The Uchtdorf talk that I mentioned yesterday reminds me of a turning point in my life. I was a young mother, with three tiny boys. I was struggling with keeping my house clean and all my other duties, but I had an innate desire to create items of beauty with needle and thread. I would make myself do all my housework, and then I would let myself sew one thread on my handmade quilt. ONE THREAD. That was my daily allotment. I figured if I did one handsewn thread per day, eventually the quilt would get done. (Note: Back then I sewed my quilts by hand. Now I do most things with a sewing machine.)
I even felt guilty for that tiny amount of “fun”. I sometimes asked myself, “Shouldn’t I be using my spare time to do genealogy or make a garden, etc.?” But I didn’t WANT to do those things with my spare time, I wanted to SEW. I continued to sew, but I continued to feel guilty.
Then, around 1985, I attended my brother Larry’s graduation from BYU, and they gave Boyd K. Packer an honorary degree. As they presented the degree, they told how he (an apostle of our church) has carved many, many beautiful wooden sculptures of birds, and painted them. Some of them took up to a year to complete. This completely shocked me—-I had the mistaken belief that apostles just do church work all the time. When I learned that an apostle can take time out from his busy schedule to create items of beauty, a huge burden was lifted from my shoulders, and ever since then, I have known that God approves of us having wholesome creative outlets in our lives. I am eternally grateful for that knowledge.
2 Nephi 2:25 Adam fell that men might be, and men are, that they might have JOY.
(If you want to read about Elder Packer’s bird carvings, click here for the article.)