There were so many good things to read in these week’s historical April 15, 1873 Women’s Exponent. I had a hard time deciding what to write on! So instead of trying to narrow it down I’m sharing some of my favorite ‘snippets of wisdom.’
The “influence of a smile”
“There is nothing which makes the human face so attractive as a bright smile. It breaks over the countenance like the sun-light through the rain clouds after a shower and it enlivens all upon whom it rests.”
This reminded me of a journal entry Meg shared from a pioneer woman. Martha Cragen Cox recorded in her journal:
Our attitudes, and conversely our countenances, have a great affect on those around us. Do our husband and children see us being cheerful as we go about our work? Or do they more often than not see us grumbling, complaining, and wearing a scowl?
Which leads to the next snippet:
“WOMAN was created for a helpmate for man, and while it is his duty to provide for and protect her, it is no less her duty to assist him in all the minor affairs of life. Her province is home; there she should reign supreme, her busy steps never flagging, her watchful eye never wearying; the welfare of her children, the happiness of her husband, her constant care.
She should strive to make her home the most delightful place on earth to him, that when the toils of the day are ended and he seeks it for repose, he may find in it his cares lightened and his sorrows soothed; that he may go forth again to the contest with renewed vigor and with cheerfulness and encouragement in his heart.
Domestic duties and even, as is often the case, household drudgery, must necessarily fall to her lot, and though she does not shrink from the performance of these, there are those of a different kind which have no less claim upon her. God has given her a mind, has bestowed upon her intellect, and it is her duty to cultivate it – it is a religious duty, for it was given her for a noble purpose that she might be her husband’s pride, a fit instructress of her children, an ornament in her home. She should not suffer the common details of everyday life to render her manners coarse or sour her temper, but always strive to be mild, refined and polite.”
The quote goes on for a few more paragraphs and rightly tells how a kind encouraging word and assistance from her husband can lift a woman and make her feel appreciated. I know my outlook on even hard days can be changed to one of joy when my husband offers words of appreciation and love for my efforts. When both husband and wife offer encouragement to each other they find their individual tasks a joy to perform rather than a burden to be endured.
One of my greatest joys is teaching my children.
“To none is given greater responsibilities than those resting on mothers in training their children in the fear of the Lord. We are all aware that when we receive these precious darlings from the hands of their Maker, they are perfectly innocent and pure. . .We should not fail to instruct them in the principles of faith, that as the Savior, when He was upon the earth, loved little children and took them in His arms and blessed them. He still loves them and loves to listen to their prayers.”
Is there nothing sweeter than hearing your children pray? I love to hear their humble thanks of gratitude for little things – the bug they saw, the protection they received, the peas they didn’t have to finish from their plate. I also gain much insight from their pleas of help – to try to be more kind, to find a lost item, to bless others who are in need.
Join us for Society Sunday! Write your thoughts on this week’s excerpt from the April 15th, 1873 Women’s Exponent or post a story about a Relief Society experience you’ve had or a history of a Relief Society sister you know.