by Katherine Nielson
When I was growing up I tended toward pessimism, and although I wanted to be a mother I had low expectations for what it would be like. I think I was more aware of the hard work and heartache that parenting involves than most people who aren’t yet parents.
I was conscious of the deep love parents have for their children and that seeing one’s children progress would bring satisfaction, but that was the upper limit of my hopes for parental reward.
It has been a big surprise to me as a mother that I enjoy my children. I mostly delight in serving them, I think they’re neat little people, I adore many of their particular gifts and charms, and I prefer their company to nearly anyone else’s. Reflecting on this has made me wonder about Heavenly Father’s experience as a parent. I usually think about his positive emotions toward us in terms of perfect, Godly love; clearly he relates to our parenting sorrows. Perhaps there are more facets to his feelings for us. Does he enjoy parenting us? Does he adore the unique ways we express his gifts to us? Does he desire us to return to him not only for our own happiness but also for his? How much of our parenting experience can be extrapolated to Heavenly Father’s parenting experience?
Katherine is 29, Iowa-raised, and has a BS from BYU in family science. She has been married 5 years, has children ages 4 and 18 months and is currently living in northern CA. She really appreciates the gospel discussions in the Bloggernacle.