Sunday was a bittersweet day at Patchwork Farm, as Molly and I headed off to church in the evening for Molly’s last New Beginnings program with the young women at church.
New Beginnings is an annual event that occurs at the start of the year. The purpose behind this social activity for the young women and their parents, is to welcome the young ladies who are turning 12 and moving into the young women program, bidding farewell to the graduating seniors, and to introduce the youth theme for the year.
This year the theme is:
And the décor and activities of the evening revolved around this theme of love.
I have attended many, many, many New Beginnings between Grace, Molly, and my years serving as Young Women’s president. I remember the bittersweet emotions felt at that first New Beginnings ceremony when Grace was welcomed into the Young Women program. I remember the feelings of sadness that she was old enough to be part of the teen youth group, and the feelings of dread that this was the beginning of the end. As I fought back tears over the fact that my baby was growing up, I couldn’t imagine the heartache those with graduating seniors must be feeling.
Now I find myself in their shoes.
After 10 years of complete immersion in the young women program, I find myself on the cusp of having no more young women in the house. As I sat there celebrating the growth Molly has achieved through the inspired young women’s program, I found my feelings were less sad, and more grateful.
It is funny how the Lord prepares your heart for the transitions of life,
And those dreaded milestones that you live in fear of coming, turn out to be a celebration of growth when they arrive.
Those life events you feel incapable of handling years before they happen, would be impossible to embrace at that time, but God grows our hearts and prepares our children, and brings about a joyful acceptance so that when the day does arrive, you find your emotions have evolved and your capacity to celebrate the changes of life expand.
It is a beautiful testament to the Lord’s promise that if we live in today and not worry about tomorrow, He will care for us.
We arrived at New Beginnings 15 minutes late, due to a dinner and Braden’s lesson with our missionaries running later than planned. We got there just in time to witness the welcoming of the new 11/12-year-old’s who enter Young Women’s this year. They looked so little!
And then Molly joined two of her dearest friends to be honored as graduating seniors. Each young lady had the opportunity to speak and share their testimony and parting words of advice with the younger girls. All spoke to the power of transformation that can be found in the young women program and the gospel of Jesus Christ.
As I watched them say good-bye, I was blown away by the growth and transformation I’ve had the honor of observing over the last few years.
They have each grown into amazing young ladies that are more than equipped to head out into the world and change this world for the better…
And I can’t wait to see what Heavenly Father has in store for them!
The remainder of the evening was filled with fun games, yummy treats, and a beautiful musical number by the young women.
It was a beautiful night and my heart was filled with love for my sweet daughter, her dear friends, and the countless leaders that have been instrumental in molding her into the lady she is today.
Here’s to New Beginnings…
May we embrace them for the divine adventure they are!