The Gift of Choice

In an effort to be more effective parent, I’ve been reading a book about discipline.  The premise is “Giving your Child the Gift of Inner Discipline.”  I’d love my children to become more resilient, responsible and to chose to do so of their own volition and not because they are afraid of a time out, etc.  My father-in-law raised 13 successful kids.  He didn’t force them to be obedient but taught them that their choices have consequences and let them experience those.  At times it may be hard to let children experience the heartache that comes from poor choices.   I hope I can help my children want to make good choices and experiences both the happy consequences that come from those as well as help them experience unpleasant consequences that come from poor choices.  I am really working on not shaming or blaming when they do something wrong but helping them learn from it.
What a great blessing to have agency and to live in a country where we can exercise our ability to make choices.  I love the above quote from For the Strength of Youth.  I do believe that “true freedom comes from using your agency to chose obedience.”  
Similarly, I think we can chose to have a good attitude even when life is hard and not ideal.  Being in control of my attitude and reaction to trials and other people is something I have not yet mastered.  Our attitude plays a big role in our ability to progress and meet our challenges.  A positive and cheerful attitude is a indeed a blessing.

In Alma 34:34, we read “for that same spirit which doth bpossess your bodies at the time that ye go out of this life, that same spirit will have power to possess your body in that eternal world.”
When my maternal Grandmother Olive was a young girl, she read this scripture and it had a profound effect on her.  She determined to be positive and happy tno matter what trials and challenges she experienced.  She had many challenges in her life.  When she died she weighed only 40 pounds having been crimpled from arthritis.  She had a fracture in almost every bone in her body.  She would sneeze and get a fracture.  However, she maintained a positive and cheerful attitude throughout her life despite her challenges.   She left such an impression on me.  She was always patient, positive and cheerful.  I never remember hearing her complain even though she was bedridden for the last 13 years of her life and never felt well.
My dear brother-in-law recently passed away after a very difficult battle with cancer.  He is also a great example of self-mastery.  At his funeral, I learned that he had a temper that he worked very hard to overcome.  I never would have guessed that as he was the most patient and even-tempered man I know.  As I struggle with my own temper and other shortcomings, both of their examples are a tremendous blessing to me.  I can chose to be better and not let my faults be the master of me.  And I can keep trying and repent even after I fail.
I hope you all have a wonderful Memorial Day as you remember and honor your loved ones who have passed away

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