Declaration of Independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. - That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Good Attitudes

                Parents can strengthen their family, community, and nation by helping their children to have good attitudes toward life.  Whether we like it or not, our children adopt the same types of attitude that their parents have.  If the parent is prideful, the children will be prideful.  If the parents have positive attitudes, their children will have positive attitudes.  There are exceptions to this rule but not many.

                I am pleased when I hear my children tell their children something like this:  “You get what you get, and you don’t throw a fit!”  Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles explained that his mother’s counsel to him was “Come what may, and love it.”  He said the advice of his mother “has stayed with me all the rest of my life.”

                “How can we love days that are filled with sorrow?  We can’t – at least not for the moment.  But I do believe that the way we react to adversity can be a major factor in how happy and successful we can be.  Over the years I’ve learned a few things that have helped me through times of testing and trial.”  Elder Wirthlin then listed four things we can do to be happy in spite of bad things happening:  (1) “Laugh … “It’ll extend your life and make the lives of all those around you more enjoyable.”  (2) “Seek for the eternal … Learning to endure times of disappointment, suffering, and sorrow is part of on-the-job training.  These experiences, while often difficult to bear at the time, are precisely the kinds of experiences that stretch our understanding, build our character, and increase our compassion for others.”  (3) “Understand the principle of compensation.  The Lord compensates the faithful for every loss.  That which was taken away from those who love the Lord will be added unto them in His own way.”  (4) “Put our trust in our Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ.  `God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son.’  The Lord Jesus Christ is our partner, helper, and advocate.  He wants us to be happy.  He wants us to be successful.”

                My own parents showed the attitude “we can do what we need to do,” and I have used that attitude in many different circumstances.  On a recent trip to visit children and grandchildren, I had a choice between staying home alone and going skiing with my family.  I went skiing much more to spend the day with my family than to actually ski.  I had not skied for over forty years and was a little apprehensive about the experience.  Different members of my family skied with me; I even had my own private ski lesson.  I had a good experience because I was with my family doing something that my husband, children, and grandchildren really enjoy doing.

                I know from personal experience that good attitudes are valuable in our quest for happiness in this life.  I know that we can strengthen our family, communities, and nations by helping the rising generation to have good attitudes. 

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