Sometimes life just isn't sunshine-y. It can be confusing and frustrating and at times make no sense at all. It can pull you in too many directions and not always the ones you hoped it would. It can stretch you until you snap. It can shatter in to a million pieces very suddenly, too. It can fill you with hope or engulf you in despair. I feel like Satan is playing a violent and corrosive game of tug of war with couples and families everywhere. I hate the moment of truth that always inevitably comes declaring loud and clear who won in what family. I pray hard that the storms of life stop at the door for every family but I am especially trying with mine...I do it as much as I can in more ways than I can count and not nearly enough in others. To combat the powerful attempts of our ever trying and never relenting brother Satan we have to be putting in more effort than he is. It takes vigilant and watchful care of our homes and those who live there---we cannot cease to do the very things that will armor our children, and even our spouses, each reaching out to the other, providing vital and essential protective gear that we, each of us, absolutely and fundamentally need to succeed in beating against the worldly game of tug of war Satan is desperately playing with every family (&especially those sealed eternally), and each individual in those families. He is literally standing at the door of our homes, our lives, and he's taunting us through thoughts and temptations, he is coercing at any chance he gets...hoping someone, any one will leave their door open even just a tiny crack enough to let him put his menacing manipulative foot in and keep that door open little by little until he of course knows he's opened it wide enough that he can move on because those inside are as miserable as he is and he has officially succeeded in tearing apart and segregating those behind that door to the point that he moves on to the next family with a sneer and a smirk that he has succeeded in destroying another covenant marriage, once eternally committed families now left in ruins. When he moves on he leaves in his wake heart-broken, angry children and self serving, momentary pleasure seeking parents. Or heartbroken pain stricken parents and rebellious self serving children.
I know of no other way to invite only the Savior in to our homes than to keep that door closed tightly, dead bolted against the violent forces of Satan. To successfully combat those forces we have to gather our families around us & use our time for a daily meaningful studies of the Book of Mormon and coupling with that we can't miss a day of having a kneeling family prayer at least a couple times every single day. We must embrace the good that is in the world and encourage our children to do the same. Decorate the walls with pictures of Christ, family, temples, scripture stories and beautiful things. Hug often and Listen. Talk to each other, eat dinner together, read the Friend magazine to our kids and articles from the ensign as a couple. Set goals and work hard to meet them, avoid judgments and harsh words, speak in quiet voices and praise at every chance with thankfulness and appreciation. There are so many ways to combat Satan and become a stronger family unit following after Christ only and never veering from his pathway. Even if you have left that straight laid path there's never lost hope, there is always a way back. I know the Atonement of Christ covers every heart ache and every sin. I know even when hope seems lost and dark times threaten us there is always a way to access that peace again and to come back after you've wondered strange and crooked or sloppy paths. I know our Heavenly Father is real and loves ALL of his children not just the ones who never stray or sin but all of us I know he wants us all back in his arms again no matter what kind of dirty, rotten mean or seductive thing we have done, He is not only there for us he is here now and stands waiting. I hope not a soul will be lost. I hope my own little family can somehow get by unscathed.
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President Howard C. Sharp
1 week ago