My name is Amanda and I am an LDS woman. I have been married to Bryan for ten years and we have three children – a boy who is 8, a girl who is 6, and another boy who is 4. I was born and raised in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. My mother is an active member of the Church and showed her testimony and faith to us by taking five children to church meetings each week by herself. Her doing this showed me how important the church is to her. My father is a baptized member of the church but doesn’t attend church. He always supported my mother in bringing us to church and would help to get us ready, but he never attended with us. It would have been much easier for my mother, I suspect, to stay home and not bother. I am so grateful to her that she didn’t take the easy road.
I was raised in Utah, where almost everyone (then) was a member of the LDS church. We went to church with our friends and neighbors. I loved being with so many people that shared my beliefs and standards. It was a safe place for me. When Bryan and I had been married for eight years, we moved from Utah to Oregon. Here, we are not surrounded by members, and that has been a hard adjustment for me. I miss going to church with my neighbors, but I have enjoyed branching out and meeting people from all walks of life. It has given me the chance to really show people what is important to us as well.
When I find myself with down time, I love to read and watch movies. I get nightmares easily though so nothing too scary! I spend time reading every single day. I also play volleyball in a league with other women each week. I love the physical activity and it gives me a breather from my regular life that I need. I am a crafty person, so I do some quilting and scrapbooking. I am not a perfectionist though so my quilts are always far from perfect. And that’s okay with me.
I am a stay-at-home mother – a homemaker. I enjoy it. Sometimes I find myself wishing that we had more money and I consider trying to find an outside job. I am a trained hairstylist and I miss regularly doing other people’s hair. I find that I when I am considering finding a job, the Lord reminds me why it is important for me to be in the home with my children. I enjoy taking care of them and being there for them. It is good for me, and I find that I am constantly learning new things about my “job.”
In church, my calling right now is Provident Living [preparedness] Specialist. I am new at the calling and I am not really yet sure what it means. I hope to help the women in my ward to build a three-month supply, [see this article as well], to learn to garden and be self-reliant, to use food storage, and to know how to budget and be responsible with money. We’ll also focus on exercise, nutrition and emotional and social health. I am also on the RS meeting [formerly Enrichment] committee, which is where a group of us plan midweek activities for the benefit of the ward Relief Society sisters.
In a former calling a few years ago, I was serving in the Young Women organization of the ward I was in. Our stake president [who oversees about 10 local congregations (wards/branches) issued a challenge for the youth to read the entire Book of Mormon over a summer. It meant reading a lot of pages each week to finish in the amount of time presented. I didn’t feel like I could issue a challenge to the young women in my group and not do this myself. Before this time I had not read the Book of Mormon from cover to cover, because when I study scriptures, I tend to research a specific topic that I want to know more about. Over the course of the summer, I was able to develop the discipline that I needed to read the book in such a short amount of time. I was able to have a greater understanding of verses that beforehand I would have found confusing. I was also able to feel the truth of the book – I now know without a doubt that the Book of Mormon is scripture; another account of the Savior, a companion to the Bible. And I know this to my core.
I love being a LDS woman because I love knowing that I am part of a worldwide sisterhood. I love knowing that there are many people out there that believe what I believe, that understand and can help me. I love that I know that I can be with my family forever if I make the right choices here. I love going to church and feeling that spiritual uplift that encourages me through another week. I know the reason I am on earth, and I know where I am going when my life is done. I know that the Lord loves me.
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