I've been reading the Proclamation on the Family a lot over the last week. I found two blogs that are focusing on it for the whole month of September and I've been loving it! While cleaning and organizing on Friday I found the words my Bishop spoke at our wedding. He had it all typed up and gave us the copy. Which I am so glad he did because I was so not paying attention. I was nervous and in a hurry to get married. I read through it and was just touched by so many things he said to us. I felt it was right in line with things taught in the Family Proclamation.
The first line in the proclamation is "We, the First Presidency and the Council of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, solemnly proclaim that marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God and that the family is central to the Creator's plan for the eternal destiny of His children." This proclamation was given to the church and the world in 1995 years before most people questioned what a marriage was. Now there are people all over trying to say that same sex marriage is copacetic. God has made it clear from the very beginning that marriage between a man and a women is what He intended. "Marriage between man and woman is essential to His eternal plan." Heavenly Father's purpose for us here on the earth is "bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man." (Found in Moses 1:39) To make this happen He created families with a Mother and a Father to rear and raise children.
The proclamation states that "Husband and wife have a solemn responsibility to love and care for each other and for their children." I am going to focus right now specifically on the husband and wife. I find it important how it states that it is a solemn responsibility. We need to not take our relationship with our spouse lightly. In the comments from my Bishop he states "...cleave unto each other, and to none else! And then, together, cleave unto Christ and His gospel. Consider for a moment what that means...what it entails. And, it simply means this: there is no other, period. You are to be each other's best friend, period. You discuss and share emotionally sensitive issues and intimacies only with each other. You don't confide in others, only each other. You discuss and resolve conflict only with each other..." Over the years as I look back after reading this I can see and understand why this is so important. If you are not discussing and confiding things in your spouse you can start to grow apart. It is vitally important that you take time each day with your spouse to discuss your day and your thoughts and feelings.
"Love is more than simply caring for someone. Love is more than giving selflessly of oneself for the other's happiness and well being. Love is more than simply sacrificing, and more than anticipating and meeting the needs of the other. There can be no love without sacrifice, and there can be no sacrifice without discipline. Love is all of these things, combined with deep friendship, trust, concern for the well being and happiness of the other. Love is work...hard, strenuous work, at times. But work that brings an unmatchable reward!" (My Bishop's comments) Sometimes marriage can feel more like work and harder than it used to be when you first fell in love. But things in life that are worth it take hard work.
The proclamation gives guidance on how we can have successful marriages. "Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities." Prayer as a couple is important and should happen every day. We do it every morning and night before we have personal prayers which helps us to make sure we have our personal prayers each day. I think respect and forgiveness are both very important. We must always treat each other with respect. I don't remember where I heard it now but I remember being told that you should never bad mouth or say anything negative about your spouse to others. By not sharing your husband or wife's faults with others or complaining about what they did or didn't do you are showing you respect them. Now of course sometimes we slip and that is just one instance where forgiveness comes in. When we make mistakes we need to go to our spouse and confide in them and ask for forgiveness if we've made a mistake.
I'm very grateful for my husband. He is my best friend and I appreciate each day that I have with him. I know that the proclamation on the family is inspired. And I know that it came out in a time that it would be most needed to help families stick together and be prepared for the times ahead of them.