Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A Letter From Jane: A House Of Order

Dear Readers,

I know that when you read the title of this letter, you’ll be hoping for cleaning tips or organization methods.  I do have some of those.  But I want to say a word today about something more basic.  And I’d like to start out by issuing you a challenge.  This challenge is going to sound impossible.  So you know I wouldn’t ask if it weren’t important and if I didn’t know how much it would bless your life.  Here it is.  I want you to begin every day with 15 minutes or more of scripture study, followed by a really good prayer.  I’m not sure how you’re going to do it…how you’ll need to juggle, but I want you to commit to try.  

And it really matters that you do it before everything else.  Here’s why.
  1. It clearly tells the Lord that he comes first with you—that everything else in your life is built upon this relationship.  You know that wonderful scripture in Ether (5:12)  …it is upon the rock of your Redeemer that you must build your foundation…  Picture that your days are like structures that you are building. When you place the Lord first, he becomes the foundation of your work.  Like paying tithing first, there is power in everything else that follows and confidence that your efforts will be magnified, blessed and that the windows of heaven will be opened.  When we launch into our day without that help, we are flying alone.  Our Heavenly Father becomes an afterthought…even an obligation.  
  2. You will experience an increase of peace.  I love this quote by Merrill Bateman:  “As faith grows, our vision of eternity expands, which increases our capacity to meet life’s challenges.”   There is no more challenging life than yours.  You need wisdom.  You need ideas and plans and blueprints to go on as you raise these little children.  Why wouldn’t we enlist the Lord’s help and depend on his direction?  There is no more satisfying experience than to receive a flash of inspiration about one of your children—knowing that it came from outside of yourself.  It’s usually something so simple but when implemented it turns the tide.  It’s always loving.  And peace comes because you recognize that you are not alone.  You remember that you are not the only parent here.  You are really just an instrument.  As I’ve mentioned before, these flashes of light do not usually come during the prayer or even during the scripture study, but later in the day.
  3. It is the way to truly teach your children the gospel of Jesus Christ.  It becomes written in the “fleshy tablets of your heart.”   You teach them from your own experience.  When you tell them of the reality of God, they know that you know.  Otherwise, it’s only words.  The accumulated days of study and prayer, produce in you, core strength.  There is no substitute for that.  There is no shortcut.   Our world is darkening.  In the past few weeks, I have watched some of my most precious friends struggle with their faith, lose their testimony and let go.  We’re going to see this more and more as we move into these final days.  Our children need more than visual aids.  They need to know because their mothers taught them.  
There are other reasons.  But unless you really commit to this and create this pattern in your life, you will not experience the blessings.  Give place for this expansion to happen.  It will give perspective and often solutions to every single problem in your life.  I know this from my own experience.  I’ll end with my current favorite scripture.  I read it in Gospel Doctrine class this past Sunday and I loved it.

“Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is.  For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her tent shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.”   Jeremiah 17: 7-8

All my love,
Jane

17 comments:

  1. You are right. This is a good pattern to follow. I'm going to start tomorrow. You've convinced me! lol It does make perfect sense to have it be the very first thing you do. It's just a matter of deciding that you are going to do it. I'll have to wake up a little earlier, but I need to do that anyway. I do have a strong testimony that when we put God first, all other things fall into place. I know that starting the day out getting the most important things done first will change our lives.

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  2. This was just what I needed to read today. Thank you so much for the reminder and challenge! I love your blog. Thank you for all your insight!

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  3. I started doing this about 2 or 3 weeks ago and it is a challenge. Some days I can't get to it because my duaghter decides to wake up at 5:30 when she normally wakes up around 7:45. I do know that on the days I actually get up and read my scriptures my days seem much better. It's amazing how feeling the spirit first thing in the morning can really make a difference.

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  4. Bless you for the reminder of what's most important in life.

    We begin the day with our family scriptures study and discussion at 6:30. My own personal study happens in the evenings after my children are in bed because that is when I have the concentrated time to study, ponder, and sometimes write in my journal.

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  5. I never thought of a "house of order" in terms of the order of importance of the things we do. It reminds me of when Sister Beck told us to put the essential things (like scripture & prayer) first. Thanks!!!!

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  6. Thank you. I needed this today- a lot.

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  7. Thank you so much.....I too needed to hear this. I love and appreciate all your advice and insight. It is so true that our "core strength" comes over time, consistently doing those things that bring us closer to the Lord.

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  8. I have ups and downs with his principle, but I truly believe in it. Thank you for reminding me the miracles that come from consecrating my days to the Lord.

    Amanda

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  9. I started doing this in September around the time that school started. I think it has really made a difference!

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  10. I love this principle. I know that "order" is the way of God and that by prioritizing God, we enable His will within our home, which is beyond our own ability!

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  11. I know this principle is true. Thanks for the wonderful reminder.

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  12. I love this. I have found it extremely difficult, especially since having my second, to always do it in the morning. I really believe the morning is best, if possible. But when not possible, it is MORE important to make sure you are alone, undisturbed/undistracted, prayerful and concentrating. I love using a scripture journal. This concentrated early morning scripture study is probably the one thing, next to becoming a mother, that has really changed my life for the better.

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  13. I've been reading no matter what! Sometimes all my children are awake running around in there jammies while making a little mischief, but I still do it no matter what! I am silently telling myself that breakfast can wait! Even brushing my hair and getting dressed! I have a 5 year old, 3 year old a 7 month old and now I am nine weeks! It's possible to get it in there! I can feel a positive difference in my attitude! Thanks!

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  14. Dear Jane,
    How I LOVE you and your heavensent sweet advice! I love to check in here and read your inpsired words of encouragement. I have always studied my scriptures--but am happy to report that I have started doing it first thing and it has been a beautiful experience! Thank you with all my heart for your letters!!

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  15. Thank you! You have no idea how much I needed to hear this today.

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  16. Thank you for this post. I needed to be reminded of the importance of personal scripture study. I'm taking the challenge to read every morning, first thing. It made a world of difference this morning. :) I could spend hours reading all of your posts, you're so inspiring.

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