A year ago when asked to give a talk in stake conference I went through and read most of the scriptures listed under "heart" in the Bible Dictionary to prepare myself. Ever since then, the heart has been a central focus of mine as well - - for myself and especially for one of my children who tends to lean more toward the hard-heartedness side of things (she's come a very long way in the past several months!) I just reposted my talk on a different blog here (a work in progress, by the way).
But, in response to Andrea, this book has been on my list for quite sometime. You simply encouraged me to put it higher on the list. :-) Thank you!!
I loved the part about how scriptures never leave you discouraged whereas other sources can disappoint you. I think modern technology (blogging, facebook, etc.) has brought in more of that disctraction and keeps us from looking at the true source of self worth. I know when I get in my more addicted phases of looking at others' blogs I get rather down on myself and feel more like a failure than amazing (which you all know I am!). :-) Sister Beck said something kind of similar in her last conference talk. She said, "When you are doing your best,you will have disappointments but you will not be disappointed in yourself." I loved that!
The other part I liked from your post, Ans, was the idea of "reporting" to someone. I've always believed in the return and report method of the Church. We need to report our Visiting Teaching for a reason . . . not only for numbers. People usually excercise better when they have a "buddy." Weight Watchers has a lot of success becuase there is that accountabillity to someone. This brings to mind Elder Bednar's two talks on prayer from last year and how we talk to God about the things we plan to work on in the morning and then at night we report to Him on how well we did, making the command to "pray always" more relevent in our lives. Very good stuff!
Now, you did write: "The more I give to my children, the more I have to give." I understand what you meant, but for me it's a little different. I HAVE to give to myself thing in the morning (mostly in regards to that relationship with my Heavenly Father) before I can give very much to my children. If I don't give to msyelf first, filling my bucket then I think about when I can give to msyelf all the rest of the day. Not really, but I'm a bit more edgey I guess. Only when I feel filled can I unselfishly give to them . . . even all day if need be. Anyway, just a thought.
Thanks for posting though, great thoughts to ponder on!