Begin Where You Are: Nurturing Relationships with Less-Active Family and Friends

by Jacqueline S. Thursby

Begin where you are

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There is nothing more important than to lead our loved ones to Christ. So how can we help those who do not yet fully partake of the blessings of membership in the Lord's kingdom? Drawing from her own experiences and others', Dr. Jacqueline S. Thursby writes, 'I have discovered many strategies of love that can be practiced in order to keep warm, growing relationships with family members and friends who are less active or who may be members of other faiths.' This book will aid the many who struggle with situations that arise when friends and family regard the gospel differently.

Praise for Begin Where You Are:

'Dear Jackie—Your book is wonderful! It is real, honest and direct—a personal message to me—a message of hope. Thank you for sharing your experiences and insight.'

—Jeannine Beck

'Begin Where You Are addresses one of the more challenging and frustrating parts of being a Latter-day Saint. It seems that the struggle to reconcile relationships with less active family and friends affects the lives of all church members at some level. The personal experiences that you share, combined with those of so many other faithful Church members, have encouraged me to stop viewing religious differences as the deciding factor in my relationship with family members and friends. Begin Where You Are has helped me to understand that families and friendships can and do thrive despite different levels of church activity and commitment to gospel principles.'
—Lauren Gillespie, BYU Graduate Student, English

'I read Jackie Thursby's book at a time in my life when I was frustrated with my own family. Not everyone in my family is active, and I didn't know what I could do to encourage them about the importance of church. But, more importantly, I wanted to remind myself to love them first. Begin Where You Are provided the much needed insight about myself being a child of God and each person in my family and each person around me and how I should treat them with that sanctity. Too often we look at people as a statistic instead of looking at their soul and their basic need to be loved first. The book offered many examples of the value of each person in this world and how it is our responsibility to love and served them instead of wondering what they do for us. Often I find myself frustrated at others because they are not fulfilling the needs that I demand. I savored the words of this book because it was a much needed reminder of the importance of respecting others and respecting the lives that they live though they might differ from my own. We are not the judge and our perspectives are so jaded, that I am grateful when I can remind myself that my duty in this life is to love, simply to love. And, my duty is not to love everything but that one thing, but to love individuals as entities. It is to say, I love so and so,' it is not to say 'I love him except for this and that and this.'

—Erika Anthony, BYU Senior, English

Published: January 2004

Pages: 128

About the Author

Jacqueline S. Thursby

No biography available

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Praise for A Much-Needed Book
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

Sister Thursby's book has changed forever how I view and how I will treat my less-active and non-LDS family members and friends. Seeing through her eyes and heart, I now can feel more of the love, appreciation and patience Heavenly Father and our Savior have for them, and for me as well. This 'discovery' is very timely for me as I continue to struggle with having been divorced by my kids' mom, repudiated by her family, and dismissed by many of our Church friends. 'Begin Where You Are' is a Love Story about how (and how much!) God loves each of us & how we can love each other more fully, but is also a touching testimony of the power in beleiveing Him in the face of rejection, indifference and intolerance. Thank you, Sister Thursby! )

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