My first thought when I read this heading was “Really? More marriage and family?” It seems as if the last several topics I have been studying have been about marriage and family. But that is only appropriate, since marriage and family should be the top priorities of every Latter Day Saint (Mormon). After I came to it with this new attitude, I really felt like I got a lot out of this seemingly basic Relief Society lesson.
“As Latter Day Saints, we are living with an eternal perspective, not just for the moment.” I have to remind myself of this every single day. Especially as a mother of young children. Young children can seem to make every day seem like your last. I don’t meant that in a bad way – it’s just the truth. Raising children is hard. It is the most demanding, stressful, thankless job I have ever done in my life. But at the end of the day (and sometimes smack in the middle) I am reminded that it also the most rewarding, most precious, and most meaningful job I could ever have. And the latter part comes from having that eternal perspective. Even if I do have to remind myself about it every now and then.
“We know that our marriage can last forever. Death can part us from one another only temporarily. Nothing can part us forever except our own disobedience. This knowledge helps us work harder to have a happy, successful marriage.” This is most definitely true. Knowing that I can be with my husband forever encourages me to work harder at getting to know him, understanding him, and working together with him. We need to learn how to have a great marriage, since it will be a forever one.
“We know that our family relationships can continue throughout eternity. This knowledge helps us be careful in teaching and training our children. It also helps us show them greater patience and love. As a result, we should have a happier home.” I know that my understanding of our children’s nature and where they came from helps me love them better. But because they are mine for eternity, I feel a great desire to help them become the best followers of Christ they could possibly be. And when I am doing that, our home is a much happier place.
The manual gives a quote from Spencer W. Kimball that says, “In selecting a companion for life and for eternity, certainly the most careful planning and thinking and praying and fasting should be done to be sure that of all the decisions, this one must not be wrong.” I like this quote, but I was immediately reminded of President Thomas S. Monson’s talk from April General Conference. He said, “Perhaps you are afraid of making the wrong choice. To this I say that you need to exercise faith. Find someone with whom you can be compatible. Realize that you will not be able to anticipate every challenge which may arise, but be assured that almost anything can be worked out if you are resourceful and if you are committed to making your marriage work.” This is my very favorite quote about finding an eternal companion. Marriage takes faith, and I think that is important to remember. But like President Kimball said, we still need to be careful, and we need to plan, think, fast, and pray – and then, move forward with faith.
“When you ask for a temple recommend, you should remember that entering the temple is a sacred privilege. It is a serious act, not something to be taken lightly.” I love attending the temple. I am so grateful for my temple marriage. I know that it is a sacred privilege to be able to attend the temple, and I am grateful that I am able to live worthy of that beautiful blessing.
How does your knowledge and testimony of Eternal Marriage change the way you act? Does it change the way you treat your spouse and your children? How did you come to the decision to marry your spouse? How do you feel when you ask for a temple recommend, receive one, and enter the House of the Lord?