Sunday, February 16, 2014

The Armor of God

I've bragged about all four of my kids' talents, and it is especially heart-warming
when I learn of the involvement of them in service to others.
I heard of yet another one today which involved my mom.

She was not without fault (same as the rest of us), but she was extremely talented and always had a project in mind, often to the potential detriment of her own health as she strove to use that talent to benefit others.  My Dad actually said "she lived a long life" (68), and considering all the diabetic midnight oil burned, she really did.

Today's Relief Society lesson was given by a sub teacher who had less than a day to prepare.  She took the subject and developed it from her own angle perhaps more than a teacher would have, because she was so short on preparation time.  In her house of nine, no one skips breakfast, because that is where they put their armor on, to face the challenges of the day, with family prayer and family scripture.

She asked Carol Harding to come draw a man decked in armor, while she taught the lesson.  Carol lives in my growing-up house, and has built an artist studio in the rose garden.  This is what she drew:
After, I asked her if I could take its picture.  That is when she told me that once my mom was giving a stake presentation and asked her to actually paint a large picture as she presented, in front of the group.  She said she was scared to death but it was a good experience for her.  Since mom died in 1980, and it was a number of years before that, it's 40-something or more years of continuing to paint.  Now Carol paints temple murals, and her art hangs in galleries.  She said mom was a "Ruby", a jewel of brilliant rich and deep color.  I didn't say this to Carol, but it reminded me of a time when I was giving an R.S. lesson in this ward and said, because it fit with the lesson, about how it's best not to worry ourselves endlessly over small things ... "like my mother did" ....  It didn't come out like I meant it to, but one of the older sister piped right up with, "I loved your mother!," in a scolding way since I had just criticized her!  It was a sweet reaction and I apologized.

Carol also made me think about how there's a reason for everything and we do need to give people the benefit of the doubt (as well as not fret over the little things).  Mom was sent on an errand she wasn't keen on doing and talked her younger sister into accompanying her.  On the way home, a car veered into them, knocking my mother out and killing her seven-year-old sister, who was closest to the road.  My mom spent her life trying to make up for that, to be thought worthy of being here instead of her sister.

It also made me think of all the cool stuff I have which began in my early Primary music days and Grant made me this suit of armor I then used year-after-year whenever it fit with the theme.  I always used it with A Young Man Prepared and Scripture Power.  I can't remember how old he was, but he was still in elementary school.

The arm piece and the sword (yard stick covered in foil):
 The shield (has a sling on the back to slide onto the arm):
 The shin guard:
 (Pencil stubs to keep in place.)
 The breast plate:
 Slots for various sizes of kids, latched with pencil stub:
Used this picture for these parts of my Scripture Power chart:


Take-home card to practice the words with family:
Fun days.

Other pictures since my last post - I was on my way to join other R.S. sisters at the temple early one Saturday morning, and passed this, out in Manila:
Since I was a little early, I stopped to take the picture.  I have no idea if the same family lives there, but when I was a kid, we'd always drive by as part of celebrating Christmas, and also go on to Mary Pulley's yard just down the hill from the temple where she had a large nativity and played Christmas music (long gone, now a subdivision).

(In addition to building an ice display in the yard each year,
apparently their vehicles get very good traction!)

And lastly, this is a strawberry which was served at our snack schools this month,
and the teaspoon tells you how big they were!  Luscious too!