Tag Archive | Father

Second Chances

Second chances are kind of special things.  I have a friend who lives the next town over who has been divorced for a while now, and I simply do not know how she does it.  She works and has four kids.  Two of the four are angels, but the other two are, well, hmm, I think “brats” is the nicest way I can think of to put it.  She struggles all the time and is constantly at her wits end.  Yes, they are that bad.

I just found out that she got engaged over the holidays.  I can’t even fathom how she had time to meet anyone, but I am glad she did.  I can’t imagine what type of a person is willing to take on the challenge of rebuilding that home.  Wow.  All I can say is wow.

I can’t think of a word better than “miracle” to describe what a father and husband will do for that home.  The hand of the Lord is most definitely at work here.  I wish them the best.

A God of Mercy

I’ve had 2 rather shocking stories going through my mind.  I feel to share both today.

Story 1  —  A woman struggled for years with the fact that her father had killed himself.  She struggled with not only the pain of losing him, but with trying to reconcile herself to the fact that this wonderful person, who had done so many wonderful things in his life, had chosen so poorly to end it himself.  He had been sick, but that didn’t justify suicide.

Many years later she herself became seriously ill.  During her illness she couldn’t ever sleep and couldn’t function.  Her mind became stressed with lack of sleep and constant pain.  Only with the help of the doctors and modern hospital equipment was she able to eventually make a full recovery.  As she researched her disease, she found out that it was hereditary, and only in the few years before her episode had doctors really been able to identify and treat it.  Before that, it is suspected many ended up relegated to mental institutions, or dead.  She learned and understood that God was aware of every factor that lead to her father’s decision, and that God would judge in all His wisdom, complete knowledge, and mercy.  The condemnation had never been hers to make.

Story 2  —  Second is a murder story.  It was about a man who had arranged to have his entire family killed.  He arranged for the “hit man” to graze him to divert suspicion from his own involvement.  The plan was carried out and was successful, except his father who eventually recovered.  The story focused on the man who was eventually caught, admitted his involvement, but never showed any remorse or regret.  He had come from a loving family and had no reason to wish any of them dead.  He was given the death sentence.

The true story there should have been the father. At first the father wanted revenge on whoever hurt and killed his family.  However, after some prayer, he experienced a complete change of heart.  He told his son, the only family he had left, that he had chosen to forgive whoever did this to their family.  The son remained silent, positive in his own belief that the sentiment would not apply if the truth ever came out.  Eventually the police were able to piece together the source of the apparently random shooting, and reveal the son’s guilt, but the father remained true to his forgiveness.  He never once sought revenge on his son.  He never stopped loving him.  He visited him regularly in prison and headed up the appeals.  He had already unconditionally forgiven the person who had taken his family from him.

This humble father did what we have all been asked to do, despite his trying circumstances, and turned judgment completely over to God.

Next time I want to judge, I hope to remember that I may not really have the entire picture.  Next time I think it is too hard to forgive someone, and still show love, I’ll remember what unconditional love can really look like.  We are told that God is merciful, and I believe that mercy is one of the powers that creates miracles.

Gifts from Father

 

English: Jesus Christ with children

English: Jesus Christ with children (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

When I had my first child, I realized really quickly that children are simply gifts from God.  Each child is entrusted to me, and the best I can hope for is to not mess them up, but allow them the chance to become what their first Father has in store for them.

 

In our faith, each baby is given a blessing when they are born.  This blessing is given through the priesthood and basically gives them their name, and a blessing from their Father in Heaven.  Thinking about it, it is sort of like Princess Aurora receiving gifts from the fairies – or whatever they are.  With each of my children, I quickly identified a single word that summed up their unique talents.  My children were joy, comfort, peace, calm, love, compassion, and strength.

 

Through the years I have been amazed to see how each child, even from young ages, shows each of these unique gifts.  A quick story today is about my youngest, Mr. Strength.  His strength is definitely physical, but it is other things as well.  Yesterday morning this four year old boy opened his eyes, smiled at me, and said something I felt showed real strength of character.  “Mom, I love you.  When I go to preschool I miss you so much.”  It takes a real man to admit when he needs his mother!  Especially this tough little boy who would never show weakness by crying at school.

 

 

 

Amazing Children

Is is just me, or are children today amazing!  It was Kimber’s 6 year old birthday today.  In addition to being super excited about everything and having a mile long list of things she wanted to get and to do, there were two things that stood out.

Request 1:     Can we all be nice to my sister April for my birthday.  She’s had a rough day and I think it would be really nice to have everyone be nice to her for my birthday.  We can surprise her.

Request 2:     She “conned” Dad into taking her to the store and buying a present for her to give to everyone else.  She has so excitedly wrapped it up, put everyone’s name under the “to” section, and her name in the “from:” category.  She has been talking about it all week.  (She did share the secret with April because she just couldn’t stand it anymore.)

I know one of her sisters learned how to knit a teddy bear to give to her, and another sister spent all the money she had on presents for her sister.

Who says that everyone today is selfish and can only think of themselves?  I think the opposite.  I think children come to earth thinking about and loving others, and it is our society, our culture, and even parents who show them by example to be myopic and discourage giving of themselves to others.  (Sorry about the soapbox.)

I know there are so many others who have experienced the absolute miracle of the innocence of children.  Children hold a special place in all our hearts and for a good reason.

Entire Week in One Post

Latter-day Saints believe in the resurrected J...

The Christus Statue in the North Visitors’ Center on Temple Square in Salt Lake City (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The BYU Carillon stands as one of the landmark...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: N. Eldon Tanner Building (with additi...

 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

J. Reuben Clark Law School

 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Okay, I have not forgotten about my need to blog a miracle daily, I just failed to make arrangements to be near the internet on my latest vacation.  I’m going to do some quick catch-up.

Thursday June 14th – attended the Williams Family Reunion.  Gave gratitude for family who worked so diligently to make it a memorable event.  Reflected on the miracles of modern travel that allowed family to attend from literally all corners of the nation.  Thought it was so cool to be able to watch videos of my grandparents with my children who were not even born when they passed.  I think that would be considered a miracle of technology working to establish the “Spirit of Elijah” in the hearts of my children.  Just because I can explain the technology does not mean that it is not a miracle.

Friday June 15th – Met with a BYU counselor to help my daughter refine her college major/minor and career focus.  I think it is miraculous that we were able to take this trip and were able to meet with the people we needed to.  Shanna is receiving exactly the help she needs when she needs it.  It was so fun to see her eyes light up when we spoke of her options.  As someone whose husband never received that help, and has been unable to find his “place in life,” I consider it a miracle that my children have such great prospects.  I have high hopes that the poverty of the parents will not curse the children yet another generation.  That will be a miracle worth seeing.  I also watched my older daughters take my younger children to tour campus as I worked to help with he wedding.  It is amazing to get a sneak preview of the abilities of the rising generation of mothers.

Saturday June 16th – Saw my sister get married.  Sure people get married every day, but this wedding was different.  Carrie has had a long wait for a husband.  Her life has been filled with unbelievable heartaches, tragedies, and loneliness.  Watching her be sealed, with her two sets of “in-laws” from her two murdered fiance’s, the veil was thin.  Today was a day of fulfilled promises and of rejoicing.  For Carrie and our family, there is no question that today was a miracle.

Sunday June 17th – A day of personal triumph.  Today was supposed to be the day that my husband and I separated.  I don’t know how I have found the strength to continue on in my trials and still stand by him.  It is still so hard to love him so much, and to still blame him for so much.  I know my children all love him unconditionally, despite their poverty.  What type of world do we live in where I am so tempted to destroy such a precious thing as a family who has great love, just because we can not find a way to make a living?  Les is not perfect, but none of us really are.  He never intends to hurt me or us, but the world does it for him every time I can’t afford basic clothes for the kids, or gas for the car, or even enough to keep the utilities on.  I am amazed every time he keeps trying anyway – and I know he always has.  Thanks to Mom and Dad for the cash they gave Les for Fathers Day.  We literally did not have enough to put gas in the car this afternoon, and here we are on a family vacation I did not want to go on.  I chose family over money this week, and I was sustained for another day.

Monday June 18th – Shanna lined up her housing for next school year.  I still don’t know how she has been blessed to afford college.  We are still trying to account for extra money in her bank account.  As she double checked her numbers again and again she found that she was able to sign her contract for a very nice apartment very close to campus.  I could tell that not having to settle for the cheapest dump out there was a relief for her.  She is being blessed with hope for her future and with the resources she needs.  I know the Lord loves her, and I know she is doing what she was sent here to do.

(BTW, because my husband was worried about me, he made arrangements to stay on vacation with us longer than he had planned.  Because he stayed longer he was also able to see Shanna’s apartment for the fall.  Not exactly a miracle, but a blessing for us, because Les really does love his daughter, and they were both so happy he could see it as well.)

Tuesday July 19th – The miracle for this day is simply the healing that has come this entire week with family.  We have had wonderful family get togethers with family who does not always really care about each other  I have been able to find a way to spend time with everyone that I needed to.  I have seen my children re-connect with cousins in a very positive way.  I have seen my husband forgive his father this week for years of hurt.  It may not be the opening of the Red Sea, but anyone who has struggled with family relationships may understand that healing of relationships is as miraculous as healing of bodies.

Wednesday July 20th – Two miracles today, possibly three.  When we stopped by Grandpa’s house to say good-bye, I was thrilled to be given the results of a late night and early morning of dedicated research from Doris.  She handed me her work on my cousin’s biological father’s genealogy.  I am excited to share that with her, but that will have to wait for another day.  Then as we headed home, Les got a series of phone calls that lined up enough work for us to be able to finish paying all of our bills for the rest of the month, and then a little.  Not a single call for work during our vacation, then everything we needed immediately when it ended.  The third miracle may involve the softening of a very hard heart.  It remains to be seen what happens with that one though.

Thursday July 21st – I came home and crashed.  Thanks to my VT partner who took the initiative anyway to make sure we got out and visited our sisters.  Heard some things I needed to hear.  The real miracle for the day though, is that Les had the energy he needed to go do a late night tune after coming home from a vacation.  Just a few months ago that would not have been physically possible because of his CFS and Fibermayalga.  He should have been bedridden today.

Almost caught up now.