Wednesday, June 27, 2012

A Meaningful Life: A Spiritual Life


Provo Canyon in the fall-- taken Fall 2009

Let's talk about quality of life for a minute.

I used to think that quality of life could be defined by a couple of things.
-Marriage
-Kids
-House/lifestyle
-Free time/hobbies

When you look around in the world that we live in, it's easy to see why I thought this is the case. People fill up their time with this stuff. It's all over facebook, blogs, it's what you talk to people about when they ask you what you did over the weekend. Getting an ice cream cone with your daughter, going for a bike ride with your true love, putting on a new deck on your house, whatever.

But recently I had a conversation with my mom that I just can't get out of my mind. My mom had 11 children. There was a lot of that "quality of life" stuff that we didn't get growing up. My mom had a lot of ideas of how to be a great mom, she loved canning and sewing and making homemade bread. But by the time I came around (#8) a lot of those things kind of moved to the back burner.
So I asked my mom, "Were you ever disappointed with the quality of life you gave your kids?"
"Sure," she answered, "We had to buy cheap food so it wasn't the best, our kids wore hand-me-downs, and we ate store bought bread."
"So why did you keep having kids?" I asked.
"I guess it was because I was married to a man who wanted to have a large family, no matter what the cost," was her reply.

The thing that I couldn't shake from my mind was this: quality of life is not what you think it is. I've come to realize what quality of life means for me. And this is why I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

No matter who we are, we are all going to face struggles in our life. Most of us probably won't be able to build that dream house, or have all that free time where we develop our favorite hobbies. We might lose a job, or end up living somewhere that is not our ideal.

But I have come to realize that no matter what my circumstances, I can find a great "quality of life" through these things:

-A personal relationship with my Father in Heaven through prayer. Someone you can always call on and pour your heart out to.
-Repentance. It makes a huge difference in your life when you can say, "I messed up. I need to start over. Can you help me?"
-Personal improvement guided by the One who already suffered for your weaknesses: Jesus Christ. You may not be able to improve your circumstances, but isn't it exciting to think that you can always improve yourself? How's that for a hobby.

In this ever tumultuous world, I'm so grateful for knowledge that grounds me. I don't know where I would be without the knowledge I have gained through my membership in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.


4 comments:

  1. You are a wise woman. I needed to read this today. You're the best!

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  2. I agree! The more I am immersed in mommy life the more I realize that the intangible things in our family- our laughter together, tender moments spent appreciating the miracles that our daughters are- is way more important than the tangible details of every day life.

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  3. Thanks so much for sharing your experiences with us. :)

    -cass

    P.S. I'm glad you're my big sis.

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  4. So inspiring! PS...thanks for the blog tips...I didn't even think of that...I am going to give it a try:) Hope you are feeling well.

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