The other day I was going through my old journals from college days (long before I knew Mr. Graham), and found this list that I had made:
"Things I Hope to Do When I am Married"
1. Start every morning with a prayer and a hymn, and end each day the same way.
2. Bless each meal, and have as many sit-down meals together as possible.
(Photos taken at the Anita B. Gorman Discovery Center, Kansas City, MO)
3. Say "Thank you," "Please," "I'm sorry," and "I love you."
4. Hug and kiss frequently.
5. Do dishes at least once daily, preferably after each meal.
6. Read scriptures daily, ideally as a family, and also alone.
7. Keep things in their proper perspective.
8. Hold weekly Family Home Evening.
9. Hold regular family meetings to see how everyone's doing.
10. Leave notes of love and encouragement.
11. Read to children every night.
12. Have regular family service projects.
13. Never become selfish.
14. Remember to take time off for myself, and to be alone with my husband.
15. Take a walk after dinner.
16. Continue my education.
17. Never have a tedious, humdrum lifestyle. Always have a goal to work on.
18. Always be reading, learning, pondering, and trying to find ways to serve others.
19. Take time out each week to spend one on one time with each child.
20. Remember that my life is not my own now, but that it belongs to my family, and that is the way it is supposed to be.
21. Cook regular meals each day, and always be prepared for when there's no time to cook a lot.
22. Always show appreciation to my husband and children for the things they do for me.
23. Open a savings account for each child, and teach them responsibility for it.
Not a bad list, is it? :) I was a child of divorce, and had no real role models to look to for establishing a strong family. Around the age of 20 I began observing others from my church, and reading family magazines in hopes of gleaning wisdom there.
Looking back, almost twenty years later, I am impressed with the things that I came up with, and amazed that most of them I am faithful in doing! I had no idea that I would be homeschooling my children at the time, and learning right there along with them.
Life has taken me along paths that I never would have chosen for myself, but I have a testimony that the Lord can take his weakest children, and through them make a mighty work come to pass. My children are so much farther ahead of where I was at their age, and I know that they are being blessed every day by how my husband and I have chosen to live our lives (however imperfectly we follow through!).
I also have great hope for those whose home lives are not what they are wish, for I know that strength comes through struggles, and that God's grace is sufficient for all who come unto Him.
May you be blessed today, my dear friends, and know that we are praying for all of you and your families. Your kindness and friendship encourages us more than you can know.
Marqueta (who is being attacked by a tomato plant in this picture)