~by Brenda

The past month has been tough for my family. My husband made an extremely costly error at work. My chronic illness left me immobile for several days. My children have had behavior and potty training issues. My husband’s employee fell ill and very nearly died. With the loss of those extra hands on the job site, my husband has been working from 5 a.m. to 12 a.m. daily.

One night after returning home late from work, two of my small children awoke at the sound of my husband’s truck pulling into the driveway and followed him into our bed. He welcomed their sleepy embraces and snuggled them tightly. I could see the stress of the day fall off his shoulders as he heard tiny voices chime “I love you Daddy.” Our children quickly buried under the covers next to my husband, seeking the warm crooks of his arms to use as pillows. He relished the chance to spend a few seconds snuggling with them, taking care not to move abruptly so they could fall back asleep before he carried them back into their beds.

When he returned, my husband reached across the bed and touched my head, “I love you, Brenda. I miss you and the kids when I work this much.” I reached up and entwined his hand in mine and told him I loved him too. A familiar peace washed over me in that moment and I recognized the feeling as joy. That night I fell asleep smiling, my heart swelling to nearly bursting, with love for my family.

Shortly after this experience, I read a scripture that matched my emotion. The scripture that touched me is found in a book of scripture called the Pearl of Great Price and it is quoting Eve, mother of all. In this scripture, Eve is reflecting on the choice she and Adam made in Eden.

Were it not for our transgression we never should have had seed (children), and never should have known good and evil, and the joy of our redemption, and the eternal life which God giveth unto all the obedient Moses 5:11

After reading that scripture I thought back to that familiar peace I had felt only nights before and realized my heart was singing Eve’s song. Despite the physical and emotional pains brought on by mortality I was still able to experience joy, just like mother Eve.

In the Book of Mormon, a prophet named Lehi explained Adam and Eve’s choice further:

And they would have had no children, wherefore they would have remained in a state of innocence, having no joy, for they knew no misery; doing no good, for they knew no sin. But behold, all things have been done in the wisdom of him who knoweth all things. Adam fell that men might be, and men are that they might have joy. 2 Nephi 2:22-25

I am thankful to Adam and Eve, for choosing life, and for giving me the opportunity to experience joy here on Earth and in the life to come.