{home a haven} strength

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

For other posts in this series, look here:

 Therefore, whoso heareth these sayings of mine and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, who built his house upon a rock— And the arain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it bfell not, for it was founded upon a rock.          3 Nephi 14: 24-25
It is said that when Brigham Young began the construction of the Salt Lake Temple, he said that he wanted it to stand for over a thousand years. I think of that when I think about the work I do in my home. My family will continue for thousands of years and I want the home I build for them to leave a legacy that will strengthen the generations of my family for years to come.

Salt Lake Temple artwork hanging in the baby's room

Creating a physical environment that strengthens:
  • Temple pictures in every room: Visual reminders of the temple covenants we've made and the eternal nature of our families can bring us the strength to live worthy of the temple each day. I love this advice from President Spencer W Kimball:
“It would be a fine thing if … parents would have in every bedroom in their house a picture of the temple so [their children] from the time [they are] infant[s] could look at the picture every day [until] it becomes a part of [their lives]. When [they reach] the age that [they need] to make [the] very important decision [concerning going to the temple], it will have already been made.”6

  •  Inspiring words in visible places: The words we see and hear every day become a part of us. In your decorating include words that strengthen and inspire. Include your family motto, a family scripture, or a family saying on the walls that will help you incorporate that message into your every day.

I try to incorporate our family motto from 1 Corinthians 13 in every room. Yes, that is vintage wallpaper in Baby's room.
Creating a family dynamic that will give strength to each family member:
  • Spoken words that strengthen: Carefully select a phase or two to speak to your family that will become a reminder to be strong and make correct choices. You've probably all heard "Return with Honor" at some point as you walked out the door. My husband's job can be a bit dangerous, so mine is always "Be safe. Come back to me."
  • Building up individuals with our words: I want our home to be a place where each family member feels that their name is safe when they are present and when they are away. By avoiding gossiping about others, we confirm to our families that we will not gossip about them either. When we must give constructive criticisms or speak of things that hurt us, we can remember to note 5 positive things for each 1 negative thing. That will help us build up our family members, instead of tearing them down.
  • Consistent spiritual family activities: Family Home Evening, family prayer, family scripture study, eating dinner together. Each of these events may not be a peaceful, inspiring, or grand event. But by consistently performing each of these activities, we create practices and rituals that carve out room in our lives for spiritual events to happen. 
It's hard to see the impact of all the things we do to create lovely homes. But each activity and each day is like a brick in the walls of our homes. You may not see much value or strength in one individual brick, but when added upon, cemented together, and built upon the rock of our Redeemer, those bricks build a strong home that will shelter and protect us and our families for generations to come.

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