Needed Encouragement

Try-It With-Me Tuesday, an interactive weekly time and place to foster connections that challenge and encourage the process to become a well-rounded person.

Thus far, I have mostly posted challenges that stretch me and those who try it with me. But an equally important part of my goal in writing for Try-It-With-Me Tuesday is to give and receive encouragement. Yes, I need encouragement to overcome discouragement—especially now as I jealously await (from my snow-covered locale) the spring-time weather that has arrived in other parts of the country.

To encourage is to inspire with hope, courage, or confidence and to give support. Personally, I need courage and inspiration to continue in a worthy purpose, whether it be writing on this website, being a good wife and mother, or serving God by nurturing my own spirituality and serving others. We all need encouragement in our process to become the person we want to be. For that reason, here is my challenge for the week:

Encourage someone this week by giving genuine praise or positive feedback.

Interestingly, this challenge comes from the reflective thoughts I have had since writing Commonality in a Community of Mothers. Many women across all religions share a common desire to use our time wisely to accomplish meaningful and inspired purposes, including being good mothers. Sarah at Genesis Moments considers this question as it relates to earning an income but concludes with the inspiration she gains from women who encourage her:

Most importantly, I am learning through these humble spiritual giants to pray above all things, on all things, about all things, under and through all things and that God is faithful if we believe in Him. He knows our comings and goings and will see us through.

I loved reading her thoughts and followed her link to Musings of a Housewife, where I read some more:

I often wonder what I’m doing with the blog. Is it a waste of time that I should be spending on more holy pursuits, or is it an opportunity for me to put my gifts to use by bringing women together and bringing new products to moms? Is it simply a place to socialize and ramble, or does it serve a greater purpose? Do I share too much, or should I share more? Am I really being myself? I evaluate these questions often.

Another forum posed a similar question To Blog or Not to Blog? in response to this excellent talk given by an LDS leader on womanhood and motherhood.

I took from that talk this important message:

There is no one perfect way to be a good mother. Each situation is unique. Each mother has different challenges, different skills and abilities, and certainly different children. The choice is different and unique for each mother and each family. . .What matters is that a mother loves her children deeply and, in keeping with the devotion she has for God and her husband, prioritizes them above all else.

Elder M. Russell Ballard
Daughters of God

As I consider all of these words from varied religious perspectives, I know that I can be tough on myself or overly sensitive to the reaction of others in regards to my own priorities and purpose. Knowing, however, that this is not a struggle that I alone face, I am inspired to trust in the personal messages of encouragement that I receive from my own prayers and to look for opportunities to give encouraging words to others.

Do you want to Try It With Me? Share your thoughts next Tuesday, April 22, at Finding What Inspires on this week’s challenge. I am also spending some time trying to memorize something inspiring for the April Reading Challenge.

Join in by trying the challenges with me, commenting, linking, or suggesting a challenge. If you want to write a post on your blog about what happened when you took the challenge, I will publish your link. Just link to my website in your post and send me your link.

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