Saturday, November 12, 2011

Good-Bye Montana

One of the most influential times of my life has been the last year and a half. No more emotion, sweat, tears, time, energy, spirit, love, and devotion have been given at any other time of my life. Yet, no more hope, love, joy, acceptance, support, growth, understanding, and learning have come at any other time of my life. My mission has changed me and I have had the blessing and opportunity to help other change as well. The Lord is willing to give so much if we will but let Him. That however does not eliminate our own personal responsibility. We have to put forth effort as well.

I began with a very small seed at the beginning of my mission I had very little to offer the Lord. Yet I mad the choice to plant that seed and see what happened. I went out and I worked everyday. Not everyday was easy in fact most days I came home exhausted, but I was out there, and I loved it! When we choose to not act it is like holding that seed in our hand and believing that it will sprout without dirt or water. Where is the nourishment? It will never grow! So I planted it, then I nourished it. I studied, I prayed, I gave my whole heart and soul. With that the Lord was able to turn my little seed in to a sapling. I am still nourishing it and it will continue to grow.

There is no doubt in my mind that I will one day be a great oak. But I must continue to work at it. This stage of my life is over. "I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith" (2 Timothy 4:7). But my progression and work are never done I must press "onward, ever onward, as [I] glory in his name; Forward, pressing forward, as a triumph song [I] sing. God [my] strength will be. . .Called to serve [my] King" (Called to Serve).

Saturday, November 5, 2011

First Snow Fall

Sometimes I am confused by the amount of accidents that happen when snow first falls each year. It's not like people have never seen snow before, didn't they drive in it last winter? It's not like they grew up in western Washington where it never snows. They live in Montana where they get feet of snow and ice every year. So why all of the sudden is it something that causes so many accidents. Perhaps we forget that we have to slow down and begin stopping earlier. Is that what happens in life? Things are going so well that we forget. We forget how we are supposed to act. Things start slipping, we think well things are going so well that I don't need to pray, the Lord will bless me anyway. Or I don't need to go to church I'm spiritually fed at home. It is in those times that we begin to slid though the stop sign, or even spin out of control.

Perhaps we need to slowdown and take a look at where we are and think about the things that might be slipping. We don't want to end up in the ditch. Just remember that there is always a way out of the ditch and that is repentance and the Savior. "we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved" (Acts 15:11).

Friday, November 4, 2011

More Love in our Hearts

I have recently discovered that I need to find more room for love in my heart. So . . . I am working everyday to be more like Christ and He loves each of us enough to be our Savior if that isn't unconditional love I don't know what is. He suffered for us, in Luke it says "And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground." All this that we might be mad clean and return to our Father in Heaven. I know that he is the only one that could have accomplished this task. Anyone else would have balked at what was being asked of us in the service of others. So how can we begin to have even a measure of the love that Christ has? This much I know we cannot do it on our own. On my mission I have had the wonderful experience of finding more room in my heart for another, something I'm not sure a lot of people have received from me before this. I know that my increase of love has come as a direct result of prayers, study and truly being open to all that the Lord has to offer me. Each of us has an unmeasurable capacity for love, however we don't always love to the capacity that we are able. Let us each be more loving in our lives as we go forward embracing others instead of pushing them away.

Friday, October 14, 2011


I remember as a child trying to go up the down escalator. It wasn't easy you had to sprint to even move forward and you had to full out run to get all the way to the top in a decent amount of time. If it was a particularly long way up, you would want to take a break and catch your breath, but that just sets you back as the escalator carries you back the way you came. Sometimes life feels like a down escalator that we are trying to go up. We are constantly striving to move forward and upward, reaching for the aspirations of Heaven. It isn't an easy climb, sometimes we are running full out and at other times we are merely striving to keep from being set back. When we stop going to church or reading our scriptures or praying it as though we are standing still on a down escalator. The moment you stop you aren't moving forward any more, you are moving back, there is no real standing still. The closest you can come is walking up instead of sprinting. At least then you are staying in the same place but you still have to work, to strive, to take action toward moving forward.

The Lord expects us to do our part. Christ suffered for us but that does not relieve our personal responsibility. If we never take steps up then we are standing at the bottom, thinking 'the Lord will just come get me when the time is right.' We need to come to him. "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light" (Matt 11:28-30). Press forward up the down escalator.

Familiar Strangers

Have you ever met someone and felt like you have known them for an eternity already and then you become instant friends? I know that I have. It has happened for me over and over again in my life. Have you ever thought about where those feelings of familiarity come from? Have you known them before? I would most definitely say, that you have. We all lived in heaven before we came to this earth. Just imagine one big happy family. We had the opportunity to get to know not only each other but also our Heavenly Father. Not only that but he took his time in getting to know us. I love this confirmation of meeting people that you "already know" It helps me remember that my Father in Heaven Loves me and that I lived with him before. To Jeremiah the lord says "Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee" and so it is with us.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Are you Forgotten?

I spent a good chunk of my growing up life attending church and going to activities that were planned for my edification and development. Somewhere along the lines I sort of lost it all. I stopped believing. I didn't know if any of it was true. I turned away from the Lord. I no longer went to the activities that were planned for my edification and development, I no longer went to church. I began to feel forgotten and abandoned. I didn't have the sense of care that came with being close to my Father in Heaven. So did the Lord turn away from or forget me? No! I can now look back on my life even during the time when I wasn't doing all the the Lord wanted me to do where he was still leading me by the hand and bringing me back. "The Lord uses a scale very different from the world’s to weigh the worth of a soul. . .At times we may even feel insignificant, invisible, alone, or forgotten. But always remember—you matter to Him!. . .God sees you not only as a mortal being on a small planet who lives for a brief season—He sees you as His child. He sees you as the being you are capable and designed to become. He wants you to know that you matter to Him" (Dieter F. Uchtdorf).

During this time of my life I made a major move on a whim. A friend called me up and said why don't you move over here? I said if I can transfer I will. I was able to so I moved. Where before I had NO direction in my life I began to move forward! I went to college because my friend lived in a college town and I thought well I'm here I might as well go. Then I got active in church again. The Lord knew exactly where I needed to be and who I needed to be around. The Lord had not forgotten me as much as I felt abandoned. He was literally picking me up and placing me lovingly where I needed to be. I know that he has a great plan for my life and it is much easier for me to fulfill it when I am following him. "The Lord doesn’t care at all if we spend our days working in marble halls or stable stalls. He knows where we are, no matter how humble our circumstances. He will use—in His own way and for His holy purposes—those who incline their hearts to Him" (Dieter F. Uchtdorf).

Friday, September 30, 2011

Warmth of a Blanket

What is it about a blanket? They are so soft and comforting there are times when all you want to do is snuggle up with a blanket and forget the world outside. It just makes us feel better. It warms us body and soul to be engulfed in something so wonderful. When we are sick a warm blanket can make the difference in healing. Imagine a cold, drafty house, on a cold night in January. Now imagine the most amazing blanket: big, warm, soft. How important does that blanket become? A blanket is more than just something we put on our bed.

As I was growing up, I can remember my mom telling me a blanket is like the Holy Ghost. It speaks in soft tones. It comforts us when things go wrong. It warms our bodies and souls as it testifies of truth. The Holy Ghost can most definitely make the difference in healing, if we will only listen. Remember our imaginings? Think of the world these days what a cold, harsh, lonely place it can be. Think of the Holy Ghost how it can comfort us and bring us peace. The Holy Ghost is our blanket in this cold world we call home. What a wonderful blessing that we are able to have him as our constant companion. How can we earn his companion ship? I think Moroni Explains it quite well "Because of meekness and lowliness of heart cometh the visitation of the Holy Ghost, which Comforter filleth with hope and perfect love, which love endureth by diligence unto prayer, until the end shall come, when all the saints shall dwell with God." He is the Comforter. As the warmth of a blanket can quiet a crying child, the whisperings of the Spirit can calm our fears, hush the nagging worries of our life, and comfort us when we grieve. I would invite you to live a life where the Holy Ghost can live with you at all times.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


Time is one of the most precious gifts that we are given. We think of it so resolutely, time has boundaries and our life is only filled with so much time. Each period in our life has only so much time. You can only be a child for so long. How often are we wishing that we could be out of a phase of life sooner. When I was in college I loved it, that was one my favorite times of life. So many friends and good times but I felt very done with school and wanted to finish, so I set about to finish my degree with haste. Now that I am done with it I miss that time of my life. I look back and think how could I have made more of the time I had.

I am right now faced with the impending end to my mission, and have lately been reflecting on what I could do to make the very most of the time that I have left. The months that I have been here seem to fly by and sometimes it is hard to remember the details. But, have I done all that I could in this phase of my life? Do each of us put forward the effort that will fill us with the knowledge that we have done all we can? Or are we left with regrets? Charles Darwin said "A man who dares to waste one hour of life has not discovered the value of life."

"To live more fully each hour and to glean the most from each day is wisdom. How unwise we are to waste our todays when they determine the significance of our tomorrows. We should wisely live a day at a time because that is all we have. . . the message is loud and clear. If we work, serve, improve now—each hour, each day will lead us onward and upward to a significant tomorrow in his paths. Today is the time for decision. Now is the time for action. Believe me when I tell you God is well pleased when he sees us using our time wisely" (Marvin J. Ashton ). So what are we waiting for? Get up and get moving time is moving forward let's move with it.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Sea Glass

A while I was given a piece of sea glass. Now for those of you that have never heard of this before let me describe it. It is pieces of glass found on beaches that has been tumbled and smoothed by the waves, water and sand, creating smooth, frosted pieces of glass. Now I put my small piece of glass in my jewelry box and thinking oh that is neat but what am I going to do with that. Now a lot of people are like me others however, spend hours of time combing the beaches searching for these small pieces of glass. What would anyone want with an old piece of glass?

Think about the journey that this piece of glass has been on. It began long ago in a bottle making factory. It was then filled with some liquid defining it's existence.It didn't get to choose that life it merely had to live it. It was put on the shelf of a store where it was eventually bought and its contents were drank. After it had been emptied the bottle is tossed aside.

This is when that simple bottle becomes something of value. It doesn't come over night but over years. It is tossed in the sea and waves unsure of it's eventual end. It comes to shore and is roughly sanded. If it is taken to soon it still has rough edges. The most beautiful and prized pieces of sea glass are completely smooth; they have spent the most TIME in the uncomfortable folds of the sea and sand.

We are in the waves and the sands of life we have not yet come out smooth, that takes time. "Be assured that there is a safe harbor. You can find peace amidst the storms that threaten you. Your Heavenly Father—who knows when even a sparrow falls—knows of your heartache and suffering. He loves you and wants the best for you. Never doubt this" (Joseph B. Wirthlin). That is why our Heavenly Father has lovingly let us be tossed about so that we can become smooth.  We were given situations we did not get to chose, but we unlike that bottle get to make a choice about our reaction. We often think that the waves and sands of life are to much to bare. Think of a small piece of glass and how fragile it is. I'm not sure how the glass did it but I know that if we will but turn to our Father in Heaven the waves and sands of life will not seem so harsh. "Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light" (Matt 11:29-30).

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Be Still

How often do we see people walking around with those little buds in their ears, rocking out to the latest tunes? It reminds me of when I was in college and seeing all the people on the bus with there ear-buds in. Now I see people running together and not talking but listening to their separate music. Who of us has put on music to relax or think? I know I have. I even put on music to study. But it is only on very rare occasions that I spend time in just quite peaceful thought? Now don't get me wrong, I love music it seems a little strange to me to not have music playing as I am driving. Perhaps however, we need to take time to simply be still, and listen.

When I was in college I can remember a day where life just felt overwhelming. I had just heard that my dad had kidney cancer and I was struggling with the idea of mortality. After about a day of freaking out and crying my eyes out, I decided that I would spend some time and just talk to God about it. I turned off the music and sat on the floor of my bedroom. I said a prayer, which consisted of very little, and then just sat. As the stillness and the quiet overcame I was able to listen to the spirit and have a better understanding of what the Lord had for me to hear. I was able to understand that no matter what happened that everything would be okay, that my dad would be taken care of even if that meant in heaven. The Lord has said "Be still, and know that I am God" (Psalms 46:10).  I believe that if we take the time to be still and listen to the Lord we will be able to truly know that he is God and is looking out for us and our needs.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Watermelon Snow

We are always taught not to eat colored snow but have you ever seen pink snow? Well here in Townsend there is a mountain familiarly termed Baldy. It is a high peek that continues to have snow, left over from the winter, into the summer months. Because of the height of the peek there is higher Ultra Violet rays. Now this is only important because in order to protect itself an organism that lives in the snow produces a red hue and turns the snow pink. Now I know that right now your mind is blown! But it gets better not only does this snow look pink but it smells and tastes like watermelon. Thus the name watermelon snow. Now when I heard this for the first time I couldn't even believe what I was hearing. But I have come to realize that we need to expect the unexpected, or believe in miracles. A miracle is an extraordinary event caused by the power of God.

Many miracles have been performed though out history. We see the things that the prophets did. Moses, he parted the Red Sea, there was manna for the Israelites, Noah built an ark, Daniel was saved from the lions and many more. There is of course the many miracles that Christ performed throughout his life, beginning with turning water into wine and ending with his Resurrection.

However many today do not believe that miracles still happen. Just look at the brilliantly pink snow and tell me that is not  "an extraordinary event caused by the power of God." So if God is working in these small ways to show that he is still there and still working with us then why would the greater miracles have ceased? "Wherefore, my beloved brethren, have miracles ceased because Christ hath ascended into heaven, and hath sat down on the right hand of God . . . Behold I say unto you, Nay; neither have angels ceased to minister unto the children of men" (Moroni 7:27, 29).

The Lord has again reached out to his children in love and has revealed the fullness of his Gospel in a miraculous way. He appeared to a young boy who had a simple question. A young boy with enough faith to go forth and do what the Lord asked of him despite the difficulties that it would bring to his life. The Lord has not ceased to be a "God of miracles." We must have faith to see the miracles in our life. Do you believe that there could be watermelon snow? Then why not greater miracles?

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The Penny

Everyone has found a penny on the side of the road. Well what does that make you think of? Before yesterday I would always think of the little poem "find a penny pick it up all day long you'll have good luck." Well yesterday I heard this amazing story. 

Several years ago, a man and his wife were invited to spend the weekend at his employer’s home. The boss was very wealthy. He was quite generous as a host, and took them to one of the finest restaurants.As the three of them were about to enter this exclusive restaurant, the boss was walking slightly ahead of them. He stopped suddenly, looking down at the pavement for a long, silent moment. The wife wondered if she was supposed to pass him. There was nothing on the ground except a single darkened penny that someone had dropped. Still silent, the man reached down and picked up the penny. He held it up and smiled, then put it in his pocket as if he had found a great treasure. How absurd! Thought the wife. What need did this man have for a single penny? Why would he even take the time to stop and pick it up? Throughout dinner, the entire scene nagged at her. Finally, she could stand it no longer. She causally mentioned that her daughter once had a coin collection, and asked if the penny he had found had been of some value. A smile crept across the man’s face as he reached into his pocket for the penny and held it out for her to see. She had seen many pennies before! What was the point of this?
“Look at it.” He said. “Read what it says”
She read the words “United States of America.”
“No, not that; read further.”
“One cent?”
“No, keep reading.”
“In God we Trust?”
“And if I trust in God, the name of God is holy, even on a coin. Whenever I find a coin I see that inscription. It is written on every single United States coin, but we never seem to notice it! God drops a message right in front of me telling me to trust Him? Who am I to pass it by? When I see a coin, I pray, I stop to see if my trust IS in God at that moment. I pick the coin up as a response to God; that I do trust in Him. For a short time, at least, I cherish it as if it were gold. I think it is God’s way of starting a conversation with me. God is patient and pennies are plentiful!"

So my new challenge for you is to put your trust in the Lord find those pennies and see how much the Lord is blessing you.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Water It!

Remember just a few weeks ago when I was talking about all the rain that we were getting? Well it has been hot for about a month now and the farmers, and the lawns are beginning to suffer. We were doing some service and in comes the husband conversationally he says I don't know what is wrong with my lawn I have all of these brown spots. My first thought was well are you watering it? His response to that was "well we've had so much rain." Well sure, but when the days have been hot since then and you are seeing the dry patches i think it might be time to water again. Now in stark contrast, the family that we live with were watering even when it was pouring down rain.

The Lord has said that we must drink from His waters for He is the living waters. “Whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst” (John 4:14). Can we simply take a sip from the waters and walk away? I don't think so. I believe that we need that consistent flow, just as the grass does. The Savior has the well and we have the cup, IF we choose to come to Him he will keep that cup full. If we choose to walk away from the well we can no longer gain access to that water. We must pair the love and mercy of the Lord with out own willingness to come unto Him and do as He asks.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Are You Protected?

So we went up to Huckleberry Pass for the fourth of July and we had a great time! We had a snow ball fight in July, we took tons of pictures, saw some sweet sights and without even noticing I got a whopper of a sunburn. It was a pretty warm day but with all the fun we were having I hardly even noticed it. Even when we got home I didn't feel like I was all that burned. I woke up the next day and my face hurt. I was thinking about how subtly it all happened and how if only I had remembered to put on sunscreen that morning I would have been fine.

Our lives are the same way, Satan comes into our lives in subtle ways and we don't even notice it till it is too late. Just like the protection that sunscreen would have afforded me, we have the armor of God to protect us. We need to put on the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the shoes of the preparation of the gospel of peace, the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit. When we do this we become protected as it says in Ephesians "Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil." If only I had put on that sunscreen I could have stood against the wiles of the sun. Don't get burned by the "fiery darts of the wicked" put on the whole armor of God.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Wise Wildlife

When I was growing up we had a giant old walnut tree in our backyard My brothers and I used to go out and pick the unripe walnuts off the tree. We had to get them early or the birds and squirrels would get to them first. So when they were still green we would pull them off the tree. Once we had a nice little cache of walnuts we would tear into them trying to get to the precious center of the nut. We always hoped to find that nut. Most of the time we were picking way too early and we were getting nothing but green fingers for a week. So we began to let them stay longer on the trees, however the wildlife would then get to the nuts before we would. I never understood why they would want that bitter green husk of a nut but they were always gone before they were ripe.

Just the other day I was told that you can pick walnuts when they are green and save them till the green shell starts to come off. Then within is a ripe walnut. Imagine my surprise when I realized that those crafty little critters knew what they were doing. Sometimes we expect to get things in the time that we are looking for them not in the timing that the Lord has for us. "To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven" (Ecclesiastes 3:1). If we exercise a bit of patience perhaps the outcome will be to our benefit.

I believe that the Lord knows what he is doing even if it may be hard. If as a child I had merely picked the green nuts and stored them away for a time when they would be ripe, we could have had a barrel of walnuts.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

To be or Not to be . . . Line!

So I guess a few things you should know about me first. I grew up in a VERY theatrical family. Both my parents got Degrees in theater and I also have a sister and a brother that have gone into some type of theater as their career. So I grew up doing theater all the time. I remember my first time in a play; I was 5 and I played Titania in I an extremely abridged version of  A Midsummer Night's Dream. I have found that being in a play is a road-map for how we learn. You start by getting a part and a script. Most people highlight the lines that are theirs so that they don't step on someone's part. Next you practice, you go to rehearsals, you go over your lines with the other actors, you listen
to the director and go where they are telling you to go (get your blocking). You write it all down so that you don't forget it. But there comes a time where you have to put down the script. You cannot rely on it forever! It comes in steps, the first week without the script their is someone following along with the script and if you happen to not remember your line you can call out LINE! and they will prompt you with the first few words of the line or the whole line if you need it. As you go though that you can see where you are making mistakes and practice those parts on your own. Then it goes a step deeper, you can no longer call for a line. You have to remember your blocking, your lines, when you come on stage. What would happen if you got to keep that script in hand until the day before the performances? Would you know your part? or would you still be relying on the script?

This is not just the way we learn in theater but in life it is the way that God set up. It is an eternal way of learning. In 2 Nephi 28:30 the Lord describes this, "For behold, thus saith the Lord God: I will give unto the children of men line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little." We cannot learn all at once, we must work a step at a time to understand. Just like in theatre we must put down the script. In life perhaps that is moving away from home and out on our own. If we have practiced, read scriptures, gone to church, or prayed, we will be prepared and know what we are to do. Perhaps on occation we may have to call LINE! to get back on the right track. Others may belive that they are past that stage in life. They think they can no longer or no longer need to call for a line. I however believe that this time does not comes for any of us. There is always a point that you can call out to the Lord and he will help you get back on the right track. Perhaps the need to no longer call for a line comes after this life when our actions are set, perhaps not. Now however, we are still in the practice part of life the performance will come later. My hope is that we all remember that this life is a time of learning and growth, we are in the process of becoming. We will always get the help that we call out for. I know that Christ is always there for me that he knows where I am and what I am going through. I know that he can joy and sorrow with me and that he can "lift up the hands that hang down" (Heb 12:12).

Saturday, June 18, 2011


It has been raining a lot here in Townsend, MT and everyone keeps asking us if we can make it stop. While that is not with in my power it is within the Lords. So with so many people praying for the rain to stop, why hasn't it yet? In answer to that question I would like to share with you an experience I had years ago, that pertains to this very issue. I grew up in Western Washington where it rains about half the year. That amounts to a lot of days where it was raining. I of course got used to it, that was just the norm. There were still those days, however, after 4 weeks straight of rain where I just couldn't stand it anymore. This experience takes place on one of those days. 

It had been raining for what seemed like an eternity. I felt like I might never get dry again. I was on the way home from a meeting and was praying for the rain to stop. I was telling the Lord all the reasons why I thought it was a good idea for the rains to cease. To my mind came the journey of a single drop of rain. I watched as that drop fell from the sky onto the field below. I saw it seep into
the ground and the growing plants draw it up to sustain life. Those plants were then cut and stored and eventually became the wheat that we consistently rely on. I then saw hands kneading bread, then slicing and giving it to a child. As tears ran down my cheeks i began to understand. I know this seem like an odd event to watch by in my minds eye it was so clear. I had always lived in rain but until that moment I had never appreciated how vital it truly is. So now, I ask a new question, what if God just did everything that everyone prayed for without respect for our true needs? We need the rain it is the life blood of this earth without it we would have no food. Famines have often resulted from a lack of water. 

So if you feel like sometimes your prayers are not being answered perhaps the Lord has a better idea of what you need and is blessing you with that for the time being. Know, however, that your prayers will be answered just not always when or how you might think they are 
supposed to be. The rain did stop my prayer was answered it just took a few days. Christ is always our best example. "He went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt" (Matt 26:39). Let us take His example and consistently seek the will of the Lord in our prayers that we may be ever more blessed.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Moments That Matter Most

What are the things that matter most to you? Do you spend enough time doing those things? The things that matter most to our Heavenly Father is US can we say the same about him or even about our families? As you watch this video make a list of goals that will help you focus on the most important things in life. Then, do those things.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Effects of Music

I have always loved music in fact I loved it so much that is what I got my degree in when I went to college. Music has so much impact on us that we don't even recognize. As we listen to a fast paced song our heart rate rises. As we listen to sad song our mood changes. It is those almost unnoticed things that make music such a joy! I love listening to happy music when I am down in the dumps to help me pull myself out of it and fast music when I work out because then my workout doesn't seem so hard. The Lord also loves music! Why would we have so much of it if he didn't? "For my soul delighteth in the song of the heart; yea, the song of the righteous is a prayer unto me, and it shall be answered with a blessing upon their heads" (D&C 25:12). But just like with the rest of our lives we must focus on the good. There is bad music out there that brings you down and harms your soul. It comes through the music's language, lyrics, melody (or lack there of), style and tempo. I know that as we put forth effort to listen to only uplifting and good music the spirit will have better access to us and we will be better able to listen to the still small voice that is trying to reach us. In an effort to help in this process I have included one of my favorite songs. This is just one of many different types of music that are good.

Monday, June 6, 2011

I Am a Child of God

"Every one of us has potential we can scarcely imagine . . . a gift from our loving and eternal Heavenly Father . . . there is within each of us a divine spark of greatness" Elder Wirthlin

Friday, June 3, 2011

Tire Swings, Good Idea or Bad Idea?

Have you ever thought about the idea of a tire swing? We had one hanging from the walnut tree out back and we would spin and spin on it till it made us sick. It was so much fun. I look back on that and wonder how I ever found that fun. But I did, so much so that as soon as my stomach had settled back down I would get on it again. Is that the way we face some of the issues in our life? Addictions can be one of the worst things to overcome. We think that what we are doing is fun, calming, not bad for us, or exhilarating! Perhaps for a moment it is. Satan draws us away making us believe that this moment is worth the later sorrow, pain, and guilt. Life however, cannot subsist on
momentary happiness. So how do we keep ourselves from climbing back onto that tire swing? We turn to the thing that will give us lasting happiness. As we understand better what our Heavenly Father expects of us we will want to change to live our lives in better harmony with his teachings. We must understand that Christ has the ability and desire to take these things from us, it is up to us to give them over to him. We do this through prayer, we have to give up our pride and be completely humble willing to give the Lord your heart. It takes one day at a time.

If you are in need of help in overcoming addictions don't suffer alone let the Lord help you. Addiction Help

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Honesty: You Better Believe It!

It is not always easy but it is always right!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

I'm Just a Little Girl

When I was young my favorite Disney movie was Alice in Wonderland I loved the story of this little girl transported into a fantastical world of adventure, unique animals and eccentric characters. I always imagined myself as Alice going about on her quest and some how always getting herself into trouble. In fact that was me as a kid! So I felt very connected with Alice and her situation. However, there was one scene in the movie that always confused me. Alice is told by the caterpillar that one side of the mushroom will make her grow and the other-side will make her shrink. In a lack of proper instruction Alice takes a big bite of the one that will make her grow and shoots into the air. A bird that is nesting in the tree above is disturbed by Alice's sudden growth and starts shouting "Serpent, Serpent, Serpeeeeeeeent." In response Alice tells the bird "I'm not a serpent . . . I'm just a little girl." The bird does not believe her and begins attacking her. Was Alice a serpent? Obviously not! But this bird had in her mind that she was and wouldn't let go of that idea.
 Do we ever have the wrong idea of a person and cannot let it go?  "Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged" (Matt 7:1-2). As we judge others we are placing that same judgement on our own heads. We have no understanding of where others are coming from. We have not seen the events that have led up to this moment. Only Christ can judge only he has seen all things. The bird had no idea how hard Alice's day had already been or would continue to be. Let us therefore judge not but instead love one another. "None of us is perfect. I know of no one who would profess to be so. And yet for some reason, despite our own imperfections, we have a tendency to point out those of others. we make judgements concerning their actions or inactions . . . Rather than being judgmental and critical of each other, may we have the pure love of Christ for out fellow travelers in this journey through life" (President Thomas S. Monson)

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Which Way Do I Go?

 When I was younger I can remember going to my father and talking to him about decisions that I felt I didn't know how to make on my own. He being the wise man that he is would have me do something like a pro/con list or would talk to me about the benefits of each choice. What I remember most however, is the poem that would always be recited at the end of these conversations. It is a simple poem be Robert Frost about two roads and the choice that is needing to be made.

The Road Not Taken
By Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth.

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same.

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
The man in Frosts poem had to make a decision. If he were to never choose he would be standing there forever with no progression or progress. However, both roads were good and perhaps another day he would come back and walk the first. I can still hear my dad quoting those last three lines to me each time I came to him. There are so many decisions to make and sometimes we need to choose the road less traveled.  We need to choose the path that our Savior traveled; we need to walk in his foot steps! Just as I turned to my earthly father for help in making decisions so can we each turn to our heavenly father in the life choices that we make. Choices can be overwhelming but if we remember the teachings of the prophet Moroni "that which is of God inviteth and enticeth to do good continually; wherefore, every thing which inviteth and enticeth to do good, and to love God, and to serve him, is inspired of God" we will be led to do the will of the Lord.


Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Why Do The Good Have To Suffer?

Sometimes we wonder— why do the good suffer so much? Why do we who are living our lives to the best of our ability, doing all that the Lord has set forth for us to do, need to suffer? Are we not good? Well the answer to that is yes, we are good but we can always be better. There are a few examples in the scriptures of men that went through trials more than we can imagine and did all that the Lord asked of them for the benefit of others to the detriment of themselves. Paul is one of these men. In 2 Corinthians 11 he talks about the struggles that he has been though. "I am more; in labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft. Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one. Thrice was I beaten
with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep; In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness." In Chapter 12 the Lord responds "My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness." Pauls response to the Lords simple word is, "Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong." (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)

Paul is not the only one that suffered for his faith. Joseph Smith a Modern Prophet went though many trials. He was poisoned, beaten, tarred & feathered, unjustly imprisoned, and once sentenced to die by firing squad. He and Emma seldom had a home of their own, and six of their children died in infancy. But he would not deny his faith. He said "I had seen a vision; I knew it, and I knew that God
knew it, and I could not deny it," (JS-H 1:25) However, in a moment of trial recorded in the Doctrine and Covenants  Joseph asks "O God, where art thou? . . . How long shall thy hand be stayed? . . . let thine heart be softened, and thy bowels moved with compassion." In response the Lord Counsels "My son, peace be unto thy soul; thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment; And then, if thou endure it well, God shall exalt thee on high; thou shalt triumph over all thy foes." (D&C 121:7-8) Joseph later recorded this statement "As for the perils which I am called to pass through, they seem but a small thing to me, as the envy and wrath of man have been my common lot all the days of my life. It all has become a second nature to me; and I feel, like Paul, to glory in tribulation; for to this day has the God of my fathers delivered me out of them all." (D&C 127:2)

Both of these men later suffered the martyrdom. But with their death was probably the only relief from the pain and torture that this life had to bare for them. They had lived to the best of their ability and yet had suffered. We also have struggles and sorrows that way heavily upon our hearts. Let me give one more example of a man that suffered even unto death. This man is our savior and redeemer the Lord Jesus Christ. He suffered most abundantly in the Garden
of Gethsemane. He plead with the father "O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt." (Matt 26:39) He bled from every pore, He was beaten, imprisoned and tried unjustly and finally He was crucified. But He did not have any comfort as these others did instead he cried "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" (Matt 27:46). "because Jesus walked such a long, lonely path utterly alone, we do not have to do so. His solitary journey brought great company for our little version of that path" (Elder Holland).
This path that we are on is not always an easy one but I know that it is a necessity Our Father is perfecting us through our trials. He knows what He wants us to become and is working to get us there. As we go though our trials remember that there is always one there to uplift. Christ understands us perfectly and is always willing to help.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Joseph Smith: The Prophet of the Restoration

Take and hour and watch this amazing movie you will love it!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Lead Me By The Hand

As we go through life we attempt to do things on our own. Can we? I know that I try, but when comes down to it I have very little capability. In Alma 26 Ammon says "I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I...will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things." I know the truth of this speaks to all. How can we accomplish the things that are set before us without His help? He lends us breath that we may live and move (Mosiah 2:21), how can we believe that we may accomplish the tasks of this life without Him? 
"Know ye not that ye are in the hands of God? Know ye not that he hath all power." (Mormon 5:23) Yet we as the stubborn people that we are, we "kick against the pricks" and continue on the path that we began without turning to the Lord. Let us therefore change our ways let us turn back to the hands of the Lord.
 "To be in the hands of God would suggest that we are not only under His watchful care but also that we are guarded and protected by His wondrous power. . .The great plan of happiness includes a proverbial roller coaster of challenging times along with the most joyful times. Yes, we all have our moments of difficulty and heartbreak. Occasionally, they are so difficult for us that we just want to give up. There are times when our steps are unsteady, when we feel discouraged and even reach out in desperation. . . Every one of us needs to know that we can go on in the strength of the Lord. We can put our hand in His, and we will feel His sustaining presence lift us to heights unattainable alone." (W. Craig Zwick)
Elder Scott has recently counseled: “Trust in God … no matter how challenging the circumstance. … Your peace of mind, your assurance of answers to vexing problems, your ultimate joy depend upon your trust in Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ.” We can accomplish all things there is nothing that is withheld from us if we will but put our hand in the Lords and be led by him. I know that as we do this our sojourn in mortality will be one of joy and happiness. Where we endure the trials of life with patience, accepting all the will of the Lord.
Now this will take a great deal of humility! Remember how we think we can do it all on our own? That is because we are a prideful people we don't want to appear or seem week or incapable. We want only to show our strength and ability. The thing is, the Lord already knows all of our weaknesses and all of our failings, and has already paid for them. So, why not take his hand and let him lead you through this life to life eternal.