Monday, February 6, 2012

top of the world

 pictures taken in Aug. 2010 @ the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum

I'm on top of the world lookin' down on creation...
and the only explanation I can find...
is the love that I've found ever since you've been around 
it has put me at the top of the world...  
-The Carpenters

How did I get so lucky to be with him?  He truly is my better half.  He helps me laugh when I am taking things too seriously.  (I always take things too seriously.) He supports me in every goal or ambition.  He is my best friend---I can tell him anything.  He understands me.  He cares about us.  I love him.

I was asked to teach a Sunday lesson at church to the Relief Society (a women's group).  The assignment was on LOVE & MARRIAGE with the emphasis (taken from Daughters in My Kingdom) as follows:  "The cultivation of Christlike qualities is a demanding and relentless task..."

As I thought about what I could say, one thing that kept returning to my mind was something Patricia Holland said, "If I were Satan and wanted to destroy a society, I think I would stage a full blown blitz on women.  I would keep them so distraught and distracted that they would never find the calming strength and serenity for which their gender has always been known."  One Thing Is Needful, Patricia Holland; Ensign Oct. 1987

It left me wondering in which ways I am distracted and how I could improve my relationship with Danny.  I decided on three specific distractions to overcome for myself-

"I have heard President Hinckley teach publicly and privately what I suppose all leaders have said---that most problems in love and marriage ultimately start with selfishness."
How Do I Love Thee, Jeffrey R. Holland

being easily provoked
"Think of how many arguments could be avoided, how many hurt feelings could be spared, how many cold shoulders and silent treatments could be ended, and, in a worst-case scenario, how many breakups and divorces could be avoided if we were not so easily provoked, if we thought no evil of one another, and if we not only did not rejoice in iniquity but didn't rejoice even in little mistakes."
How Do I Love Thee, Jeffrey R. Holland

"Bite your tongue if you have to.  'He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city' (Proverbs 16:32)  At least one difference between a tolerable marriage and a great one may be that willingness in the latter to allow some things to pass without comment, without response."
How Do I Love Thee, Jeffrey R. Holland

As I studied these distractions I found some wonderful solutions that I need to work on:

for selfishness---be deliberate
find ways, on purpose, with thought and genuineness to show love
don't assume that it is assumed--show love by my actions
Mother Theresa said, "Do small things with great love."
plan dates and time to be together
turn off phones and electronics for said dates
remember making memories is more important than receiving things

easily provoked---laughter
I love this from Joseph B. Wirthlin-
"The first thing we can do is learn to laugh.  Have you ever seen an angry driver who, when someone else makes a mistake, reacts as though that person has insulted his honor, his family, his dog, and his ancestors all the way back to Adam?...Our laughter created cherished memories for us...The next time you're tempted to groan, you might try to laugh instead.  It will extend your life and make the lives of all those around you more enjoyable."

criticism---seek optimism (or bite my tongue)

"'The Spirit of the gospel is optimistic; it trusts in God and looks on the bright side of things.  The opposite or pessimistic spirit drags men down and away from God, looks on the dark side, murmurs, complains, and is slow to yield obedience.'  (Orson F. Whitney) We should honor the Savior's declaration to "be of good cheer.'  Speak hopefully.  Speak encouragingly, including about yourself.  Try not to complain and moan incessantly.  As someone once said 'Even in the golden age of civilization someone undoubtedly grumbled that everything looked too yellow.'"

Another thing I could do better...posting pictures of Danny and I.
I could take a few more too.
I hardly ever post pictures of the two of us.
Next time it wont be so wordy.


Stueller said...

Love your thoughts, I have to tell you one of my favorite books is called "A Quiet Heart" by Patrica Holland... amazing book on finding "quietness" or peace again in our heart, I bet you would love it!

Annemarie said...

I love this and I love that biq squeeze hug picture!

Connie Miller said...

You're the best -- I love the way you are able to personalize all these marvelous quotes. I think you've mastered them already.

Tebbs Family said...

Your lesson was wonderful and I wish we'd had more time!! Your distractions seem to be very similar to mine... thanks for the ideas!

nikki said...

I agree with your mom - I think you have already mastered them! You and Danny are a great example to me of how a couple should be. I love watching you two interact with each other.

I wish I could have heard your lesson...and the photo of his squeezing you is great!

Artisan Bakers said...

I LOVE this!

carol said...

*love* that picture of you and Danny!

Michel (Yo Mama) said...

What's wrong with wordy? I like words and the more the better ... unless you can't spell ... okay they are fine even if you can't spell...

I like it

Alison said...

You guys are too freaking cute!