by Jon Cannon, Stake President, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
A story has been told about two goldfish swimming in a bowl. Each day they would congratulate themselves on their wonderful environment and self-sufficiency. However, they failed to recognize the loving hands that dropped the food pellets each day and provided the regular fresh changes of water.
Establishing a happy marriage and family takes more than just effort and commitment. Like the goldfish who rely on loving hands for food and water, happy marriages and happy families need the help of Heaven.
I love the phrase “A family that prays together stays together.” Prayer is very natural if we remember that God is our Father and we are His children. Prayer can knit hearts together in love as family members kneel before God, express gratitude and petition blessings for one another.
Perhaps most importantly, family prayer can help eliminate feelings of anger and contention. Lawrence Douglas Wilder has said, “Anger doesn’t solve anything. It builds nothing, but it can destroy everything.”
The poetess Mary A. Kidder (1820-1905) penned:
When your heart was filled with anger,
Did you think to pray?
Did you plead for grace, my brother,
That you might forgive another
Who had crossed your way?
Oh, how praying rests the weary!
Prayer will change the night to day.
So, when life gets dark and dreary,
Don’t forget to pray.
I invite all of us to put prayer to the test – to pray with our families each morning and each evening and ask God to bless us with the gift of love at home.
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