Sunday, February 26, 2012

Teaching Reverence : words of Spencer W. Kimball

Recently I've been occasionally supplementing my scripture study with The Latter-day Saint Woman: Basic Manual for Women, Part A. I found the following thoughts on reverence from President Spencer W. Kimball very valuable, and I didn't want to lose track of them, so I am posting them here.
As with the other principles of the gospel, reverence leads to increased joy.
We must remember that reverence is not a somber, temporary behavior that we adopt on Sunday. True reverence involves happiness, as well as love, respect, gratitude, and godly fear. It is a virtue that should be part of our way of life. In fact, Latter-day Saints should be the most reverent people in all the earth.
Where, then, does reverence begin, and how can we develop it?
The home is the key to reverence, as it is to every other godlike virtue.
Let me emphasize the importance of teaching children to pray. It is during personal and family prayers that little ones learn to bow their heads, fold their arms, and close their eyes while our Father in heaven is being addressed. Behavior learned at home determines behavior in Church meetings. A child who has learned to pray at home soon understands that he must be quiet and still during prayers in worship services...
...Of course, parents should attend Sunday meetings with their children.
The father and mother should work together to make sure that preparation for meetings is a pleasant family experience. The last minute rush to gather the children, dress, and hurry to meeting is destructive to reverence.
When families fall into this pattern they are frequently late to church, there are often cross words and hurt feelings, and the children are often upset and restless during the service.
How much more reverent is the family that prepares well ahead of time for meetings, that arrives at the chapel well before the meeting begins, and that sits together to listen to the prelude music and put worldly concerns out of their minds.
Parents with small children sometimes have a difficult time helping their youngsters appreciate meetings and keeping them from creating disturbances. Perseverance, firmness, and preparation in the home are essential ingredients for success. If they are perplexed about how to handle their children at church, young parents might seek the advice of a more experienced couple in the ward.

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