The Lord knew I had already read about this metaphor in Sister Beck's talk, and that just one scripture would conjure up the image of strength, and hope and determination I needed.
"I have said lately that women are like lionesses at the gate of the home. Whatever happens in that home and family happens because she cares about it and it matters to her.
She guards that gate, and things matter to that family if they matter to her.... If that lioness at the gate knows about renewing her baptismal covenants with God, she will be in sacrament meeting on Sunday, and she will prepare her children to be there... If the lioness at the gate knows about and understands missions, missionaries, and the mission of the house of Israel, she will prepare future missionaries to go out from that home. It is very difficult to get a lion cub away from a lioness who doesn’t believe in missions, but if the lioness believes in a mission, she will devote her life to preparing the cub to go out and serve the Lord.
That’s how important she is. Service happens if she cares about it.
Prioritizing. Making choices. Picking up my cubs and moving.
Protecting. Safe guarding. Here was what I knew I needed to do.
Here in this metaphor was the courage & inspiration to do what I had known all along.
"Mothers who know do less. They permit less of what will not bear good fruit eternally. They allow less media in their homes, less distraction, less activity that draws their children away from their home. Mothers who know are willing to live on less and consume less of the world’s goods in order to spend more time with their children—more time eating together, more time working together, more time reading together, more time talking, laughing, singing, and exemplifying. These mothers choose carefully and do not try to choose it all. Their goal is to prepare a rising generation of children who will take the gospel of Jesus Christ into the entire world. Their goal is to prepare future fathers and mothers who will be builders of the Lord’s kingdom for the next 50 years. That is influence; that is power."
I am the lioness of my home. My vigilance is our protection.
I protect. I protect our family. I protect our time.
I protect our bonds. I protect our emotional reserves.
I protect our spiritual strength and traditions.
I protect our energies and ensure it is being spent in things that will bear eternal fruit.
I protect my "whelps".
"Taking care of our posterity takes precedence over all other things"
Sister Beck's dying father
And those "little whelps" just want us!
Need us to see them. To hold them. To believe they are worth it.
To see them as the "young lions" they can become and show them how to get there.
And we need to see ourselves. See how strong we really can be.
from whatever source.
And as we see ourselves and our little lions as we really are, the direction and purpose will also become clear.
And believing we will get there.
That as we follow the Lord,
He will always lead us, guide us and walk beside us.
Even if that guidance come in one word.
one answer to prayer.
one tender mercy at a time.