I remember coming home one day in 5th grade, when my best friend suddenly and out of nowhere turned her back on me. It was a devastating time in my life, I was only 10 years old, my heart was broken. I remember my mother sat rocking me for a very long time. She was very busy with my 4 little brothers, and I tried not to take up too much of her time, but I was crushed and needed her desperately. I knew there was no one who could make it better. Not my dad or my sisters or my other friends. I knew even my mom couldn’t fix it, but I knew as I sat in her lap at 10 years old, that her love and her arms could take some of that sting away.
Mothers have the most challenging, most noble calling on earth; to love, care for, teach, and as the Family Proclamation states, “to nurture”. The dictionary defines nurture as ‘the care and attention given to someone or something that is growing or developing’.
Satan has tried to devalue a mother’s role many different ways. One way came in the form of feminist Betty Friedan who asked women, “Why should you accept a half-life, instead of share in the whole of human destiny?” This is by far one of Satan’s strongest tools against the family, to devalue a woman’s work in the home.
We are taught today that we should dream outside of the walls of our home, to aspire to more, to make a ‘real’ contribution to the world.
By contrast our Heavenly Father has let us know our value through his trusted leaders, one statement said, “Motherhood is near to divinity. It is the highest, holiest service to be assumed and service next to the angels”.
Most women can give birth, but what does it mean to be a mother. President Kimball has said, “Mothers have a sacred role. They are partners with God, as well as with their own husbands”. When we understand that our role is vital to raising the next generation, we can feel confident in our worth and in our decisions.
David O. McKay declared, “Motherhood is the greatest potential influence either for good or ill in human life. The mother’s image is the first that stamps itself on the unwritten page of the young child’s mind. It is her caress that first awakens a sense of security; her kiss, the first realization of affection; her sympathy and tenderness, the first assurance that there is love in the world”.
When we understand our responsibility and our partnership with God it is easier to practice patience, be thoughtful to those tantrums, commit to family home evening and nurture those little ones with so much love that they will grow big and strong.
There is no work in which the Lord takes greater interest than in the nurturing and rearing of our children. Because of that, we can be assured that He will strengthen mothers in their holy calling. Truly, motherhood places her who honors its holy work next to the angels, for nothing could be of greater significance to God than the nurturing of His little ones - His precious children.