Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Noah Principle

This post really began last spring when my sweet husband practically had to push me out the door of our van so I could attend a day of the BYU Women's Conference. (He sends me every year, but this year Grace was sick, and I wasn't sure how it would all work. So he drove down to Provo and tended three kids for the day and brought Grace to me once between classes to nurse. Yes, I married He-Man.) There I listened to a young mother tearfully exclaim, "If you don't know about Scripture Scouts, you should." I was a little skeptical. But she was so sincere. My curiosity overcame me, and I checked out all five Scripture Scouts CD sets (Old and New Testament, Book of Mormon, Articles of Faith, and Proclamation on the Family) from the library. We listened to them all the way to and from Disneyland this summer, and we came home a van full of fully converted Scripture Scouts. Seriously. If you don't know about Scripture Scouts, you should.

But on to the point of this post. Recently we were listening to the Noah segment of the Old Testament Scripture Scouts in the car. I thought about Noah's poor family trapped on that ark for months on end with all those noisy, smelly animals. They must have been stir crazy and tired of each other and their trying circumstances. Suddenly I wondered if any of them ever thought that, in the short run at least, they had made the harder choice. Yes, they got to live, but they paid a pretty heavy price for their lives in the first bit after the flood. Their choice was better in the long run but must have been at least occasionally miserable in the beginning.

And then I thought about how life is sometimes like that. Why in the world would I choose to have kids when I could shower every day, enjoy a career, and feel like an intelligent human being? Why would I have three kids spaced fairly close together and hope to one day have more? What in the world possessed me to try to move on with life and have another baby after my cancer? Why do I try so stinkin' hard to choose non-punitive, respectful parenting methods? Why would I encourage my husband to follow his dreams and go back to school for an MBA? In the short run, all of these choices have made my life harder.

Each of us has a different life with different scenarios and attendant choices. But the principle remains the same: choices that are the best eternally are often harder in the beginning. Just ask Noah.

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