Guest post from Liz Johnson… When people ask me how many children I have, I don’t really know how to answer. The proper response is “four,” because that’s how many I tuck in at night – three beautiful boys and a darling baby girl. But in my heart, I want to answer “five.” And then I guiltily admit that I feel like I should want to answer “seven.” . . .
All of the talk was beautiful, but do you know what my absolute favorite part was? My favorite phrase Elder Holland uttered today was this: “laboring through the battered landscape of his despair.” As Elder Holland spoke of a mother striving to bear up her son as he traveled through the darkest days and nights of his intense anguish… I can’t even really describe to you what I felt inside.
So we moved this summer. In the process of unpacking, I found a composition book with notes, freewriting, story ideas, and poetry from the Creative Writing class I took at BYU during the last semester of my senior year. I was newly pregnant with my first child at the time and thus processing a lot …
Last Sunday we talked about Gethsemane and the Apostles struggling to “watch” with Christ in His agony. I think our instructor’s was the best explanation I have ever heard for the apostles seemingly “slacking on the job.” It is not easy to hold space for someone in pain, and the Apostles were holding space for the most intense experience of pain that has ever occurred.
Nothing is more important than physical birth and spiritual rebirth Elder Christofferson told us. Our mothers have given us the gift of birth and our first naming. Christ gave us the gift of rebirth through baptism and offered us His name. We may experience other rebirths in our journey upward, but none is more sacred than the rebirth our Heavenly Parents offer to us: a rebirth as kings and queens, priests and priestesses, and the sacred naming given only to those who have overcome the world.
My experience with milk donation is that an ounce given is received back one hundred times over in the the joy of selfless service. For both donor and recipient, an exchange of freely given breast milk is about so much more than filling bellies. It is about finding healing and bringing peace to the hearts that long for love, and that is a treasure that cannot be measured in ounces.