Sunday, May 23, 2010

On Prioritizing

Sister Julie B. Beck, LDS General Relief Society President, recently spoke at a BYU Women's Conference. Her awesome talk was so helpful for me as a mom, but would be helpful for anyone. She categorized everything that we do into three categories:
1. Essential.
2. Necessary.
3. Nice to do.
Items in the Essential category focus around receiving personal revelation. These include reading scriptures every day, pondering, fasting, frequent temple attendance, repenting in preparation for Sacrament meeting, service, sharing the gospel, and most importantly-prayer. Keeping a pen and paper near us when we pray is a great idea so we can write down impressions that come to us. "Seeking revelation is the most important skill we can achieve in this life. Being able to feel the Lord's spirit upon us is the most important education we can receive."
The Necessary category includes homemaking. We can try to model our homes after the temple, but since people make messes, we do the best we can. We can try to have the Spirit at our meals, smile, support our husbands, live within our means, become self-reliant, and love one another. This has helped me be a little more dedicated to my homemaking--well, I'm not necessarily more dedicated, but I feel more purpose in doing the laundry or dishes, and cleaning up yet again.
Things that are Nice to Do include crafts, hobbies, reading, lunch with friends, etc. They add variety to our life, but won't save us. "When our priorities are out of order, we lose power." She said, also, that when the essential and necessary things are taken care of, it is surprising how much time we have for the nice to do items.
Sister Beck said that as mothers, the afternoon shift is the hardest but most special shift. It is when our family members are hungry, tired, and unloveable, and we are hungry, tired, and unloveable. But it also when family members are the most teachable and grateful.
One quote I loved is: "Taking care of our posterity takes precedence over everything else."
She also suggested getting a new copy of the Book of Mormon and writing these questions in the front: Who am I? What are my responsibilities in the House of Israel? and How do I fulfill these responsibilities? In the back of the Book of Mormon, write the answers to the questions, as found while reading the Book of Mormon.

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