Tuesday, November 23, 2010

My Pioneer Heritage (And a Winner)

During November, we always think so much about what we're grateful for. I am very grateful for my own pioneer heritage. As far as we’ve been able to determine, we don’t have any ancestors who joined the church during the beginning years, but that doesn’t mean there are no pioneers in my family. My parents are both the first members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in their families (and the only ones) and they are our family’s pioneers.
I am so grateful that they accepted the gospel and were baptized. They raised me and my siblings with a knowledge of our Heavenly Father’s plan. I never doubted that my parents had/have a testimony. I am so thankful for this place.
The Los Angeles temple is where my parents were sealed a few years after their wedding, so it is where our eternal family started. It is a blessing to know I am sealed to them.
And despite my divorce, I am so thankful for my sealing in the Provo temple.
Because of my sealing years before we had children, my children are sealed to me and to their father. Attending the temple regularly had been one of my weaknesses, but no more. I love to go feel the peace and to contemplate the eternities I will enjoy with my family.  
While I was growing up and my parents and siblings and I were the only church members in the family, I didn’t get to hear testimonies from aunts and uncles, go to youth conference with cousins, or have my grandparents attend my baptism. But my children have their grandparents and aunts, uncles and cousins who are members because of the legacy of my parents. They have the examples of so many in their family. They get the blessing of having them attend their baptisms, primary programs, ordinations and someday attend their temple sealings.


“Many of our challenges are different from those faced by former pioneers but perhaps just as dangerous and surely as significant to our own salvation and the salvation of those who follow us. For example, as for life-threatening obstacles, the wolves that prowled around pioneer settlements were no more dangerous to their children than the drug dealers or pornographers who threaten our children. Similarly, the early pioneers’ physical hunger posed no greater threat to their well-being than the spiritual hunger experienced by many in our day. The children of earlier pioneers were required to do incredibly hard physical work to survive their environment. That was no greater challenge than many of our young people now face from the absence of hard work, which results in spiritually corrosive challenges to discipline, responsibility, and self-worth. Jesus taught: ‘And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell’ (Matt. 10:28).


“The foremost quality of our pioneers was faith. With faith in God, they did what every pioneer does—they stepped forward into the unknown: a new religion, a new land, a new way of doing things. With faith in their leaders and in one another, they stood fast against formidable opposition. When their leader said, ‘This is the right place,’ they trusted, and they stayed. When other leaders said, ‘Do it this way,’ they followed in faith.



“Two companion qualities evident in the lives of our pioneers, early and modern, are unselfishness and sacrifice. Our Utah pioneers excelled at putting ‘the general welfare and community goals over individual gain and personal ambition.’ That same quality is evident in the conversion stories of modern pioneers. Upon receiving a testimony of the truth of the restored gospel, they have unhesitatingly sacrificed all that was required to assure that its blessings will be available to their children and to generations unborn. Some have sold all their property to travel to a temple. Some have lost employment. Many have lost friends. Some have even lost parents and extended family, as new converts have been disowned for their faith. This must be the greatest sacrifice of all.”
Dallin H. Oaks, “Following the Pioneers,” Ensign, Nov 1997, 72


And onto the winner of the $65 CSN Stores gift certificate…..
Valerie from All the Pieces of Me
        (Go check out her recipes and get to know her and her family)
For everyone else who didn’t win this time, I’m hoping to do another CSN Stores giveaway in the future, so maybe next time! Congrats, Valerie!!!

4 comments:

  1. Hooray for Valerie!
    Great post! My friend and I were talking about how a single decision can influence generations to come! What a blessing that your parents joined the church.

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  2. Great Post. Never forget that you are a pioneer too. You have that spirit about you!! Happy Thanksgiving. I hope you have a wonderful day.

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  3. It is wonderful all the support we have from each other. I too am grateful for our pioneer parents, of course! Love you. Hope you had a good Thanksgiving!

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  4. Thank you for posting about us. We are so grateful for our eternal family too. I'm so glad we can all be there for each other. You are always willing to take time for service to others. What an inspiration you are! Love you!!

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