Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Default is Off

Michelle from Mormon Women cued me into Having another child: Questions couples can consider by the Eyres.  I really liked what they said about the function of the family:  ". . .family is the core rather than the periphery. Children are part of the purpose rather than the sidelight. Work supports family rather than the other way around."

Then they gave the "default" analogy:

Most electronics have "default positions" that control the device's operation unless we override it. In terms of having children, should our default switch be OFF (assume you should not get pregnant until you receive inspiration that you should), or ON (assume that we should have a child in a reasonable amount of time unless, as we pray, we feel that we should wait). . . .  In light of the gospel and the restoration and the plan, would it not be a better idea to generally have the default switch on ON — to assume that God wants you to have children (or another child) reasonably soon until you feel, in your prayers, that he wants you to wait, or to be finished?
We live in a culture where the default to have families is generally OFF; we wait and wait to have children, but we need to remember that God intended married people to have families.  We are a part of His plan.

The Value of a Mother

"All the  nuns in the world are not worth as much as one mother in the formation of a young girl's soul."  Victor Hugo in Les Miserables (the book)

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

My Testimony

Joni Martin asked me to answer some questions for her on her blog, Hope's Journey.  I realized what I wrote is much of my testimony.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Faith and Feminism

Here's a recent discussion from the Washington Post site regarding faith and feminism:

“The discrimination against women on a global basis is very often attributable to the declaration by religious leaders in Christianity, Islam and other religions that women are inferior in the eyes of God,” former President Jimmy Carter said last week. Many traditions teach that while both men and women are equal in value, God has ordained specific roles for men and women. Those distinct duties often keep women out of leadership positions in their religious communities. What is religion’s role in gender discrimination?
My thoughts are, first of all, because there is still discrimination and abuse toward women all over the world from whatever source, this is why I like people (defined feminist or not) who fight for equal work rights, pay, voting, political opportunity, education, health care, respect, etc. for women (and the rest of humanity for that matter). 

Secondly, I think it's great that religion teaches "that while both men and women are equal in value, God has ordained specific roles for men and women."  President Monson in the LDS Church's General Conference in April just re-stated :
Your wife is your equal. In marriage neither partner is superior nor inferior to the other. You walk side by side as a son and a daughter of God. She is not to be demeaned or insulted but should be respected and loved. Said President Gordon B. Hinckley: “Any man in this Church who … exercises unrighteous dominion over [his wife] is unworthy to hold the priesthood. Though he may have been ordained, the heavens will withdraw, the Spirit of the Lord will be grieved. . . .” 8

The LDS Church's Proclamation on the family teaches: 
By divine design, fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families. Mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children. In these sacred responsibilities, fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners.
Clearly, men and women are equal, yet there are also some role guidelines.  To me, the role division keeps me from being too busy and taking on too many responsibilities.  It keeps our duties slightly divided so we can each have our own turf. Although the separate guidelines are there, there is a lot of overlap.  Several times, I've heard a father encouraged to be the one to leave a church meeting with a fussy child so that the mother may stay and enjoy the meeting.  Several times, I've seen mothers serve in heavy duty leadership positions.  It's not always the men in leadership positions, nor is it always the women taking care of the children.

I see marriage as a partnership.  My husband holds the priesthood which he uses to bless and lead our family; I carry and primarily care for the children (at least when my husband is not home).  It's not much unlike body parts.  Is my arm more important than my leg?  Is my vision more important than my hearing?  Is a man more important than a woman?  We each have our particular roles and work together as a team.

Thirdly, by stating "those distinct duties often keep women out of leadership positions" obviously shows that whoever is asking the question is valuing leadership over other duties.  If we valued following, or nurturing, or something else more than leadership, would this even be a question? Actually though, in the LDS Church, there are very few positions in which women don't serve.  Some of these include bishop (leader of a congregation) and prophet (leader of the world-wide church), but women are plenty involved on the home-front all the way to the general level of the world-wide Relief Society.  (By the way -- there are also positions in which men DON'T serve!)

Lastly, I agree that some of the abuse and discrimination against women is carried out in the name of religion, but I don't think that a separation of roles is a direct form of abuse or discrimination.  I don't know specifically what many religions teach or practice that is interpreted as or is truly discriminatory, but I wonder how much of the abuse and discrimination is actually cultural in nature, not religious.  I'm sure some people want us to conclude that religion breeds discrimination, but I see role division as a way to help us unite as women and men and to simplify our lives.

4/20/11:  And wow, on the other hand ... this just in today:

People across the world are suffering from persecution. “And why are they suffering?” John Graz said. “Are they dangerous for their country? Are they bad people? No, most of the time they are good people. But they are suffering, they are discriminated against, they are excluded only because of their religion.” 

So either religion is the culprit of discrimination, or those who are religious are discriminated against.  How confusing.

Dressing (or not fully dressing) Little Girls

You may have seen this great editorial, but I love how he really expresses that there is no need for little girls to be dressing inappropriately and if they are doing so, it is most likely because adults are buying them questionable clothing. It is a great and thought-provoking quick read and I thought that the implications he lays down at the end for the "early sexualization of girls" is so sad, I hope that parents will reconsider what they are letting their kids wear.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Perspective: Raising Children You Will Like as Adults

This summer we are planning a big family campout and are inviting lots of our old friends.  I thought how exciting it is going to be to see some of these people.  Aw, the good old days!  Then I began thinking about our children, and I hoped that in the future, when they are grown, they can also be our good friends whom we will want to spend time with.

In the LDS Church, I've heard some people say that they believe they knew their families before they came to earth.  Now I don't believe there is any confirmed scripture or doctrine on that specific point*; however, I did ponder that if that is true, and I did, in fact, know my family in the pre-earth life, we probably were really good friends who said we wanted to help each other through this earthly journey.  I even pondered that perhaps I committed or even covenanted that I would provide bodies for those spirits who would become my earthly children!  Again, don't take that as LDS doctrine; I'm just pondering here.

The whole idea that my little children could have been my friends before this earth life, and that they can be my friends, people I actually like to be with, when they are grown, made me feel a little more patient and a little more excited in being diligent in teaching them to become people that I will like as adults, as Julie Beck similarly stated in her Conversation on the Mormon Channel.

*If you've found an article on this topic of knowing our families before we came to earth, please save me some time and point me to it!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

About Me

Just in case you were dying to learn more about me, here's a piece I wrote up for Mormon Women:  Who We Are a bit back.

Friday, April 15, 2011

More on Modesty

I wish I had time to further develop this thought here, but here are three points to drop into my modesty/chastity file.  Enjoy:

1. 195 Dresses:

2.  From a LAF/Beautiful Womanhood review of the movie Soul Surfer:

Mom, I don’t understand. Parents tell their daughters they’re supposed to dress modestly, and then they go crazy over this movie [Soul Surfer}, proving that modesty isn’t really all that important to them. It’s like girls at church are supposed to be modest, but it’s OK for boys at church to watch girls who are practically naked, as long as it’s in a movie. Modesty is either important or it’s not. If boys aren’t moved by a girl in a bikini, then what are they moved by? And why do I have to dress modestly?

3.  From President Monson's talk at the Priesthood Session of General Conference, April 2011:

Many movies and television shows portray behavior which is in direct opposition to the laws of God. Do not subject yourself to the innuendo and outright filth which are so often found there.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

If Dads Are Irrelevant, Moms Are to Blame

Stephanie over at Empowering LDS Women linked to If Dads Are Irrelevant, Moms Are to Blame.  Very interesting article.  My impression as I came to the end of the article was that we need to value parenting more, whether it is parenting from a mother or a father.  We need to be teaching values in our families!  The article sums up:

Overall, these figures show that mothers are still doing the bulk of the childcare work within the family, but that fathers are involved too and that the degree to which fathers are involved is increasing significantly. This tells me that it is time for fathers to be given some of the credit and some of the blame (to the extent that credit/blame belongs on the shoulders of either parent) and it is time for researchers to stop assuming that only the choices and actions of the mother are relevant.

I don't want to turn this into a debate about who contributes more or who deserves more blame (for being absent or for screwing up while being present). I don't think that will help mothers or fathers or children. However, I do think that researchers and the media need to rethink their portrayal of mothers and fathers.

I also think that our society, as a whole, needs to put more value on parenting.  Mothers and fathers alike should be celebrated for the contribution that they make to their children's lives, rather than being blamed and ridiculed for everything that goes wrong.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Biblical Womanhood and the LDS Church - Part 2

A couple of Julie Beck's talks recently have outlined the things we women do in the LDS Church.  I've already made a list a couple times from her talk, Mothers Who Know, but just so you don't have to click, here's the list again:
  • “. . .In the eternal perspective, children—not possessions, not position, not prestige—are our greatest jewels.”
  • The value women place on motherhood in this life and the attributes of motherhood they attain here will rise with them in the Resurrection.
  • We honor sacred ordinances and covenants.
  • We know that if we are not pointing our children to the temple, we are not pointing them toward desired eternal goals.
  • We create a climate for spiritual and temporal growth in our homes.
  • We work beside children in homemaking tasks (cooking, washing clothes and dishes, and keeping an orderly home) to create opportunities to teach and model qualities children should emulate.
  • We are knowledgeable, but all the education we attain will avail us nothing if we do not have the skill to make a home that creates a climate for spiritual growth.
  • Nurturing requires organization, patience, love, and work.
  • We do not abandon our plan (missions, temple marriages, education, prayer, scripture study, and family home evening) by succumbing to social pressure and worldly models of parenting.
  • We are selective about our own activities and involvement to conserve our limited strength in order to maximize our influence where it matters most.
  • We consider our homes as a pre–missionary training center.
  • We allow less media in our homes, less distraction, less activity that draws our children away from our home.
  • We are willing to live on less and consume less of the world’s goods in order to spend more time with our children—more time eating together, more time working together, more time reading together, more time talking, laughing, singing, and exemplifying.
  • We choose carefully and do not try to choose it all.

I additionally re-read "Daughters in My Kingdom":  The History and Work of the Relief Society.  Relief Society is the women's organization in the LDS Church.  Again, there's a big list of things we women do, or rather, should do (or should not do in some cases):

  • you are preparing for eternal designations, and each of you has a female identity, nature, and responsibility
  • The success of families, communities, this Church, and the precious plan of salvation is dependent on your faithfulness.
  • bring up [your] children in the light, truth, and strength of the gospel
  • In the growing climate of entitlement, excuse, apathy, and enticement, daughters of God who are not watchful, prayerful, and inspired are increasingly at risk of becoming what the scriptures describe as “silly women” who worship a variety of “strange gods.”
  • many sisters believe the myths more than the truth. Their misalignment with God’s plan is demonstrated in findings that many are not doing essential things such as praying and reading scriptures.
  • The purpose of Relief Society is to prepare daughters of God for the blessings of eternal life as they increase in faith and personal righteousness, strengthen families and homes, and seek out and help others who are in need.
  • Righteous women today seek an outpouring of revelation to resist distractions, fight evil and spiritual destruction, and rise above personal disasters by increasing their faith, strengthening their families, and providing relief to others.
  • Understanding the history of Relief Society strengthens the foundational identity and worth of faithful women.
  • [The Lord] had in mind something much, much bigger than a women’s club or special-interest entertainment group [in regards to the Relief Society].
  • He intended Relief Society to help build His people and prepare them for the blessings of the temple.
  • There is a worldwide hunger among good women to know their identity, value, and importance.  
  • We study our history to learn what we are to do.
  • Through our history we learn how to prepare for the blessings of eternal life.
  • Through Relief Society meetings, the ministry of visiting teachers, and their combined service, daughters of God are taught, watched over, and inspired in their responsibility in the Lord’s work and kingdom.
  • We have also seen an increase in the dignity, identity, and relevance of Relief Society
  • We are seeing an increase of faith and personal righteousness, a strengthening of families and homes, and more relief being offered by Relief Society sisters through the correct use of Relief Society meetings.
  • It has always been a responsibility of Relief Society to participate in the work of salvation.
  • From Relief Society, sisters go forth to serve in Primary, Young Women, Sunday School, and other efforts, and they are beacons of light and virtue to the rising generation.
  • sisters have been at the forefront in sharing the gospel
  • they serve missions, prepare young men and women to serve missions, and invite their friends, neighbors, and family members to share in the blessings of the gospel
  • Today, family history and temple work continue to be some of the primary obligations of Relief Society.
  • Our understanding of our historical purpose helps women learn to prioritize properly so they will “not spend money for that which is of no worth, nor [their] labor for that which cannot satisfy.”
  • Relief Society has always had the responsibility to do as the Apostle Paul taught—to teach young women to be sober, discreet, and chaste and to teach those who are married to love their husbands, love their children, and strengthen their homes.
  • take care of the essential things which will save and sanctify us and the things which are necessary to make us personally self-reliant and useful in the Lord’s kingdom.
  • utilize the power of the Holy Ghost operate with the inspiration of the Lord in their lives and receive revelation for their responsibilities.
  • continue to progress toward the blessings of the temple and eternal life by increasing their faith and personal righteousness, strengthening their families and homes, and seeking out and helping those who are in need. 
  • thrives on the teaching of the Lord Jesus Christ, who said that when we give our alms (or offerings) in secret, our Father in Heaven, who sees in secret, will reward us openly.
  • we are connected to a great worldwide sisterhood of young and old, rich and poor, educated and illiterate, single and married, strong and immovable daughters of God.
    So, in the next post, how do we put Part 1 & Part 2 of Biblical Womanhood and the LDS Church together?

    Monday, April 4, 2011

    Breastfeeding Baby Doll

    While we're on the topic of breastfeeding, I was driving in the car the other day and heard a story about a new doll from Spain:  the breastfeeding baby doll!  WHAT?!  I kinda laughed.  The doll comes with this thing the child straps on, and there are flowers where nipples would be.  The child holds the baby doll up to her (or his, I suppose) "flowers" and the sensors in the baby cause the baby to make nursing noises.

    People's reaction to the doll (in the U.S.) is rather negative and some said it sexualizes children too soon.  Sexualizes?!  I've never associated breastfeeding with the sexualization of children!  The only way I can imagine these people being offended is if they are likening breastfeeding to "self stimulating" or something.  In that case, then, yes, I can see they'd be offended.  I don't know if that's what these people are thinking, though, but I've never thought of breastfeeding as sexual or offensive. 

    Proponents of the doll say it helps children learn to nurture.  I can imagine it also making breastfeeding seem more natural and common.

    My reaction was that the idea is kind of weird, and I don't think I'd buy one of these dolls, but I don't think people should think it's a bad thing.  Obviously there are some serious misperceptions of breastfeeding.

    Breastfeeding and societal views of women

    Emily's note:  I added my husband Evan as a contributor to this blog.  Here's his first post.  Although he's not a woman (uh, thankfully), he sure gets me thinking sometimes about women's issues.  Don't mind his organization; he just defended his master's research.

    I was recently directed to a blog post entitled "Most Think Breastfeeding Moms Are Stupid." The article talks about some studies that have been done about what people think of breastfeeding mothers. In the studies, people are told stories about women who bottlefeed and women who breastfeed.  Then, the people were questioned about their attitudes toward the women in these scenarios. The answers to these questions are used to measure societal attitudes toward breastfeeding. The blog warns that if you breastfeed, that people will think you are stupid.

    The mothers that commented on the post were almost universally shocked and offended that others would be so ignorant of the benefit of breastfeeding and would judge breastfeeders so harshly. After reviewing the article linked by the blog post and thinking about people's reaction to the article, I've come to view the results of the studies in a slightly different light. I also believe that people's reactions to the studies may be more instructive on societal attitudes than the studies themselves.

    While I am not completely settled in my thoughts on this matter, I though I'd share my current thinking with the hope of understanding it better. I'll first share what I think the studies reflect about societal attitudes. I'll then discuss the further insight I think we can gain from people's reaction to the studies.

    The Study
    While the title of the blog post seemed to focus (and sensationalize) on the aspect of the studies that showed that women in stories who breastfeed were perceived as less competent in general and especially less competent in math, it failed to mention some of the other findings of the studies. For example, the study showed that when a story about a woman in a strapless bra was told she was also perceived as less competent like the woman in the stories about breastfeeding. The studies also indicated that stories of women in both groups (breastfeeders and strapless bra wearers) were more likely to be perceived as being significantly more warm and friendly than stories of women who bottle fed.

    A possible explanation for the perception of less competence in these two groups is that society holds two separate prejudices, one against breastfeeders and another against women in strapless bras. While this is possible, I think a more likely explanation is simply that when the person's female gender is emphasized in the story, people tend to perceive the her as less competent.

    In western society, warmth and friendliness are labeled as "feminine" and so it should not be surprising that people would strongly associate those attributes with a person who's female gender has been emphasized by drawing attention to the breast. It should also not be surprising that people would de-emphasize intelligence (especially mathematics) which are labeled as "masculine" in western society. Please note that I am not defending or justifying these placement of the "masculine" and "feminine" labels, but simply asserting that these labels exist and I am, therefore, not surprised by these results. I think the results of the studies say more about current societal views of the "feminine" and the "masculine" than on society's view of breastfeeding.

    The Reaction
    While I believe the study does emphasize what attributes society labels as "masculine" and "feminine," I think the reactions to the study shows how society values the "masculine" and "feminine." As mentioned before, the study found that stronger associations with warmth and friendliness and weaker associations with competence and mathematical ability. People's reaction to these results were almost universally negative. Why would people in general, and mothers specifically, react so harshly to being considered warm, friendly, less competent, and having less mathematical ability?

    It could be that our "quick to be offended" culture leads people to focus on the negative (less competent) and overlook the positive (warm and friendly). It could also be that many feel that motherhood and breastfeeding are under constant attack and so people have become sensitized to additional attacks. While I think that both these explanations likely contributed to the negative reaction to these studies, I think there is another element involved. In addition to the false dichotomy of the masculine and feminine labels that are established by western culture, the culture also values the masculine and de-values the feminine.

    Evidence of the valuing of the masculine and de-valuing of the feminine can be seen in the reaction to these studies. Being perceived as warm and friendly are not highly valued because they are associated with the feminine. Being competent and good with mathematics are highly valued because they are associated with the masculine. Members of a culture that had a high regard for friendliness and warmth would have likely had a positive reaction to this study. Likewise I suspect that the reaction to these studies would have been less harsh had the results been that those that breastfeed were considered more competent and able in mathematics, but less warm and friendly.

    If we want to change society's view of motherhood, womanhood, and breastfeeding, it is not enough to change what attributes receive the "feminine" label and what attributes receive the "masculine" label, but we must also must learn to value the feminine. We must value the "feminine" attributes like "nurturing," "warmth," "kindness," "meekness," and "emotional" as equal in value to their "masculine" counterparts of "competence, "logical," "strength," and "assertiveness." I suspect that people from cultures that honor and value motherhood and the feminine would be equally bewildered by the harsh reactions to the studies as they would be to the results of the studies themselves.

    Sunday, April 3, 2011

    Biblical Womanhood and the LDS Church - Part 1

    We know there are many, many women mentioned in the scriptures, particularly in the Bible (Believe me!  Either go study it yourself, or see Heather's post, How Many Women Would You Guess Are in the Scriptures? to get a quick idea).

    When I read Passionate Housewives Desperate for God by Jennie Chancey and Stacy McDonald, I was amazed at their Bible knowledge.  They referenced what seemed like everything they wrote!  They knew scriptures inside and out that help us be good human beings, and they also seemed to know all the scriptures regarding women and their roles as outlined in the Bible.  I've enjoyed becoming more familiar with these scriptures.  Near the end of their book, the authors list wonderful things women do:
    • Helping husbands take dominion through God-ordained roles and tasks (Gen. 1, 2; Acts 18:2-3)
    • Serving as midwives (Gen. 35:17; Ex. 1:15-21)
    • Playing musical instruments (1 Sam. 18:6; Psalm 68:25)
    • Singing (Nehemiah 7:67; Luke 1:46-55)
    • Feasting before the Lord with God's people (Deut. 31:10-13; 1 Sam. 1:1-9)
    • Demonstrating hospitality to strangers and saints (Gen. 18:6; Acts 16:15; Romans 12:13; 1 Tim. 5:10)
    • Serving God's prophets (1 Kings 17; 2 Kings 4:8-38)
    • Thinking quickly and resourcefully in the face of danger (1 Sam. 25:3-42; Judges 4:18-22, 9:52-53)
    • Providing wise counsel (Judges 4:4-9; Proverbs 31:1, 26)
    • Facing death for the sake of God's people (Esther)
    • Weaving, creating works of art (Proverbs 31:13, 19)
    • Crafting beautiful garments (Proverbs 31:22)
    • Producing items in the home for the marketplace (Proverbs 31:18-19, 24)
    • Assisting her husband with the family business (Acts 18:3)
    • Augmenting the family estate through wise purchases and use of materials (Proverbs 31:16)
    • Planning wisely for the future (Proverbs 31:21)
    • Selecting with skill the food the family eats (Proverbs 31:14)
    • Giving to the needy (Proverbs 31:20; Acts 9:36)
    • Being the fruitful mother of many children (Psalm 128:3; Genesis 24:60)
    • Teaching children with wisdom (Proverbs 1:8 and 31:1, 26; 1 Tim. 5:10; 2 Tim. 1:5)
    • Training the next generation of women in a hands-on manner (Prov. 31:15; Titus 2:3-5)
    • Creating clothing for the poor (Acts 9:36-41)
    • Opening the home to the Church (Romans 16:1; Acts 16:14-15)
    • Supporting the work of the Gospel (Luke 8:1-3; Romans 16:6, 12)
    • Privately exhorting fellow believers (Acts 18:26)
    Now, part of me has to wonder how many of those characteristics are cultural.  I know some of the Biblical Womanhood women do take these scriptures very literally, but for me, I don't see that I have to do all these things to be a godly woman.  One topic that did surprise me was regarding traits such as producing items for the marketplace and assisting in the family business.  I didn't realize those progressive duties were in the Bible (I'm so embarrassed!)!  Often, I think we believe Biblical Womanhood is just being a baby machine and a slave to one's husband, but there is obviously so much more!
      Additionally, throughout the book (yes I flipped through all the pages), the authors mention scriptures that greatly influence their lives.  I wanted to jot a few down.  I'm so fascinated by so many scriptures dealing with the husband/wife/family relationship:
      • ... Children are an heritage of the Lord: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.  As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth.  Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them:  they shall not be ashamed... (Psalm 127:3-5).
      • Husbands love your wives even as Christ also loved the church and gave himself for it (Eph. 5:25).
      • Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands, as unto the Lord (Eph. 5:22).
      • ...let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband (Eph 5:33).
      • And did not he make one?  Yet had he the residue of the spirit.  And wherefore one?  That he might seek a godly seed.  Therefore take heed to your spirit and let none deal treacherously against the wife of his youth (Mal. 2:15).
      • But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence (1 Tim. 2:12).
      • Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law. And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church (1 Cor. 14:34-35).
      • I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house... (1 Timothy 5:14).
      • Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife (1 Cor. 7: 3-4).
      • For as the woman is of the man, even so is the man also by the woman; but all things of God (1 Cor. 11:12).
      • Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives (1 Pet. 3: 1-2).
      • Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel. But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.  For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands (1 Pet. 3:3-5).
      •  Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered (1 Pet. 3:7).
      • Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands (Proverbs 14:1).

      After reading through those scriptures, I began to wonder, where do the Latter-day Saints stand in comparison to Biblical compilations like this?  Do we still do those same things and behave these same ways?  I can definitely think of many things that I do that certainly fall within the lists, but what about counsel from our leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints?  Well, I'll start looking at that in Part 2!