(I’m not sure if anyone even reads this.  I write mainly for myself anyway, but I usually spend a lot of time writing and re-writing until I feel like I have expressed my ideas clearly and articulately.  I am choosing to not spend the time to do this today but instead to publish this in a fairly rough stage…)

Today, being a fifth Sunday, our third hour of church was combined with men and women, and even the older youth were invited.  The stake president taught the lesson, and since I had been to these presentations before about the options available for unwed women that become pregnant, I didn’t particularly expect this presentation to be much different.  Today’s meeting was wonderful, and I hope to share some of what most impressed me.

The focus of the lesson was on doctrine- the reason for doing what we do.  The principles are outlined in the June 2002 letter from the First Presidency to leaders of the Church.  The obective is to allow each person the greatest possibility for making and keeping covenants.  “Children sealed to parents have claim upon the blessings of the gospel beyond what others are entitled to receive.”
1) parents and leaders teach members to live chaste and virtuous lives
2) unwed parents should first consider marriage
3) when a successful marriage is unlikely, the unwed parents should seriously consider placing the child for adoption through LDS Family Services

At the end of the class, a woman in our ward asked if she could share her testimony.  She and her husband are unable to have children, and a year ago they adopted the beautiful little girl that they cherish so much, and they have been sealed together.  I could see how significant the sealing is to this dear sister.

A few things come to mind after thinking about this.  First, how easy it is to take for granted the blessings of the gospel, such as sealings.  It may be, that like a child that soons tires of his Christmas gifts, that we too may fail to fully appreciate our blessings.  If we don’t cherish the blessing, I wonder how well we keep the covenants?  After all, I believe that keeping our covenants requires that we specifically think about what it is that we have covenanted to do, and then doing those things. 

Second, as I thought about adoption, when someone is unable to have children, I can imagine how much they would truly treasure the child that they are able to adopt.  I need to cherish my children more.

Third, I was reminded that in making covenants with Jesus Christ, we become his adopted children.  He paid the ransom for us by paying the price for our sins.  In making and keeping our gospel covenants, we become joint heirs to all the Father has.  I am sure that we cannot fathom the love of our Father and the blessings He has for us if we will but keep our covenants.

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