I've been waiting a full year to read Daughters in My Kingdom: The History and Work of Relief Society. I was very excited last year to hear Sister Julie Beck talk about it at the Relief Society General Meeting. It sounded like it was a truly inspired book -- and the book does not disappoint.
Aside from being an absolutely beautifully designed book, with wonderful pictures and inspirational quotes from leaders, the book reaches out and touches my heart through the history of Relief Society and the wonderful heritage of the sisters in the Lord's church.
It's been almost a year since I was released as Relief Society President in my ward. The 3 1/2 years that I spent in that calling was one of the hardest periods of my life, but one of the most fulfilling. There is so much service that sisters do quietly behind the scenes, and so much love that is given! It never ceased to amaze me at the goodness of some of these sisters that I served. Daughters of My Kingdom tells the story of the service of the sisters through the years. It brings to life that great heritage of service. After all, the Relief Society motto is "Charity Never Faileth."
The story is told of how Relief Society was organized, and how it progressed through the years. There are beautiful quotes from past Relief Society General Presidents, as well as modern day prophets. As the story unfolds, we find that the sisters of Relief Society were involved in every important program of the church to some degree or another. The sisters worked together with the priesthood in accomplishing common goals. I found the stories inspiring, but more importantly as I read, I found in myself a new resolve to be of service to my fellow sisters.
As much as I have been amazed at the goodness of the sisters, and of the marvelous service they give, I have also found that at times some of the sisters don't understand the capacity for good that the Relief Society organization has within its grasp. I believe that was my biggest frustration as Relief Society President. Relief Society is not just a Sunday class. Relief Society is sisters taking care of other sisters. It is sisters caring for families. It is sisters with one common goal -- to serve each other, our communities, and the Lord.
The purposes of Relief Society are to (1) "Increase faith and personal righteousness," (2) "strengthen families and homes", and (3) "seek out and help those in need." Emma Smith told the sisters, "We are going to do something extraordinary." As I read the history of this great organization, I became resolved to take another look at those around me. How can I serve them? How can I live up to the heritage I've been given as a sister in Relief Society? Obviously, for me at least, Daughters in My Kingdom succeeded in its goal of making us more aware of our great heritage.
I not only highly recommend reading Daughters in My Kingdom, I pray that you will.