If I had teenagers I would make a copy of it for each of my children and have FHE. Start giving them the ‘Mormon classic’ talks to start putting it in there.
Homework: Over the summer I want you to look up, ponder, pray, read, take notes on, and find out where you are. This is one of the best self evaluation talks on marriage. You can see what you did well and what you still need to work on. It breaks it down. “Agency & Love in Marriage” Lynn Robbins October 2000 pg 16
I like this one because it breaks down 1st Corinthians 13—Is patient, kind, envieth not…he breaks it down and shows what it looks like the Lord’s way. It shows Christlike, Obvious, and Not so Obvious.
It suffereth long…Christlike love-patient, tolerant, working….Obvious-cranky, intolerant…Not so obvious—inpatient, complains, and gives the silent treatment.
We have one priesthood holder. I will give you a mini focus as we get into this. Listen to today for you. With the proportion being mostly women I will tell women what they need to do in your marriage. You may not go home and tell your husband to do such and such. You may help them by sending “I” messages and tell them what I need.
I don’t know how long you were married before you realized you were different. When you are dating you are attracted to each other because of your similarities. The infatuation period in marriage lasts 2 years. During that time how much ‘effort’ did you put into that. When you were powered by infatuation it requires no conscience effort. You don’t have to say ‘Did you remember her?” They don’t realize there are other things in life. When you first got married did it matter you didn’t have any money. No you could eat Ramen together and it is just wonderful.
Then you graduate from school and real life sets in. You start having a family. Mom is pregnant and feels yucky. Then the baby is born. Then you have a colicky baby. He is busy getting a job and trying to provide. At that point where real life hits and you are thinking about different things thinking about doing something kind takes effort.
At that point…is when you have to develop love. You were in infatuation when you got married.
Love is a commitment to doing loving things. It is not necessarily a feeling.
Love now requires effort, thought, and planning, but you aren’t saying it’s not worth it.
If a husband and wife are willing to apply the scriptural definition of love to their relationship, even a stale marriage and romance can be revived. Stephen R. Covey relates the following experience:
“At one seminar, after I’d spoken on the importance of demonstrating character within the family, a man came up and said, ‘I like what you’re saying, but my wife and I just don’t have the same feelings for each other that we used to. I guess we don’t love each other anymore. What can I do?’
“‘Love her,’ I replied.
“He looked puzzled. ‘How do you love when you don’t feel love?’
“‘My friend,’ I responded, ‘love is a verb. The feeling of love is the fruit of love. So love your wife. You did it once, you can do it again. Listen. Empathize. Appreciate. It’s your choice. Are you willing to do that?’
“Of course, I was asking this man if he was willing to search within himself for the character required to make his marriage work. All our relationships follow the contours of life; they have ups and downs. This is why our families provide a critical measure of our character—and the opportunity, again and again to nurture it.”
“Agency & Love in Marriage” Lynn Robbins October 2000 pg 16
In a normal happy good marriage this happens. If you are experiencing these things you are having a normal marriage. Satan wants you to get stuck there. If you can be discontent long enough the marriage will part.
Before we get married you are in love with 80% of the things that are wonderful and ignore the 20%. After you have been married for 2 years you decide it is your goal to help fix his 20% and ignore the 80% that is good. You say I’m not nagging I’m helping. He doesn’t look at it as help. He looks at is as nagging. Stop parenting him. You may parent your children you may not parent your spouse. It’s not your responsibility to change him.
I was listening to the news…national news….she was important having an interview with the lady that was head of the Girl Scouts. They are starting a national campaign to ban the word ‘bossy’ in elementary school for girls. They have talked to children and the little girls and asked, “Would you rather be liked or a leader?” We want to be liked and everyone know that bosses are bossy. The reasoning was if we are intimidating little girls to not be leaders. Women should be 50% in Congress and everywhere else. This is society. To take women out of the home and make them equal to men. If that happens what happens to the doctrine of the family.
Class member: This has been on my mind. The feminist movement happening with women wearing pants to church. I was curious to hear why she thinks women need to have the priesthood. It was interesting to hear.
Heavenly Father sent us to earth with different purposes. In the Proclamation in the Family what does it say men’s divine purpose.
Men=Preside, Provide, Protect.
When Nephi was commanded to get the plates. “I will go and do as the Lord has commanded…I will prepare him a way that he may accomplish”
If the Lord commanded men in the pre-existence what will he do…provide a way for me to accomplish the thing he commanded them.
If he commanded women to nurture…provide a way for me to accomplish the thing he commanded them.
Heavenly Father will give different tools to men than to women. The biggest problem in our marriage is to make us equal in our marriage. The Lord didn’t intend for it to be the same. When you come and bring the gifts each of you have you create a whole, a one, a complete, a perfect union. I need both halves. That is a Godhood.
Understand that some of the gifts given to men….
Women need to be submissive or he can’t preside. If you are so efficient that you don’t need anything. You have made him feel useless. They get on the computer. They go into their hole and we wonder why. We get angry and upset. We have created an environment where we don’t need them. We have to learn to be submissive.
Provide—Gift given—Competitiveness, drive to be better. Men are blessed to be logical thinkers. They think things. They have an analytical mind. They take things apart…problems, things…and put them back together better. Men have done most of the scientific studies. With being logical thinkers they aren’t feeling thinkers. I am a basket of feelings and he wants to logically solve it. I’m having a bad day just because. They don’t wear their feelings on their shoulders. Something that is said to you, you will backpack it for years. We get offended. That gives them the ability to be successful in the workplace. It’s a gift given so they can succeed.
Class member: I took an institute class 10 years ago. It was the same topic. Most of the class we watched a Dateline. Finally the world has caught up to the differences between men and women. Men are able to go to war, do their thing, and come back. They compartmentalize it.
Men think segmented. If you have a discussion one night he goes to work that day you think about it all day and he hasn’t even thought about it. “Didn’t you even care enough to remember thinking about that from last night?” They can tunnel focus on something when you can see everything. We get angry because they don’t do it our way.
Protect—Gift given—physically stronger, Papa bear instinct. Part of protection now is to protect from media and what comes in. To protect from overuse. That is part of a man’s leadership role to protect.
I was listening to conference Bednar…a couple times back…he would ask the women how their marriages were. Interestingly enough most women were very happy in their marriage. They were righteous men. It would be for more of them to take a priesthood leadership in the home.
Nurture—Gifts given—emotions, strong emotions, empathy, inspiration-more in tune, charismatic-get along with people, service oriented, big picture, sense of beauty, women’s intuition, high moral standard, bring femininity. Gifts women have are mostly emotional.
Satan wants to take your gift and tweak them. Self pity, martyrdom, self righteousness, critical in our self righteousness…repent of our pride.
President Ezra Taft Benson
“You [women] were not created to be the same as men. Your natural attributes, affections, and personalities are entirely different from a man’s. They consist of faithfulness, benevolence, kindness, and charity. They give you the personality of a woman. They also balance the more aggressive and competitive nature of a man.
“The business world is competitive and sometimes ruthless. We do not doubt that women have both the brainpower and skills—and in some instances superior abilities—to compete with men. But by competing they must, of necessity, become aggressive and competitive. Thus their godly attributes are diminished and they acquire a quality of sameness with man” ( Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, 547–48).
President James E Faust “How Near The Angels” Ensign 1998 pg 95-97
“All of you will have to sometime answer to your natural womanly instincts, which the Prophet Joseph said are according to your natures. He said, “If you live up to your privileges, the angels cannot be restrained from being your associates.”
President Howard W. Hunter
“I suppose you would say it is a man’s viewpoint to throw a burden upon a woman to maintain the stability and the sweetness of marriage, but this seems to be her divine nature. She has a superior spirituality in the marriage relationship, and the opportunity to encourage, uplift, teach, and be the one who sets the example in the family for righteous living. When women come to the point of realizing that it is more important to be superior than to be equal, they will find the real joy in living those principles that the Lord set out in his divine plan” ( Teachings of Howard W. Hunter, 139).
Being superior means you ‘live at the Christlike attitude’. When you do it you lift your spouse.
The Holy Ghost by Joseph Fielding McKonkie
“…Women are by their very nature are more susceptible to revelation…It is natural for the woman to give and be gentle and compassionate….It is for women to give life. The father presides when the family kneels to pray, but it is the mother that will teach them to pray.”
It is to nurture your home and your children. If you use that superiority for any other purpose you abuse it. If you use it to criticize or try to preside in your home it is amiss.
That shows that both of them are brought together.
Women need to know to take your attributes you have been given and to focus them on helping your spouse magnify his divine responsibility. You marriage will blossom.
Men are responsible to help women develop her responsibility to nurture.
How we help each other is different.
Heavenly Father gave men the 3 “P’s”. I’m going to give you the 4 “A’s”. This is how you magnify their “P’s” . If you can master the 4 “A’s” they will master their “P’s”
Salt Lake Tribune October 1, 1970 quoting Elder Packer
“It is interesting to know how a man is put together, how incomplete he is. He whole physical, emotional, and spiritual nature, it depends on power found in woman. He has found the other ½ of himself. He will return again and again. It strengthens him for what life has given him. To transform a man into an able and effective LDS priesthood holder. There are 2 prerequisites. First, she must want to.
Think about the story of King Lamoni’s father. I am willing to give up all my sins to know the father. Sometimes we want to hold on to our criticizing and silent treatment.
“2nd she must know how. Part of knowing how includes the genius of encouraging him to meet obligations without replacing him in his role without presiding over him.”
Class member: Going back to protect. My husband gave a talk awhile ago that stuck with me about protecting. He talked about Noah and how when they were trying to escape from the Lamanites they were getting closer. He tells them to leave the women and children and some of the men left with King Noah. The women and children were killed. You look at that story and think there is no way to do that to my family. He related that to protecting our family. If you look at the social media those who are not keeping their families from that or who are addicted to pornography. You are doing the same thing King Noah and his men did.
Understand that these are your responsibilities no matter where your husband is right now. If you will commence the “A” it will come. You don’t get to say how good he gets to be before you keep your commandments. Let him and his weaknesses be between him and the Lord.
Preside—to help him. Be submissive. “A” Admire him. They need to be admired and respected and at the head of your home. How do you admire him when he presides. You allow him to preside. You ask him questions. When you teach a lesson or give a talk. When you have a challenge with the children you ask their opinion. You ask for priesthood blessings. When he does that you express your appreciation that he is worthy. You go to the temple with him. You tell him how grateful you are to be at his side.
Elder James E Faust “Happiness is Having A Father Who Cares” General Conference October 1973
“Let every mother understand that if she does anything to diminish her children’s father or the father’s image in the eyes of the children, it may injure and do irreparable damage to the self-esteem and personal security of the children themselves. How infinitely more productive and satisfying it is for a woman to build up her husband rather than tear him down. You women are so superior to men in so many ways that you demean yourselves by posturing or belittling masculinity and manhood.”
Provide—“A” Appreciate. I didn’t understand the pressure men were under to provide until they started getting married. They came into me and said Mom this is scary. Now I have to take care of someone else. That starts when they get married. You get more children. You need a bigger home. They want to provide things to make it easy. Men don’t come home and say this isn’t a hard life. They just keep going out to work every day and keep doing it. When they do come home and they are doing everything you can to keep you at home and you say, “This house is driving me crazy. I don’t know how we will manage to get these kids braces.” That is a ping on them. What if he came home and say, “Man I wish this house was clean.” That’s a direct ping.
In appreciating a man is stop griping. Work as well as you can at keeping the budget balanced. Sometimes the men are in charge of the money, but be mindful and talk with him about a budget. Be careful about ‘use it up wear it out make it do or do without”. Don’t be in the groove of wanting the biggest, newest, most reasonable.
When they want to buy something for themselves try to make it happen. They have been working hard to do it. Validate him. He is the provider. Do you think we could ever make that happen? Let them feel like they are in charge. We make them feel like we are 10 and we are controlling the money. Help them feel appreciated for what they make. Tell them often that you appreciate the sacrifices you make.
Protect--(2 “A’s”) “A” Affection—they want you to make them feel like you need them. Society says women do it yourself. That makes men feel useless. Without being needy to say ‘Honey can you open this jar for me.’ They want to feel needed. Submissive goes in here too. Most men like to be touched. Good healthy touching. Patting their shoulder. Giving them a kiss. It makes them feel important. How many of you started out with your husband opening your door and now you do it yourself? Dad and Mom need to sit together.
Class member: My daughter was having a conversation with return missionaries at work. We are afraid to open doors for them because they get mad or roll their eyes or go through another door.
“A” Acceptance….You do not tell your mother irritants you have about your spouse. You have no right to confess the sins of someone else. If you have a problem take it up with them. You don’t complain.
President Hinckley “Forget who you thought you married and fall in love with who you married.”
Story in talk by President Uchtdorf CES Fireside “What is Truth?”
I am reminded of a story about a couple who had been married for 60 years. They had rarely argued during that time, and their days together passed in happiness and contentment. They shared everything and had no secrets between them—except one. The wife had a box that she kept at the top of a sideboard, and she told her husband when they were married that he should never look inside.
As the decades passed, the moment came that her husband took the box down and asked if he could finally know what it contained. The wife consented, and he opened it to discover two doilies and $25,000. When he asked his wife what this meant, she responded, “When we were married, my mother told me that whenever I was angry with you or whenever you said or did something I didn’t like, I should knit a small doily and then talk things through with you.”
The husband was moved to tears by this sweet story. He marveled that during 60 years of marriage he had only disturbed his wife enough for her to knit two doilies. Feeling extremely good about himself, he took his wife’s hand and said, “That explains the doilies, but what about the $25,000?”
His wife smiled sweetly and said, “That’s the money I got from selling all the doilies I’ve knitted over the years.”
Scriptures for women….
D&C 25—revelation to Emma Smith… ‘what I have said to one I have said to all’
· Vs 14 “Let thy soul delight in my husband” = Focus on the 80%. Find joy in the positives.
· “Murmur not” = Stop complaining. You don’t always understand what is going on inside of them.
· “Role as wife comfort in trials or concerns, comfort in meekness” = quiet spirit. Don’t raise your voice and don’t give the silent treatment.
· “Go with him and be his companion.” = go with them. We develop the habit of doing things separately. We need to do things together. To provide and protect a family they have very strong natural desires. They were given to him so he would settle down to want to have a family. Satan wants to skew them and have his eyes wander. Those are natural temptations for men. They aren’t bad if they have the thought, but if they dwell on them. When you are with him they go right on through and out when you are with him. We need to spend more time with our spouses.
· “Have a song in your heart” = Have a happy spirit. Are you happy to see them come home? Smile. We are so busy doing things you would say you are happy. Tell your face you are happy. Sing a song. Make him feel like you want to be in your home.
· “Cleave unto covenants” =
· “Beware of pride” = thinking that you know what’s right and have the answers.
· “Keep the commandments” =
· “Lay aside the things of the world” = The worlds view of what he should do, what you should do.
· “Seek for spiritual treasure” =
· “Wives submit to your husbands” = submissive does not mean you are doormat. You are submitting to the will of your husband like the Savior submitted to the Father. You allow him to preside. You are not less or demeaned.
Nurture—emotional gifts that men don’t understand because they don’t have those gifts.
She needs to be listened to. You listen you don’t have the answer. You ask questions for further clarification. Empathize and appreciate her. Express often. A women needs to feel cherished. Not “BE” cherished, but “FEEL” cherished. I need to feel like I am the most important person in the world. I need to feel like he feels like I’m the best mother ever.
In the beginning of the class we talked about developing family motto, cheer, mission statement.
“This Shield of Faith” Boyd K Packer 1995
“That shield of faith is not produced in a factory but at home in a cottage industry.
The ultimate purpose of all we teach is to unite parents and children in faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, that they are happy at home, sealed in an eternal marriage, linked to their generations, and assured of exaltation in the presence of our Heavenly Father.
Lest parents and children be “tossed to and fro,” and misled by “cunning craftiness” of men who “lie in wait to deceive” (Eph. 4:14), our Father’s plan requires that, like the generation of life itself, the shield of faith is to be made and fitted in the family. No two can be exactly alike. Each must be handcrafted to individual specifications.
The plan designed by the Father contemplates that man and woman, husband and wife, working together, fit each child individually with a shield of faith made to buckle on so firmly that it can neither be pulled off nor penetrated by those fiery darts.
It takes the steady strength of a father to hammer out the metal of it and the tender hands of a mother to polish and fit it on. Sometimes one parent is left to do it alone. It is difficult, but it can be done.”
Let them each build their own shield of faith.
The church is great in teaching doctrine and principles, but in the home is where children will be fortified and build the defense to fight the fiery darts. In the home with the parents…husband and wife. It takes both to individually equip and build those shields of faith for our children. The Lord intended for men and women to be different. You underestimate your power if you don’t uplift, build, magnify your spouse. We get too focused on whether they are building us. Their job is not to make us happy. Our job is to make us happy. To make us be good. To support them in making them happy. We often want to make them good so they can make us happy.
I testify to you the only way to happiness is through the Lords plan. The Lords plan is the plan of selflessness.
“When your marriage ceases to be a irritant and becomes a quest (to make your spouse happy) in that moment you will find great power.”
Neal A Maxwell "The Women of God" Ensign May 1978
We know so little, brothers and sisters, about the reasons for the division of duties between womanhood and manhood as well as between motherhood and priesthood. These were divinely determined in another time and another place. We are accustomed to focusing on the men of God because theirs is the priesthood and leadership line. But paralleling that authority line is a stream of righteous influence reflecting the remarkable women of God who have existed in all ages and dispensations, including our own. Greatness is not measured by coverage in column inches, either in newspapers or in the scriptures. The story of the women of God, therefore, is, for now, an untold drama within a drama.
We men know the women of God as wives, mothers, sisters, daughters, associates, and friends. You seem to tame us and to gentle us, and, yes, to teach us and to inspire us. For you, we have admiration as well as affection, because righteousness is not a matter of role, nor goodness a matter of gender. In the work of the Kingdom, men and women are not without each other, but do not envy each other, lest by reversals and renunciations of role we make a wasteland of both womanhood and manhood.
Spencer W. Kimball "The Role of Righteous Women" Ensign Nov 1979
We had full equality as his spirit children. We have equality as recipients of God’s perfected love for each of us.
Within those great assurances, however, our roles and assignments differ. These are eternal differences—with women being given many tremendous responsibilities of motherhood and sisterhood and men being given the tremendous responsibilities of fatherhood and the priesthood.
Merrill J. Bateman "The Eternal Family"
When a man understands how glorious a woman is, he treats her differently. When a woman understands that a man has the seeds of divinity within him, she honors him not only for who he is but for what he may become.
Men and women have different strengths and weaknesses, and marriage is a synergistic relationship in which spiritual growth is enhanced because of the differences.