So yesterady I had the amazing opportunity to attend a stake Relief Society activity. It was all about the Prophet Joseph Smith's wife Emma. I just have to say WOW! I feel so ashamed for ever thinking negative of her. I used to judge her so harshly for leaving the church and allowing her children to do so as well. I can not believe how dumb I was about everything.
The way it was set up was there 5 women on the stage, all dressed accordling with the style of the 1800's. They started from the begining of Emma's life and went through to the end of Emma's life. I would most certainly have NOT been up to the task that God required of her.
She lost 5 children, had 8 pregnancies, watched her home be burglarized time and time again. She had to raise all of her children for the most part by herself. The times Joseph was in jail she was forced from her home and had to depend on God's love an protection to provide the food her and her children would need. She had to deal with the mobs and her husband constantly going into hiding. She had to constantly leave her home and possesions.
Then in the ultimate sacrifice she had to feed and house in her own home the men who would be responsible for her husbands death. Having to listen to the messenger come to deliver the news to the guests in her home that "the deed is done" and her husband was dead. She had to deal with the debt incurred by the church because it was all in Joseph's name. She was asked to hand over all of her papers, both church and personal, to the church because it was too hard to decifer what was personal and what was the church's. She chose not to and as a result kept the debt of the church ultimatley resulting in the loss of her home to pay for the debts.
All in all I can not imagine the pain, agony, and suffering her heart had to suffer so that we could be blessed with the church in our lives today. I am so grateful for her amazing strength and the amazing strength she was to our prophet Joseph Smith so he could peform the work of the Lord. I have severe remorse in my heart for ever thinking as harshly of her as I did.