Tuesday, January 2, 2018

No Greater Joy

This talk below, given by Brett K. Nattress is one of my absolute favorite General Conference talks ever. I can't tell you how many times I've gotten on the treadmill at the gym or jogged up the big hill and decided to listen to this one again and again and again. It picks me up when I'm feeling blah, it inspires me to be a better mother, and it fills me with hope and love for the gospel of Jesus Christ. 

The title is "No Greater Joy Than to Know that they Know," and I agree... 100%! There really is no greater joy than to know that my children have faith in and love for their Saviour Jesus Christ. I want them to know with all my heart that He is the source to look for in their lives when they need answers, that He is the way, the truth, and the light! He truly is the light of the world and will direct them on the paths they need to go. Oh how I want them to know that, all of their lives!

In this talk, Elder Nattress speaks about the struggles his own mother had with raising (6) children! He recalled how she was patient, loving, and consistent with teaching them the gospel even when they were rowdy and hard to teach. He recalled that he, personally, was a tough kid to raise because of his rambunctiousness, but his mother stayed persistent.  The perseverance of his mother is inspiring to me. It makes me want to be more diligent and more persistent in living, teaching, and being an example of what I truly believe. It's not always easy to feel like you're doing all you can do for your children, but Elder Nattress assures us that if we have faith in Christ and if we faithfully pray and read our scriptures every day, we really can't go wrong. The powers of Heaven will bless our homes and our children.

He goes on to say,
"I don’t know if anything in this world could bring more happiness and joy than to know that our children know the Savior, to know that they know “to what source they may look for a remission of their sins.” That is why, as members of the Church, “we preach of Christ” and we testify of Christ (2 Nephi 25:26).
  • That is why we pray with our children every day.
  • That is why we read the scriptures with them every day.
  • That is why we teach them to serve others, so that they can hold claim upon the blessings of finding themselves as they lose themselves in the service of others (see Mark 8:35Mosiah 2:17).
As we devote ourselves to these simple patterns of discipleship, we empower our children with the love of the Savior and with divine direction and protection as they face the fierce winds of the adversary.
I just love this. I love the spiritual power we are given as parents to discern the truth and to be able to teach our children the truth. I love that we can spend this time when they are little to pray with them, read with them, and teach them the divine sources they can go for happiness. 
We had the opportunity to hear Elder Nattress at our Stake Conference last month! He traveled to our Stake building in person!
 The funny thing is, though, that I didn't make the correlation that he was the same person who gave one of my favorite conference talks  ever. I just didn't make the connection until days later. So, when he was walking around the large congregation, shaking hands, and greeting members, I simply shook his hand and smiled.  Pffffffffft. 
If I had known he was the same wonderful, spiritual giant of the Quorum of the Seventy who gave this talk, I would've not only shook his hand and smiled, but I would've blabbed on and on about how much I love this talk and how it continues to inspire me day after day and how I listen to it all the time, and how much I love his mother, and how I can relate to her goals in life (be more patient with...Jonah), and how it's my favorite talk right now ever!! (If we could turn back time....)
I am grateful, however, that I got to shake his hand. Throughout Stake Conference I could feel an amazing spirit coming from this man of God, especially concerning his love and concern for little children. I could tell he is a person who loves his family and wants the best for all families. I could feel his love for our families and his desire to see us succeed as we raise our children in the gospel.
One funny memory we'll always have from this Stake Conference is of Malachi. When Elder Nattress went to shake his little hand he wouldn't respond. After Elder Nattress's first failed attempt to shake Malachi's hand he then tried to give him a High-5.  Again Malachi just stared at him with utter refusal. Then, right as Elder Nattress was about to move on to our other kids, Malachi looked him in the eyes with total confidence and said,"No, It goes like this." He then engaged Elder Nattress in the "Up high, to the side, to the other side, down low, too slow!" hand jive. We were all laughing so hard. That's our Malachi!
If anyone has a chance to listen to, read, or watch Elder Nattress's talk today, I promise you, it won't disappoint.

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