“Never let a problem to be solved become more important than a person to be loved.”

art by Jenna McKell

I have been a bit MIA recently because we moved last week and now my husband is out of town for a couple of days.

Life can sometimes feel like survival mode—especially at bed time.

Bath. Brush teeth. Prayers. Kids to bed. Then I can get everything done!!

Kids to bed. Kids to bed. Kids to bed.

It sometimes becomes a mantra in my head.

After my son’s prayer, I almost left the room. 🎉 “KIDS TO BED!!” 🎉 

But my son asked me to snuggle him and when I came back, he gave me a kiss, and said, “Mom. I love you more than anything in the universe except God. You are the perfect mom.”

Then he started vigorously rubbing my eyes with his open palms: “This is to stop you from crying!!” A preemptive but much appreciated move.

I am far from a perfect mom (kids are very forgiving), but it was a treasured moment. 

I realized that I was so focused on the destination that I almost missed the magic of the journey.

I have to be careful not to become the priest and the rabbi from the Good Samaritan parable,

Who are so consumed with their destination—the temple—that they forgot what the journey was for, missing an opportunity to connect and help.

In D&C 61, the Lord gives important counsel to the Prophet and ten other elders who were traveling in canoes back to Kirtland: “It is not needful for this whole company of mine elders to be moving swiftly upon the waters, whilst the inhabitants on either side are perishing in unbelief.”

The elders were looking towards their destination. 

They were exhausted,

The trip had been dangerous,

And they wanted to return to their families in Kirtland as soon as possible.

But the Lord reminded them to look around—

To slow down and preach to those around them. 

Having a destination in mind is not a bad thing.

God often asks us to look forward in faith,

And without a destination, it is easy to lose purpose and drive.

But we shouldn’t be moving so quickly that we neglect the people we are passing by or caring for now.

As President Monson said, “Never let a problem to be solved become more important than a person to be loved.”

Slow down.

Focus on the journey and the people.

That’s where the magic happens.

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