Teaching Our Children to Understand

Sister Cheryl A. Esplin's talk was so inspired - well, that's a given! I loved the back-to-back messages on our children. The compounded message by Elder Packer and Sister Esplin packed a wallop for me. I really enjoyed both talks. Here are some highlights in my book.

"As years pass, many details in my life are becoming more and more dim, but some of the memories that remain most clear are the births of each of our children. Heaven seemed so near, and if I try, I can almost feel those same feelings of reverence and wonder I experienced each time one of those precious infants was placed in my arms."

- I remember feeling this so strongly when Gwenna was born. It was like having a tiny body straight from God's presence, maybe even a little bit of Him right in our homes and arms.


"Nephi taught that the role of the Holy Ghost is to carry the truth 'unto the hearts of the children of men' (2 Nephi 33:1). Our role as parents is to do all we can to create an atmosphere where our children can feel the influence of the Spirit and then help them recognize what they are feeling.
... Sometimes the most powerful way to teach our children to understand a doctrine is to teach in the context of what they are experiencing right at that moment. These moments are spontaneous and unplanned and happen in the normal flow of family life. They come and go quickly, so we need to be alert and recognize a teaching moment when our children come to us with a question or worry, when they have problems getting along with siblings or friends, when they need to control their anger, when they make a mistake, or when they need to make a decision."

- I have been working on this with Gwenna. I've seen her immeasurable joy as of late when she know she has made good choices, despite the times when it would be easy not to. I am learning how Gwenna feels when she feels the Lord's love and how to point that out to her.


"In every teaching situation all learning and all understanding are best nurtured in an atmosphere of warmth and love where the Spirit is present."

- This was a life changing moment for me, hearing this quote. Sounds extreme, I know, but I mean it. As of late, I have struggled with being patient, slow to anger, long-suffering, perpetually kind, and Christlike. This simple sentence reminded me that teaching my children almost anything in the wrong spirit (contentiously) may be worse than not teaching it at all. I have made a very strong effort to be better. I may need to read this every week for the rest of my life.


Sister Esplin shared the words to "I am a Child of God" and it reminded me of when my children were small. I'd sing to them, "You are a child of God, and He has sent you here" - in that personalized tense. It brought tears to my eyes nearly every time. They are children of the Most High and it's our sacred responsibility and priviledge to help them become all they can be.

1 comment:

Heather said...

Oh goodness. That last quote and your words afterwards are so me right now. I have been really struggling with being kind and patient in my responses, especially at the end of the day with no back-up and I am just so emotionally taxed.