Traditionally, it is the mother’s privilege to take the opportunity to bare her testimony on the day her baby is blessed. Since we didn’t bless Paige on fast and testimony Sunday I’d like to write my testimony out, along with some thoughts I’ve been having.
This morning, I dressed Paige in her white dress and had a few minutes alone with her. I thought of the brief time she has had on earth, what a joy she is, and what a privilege it is to be her mommy. When I took her to the Dr. for her two month check up, the Dr. asked if she was smiling at Hannah and Adam yet. I told her of course and he said that was good because developmentally, that was where she should be and to expect her to start smiling at people who lived outside our home at about four months. I told him that not only does she smile, but she laughs at everyone, even people who she just meets. She has so much joy inside her already and she has so much love. I also get complements often at her attentiveness, and her ability to hold eye contact and concentrate for a long time. I think Paige is going to be a really great listener, a true friend. I feel angels in our home, guiding me daily to care for, and teach these beautiful daughters of God. Each day, I’m learning a little better how to do so. I am also learning more and more about the nature of our Heavenly Father. I have felt His love in a different, my personal way since becoming a mother. I have a testimony of His divine love for each of us, and his desire for us to obey his commandments so that we can return and live with Him and our family for eternity.
When naming each of our children, we have taken special consideration in the meaning of the name. Hannah Elizabeth came to us in the temple three weeks before she was born and means “Gift from God” and “Promise of God.” Paige was a name that we loved, and I love that it means “Little Servant,” because I like to think of her dedicating her life to the service of God. “Lily,” means purity and innocence and we chose that name as a variation of Lilian after my Grandmother who is one of our favorite people. I hope, like my Grandma, Paige is a strong and faithful woman, dedicated to the gospel and her family, obedient…but also has a lot of personality and feistiness.
I am grateful for our living prophet, Thomas S. Monson. I have a testimony that he has been called of God and that he leads our church in righteousness. I feel comfort and peace when he speaks to us. I am grateful for our scriptures, and I’ve loved having the opportunity to share them with Hannah and Paige. Hannah loves the stories of Nephi and tells me “I want to obey Mommy like Nephi.” She will tell me that Nephi was “courageous” and Laman and Lemuel were “both afraid to try.” Although it will be a long time before our family can really get into the doctrine of the scriptures, I know that Hannah can understand what it means to be courageous like Nephi. To me, being a courageous member of the church means to be taking the small and simple steps like family home evening, scripture study, and prayer, attending church, and serving in the temple. We always hear about the “wicked people” in the scriptures like Laman and Lemuel and the bad things they do but I think Hannah understands it really well when she says that they were both afraid to try. Sometimes, we aren’t bad or wicked or whatever the case may be…we are just afraid to try, or too lazy to try, or even something else comes up so we don’t really put in the effort. I know we have all been “too afraid to try,” at some point but I hope that I can try a little harder each day to be a little better and to be courageous in keeping the commandments. That is what I am learning as we make our way slowly and imperfectly through the scriptures.
I have a testimony in the temple. I know that because of the covenants I’ve made, Adam and I can be an eternal family. I am grateful our daughters have been born into that covenant. I hope we can be courageous like Nephi so that we can live up to our sacred covenants. Adam was inspired to invite our families to serve together in the Temple together. He wanted everyone to gather in the place that seals families for eternity and is conducive to the spirit. My heart was full as I sat among three righteous mothers and grandmothers, six faithful priesthood holders, and four faithful sisters. I thought of how fortunate Adam and I were to grow up in your homes. Adam and I were blessed to be raised in the gospel of Jesus Christ by parents who led the way and set the example of being faithful members of the Church. A few Sundays ago, Hannah was acting up in sacrament meeting. I was extremely frustrated and embarrassed at her behavior. I wondered to myself why we even bothered getting our family of four dressed and ready each Sunday to make it to Sacrament meeting at 8:00am since none of us were able to get anything out of the meeting. I got the distinct impression that Heavenly Father was pleased with our efforts to gather as a family in sacrament meeting, and that our job was to get our children to church to build a foundation, and to set the example that each Sunday we follow the commandment to go to church. Adam and I were so blessed to have been given that example.
Finally, I want to share my testimony in Jesus Christ, our savior. I look forward to this Christmas season, to celebrate the life of Christ. One of my very favorite scriptures is 2nd Nephi 25:26 “And we talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy of Christ, and we write according to our prophecies, that our children may know to what source they may look for a remission of their sins.” Since becoming a mother I have made it a goal to spend the month of December focusing on Christ and his life so that my children may know to what source they may look, not only for a remission of sins but as an example of love, and faithfulness. I feel my saviors love as I hold my daughters, when I look into their eyes, when my husband takes me to the temple, when I study the scriptures, when we hold family home evening, when I pray in His name. I am grateful for the knowledge of his existence, I am grateful I grew up in a home with parents who talked of Christ, rejoiced in Christ, and preached of Christ so that I came to know Him and who I could turn to in peace. I close my testimony in His name. Amen.