First off, I would like to comment that this month alone I am one post short of matching the number of posts I did last year. It seems I'm am off to a good start. I hope I can continue to keep up this momentum.
Every Sunday my wife and I attend church. For Latter-day Saints(LDS), meaning members of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, our Sunday worship usually fit into 3 hour blocks. We have a sacrament meeting. In this meeting we partake of the sacrament and renew our covenants with God. We also worship together through song, prayer and listening to talks prepared by a few of the members(which changes every week). Then we have Sunday school where we split up into different age groups and are taught the gospel. Last, we have a priesthood and relief society. The youth are split up a little differently depending on age. Here is a good description as to what the priesthood is. Simply, we divide the men into separate classes and the women into other classes.
Now, I can get to my point. In priesthood our lesson came from the last General Conference(Bi-annual conference of all LDS members). It was a talk given by Elder D. Todd Christofferson called "Moral Discipline"(follow this link for the full talk). One of the first things he point out is the fact that the word "Disciple" shares the same root of the word "Discipline". I had never put that idea together. I feel that idea gives more meaning to to discipline. A disciple is someone who follows Jesus Christ. A disciple is associated with sacrifice and devotion. So discipline is also associated with devotion and sacrifice.
We then talked about what things determine our morals. We discussed how family, God/His messengers/Gospel, and society tend to shape people's morals. However, after our discussion we came to realize that yes these sources, and others, help shape our morals, but in the end it comes down to us and what we choose to believe and follow. We may feel that something is right or wrong, but in the end what matters is how we choose to act on that understanding.
For society, what is considered morally acceptable and not morally acceptable changes from time to time. But God is never changing and his standards are always the sa is truth and me. We can always look to him for what is truth and what is morally right. I'm grateful for that anchor in my life.
In the end we talked about how we can best teach moral discipline to others, like our own children. There were lots of suggestions but in the end I think we were all in agreement that as we live morally clean lives, that example is the best method of teaching. We need to teach our children truth, but if we are not living accordingly we are hypocrites and are children can see that. Some of the best lessons I've learned growing up have been from watching my parents live what they teach.
No one is perfect and that is why this lesson was great. It helped me to see the importance of having moral discipline in my life and how living what I know to be true is the best way I can teach my children how to be happy in this life and to be a true disciple of Christ.
I don't have kids now, but if I live now according to truth I have, these patterns will be with me when I have children, standing as an example to them of how to be happy in this life and how to live to be able to return home to our father in Heaven someday.