A Summer with Great Aunt Rose


I was really excited to be going to the general womens’ conference. My spiritual batteries were looking forward to the recharge that accompanies such events. I was looking forward to the spiritual feast that is to be found when we have any general conferences.

I was super happy when I heard Elder Uchtdorf would be speaking to us. He is always eloquent and kind in his addresses to the sisters. I am constantly reminded of the love my Saviour has for the women of his church.

When Elder Uchtdorf began to speak I thought, “Oh nice a parable. Great!” Then I kept waiting for him to finish the story so that he could give an explanation of what it meant. But he ended his talk with “I hope and pray that  something in this story has touched your heart and inspired your soul.” What? The End?  

That night I felt a little cheated. I went to the conference expecting a spiritual steak dinner and the Lord gave me a cow. Now I do realize that juicy steak comes from a cow but I didn’t want to take all the effort to slaughter that cow. That night when I prayed I told God exactly how I felt. One of the beautiful things about kneeling down to our Heavenly Father is that He wants to hear from us all the time and he wants our complete truth. So I prayed and said I was disappointed in His servants talk. I wanted the five points of the forget me not and I got a story that I really didn’t understand. Well, of course I didn’t end my prayer there. I did say, “I know Thou knowest what your daughters need to hear and I am sure Thy servants are in tune … so help me get there too. I’m feeling like a need a little more than what was given but I can trust Thee and I will get to my steak dinner just be patient with me please. ”

So before I went to bed I relistened to the talk. (I think more than once) That night I was awoken at 3am. I was wide awake and I heard a voice. (although I more felt a voice say) “Are you ready to learn about the story?”

“Really? 3AM? Well I did ask. And I did want my steak… and I wasn’t going back to bed and so I pulled out a paper and pen and began to write. Some of what I share are thoughts and ideas from the night, some are from studying and reading this parable more and reflecting and studying more… and some I wont share because they were just my private lessons.

***Sometimes I struggle with what to share on this blog. These stories are important to me and the represent my truth. I don’t want to share stories that are too spiritual but the Lord has given me some powerful stories to share and lift others. In no way do I think that this is a comprehensible list of all the lessons to be learned in this parable. That is the beauty of parables… all layers … all spirit and personal revelation teaching you the lessons that you need to touch your own heart and inspire your soul.

  • Eva : Is a derivative of Eve, ( we must consider ourselves like Eve)
    • 11 years old She is a child. She is still in primary. DC 50:40 Behold, ye are little children and ye cannot bear all things now; ye must grow in grace and in the knowledge of the truth.
    • “absolutely, positively did not want to go …Not at all. No way…thousand reasons why this was a bad idea” (no one every really likes change or hard situations but after they are done we are grateful for the growth and lessons learned )
    • “she hated enduring” (its one of the hardest parts of the test. Remembering when we were enlightened and not give up when things get tough)
    • “Maybe it’s not so simple for people who don’t have everything perfect in their lives.” It’s childish to think someone else has things perfect… This is such a natural thought that someone else has the children I wanted, or the marriage, or the house, or the family, but really we are exactly where the Lord intended us to be. (it doesn’t mean we have to stay there… but for this moment we can be grateful and NOT envious)
    • “So many people today are waiting for their own golden ticket—the ticket that they believe holds the key to the happiness they have always dreamed about. For some, the golden ticket may be a perfect marriage; for others, a magazine-cover home or perhaps freedom from stress or worry. There is nothing wrong with righteous yearnings—we hope and seek after things that are “virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy.”4 The problem comes when we put our happiness on hold as we wait for some future event—our golden ticket—to appear. Elder Uchtdorf,  Forget Me Not, 2011


  • Embarrassingly Big Bright Hatsbut people didn’t laugh… they crowded around her…they thanked her… often laughed…sometimes cried.”
    • they can be physical things like callous feet, freckles, they can be more emotional  abuse, pornography in marriage, parents divorce, addiction
    • has a little to do with Elder Uchtdorf take about being grateful “in” in things and not for things. “Have we not reason to be filled with gratitude, regardless of the circumstances in which we find ourselves?”( Uchtdorf, April 2014)
    • Being involved in the churches addiction recovery program for 6.5 years now has taught me that when I wear my “embarrassing big bright hats” it does the opposite to what I think it will do… instead of people laughing and pointing they flock, thank, cry and find hope
    • My will, keep hat in hat box and put it in the closet. His will pull it out and wear it. (He gave it to me) When my will changes to wear the hat… people crowd
    • What are you hats? Do you keep them on and wear them or are they hiding in a closet?
  • Grey Creepy Stalker Cats “find the highest point in the every room perch there, staring down like a hungry tiger at everything below.
    • these represent any of our doubts and fears
    • truth will make you free
    • Elder Bednar taught us that a correct knowledge of the Saviour attributes will hush our fears (April, 2015)
    • 1 Peter 5:8 (As quoted in President Monsons oct 2015 address. “Be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion (or hungry tiger) walketh about, seeing whom he may devour.”
    • Elder Uchtdorf talk on Golden tickets… found in “Forget Me Not” oct 2011
    • Video Wrong Roads : Jeffery R Holland
      • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yNQC-_srxH8
      • I have absolute certain knowledge … perfect knowledge that God loves us.. He expects us to pray and trust and to be believing, not give up, not panic, not retreat, not jump ship when something doesn’t seems to be going just right… We stay in, keep working, keep believing, keep trusting, following that same path and we will live to fall in His arms and feel His embrace and hear him say I told you it will be alright. “
    • serenity prayer.
      • God grant me the serenity
        To accept the things I cannot change;
        Courage to change the things I can;
        And wisdom to know the difference.
        Living one day at a time;
        Enjoying one moment at a time;
        Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
        Taking, as He did, this sinful world
        As it is, not as I would have it;
        Trusting that He will make all things right
        If I surrender to His Will;
        So that I may be reasonably happy in this life
        And supremely happy with Him
        Forever and ever in the next.
  • Going to Great Aunt Roses house
    • Hugh B Brown, The Current Bush January 1973
    • Elder Christofferson “willingly seek and accept correction
    • Mosiah Chapters 23 and 24
    • When I first went through the temple I had a lot of questions. Do you know what to do when you have questions about the temple? You meet with someone from the temple presidency and you ask them. Sometimes they know the answer sometimes they do not. When I first went through I would ask them all sorts of things. The learning was awesome. But then I started to think, Ahh I don’t want to bug them, they have lots to do… I’ll ask next time. But recently I got the courage to start asking again. Ask and you shall receive is a beautiful blessing. The temple president told me that the endowment was received by revelation and we will receive and understand it by personal revelation too.
  • Picture Pioneer Girl Skipping
    • “As you walk along your own bright path of discipleship, I pray that faith will fortify every footstep along your way; that hope will open your eyes to the glories Heavenly Father has in store for you; and that love for God and all His children will fill your hearts.
    • “Faith in the Savior taught me that no matter what happened in the past, my story could have a happy ending.” That is the joy of the atonement. The pure true love and happiness of the gospels message.
    • When aunt Rose prays she is thankful for the details of life. “bluejays, spruce trees and being alive” Everyone has access to these things that she expresses gratitude for. She even teaches Eva to know the difference between sparrows and finches and how to make marmalade from oranges.  She really is grateful for the small things of life.
      • Alma 30:44 “all things denote there is a God; yea, even the earth, and all things that are upon the face of it, yea, and its motion, yea, and also all the planets which move in their regular form do witness that there is a Supreme Creator.”
  • How to be happy NOW
    • notice the bright blue path, the vibrant green … keep hope
    • be authentic, its okay to express doubt, sadness and heartache, but take them to the one who can heal, restore, lift and burdens, and open up our eyes to the true blessings and beauty all around us.
    • the pioneers girls path is the same whether she drags her feet or skips… if you don’t feel like skipping ask Heavenly Father what lack I yet? “Faith and hope will open your eyes to the happiness that is placed before you.”
    • I exercised faith in God’s promises by filling my life with meaningful things. I went to school. I got an education. That led me to a career that I loved” She took control over the things that she has control over and left the rest to God. She took comfort in the promise that all things will be made right but didn’t dwell on not having her golden ticket. She decided to enjoy the delicious chocolate too.
    • “It is love—the pure love of Christ,” Rose said. “You see, everything else in the gospel—all the shoulds and the musts and the thou shalts —lead to love. When we love God, we want to serve Him. We want to be like Him. When we love our neighbors, we stop thinking so much about our own problems and help others to solve theirs.” Helping other people always puts our own griefs into perspective and sometimes helping others because of similar experiences gives meaning to our trials and heartaches.
    • Elder Orson F. Whitney ”

      “To whom do we look, in days of grief and disaster, for help and consolation? … They are men and women who have suffered, and out of their experience in suffering they bring forth the riches of their sympathy and condolences as a blessing to those now in need. Could they do this had they not suffered themselves? … Is not this God’s purpose in causing his children to suffer? He wants them to become more like himself. God has suffered far more than man ever did or ever will, and is therefore the great source of sympathy and consolation.” 10  This gives so much meaning to our sufferings when we can lift and support our fellow brothers and sisters

    • “The happiest people I know are not those who find their golden ticket; they are those who, while in pursuit of worthy goals, discover and treasure the beauty and sweetness of the everyday moments. They are the ones who, thread by daily thread, weave a tapestry of gratitude and wonder throughout their lives. These are they who are truly happy.” Elder Uchtdorf Forget Me Not
  • Roserose with thorns
    •  “Often the prickly thorn produces tender roses” (Ovid, Epistulae ex ponto, book 2, epistle 2, line 34; “Saepe creat molles aspera spina rosas”).  This little gem is found in the footnotes of the talk.
    • “There seems to be a full measure of anguish, sorrow, and often heartbreak for everyone, including those who earnestly seek to do right and be faithful. The Apostle Paul referred to his own challenge: “And lest I should be exalted above measure … , there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me.” 2 Refined in our trials Elder Faust February 2006
    • The thorns that prick, that stick in the flesh, that hurt, often change lives which seem robbed of significance and hope. This change comes about through a refining process which often seems cruel and hard. In this way the soul can become like soft clay in the hands of the Master in building lives of faith, usefulness, beauty, and strength. For some, the refiner’s fire causes a loss of belief and faith in God, but those with eternal perspective understand that such refining is part of the perfection process. Refined in our trials Elder Faust February 2006
    • The lesson here is that if we spend our days waiting for fabulous roses, we could miss the beauty and wonder of the tiny forget-me-nots that are all around us. Elder Uchtdorf Forget Me Not
    • “The price we paid to become acquainted with God was a privilege to pay, and I am thankful that I was privileged to come in the Martin Handcart Company.’” 1
    • “Sisters, I do not know why we have the many trials that we have, but it is my personal feeling that the reward is so great, so eternal and everlasting, so joyful and beyond our understanding that in that day of reward, we may feel to say to our merciful, loving Father, “Was that all that was required?” I believe that if we could daily remember and recognize the depth of that love our Heavenly Father and our Savior have for us, we would be willing to do anything to be back in Their presence again, surrounded by Their love eternally. What will it matter, dear sisters, what we suffered here if, in the end, those trials are the very things which qualify us for eternal life and exaltation in the kingdom of God with our Father and Savior?” Linda S Reeves Oct 2015

The most ironic part of this whole study is that I told the Lord I wanted steak not a cow. But the spiritual feast he has given me because of humbling myself to His way and His leaders has been amazing. Ironically I wanted the “Forget Me Not” talk and now that I have studied them both I realize that they are the same talk… But I have been able to feast and be filled with a exquisite meal from a loving Heavenly Father. I do have to mention that my 9 year old daughter loved this talk and remembers it so well. (Sometimes it’s not all about me) I also hope that in my insight you can find something that “has touched your heart and inspired your soul.”

A Summer with Great Aunt Rose

3 thoughts on “A Summer with Great Aunt Rose

  1. Jessie says:

    Love this. Thank you. I have felt compelled to study this parable again after all this time. Thank you. In one of my Google searches I found (next to the images of the book by Pres. Uchtdorf of the same title) another book titled, Someone Called Eva, a fiction work about a little eleven-year-old girl who is taken out of Czeck, ****away from her family**** (wild) & sent to Germany during WWII. I just downloaded the Audible version of the little book & I’ll be listening to it this afternoon. I love how this parable is extending out & including more meaning to me. Originally, I felt the same as you did!!! I even attended the Conference at the Conference Center with my 2 daughters. I felt disappointed at first, too, upon hearing it back then, but now recently the prompting to go back & understand the parable more deeply has led me to search much more. Thank you for your courage to share your personal revelations.


    1. Thanks Jessie,
      Did you read my parable about Cinderella?… It was my revelation… I entered a speech contest… it is my first attempt at a parable… I had 54 versions and that is what I ended with… it is better spoken but you can get the gist of it… I would love your feedback.


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