This was originally published as a blog post at The Faithful Feminist Site.
Knowing I have a Heavenly Mother is important to me. It is important to me because it means I am created in the image of God the Mother. It is important that I am a woman. I was a woman before this earth, and I will continue to be after this earth. We learn this in ‘The Family: A Proclamation to the World’, “All human beings—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of Heavenly Parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny. Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose.”
Because of Mother God I have a road map of who I am to become. Elder Widtsoe wrote that, “[We have] a mother who possesses the attributes of Godhood.”
I should strive to develop these godlike attributes so that one day I can be a great wife-partner just as She is. President Kimball taught that, “God ‘made women in the image of his wife-partner.’” I need to know how to work in a partnership like she does with Heavenly Father. Elder B.H. Roberts said that her position “[places] Her side by side with the Divine Father”.
I need to help others learn about the gospel and learn their eternal worth, because She too is a teacher. The prophet Brigham Young’s daughter, Susa Young Gates spoke saying that she believed Heavenly Mother to be a great molding influence to the prophet Abraham. Others have testified in Her role as guardian, providing watchful care and careful training to us. Knowing how much my own earthly parents love and watch over me, especially when I was younger I know that my Heavenly Parents must do this too. “‘The Family: A Proclamation to the World’ affirms that in the eternal realms above we were reared to premortal maturity through the tutelage of our Heavenly Parents” (BYU Studies, ‘A Mother There’).
I need to be strong like She was when She had to learn and overcome the obstacles of mortality. Elder Orson F. Whitney taught, “That our eternal Father and Mother were once man and woman in mortality.” The trials she experienced and the growth she endured took her from “womanhood to Godhood.” If I follow God’s plan and use Christ’s Atonement I too can change from womanhood to Godhood.
There are many other attributes that Mother God has. She helped create this earth, and as Elder Holland has testified, Heavenly Mother is still “involved in the ongoing process of creating everything around us.” She helped develop the Plan of Salvation. Elder Ballard said, “We are part of a divine plan designed by Heavenly Parents who love us.” She is a perfect mother who’s involvement and influence in our lives continues even now.
Having learned more about Heavenly Mother I feel more prepared to testify of Her reality. I don’t have to fear that speaking about God Mother is taboo or will somehow take away from Her. President Gordon B. Hinckley taught: “The fact that we do not pray to our Mother in Heaven in no way belittles or denigrates her… None of us can add to or diminish the glory of Her.” A BYU Study researched all recorded testimony of Eternal Mother and found “That claims—that the Church mandates silence or gives only simplistic portrayals of Mother in Heaven—are mostly false.” We can take heart knowing that “It doesn’t take from our worship of the Eternal Father, to adore our Eternal Mother, any more than it diminishes the love we bear our earthly fathers, to include our earthly mothers in our affections” (Rudger Clawson, ‘Our Mother in Heaven’).
My Heavenly Parents love me so much that they gave me earthly examples of strong womanhood and motherhood too. I have more examples than God the Eternal Mother. I have my grandmothers who have taught me to learn and develop talents, to always remember family and give others second chances. I have my sisters and sisters-in-law who never stop trying to improve themselves. I have my mom who has taught me the importance of belief and testimony, who never gives up on me and is my forever cheerleader.
If we try our best to be the kind of people our Heavenly Father and Heavenly Mother expect of us then we will rejoice when we meet Them again. “Oh, what songs we’ll employ! Oh, what welcome we’ll hear! While our transports of love are complete, as the heart swells with joy in embraces most dear when our Heavenly Parents we meet!” (‘Oh, What Songs of the Heart’).
I leave you with a favorite quote from Elder Glenn L. Pace, “Sisters, I testify that when you stand in front of your Heavenly Parents in those royal courts on high and you look into Her eyes and behold Her countenance, any question you ever had about the role of women in the kingdom will evaporate into the rich celestial air, because at that moment you will see standing directly in front of you, your divine nature and destiny.”
“A Mother There” BYU Studies Article
“Daughters of God” Talk by President Hinckley
“O My Father” Hymn
“Oh, What Songs of the Heart” Hymn
Our Mother in Heaven Instagram (I haven’t seen all their content but they try to be based on teachings from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)
“Mother in Heaven” Gospel Topics Essay
Seeking Heavenly Mother Website (I have not perused all their material, but from what I’ve seen it is faith-based and faith-enriching)
“The Divine Nature and Destiny of Women” Talk by Glenn L. Pace
“The Parable of the Ten Talents” A Dialogue by Ruth May Fox