love the culture and the people you are called to serve. The work will be difficult, but there will also be great satisfaction and joy as you serve. If you are faithful during your mission and thereafter, you will look back on your life and say with President Hinckley, "Everything that has happened to me since that's been good I can trace to that decision to serve a mission and give my life to the Lord."
President Hinckley has reminded us that it is not only young elders who are entitled to these blessings. Couples serve wonderfully and are needed so very much. While young sisters are not obligated to serve, the President has said: "We need some young women. They perform a remarkable work" ("To the Bishops of the Church," Worldwide Leadership Training Meeting, June 19, 2004, 27). We also know that there are some who, for health or other reasons, are honorably excused from service. We love them and know that our Heavenly Father will provide compensating blessings in their lives as they serve in other ways and live faithfully.
A year ago, Elder Ballard asked that parents, bishops, and branch presidents work together and help at least one more young man, in addition to those who would normally be prepared to serve, become worthy and be called from each ward and branch of the Church (see "One More," Liahona and Ensign, May 2005, 71). Many have responded. As leaders, we should all recommit ourselves to following this inspired request.
Brothers and sisters, many good bishops have been doing for a long time what Elder Ballard asked. Thirty-six years ago, Bishop Matheson called my home and invited me to his office. Because of world circumstances, the number of missionaries any ward could send was limited, but an additional space had become available, and he had the responsibility to recommend one more missionary. He told me he and his counselors had been praying. He told me that he was impressed that now was the time that the Lord wanted me to serve my mission. I was stunned. Never before had anyone said to me that the Lord had something He wanted me to do. I felt the Spirit of the Lord testify to me that I should go and that I should go now. I said to the bishop, "If the Lord wants me to serve, then I will go."
For me, everything changed. The fog really did lift, and happiness and joy came into my life. In one way or another, every good thing that has happened to me since that day has come because of the commitment made to serve the Lord and His children and give two years of my life in His service.
I say again: Come and join with us. Come and be clean. Come and be happy. Come and experience the very thing that the Lord has said is of "most worth" (D&C 15:6) to you at this time in your life. Come and be part of the greatest generation of missionaries the world has ever known.
This is the work of the Lord. Our Father in Heaven lives, and His Son, Jesus Christ, leads and directs this work today. Of this I testify, in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Week 41: May You Have Courage

I have found myself using this talk several times over the last few months. I found President Monson's counsel to the Young Women of the church to be also somethign that I, as I am now considered an old woman of the church according to my children, could use. I hope you will take into your lives his counsel to have courage to not judge, be virtuous and to stand for truth and rightessnous. I know if we can all work on this together we will be a happier and more blessed people.


MP3 Link

My dear young sisters, what a glorious sight you are. I realize that beyond this magnificent Conference Center many thousands are assembled in chapels and in other settings throughout much of the world. I pray for heavenly help as I respond to the opportunity to address you.
We have heard timely, inspiring messages from your general Young Women leaders. These are choice women, called and set apart to guide and teach you. They love you, as do I.
You have come to this earth at a glorious time. The opportunities before you are nearly limitless. Almost all of you live in comfortable homes, with loving families, adequate food, and sufficient clothing. In addition, most of you have access to amazing technological advances. You communicate through cell phones, text messaging, instant messaging, e-mailing, blogging, Facebook, and other such means. You listen to music on your iPods and MP3 players. This list, of course, represents but a few of the technologies which are available to you.
All of this is a little daunting to someone such as I, who grew up when radios were generally large floor models and when there were no televisions to speak of, let alone computers or cell phones. In fact, when I was your age, telephone lines were mostly shared. In our family, if we wanted to make a telephone call, we would have to pick up the phone and listen first to make certain no other family was using the line, for several families shared one line.
I could go on all night talking about the differences between my generation and yours. Suffice it to say that much has changed between the time I was your age and the present.
Although this is a remarkable period when opportunities abound, you also face challenges which are unique to this time. For instance, the very technological tools I have mentioned provide opportunities for the adversary to tempt you and to ensnare you in his web of deceit, thereby hoping to take possession of your destiny.
As I contemplate all that you face in the world today, one word comes to my mind. It describes an attribute needed by all of us but one which you—at this time of your life and in this world—will need particularly. That attribute is courage.
Tonight I’d like to talk with you about the courage you will need in three aspects of your lives:
First, the courage to refrain from judging others;
Second, the courage to be chaste and virtuous; and
Third, the courage to stand firm for truth and righteousness.
May I speak first about the courage to refrain from judging others. Oh, you may ask, “Does this really take courage?” And I would reply that I believe there are many times when refraining from judgment—or gossip or criticism, which are certainly akin to judgment—takes an act of courage.
Unfortunately, there are those who feel it necessary to criticize and to belittle others. You have, no doubt, been with such people, as you will be in the future. My dear young friends, we are not left to wonder what our behavior should be in such situations. In the Sermon on the Mount, the Savior declared, “Judge not.”1 At a later time He admonished, “Cease to find fault one with another.”2 It will take real courage when you are surrounded by your peers and feeling the pressure to participate in such criticisms and judgments to refrain from joining in.
I would venture to say that there are young women around you who, because of your unkind comments and criticism, are often left out. It seems to be the pattern, particularly at this time in your lives, to avoid or to be unkind to those who might be judged different, those who don’t fit the mold of what we or others think they should be.
The Savior said:
“A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another. . . .
“By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”3
Mother Teresa, a Catholic nun who worked among the poor in India most of her life, spoke this truth: “If you judge people, you have no time to love them.”
A friend told me of an experience she had many years ago when she was a teenager. In her ward was a young woman named Sandra who had suffered an injury at birth, resulting in her being somewhat mentally handicapped. Sandra longed to be included with the other girls, but she looked handicapped. She acted handicapped. Her clothing was always ill fitting. She sometimes made inappropriate comments. Although Sandra attended their Mutual activities, it was always the responsibility of the teacher to keep her company and to try to make her feel welcome and valued, since the girls did not.
Then something happened: a new girl of the same age moved into the ward. Nancy was a cute, redheaded, self-confident, popular girl who fit in easily. All the girls wanted to be her friend, but Nancy didn’t limit her friendships. In fact, she went out of her way to befriend Sandra and to make certain she always felt included in everything. Nancy seemed to genuinely like Sandra.
Of course the other girls took note and began wondering why they hadn’t ever befriended Sandra. It now seemed not only acceptable but desirable. Eventually they began to realize what Nancy, by her example, was teaching them: that Sandra was a valuable daughter of our Heavenly Father, that she had a contribution to make, and that she deserved to be treated with love and kindness and positive attention.
By the time Nancy and her family moved from the neighborhood a year or so later, Sandra was a permanent part of the group of young women. My friend said that from then on she and the other girls made certain no one was ever left out, regardless of what might make her different. A valuable, eternal lesson had been learned.
True love can alter human lives and change human nature.
My precious young sisters, I plead with you to have the courage to refrain from judging and criticizing those around you, as well as the courage to make certain everyone is included and feels loved and valued.
I turn next to the courage you will need to be chaste and virtuous. You live in a world where moral values have, in great measure, been tossed aside, where sin is flagrantly on display, and where temptations to stray from the strait and narrow path surround you. Many are the voices telling you that you are far too provincial or that there is something wrong with you if you still believe there is such a thing as immoral behavior.
Isaiah declared, “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness.”4
Great courage will be required as you remain chaste and virtuous amid the accepted thinking of the times.
In the world’s view today there is little thought that young men and young women will remain morally clean and pure before marriage. Does this make immoral behavior acceptable? Absolutely not!
The commandments of our Heavenly Father are not negotiable!
Powerful is this quote from news commentator Ted Koppel, host of ABC’s Nightline program for many years. Said he:
“We have actually convinced ourselves that slogans will save us. ‘Shoot up if you must; but use a clean needle.’ ‘Enjoy sex whenever with whomever you wish; but [protect yourself].’
“No. The answer is no. Not no because it isn’t cool or smart or because you might end up in jail or dying in an AIDS ward—but no, because it’s wrong. . . .
“What Moses brought down from Mt. Sinai were not the Ten Suggestions, they are Commandments. Are, not were.”5
My sweet young sisters, maintain an eternal perspective. Be alert to anything that would rob you of the blessings of eternity.
Help in maintaining the proper perspective in these permissive times can come to you from many sources. One valuable resource is your patriarchal blessing. Read it frequently. Study it carefully. Be guided by its cautions. Live to merit its promises. If you have not yet received your patriarchal blessing, plan for the time when you will receive it, and then cherish it.
If any has stumbled in her journey, there is a way back. The process is called repentance. Our Savior died to provide you and me that blessed gift. The path may be difficult, but the promise is real: “Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.”6 “And I will remember [them] no more.”7
Some years ago another First Presidency made this statement, and your First Presidency today echoes the appeal. I quote: “To the youth . . . , we plead with you to live clean [lives], for the unclean life leads only to suffering, misery, and woe physically,—and spiritually it is the path to destruction. How glorious and near to the angels is youth that is clean; this youth has joy unspeakable here and eternal happiness hereafter. Sexual purity is youth’s most precious possession; it is the foundation of all righteousness.”8
May you have the courage to be chaste and virtuous.
My final plea tonight is that you have the courage to stand firm for truth and righteousness. Because the trend in society today is away from the values and principles the Lord has given us, you will almost certainly be called upon to defend that which you believe. Unless the roots of your testimony are firmly planted, it will be difficult for you to withstand the ridicule of those who challenge your faith. When firmly planted, your testimony of the gospel, of the Savior, and of our Heavenly Father will influence all that you do throughout your life. The adversary would like nothing better than for you to allow derisive comments and criticism of the Church to cause you to question and doubt. Your testimony, when constantly nourished, will keep you safe.
Recall with me Lehi’s vision of the tree of life. He saw that many who had held to the iron rod and had made their way through the mists of darkness, arriving at last at the tree of life and partaking of the fruit of the tree, did then “cast their eyes about as if they were ashamed.”9 Lehi wondered as to the cause of their embarrassment. As he looked about, he “beheld, on the other side of the river of water, a great and spacious building. . . .
“And it was filled with people, both old and young, both male and female; and their manner of dress was exceedingly fine; and they were in the attitude of mocking and pointing their fingers towards those who . . . were partaking of the fruit.”10
The great and spacious building in Lehi’s vision represents those in the world who mock God’s word and who ridicule those who embrace it and who love the Savior and live the commandments. What happens to those who are ashamed when the mocking occurs? Lehi tells us, “And after they had tasted of the fruit they were ashamed, because of those that were scoffing at them; and they fell away into forbidden paths and were lost.”11
My beloved young sisters, with the courage of your convictions, may you declare with the Apostle Paul, “I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation.”12
Lest you feel inadequate for the tasks which lie ahead, I remind you of another of the Apostle Paul’s stirring statements from which we might draw courage: “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.”13
In closing may I share with you the account of a brave young woman whose experience has stood through the ages as an example of the courage to stand for truth and righteousness.
Most of you are familiar with the Old Testament account of Esther. It is a very interesting and inspiring record of a beautiful young Jewish girl whose parents had died, leaving her to be raised by an older cousin, Mordecai, and his wife.
Mordecai worked for the king of Persia, and when the king was looking for a queen, Mordecai took Esther to the palace and presented her as a candidate, advising her not to reveal that she was Jewish. The king was pleased with Esther above all the others and made Esther his queen.
Haman, the chief prince in the king’s court, became increasingly angry with Mordecai because Mordecai would not bow down and pay homage to him. In retribution, Haman convinced the king—in a rather devious manner—that there were “certain people” in all 127 provinces of the kingdom whose laws were different from others’ and that they would not obey the king’s laws and should be destroyed.14 Without naming these people to the king, Haman was, of course, referring to the Jews, including Mordecai.
With the king’s permission to handle the matter, Haman sent letters to the governors of all of the provinces, instructing them “to destroy, to kill, and to cause to perish, all Jews, both young and old, little children and women, . . . [on] the thirteenth day of the twelfth month.”15
Through a servant, Mordecai sent word to Esther concerning the decree against the Jews, requesting that she go in to the king to plead for her people. Esther was at first reluctant, reminding Mordecai that it was against the law for anyone to go unbidden into the inner court of the king. Punishment by death would be the result—unless the king were to hold out his golden scepter, allowing the person to live.
Mordecai’s response to Esther’s hesitation was to the point. He replied to her thus:
“Think not . . . that thou shalt escape in the king’s house, more than all the Jews.
“For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, . . . thou and thy father’s house shall be destroyed.”16
And then he added this searching question: “Who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”17
In response, Esther asked Mordecai to gather all the Jews he could and to ask them to fast three days for her and said that she and her handmaids would do the same. She declared, “I [will] go in unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish.”18 Esther had gathered her courage and would stand firm and immovable for that which was right.
Physically, emotionally, and spiritually prepared, Esther stood in the inner court of the king’s house. When the king saw her, he held out his golden scepter, telling her that he would grant whatever request she had. She invited the king to a feast she had arranged, and during the feast she revealed that she was a Jew. She also exposed Haman’s underhanded plot to exterminate all of the Jews in the kingdom. Esther’s plea to save herself and her people was granted.19
Esther, through fasting, faith, and courage, had saved a nation.
You will probably not be called upon to put your life on the line, as did Esther, for that which you believe. You will, however, most likely find yourself in situations where great courage will be required as you stand firm for truth and righteousness.
Again, my dear young sisters, although there have always been challenges in the world, many of those which you face are unique to this time. But you are some of our Heavenly Father’s strongest children, and He has saved you to come to the earth “for such a time as this.”20 With His help, you will have the courage to face whatever comes. Though the world may at times appear dark, you have the light of the gospel, which will be as a beacon to guide your way.
My earnest prayer is that you will have the courage required to refrain from judging others, the courage to be chaste and virtuous, and the courage to stand firm for truth and righteousness. As you do so, you will be “an example of the believers,”21 and your life will be filled with love and peace and joy. May this be so, my beloved young sisters, I ask in the name of Jesus Christ, our Savior, amen.
NOTES1. Matthew 7:1.2. D&C 88:124.3. John 13:34–35.4. Isaiah 5:20.5. Ted Koppel, Duke University commencement address, 1987.6. Isaiah 1:18.7. Jeremiah 31:34.8. First Presidency, in Conference Report, Apr. 1942, 89.9. 1 Nephi 8:25.10. 1 Nephi 8:26–27.11. 1 Nephi 8:28.12. Romans 1:16.13. 2 Timothy 1:7.14. Esther 3:8.15. Esther 3:13.16. Esther 4:13–14.17. Esther 4:14.18. Esther 4:16.19. See Esther 5–8.20. Esther 4:14.21. 1 Timothy 4:12.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Week 40: My Soul Delighteth in the Things of the Lord

Dear Sisters,
This week's talk is "My Soul Delighteth in the Things of the Lord" from the April 2008 General Conference by Susan W. Tanner. When I first heard Sister Tanner's talk, I was thrilled by her use of the word delight and puzzled over why I didn't use it more frequently in my vocabulary. If our purpose here on earth is to experience joy, surely the word delight would describe many of our experiences and associations here. I have also pondered over its inclusion of the word light. Imagine what it would do for our relationships with our children and others if we communicated our delight for them in both word and deed. What would it do for their self-esteem and their realization of who they really are if we honestly and enthusiastically say "I delight in you!"

As I look forward to Conference Weekend, I find delight a perfect description of the counsel and encouragement we will receive. I delight in having and hearing a prophet who speaks to us specific words of counsel straight from the Source. I delight in Apostles who lead and teach with example and fortitude. I delight in a weekend when we can sequester our families from the world to be renewed, inspired, and propelled to be more. I delight in the Savior who knows and loves each of us, better than we know and love ourselves. I delight in His restored Gospel that teaches of Him and shows us the way home.

A delightful Conference weekend to you!

Much love,


MP3 Link

In the Book of Mormon, Nephi speaks often of delight. He delights “in the things of the Lord,” “in the scriptures,” and “in the great and eternal plan” of our Father in Heaven (see 2 Nephi 4:15–16; 11:2–8). Notably, Nephi often remembers his sources of delight in the midst of affliction, serving to lift and focus his spirit on eternal blessings.
We too should delight in the things of the Lord for it will “lift” our hearts and give us cause to “rejoice” (2 Nephi 11:8). Let me mention a few of the things I delight in.
I delight in our Savior, Jesus Christ. Like Nephi, “I glory in my Jesus” (2 Nephi 33:6), in His ministering and saving roles upon the earth. He provides light and hope and has given us the Holy Ghost for further guidance and comfort along the pathway we should go. It is only through Him that we can return to our Father. “Salvation can come unto the children of men, only in and through the name of Christ” (Mosiah 3:17).
I delight in the restored gospel of Jesus Christ, built upon the foundation of apostles and prophets with whom I have had the blessed opportunity to serve. I testify that President Thomas S. Monson is the Lord’s prophet on the earth today. I delight that he is truly a Christlike minister to the one, reaching out in warmth and love to each individual.
I delight in priesthood keys and temples that dot the earth, making available to each of us eternal ordinances and covenants. Some of my most celestial days recently have been my own children’s temple marriages, with my father performing that holy ordinance.
I delight in the strength of youth as I see them throng the temples to do baptisms for the dead. I love their worthy adherence to the standards leading to the temple and their preparation to be faithful missionaries and righteous mothers and fathers.
I delight that I am a daughter of Heavenly Father, who loves me. I learned of my divine identity in my earliest years at my mother’s side. Just recently I saw my then three-year-old granddaughter learning her identity from her mother. Eliza had gone to bed distraught. She could be comforted only as her mother again told Eliza’s favorite true story about the special night when Heavenly Father distinctly and clearly whispered to her mommy’s heart that Eliza was a special spirit with a noble mission ahead.
I take great delight in my role as a nurturer, which allows me to express my deepest identity as a woman. I never fail to be struck by the way that women, young women, and even little girls seem to have an instinctive interest and ability in nurturing. It is not only a mother’s primary responsibility but also part of our “individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose” (“The Family: A Proclamation to the World,” Liahona, Oct. 2004, 49; Ensign, Nov. 1995, 102). To nurture is to teach, to foster development, to promote growth, to feed, and to nourish. Who would not shout for joy at being given such a blessed role?
The scriptures use the word nurture only twice and in both cases speak of the responsibility of parents to raise their children “in the nurture and admonition of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4; Enos 1:1).
President Hinckley also admonished both men and women to be nurturers. He said, “How much more beautiful would be the . . . society in which we live if every father . . . and . . . mother regarded [their] children . . . as gifts from the God of heaven . . . and brought them up with true affection in the wisdom and admonition of the Lord” (“These, Our Little Ones,” Liahona, Dec. 2007, 7; Ensign, Dec. 2007, 9).
I delight in families. Recently I delighted in the birth of a new grandchild into a family that understands that parents have the solemn responsibility to rear their children in love and righteousness. The older siblings had a natural curiosity about their little sister’s entrance into this world. Their first lessons about this holy subject were taught by loving parents in a sacred family setting, in the celestial climate that accompanies a new soul’s birth into mortality, and in the context of our Father’s great eternal plan. By contrast, the next day upon returning home from kindergarten, our granddaughter reported that she had learned that day in class “a big new term called sexual abuse.” I felt concerned that at this early age children already have to be aware, for safety reasons, of the negative facets of the subject they had so beautifully talked of the night before. I delighted as never before in a nurturing family founded upon the teachings of Jesus Christ.
Jacob taught that the Lord delights “in the chastity of women” (Jacob 2:28). I delight in the chastity and purity of all women and men. How it must grieve the Lord to see virtue violated and modesty mocked on every side in this wicked world. The Lord has provided for His children great joy through intimate, loving relationships, as my grandchildren were learning. I delight in the clarity of the proclamation to the world on the family, which warns that “individuals who violate covenants of chastity, who abuse spouse or offspring, or who fail to fulfill family responsibilities will one day stand accountable before God.”
I delight in the examples of those in the scriptures who walk by faith on their earthly journey. Each time I walk with Abraham and Isaac on the road to Mount Moriah, I weep, knowing that Abraham does not know that there will be an angel and a ram in the thicket at the end of the journey. We are each in the middle of our earthly path, and we don’t know the rest of our own stories. But we, as Abraham, are blessed with miracles.
I delight in the Lord’s mercies and miracles (see “Bless Our Fast, We Pray,” Hymns, no. 138). I know that His tender mercies and His miracles, large and small, are real. They come in His way and on His timetable. Sometimes it is not until we have reached our extremity. Jesus’s disciples on the Sea of Galilee had to toil in rowing against a contrary wind all through the night before Jesus finally came to their aid. He did not come until the “fourth watch,” meaning near dawn. Yet He did come. (See Mark 6:45–51.) My testimony is that miracles do come, though sometimes not until the fourth watch.
Right now I am exerting my faith and prayers and watching for miracles in behalf of loved ones who are physically sick, emotionally bereft, and spiritually astray. I delight in the Lord’s love for each of His children and in His wisdom to allow us individually tailored earthly experiences.
Finally, I delight in, more than I can express, the eternal love and constant help of my husband and the prayers and support of my children and parents during these years of my service as Young Women general president.
“My soul delighteth in the things of the Lord” (2 Nephi 4:16)—His law, His life, His love. To delight in Him is to acknowledge His hand in our lives. Our gospel duty is to do what is right and to love and delight in what is right. When we delight to serve Him, our Father in Heaven delights to bless us. “I, the Lord, . . . delight to honor those who serve me in righteousness and in truth unto the end” (D&C 76:5). I want to be worthy always of His delight. “I love the Lord, in Him my soul delights” (“I Love the Lord,” Jackman Music Corporation). In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.