“What We Learned from Our Parents,” Ensign, March 2015, 16–19
In my home I learned to work hard. My family used a system we called the “diligence list.” At the beginning of the month, we received a list of various chores, such as doing the dishes, caring for the horses, and so on. We checked off the chores as we completed them, and then at the end of the month, we were given an amount of money for our diligent work based on how many check marks we had on the chart. From this I have learned to work diligently and to be careful with money.
Peter Stegeby of Västerbotten, Sweden
As a single parent, my mother had many things to do, but she always took time to help me, comfort me, or simply listen to me. Knowing that she was always there was invaluable, and I want to give that to my own children in the future.
When my mother remarried, her new husband chose to become the father of my older brother and me. Soon afterward, a little sister joined our family, but I have never felt the slightest difference in the affectionate and loving way he has taken care of us all as his own. Thanks to his attitude, my older brother and I have been able to grow up in a strong and unified family with the priesthood in the home. The day we were sealed as a family was very special. His loving example has taught me that a father isn’t just something you are—it’s something you become.
Amanda Cornelius of Stockholm, Sweden
When I was a child, my dad worked far away and always came home when it was pitch dark. I would stay awake until he came home. But one day he was very late, and I couldn’t reach him on the phone. I was very scared. I remembered that my parents had taught me to pray always and to ask for help whenever I was scared, so I knelt down and prayed that my father would return home safely. To my surprise, as I ended my prayer, I heard my dad’s bike outside. I was so grateful to my Heavenly Father for watching over my father.
As a young adult, whenever I’m confused or scared, the first person who comes to my mind is Heavenly Father. I know He is always with me and He listens to my prayers.
Rohini Krishnan of Bangalore, India
One night I went in my parents’ bedroom to ask my dad something, but he was kneeling in prayer, so I left and returned a few minutes later to find him in the same position. I decided to get ready for bed, thinking he would surely be done praying when I was finished with my bedtime routine. I returned to my parents’ bedroom about 10 minutes later to find him still praying! Seeing that example from my father strengthened my testimony. He was truly pouring his heart out in prayer to Heavenly Father.
Jen Hansen of Idaho, USA
I’m grateful that my parents shared the story of their relationship with me. They became good friends at age 14, and they grew up and learned together. With time, their friendship developed into true love, and they were married in the temple. I plan to follow my parents’ example of marrying in the temple and hope that I will experience happiness and true love as they have.
Pasăre Ana Maria of Prahova, Romania
Jesus Christ has always been at the center of my parents’ relationship. They focus on creating a home where the Spirit resides and set a high priority on family scripture study, family prayer, and family home evening.
My mother was called to visit teach a young mother who was struggling after a recent divorce. I often came home to my mom babysitting this woman’s two young boys. Occasionally we would stop by this woman’s home as we were running errands, and my mom would leave a note at the door. I am so grateful for my mom’s example that charity “seeketh not her own” (Moroni 7:45).
My parents are always learning and using their new skills and knowledge to build up the kingdom of God. Because of their example, I have made education a priority in my own life. The example of my parents led me to marry a man who also has Jesus Christ at the center of his life.
Rachel Nielsen of Utah, USA
My dad can repair just about anything. As a teenager, I asked him how he was able to fix things so well. He said, “Before I start working, I say a prayer to ask Heavenly Father to help me. Then I go to work.” His example has taught me to be humble and to seek heavenly inspiration.
When my mother has felt disheartened, she has sought healing and peace at the Savior’s feet. When I have had similar moments, she has encouraged me to draw on the power of the Atonement. As a young adult, I continue to find the Savior’s peace and reassuring love by following her righteous example.
Isak Malm of Jönköping, Sweden
When I was young, my parents planted within me the pure love from my Father in Heaven. I began to know Him as my mom sang “I Am a Child of God” (Hymns, no. 301) to me, and over time my parents’ examples have been my greatest inspiration to come to know and love my Father in Heaven through service and by faithfully attending Church meetings and activities.
Marlin Ortega Vásquez of Managua, Nicaragua