A few Saturdays ago, I was able to attend the Palmyra, NY temple with our youth. Right before that weekend, I started reading Covenant Motherhood by Stephanie Sorensen of Diapers & Divinity. (Yes, OUR Stephanie!)
Stephanie taught me something very profound right in the beginning of her book that I just had to copy down. She said:
"We have the opportunity to create homes that are sacred, safe, and sanctified like the temple. Can you think of anything more divine than that? A mother is the temple matron in her own home, doing all she can to make it a place filled with the spirit of God. A home is a temple because important eternal work takes place there. The mother of the home plays a significant role in creating that environment and in directing the work within" (Sorensen, p. 9)
This is exactly why I do what I do in my home. This is why I work so hard--because what happens here matters and is of eternal significance. But it was fortifying to hear someone put it into words like she does in her book.
Sometimes, the work is hard and messy and laborious, but I know WHY I am doing it...to create an atmosphere where my family and I can feel the spirit and learn the teachings of Jesus Christ. And it is to that end that I do what I do. Not because I just like crafts or because I love to cook (I don't!) Those are mainly means to an end...and that end is bringing my children to the Savior.
Because I have served as an ordinance worker in the temple in the past, her analogy instantly drew a lot of scenes from my memory--I recalled the grace with which temple matrons and coordinators performed their work and how their smiles always made me feel like I was being welcomed home. I also remembered how they conducted themselves when there was a problem to be worked out, and it was with this same reverent, peace-filled demeanor. I realized that I can conduct myself in my house more graciously if I patterned my attitude by their example.
With this quote in my heart and mind, I entered the temple that Saturday to help our youth perform baptisms for more than 200 individuals. Normally, I would have volunteered to be out in the font area in order to watch their angelic faces as they performed the work, but on this day, I headed straight for the dressing room.
My love for these beautiful girls increased as I passed out towels and wrung out wet socks.
Images flashed in my mind of myself at home performing similar tasks...only with a more profound awareness of the true purpose of doing these jobs, and I felt strengthened.
I thought about the Savior wringing out cloths as he washed the feet of his disciples, and the spirit confirmed to me that I truly could "be the temple matron in my own home," and that he would be very pleased if I would consider myself in this light...and consider all who enter my home as temple patrons to be served, taught, cherished, and loved.
I am convinced now, more than ever, that there are no small jobs in the Kingdom of God. The things that we do as Mothers, day in and day out, are spiritually significant, for us and for our children and families.
Anyway, the rest of Stephanie's book is filled with these kinds of insights that will help you to articulate what you feel in your heart is true about Motherhood and others that will shed new light on the role that you play in the lives of your children and that the Savior plays in helping you to fulfill that role.
You can find Stephanie's book Covenant Motherhood here at Deseret Book. It would make an awesome Mother's Day gift for others or for yourself!! :)
Thanks, Stephanie for writing such a beautiful, inspired book!