Saturday, January 19, 2013

Blessings of Sisterhood & Motherhood

Today I had the privilege of spending the afternoon with the Chuukese ladies of the Mwan Branch. 
The activity was to begin at 9am this morning but it has been raining here in Chuuk non stop for a couple of days.  I figured most people would be on Chuukese time which is at least several hours later than planned.  Anyway I went to the church around 12:30 thinking that lunch would be over so I took dessert instead of a salad to share.  Well, lunch was just getting served.  This huge amount of food on the plate is pretty standard around here.  I don't think I have ever eaten that much food in an entire day.  I passed up eating because I had just left our apartment where I had been preparing Sunday dinner for the elders and as you know you always have to taste what your making so I was pretty stuffed by the time I arrived.  

After lunch we played the cookie game which was very funny and the ladies enjoyed playing it.  
Then we played Chuukese version Simon Says, again very funny to watch.  After all the fun games we moved into a little more spiritual game.  
It is called "Obey and Listen" you write down 10 of your families names each on their own piece of paper including your own name.   Your kids, spouse, parents, grandparents, nieces, nephews, grand kids, doesn't matter just 10 family names.  The leader then tells a story that you're all on an airplane taking a trip.   Then she says 3 of your family members have been disobedient and they are throwing them off the plane, she comes to you and you have to give her 3 names.  Who are you going to throw out? Some mom's were like I can't throw my family away, NO.  The leader then says yes you must choose 3 to throw out, they have to go.  
The game continues until you're down to the last 2 names then she says 1 has not been listening and has been very disobedient. We only have room for 1 person, you must give up a name.  Most of the ladies still had their own name and one other and now they had to choose either themselves or the other person.  
This game was very touching and the spirit was strong in the room.  It really gave each and everyone pause about how important their family was to them and what was truly important.  

After all had made the choice they were asked to come up and tell who they kept on the plane and why.  Many tears were shed, one chose her oldest daughter to stay because she could carry on her posterity. ‘Children are an heritage of the Lord’
Another chose her husband because together they could be sealed for Time and All Eternity. “Husband and wife have a solemn responsibility to love and care for each other and for their children".
The next said her daughter because they have been planning on going to the temple this year to be sealed as a family and just recently her daughter told her she wasn't going with them and that she didn't want to be sealed to her family.  This sister just cried and cried. She said if she let this daughter stay on the plane it would give her time to change her mind so they could have her in the next life.  Parents have a sacred duty to rear their children in love and righteousness.
Another left a son because he was such a great example to his brothers that don't understand the gospel yet and he could teach them.   May it would be our resolve to build a gospel-centered home, a safe harbor from the storms of the adversary.

In a world of turmoil and uncertainty, it is more important than ever to make our families the center of our lives and the top of our priorities. Families lie at the center of our Heavenly Father’s plan.
Our most important and powerful assignments are in the family. They are important because the family has the opportunity at the start of a child’s life to put feet firmly on the path home.”
I am blessed to have the opportunity to serve among these beautiful ladies. Who I have come to love dearly. May this be our year for enjoying the light and truth of the gospel in our homes. May our homes truly become places of refuge from the world is my humble prayer.

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