14 And ye will not suffer your children that they go hungry, or naked; neither will ye suffer that they transgress the laws of God, and fight and quarrel one with another, and serve the devil, who is the master of sin, or who is the evil spirit which hath been spoken of by our fathers, he being an enemy to all righteousness.
15 But ye will teach them to walk in the ways of truth and soberness; ye will teach them to love one another, and to serve one another.
So this scripture passage comes to mind often… It is King Benjamin teaching his people, and as a mother his counsel is very poignant.
- Don’t suffer your children that they go hungry
- As a mom, I feel that I am constantly shopping for food, planning meals, cooking meals, cleaning up meals, washing hands, etc. etc. on repeat. As we sit at the table together I find it is a rewarding time to talk together. Sometimes I am tempted to get my own stuff done, snack in the kitchen, while my kids are occupied for 20 minutes. However, the times I actually sit down to eat with them are some of my favorite times. I love reading a book to my kids when they get home from school and have a snack at the table. I love preparing Sunday dinner and talking about a time when we felt the spirit. We can’t suffer our children to go hungry…both temporally and spiritually.
- …or naked
- This seems simple. Put clothes on your kids. However, if you’ve tried to dress three kids…three GIRLS, then it is not so easy. I love watching their independence grow as they pick out their clothes. I had to take all of Carmen’s clothes away because we were having too many tears in the morning. They just disappeared. 😉 . Nora always seems to pick comfy, bright clothes, and Afton is obsessed with shoes. My kids are rarely naked, but getting them dressed is not as easy as just putting some clothes on.
- neither will ye suffer that they transgress the laws of God
- Rules…commandments… This is an important concept to know. When I was helping with Carmen’s class I realized just how many times she had to follow directions throughout the day. Bubble in your mouth, hands in your lap, line up, listen to the whistle… It was a lot to take in. They were all very well behaved and Carmen is doing very well. However, it made me realize just how important it is to have structure. Do my children know what the laws of God are? If they don’t KNOW them, then they may transgress them. I feels my heart with so much peace that I know how to teach my children right and wrong. As we read the scriptures we relate them to their challenges, and it’s incredible how these lessons pertain to everyone!
- …and fight and quarrel one with another, and serve the devil, who is the master of sin, or who is the evil spirit which hath been spoken of by our fathers, he being an enemy to all righteousness.
- This is the big one. This is the one that is testing me. My kids are starting to fight more often now. It’s more than babies fighting, because that wasn’t too intense. Now it is deliberate fighting… Nora coloring on Carmen’s homework just to get a reaction. Foot stomping, door slamming, crying and hurt feelings. It’s a little much. I don’t want Satan to win. I don’t want to lose the Spirit in our home. I remember one mother saying, “How do you expect your children to combat with the devil every day? I get on my knees every morning and plead for them to be protected and safe.” This stood out to me. It’s something I pray for every morning. Help us to keep the Spirit and stay protected. And please, oh please, help us get along.
- But ye will teach them to walk in the ways of truth and soberness
- We taught our children about Mormon, the prophet in the Book of Mormon. He was entrusted at age 10 with the work of the Lord. He was sober. He was true.
- Ye will teach them to love one another, and to serve one another
- We went out to pick up trash as a family one Sunday. It was near a road by the school and it was trashed! Literally. I loved watching my girls feel the joy of service. I know my parents would often quote this line. Love one another and serve one another. That is the secret to a close-knit family. I am looking for ways to help my children serve each other. Doing acts of kindness and looking out for their best interests. It’s an important part of motherhood.