Some years ago, this Deseret News article, "Mother's Influence Felt in Decisions of LDS Executives" was brought to my attention, and has been lurking in the back of my mind ever since. The article is an excerpt from a book called, "The Mormon Way of Doing Business". While the book sounds intriguing enough, I admit I have not yet read it. On the other hand, I have frequently reflected on this article and the proactive approach Kim Clark's mother took in raising a boy with strong values, and how it paid off- he is a former dean of Harvard Business School:
"...Clark's mother had three sayings she used to repeat to him every day as a child:
1. 'Be a leader.'
2. 'If it's not worth doing well, it's not worth doing.'
3. 'Remember who you are.'
"On most school days, Mrs. Clark would grab Kim by the lapels of his coat before he left the house and say: 'Don't you let those other kids pull you around by the nose. You be a leader. You stick to your guns. You do the right thing.'"
What a woman! She is my hero. (In fact, when my son turned 5, I tried her pep talk out on my son before school. I soon realized that I had to define that being a leader doesn't mean you're always in charge. Oops.) At any rate, I want to raise up a strong man, and I often consider how to accomplish this thing. It is certainly not something that our culture is promoting. The humbling thing, is realizing that it also takes self-introspection as to the kind of person we are, and what our examples alone are teaching.
We hear and remind ourselves time and time again that our roles as mothers are important, but the fruits of our effort are so painfully slow to ripen, it is easy to forget that our job has an impact beyond feeding, diapering, bathing, or reminding them to change their underwear. This article is a solid reminder of what we as mothers are building one day at a time- The Future.
And should we find ourselves pining for other venues, Sue Clark wisely reminds us, "There are seasons in life. Once childbearing years are over there are many years to pursue education and other things. But there are seasons, and it's essential to protect and guard these childbearing years because they are shorter than life expectancy. There is a narrow window for childbearing and child rearing."