Saturday, September 24, 2011


When I was a bit younger, I use to be a cross country runner.  I wasn't very good but it was still an accomplishment for me to get out there and run a 5K (3 miles), every week.   I really liked the training and I felt like I was part of something that was more or less self-competitive.  Of course we competed against the other runners but it was us (individually) against them.  We were all trying to do good for our school but we had to push ourselves to do our best.  I remember my dad told me, pick a time to get and the next race beat it by thirty seconds and continue doing that until you've accomplished the race in the 'ideal time.' I have always remembered that.   Because it was about setting a goal and slowing pushing myself a little harder each time.  So maybe from night to day it wasn't really quick but from week to week I saw a big improvement.  Not only in myself, but in my decision to push myself.  I wasn't just accountable to others but I was accountable to myself.  I had personally set that goal and I wanted to reach it. Okay so you are probably wondering what my point is... GOALS!!

Young Player
I won't lie, I don't really like goals. I feel like they cause added stress for the most part.  But I've come to learn especially on my mission that goals are all in how you look at them.  If you look at it with a negative attitude that it will be something awful that you have to do.  Of course you will hate it.  But when you look for ways to improve each day and then looking back you will realize how wonderful it was that you pushed through it. I guess you could say that we all have dreams, but we can't make it to our dreams unless we have goals to get there.  I know that is how Heavenly Father works, He provides us with something new everyday of our life and we have to make the choice to win the race or to quit.  Sometimes it is hard and we want to quit.  But as we set goals, like getting baptized, we can find ways everyday to accomplish them.  So I encourage you to all find a new goal to reach for. A new way that you can stretch yourself this week.

 “I feel that goal-setting is absolutely necessary for happy living. But the goal is only part of the desired procedures. We need to know which roads to take to reach the goal. … [People] need to make commitments with themselves by writing down their goals and keeping a record of the fulfillment of their achievements” -Bishop John H. Vandenberg

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Serving the Lord

I had to write a little bit today about missionary service.  It seriously has been so amazing to serve the Lord this past year and a half. I can't believe how quickly the time has flown and lately I've been very contemplative about the whole experience.  So some of you might ask why would a twenty one year old leave her school, family, and work behind to go somewhere foreign and talk to complete strangers? yeah I guess when you say it that way it seems odd.  But there is an answer.  Fifty three thousand of us missionaries leave for 18 to 24 months so that we can share with others the truths that have brought us so much joy. But I don't want to talk about missionaries in such a general term.  Today I want to tell you why I came here to serve the Lord for eighteen months.  I came at first so that I could give something back to God.  He has blessed me with so many things; a family, the blessings of the Restored Gospel, an education, good health, and countless other things.  Once I got here I realized that as much as I wanted to give back it was really the Lord who would end up giving me more than I had when I first came out.  I won't lie it is a hard transition. You go from being a selfish college student where everything is about me me me, to a place where everything is about them.  I mean it is how Christ was, wasn't it? He cared so much more about others than himself.  He gave his life for all mankind.  So I came to find that it was a joy just to give these few months of my life to the people in New York. Sometimes I wanted to think about me and I usually got a big slice of humble pie, when I did.  But after that I realized that I needed to have more than just a desire to be here but a testimony.

A testimony is a spiritual witness given by the Holy Ghost.  I needed that.  Of course I had all these great experience before my mission that grew my testimony.  But I needed a sure witness that what I was teaching was true. It didn't all come at once but my testimony is a build up of countless experiences and now I know without a shadow of doubt that this church is true! I'm so extremely grateful to have come.  Because not only have I gained numerous friends, and incredible experiences, but I have a testimony.  A gift that is fragile but very significant.  It is amazing to see what someone can do with a testimony! Even serve a mission... Kudos to anyone who can do it. Seriously hardest thing I've ever done, but it has been incredible!  Looking back I can't thank my Father in Heaven for allowing me to come here to serve a mission. It has changed who I am and what I'll be the rest of my life.  I will never forsake my Father in Heaven who has given me so much! I owe Him everything.

"..he doth require that ye should do as he hath commanded you; for which if ye do, he doth immediately bless you; and therefore he hath paid you. And ye are still indebted unto him, and are, and will be, forever and ever..." (Mosiah 2:24)

Thursday, September 8, 2011

my joy is full

smiling eyes"...he has poured out his Spirit upon you, and has caused that your hearts should be filled with joy, and has caused that your mouths should be stopped that ye could not find utterance, so exceedingly great was your joy." (Mosiah 4:20)

I feel like this right now.  I feel so overjoyed.  Today Sister Garcia and I went to visit a lady that attends our church. She seriously is one of the sweetest ladies I know.  She showed us some things that she learned from a class that she took, one of which was how to express your feelings.  She showed us a sheet of a lot of different kind of feelings.  Sister Garcia mentioned that we could use that in our companionship and so she decided to make us both a copy.  It was fun to look at the list and think about the way that we were feeling.  The day continued on and a lot of really great things happened. Miracles, actually. And now I can say my Joy is full!!! That is why I picked that scripture at the top.  Because I am speechless.  NO word can really describe how I feel. My mouth is definitely stopped. Have you ever felt like that?
God blesses us everyday with countless joys and countless reasons to be happy.  I bet if your took five mintues you could  think of a dozen blessings you've recieved today.  try it.  I think you'll be surprised.  But the ultimate way that we can feel joy is through God's Son, Jesus Christ. He really is my joy and my song, my life and my light. An Apostle of the Lord, Elder David A. Bednar, gave a beautiful talk about tender mercies from the Lord.  Blessings that we are given each day no matter our circumstances.  This is a quote from his talk:

"We should not underestimate or overlook the power of the Lord’s tender mercies. The simpleness, the sweetness, and the constancy of the tender mercies of the Lord will do much to fortify and protect us in the troubled times in which we do now and will yet live. When words cannot provide the solace we need or express the joy we feel, when it is simply futile to attempt to explain that which is unexplainable, when logic and reason cannot yield adequate understanding about the injustices and inequities of life, when mortal experience and evaluation are insufficient to produce a desired outcome, and when it seems that perhaps we are so totally alone, truly we are blessed by the tender mercies of the Lord and made mighty even unto the power of deliverance"

Friday, September 2, 2011


I wanted to write a little today about change, especially because fall is coming on and summer is changing into fall... Today has been really warm.  Surprisingly.  But lately you can feel the crisp air coming and the tip of the leaves are changing their green colors for warmer reds and browns.  It is sad to see summer leave, but it is fun to see autumn come.  The longer I've lived the more I've realized the amount of changes a person has in a lifetime.  There is always change.  Life changes from day to day, week to week, and year to year. It is really quite incredible the constant changes that we all go through.  Not only does the world change around us but we as people change.  I was doing some reading this morning on repentance, and it was talking about how repentance was really a way that we can change each day. Most people look at repentance as something needed for those who commit awful crimes, but repentance really is changing our life and living closer to our Father in Heaven.  I really like this quote by Elder Neil A. Anderson, it says:

“The invitation to repent is rarely a voice of chastisement but rather a loving appeal to turn around and to ‘re-turn’ toward God. It is the beckoning of a loving Father and His Only Begotten Son to be more than we are, to reach up to a higher way of life, to change, and to feel the happiness of keeping the commandments.”

We all have a need to repent everyday, to grow closer to our Heavenly Father and to change.  It is really incredible to know that we can become better everyday.  We hold the pen that writes our future. We are the ones that decide.  God has created a perfect plan and through His Son Christ we can repent everyday and be a little better.  I ask you all to find something to change.  Just like Summer to Autumn is a beautiful change so is repenting everyday!

Thursday, August 18, 2011


There is a hymn in my church that I love.  One of the line in it says... "Where can I turn for peace, where is my solace.." I often think about that line when I am sad, or when I just can't seem to find a ray of sunshine at all. Then I think of the scripture in John 14 that says in verse 27

 "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you; not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid."

It clicks.  Christ is the answer.  He is the one who gives us peace, because of him we can recieve peace and solace in our lives. I remember feeling so alone and getting on my knees and asking God to comfort me. I couldn't believe the love that poured over me as I thought of the Savior.  I have a picture in my room of a young women kneeling at the Saviors knees asking for forgiveness.  I love it because I know that we can receive peace from him if we believe and if we go to him. So find peace today, seek out the Savior.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Embarrassing moments?!

I feel like I got such a good attendance with my awkward post that it was probably time I wrote another one.  I was thinking today, why did it get so many hits? And I realized who doesn't have an awkward moment in their life... Seriously all of us has have had one, at one time or another. So I decided to break down and tell you one of my awkward stories... ha ha you'll have to laugh with me and not at me please :) So I was walking home from class one day at the University that I attended. On that campus is a HUGE hill. You probably know where this is going... Well I was walking down it, midday, which meant the bulk of the students there were either coming out of class or going to class. So pretty much everyone was walking up or down the hill.  For some reason I decided it would be faster to take the grass, instead of the stairs (BAD IDEA).  So I was walking down with probably too much weight in my little back-pack... And one wrong step and there I go.  It happened so fast I'm not exactly sure what happened all I know is that I had grass stains on my knees but landed on my rear.  My books were out of my bag, strewn across the hill.  I was so embarrassed I didn't even know what to do with myself... Which caused me to do something more embarrassing... I just pulled out my books and started to read!!  In my shaken mind I thought that maybe, just maybe, I could make it appear that I meant to do that just so I could study.  Yeah I know.  Well after about three minutes of insanity I realized that I looked very dumb.  So the embarrassment set in and I decided to call a good friend to maybe take away some of my embarrassment. Of course she didn't answer and I proceeded to leave a long message with all the details of the event.  Which after led to a pretty hilarious recreation of the whole event... other story, for another day. So with my pride completely gone, I gathered my books and made my way down the remainder of the hill to my car.  I sat in the car for a few minutes and just laughed and laughed. Well the reason I am telling you this story is because this is a good analogy to our lives. 
Sometimes we have a lot on our plate or backpack, and think maybe this route will get me where I need to quicker... Which sometimes it does, but on this particular day it didn't.  I ended getting myself in a very unfortunate predicament and then had to deal with an extra problem on top of my already crazy life.  So moral of the story, follow the path prepared for us.  The best one is the path of the Savior.  That day I saw so many people taking it the stairs, but I chose to be different and look where it got me.  I know that choosing to follow the Savior will ease our burdens and help us get where we need to.

"And now, behold, my beloved brethren, this is the way; and there is none other way nor name given under heaven whereby man can be saved in the kingdom of God. And now, behold, this is the doctrine of Christ.." (2 Nephi 31:21)

Monday, August 8, 2011

What can you see through my eyes?

"The light of the body is the eye; if, therefore, thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light"
Matthew 6:22

I love looking into peoples eyes and finding out who they really are.  I especially love to look people in the eye and tell them how much I love the Savior.  Like so many people say the eye is a window to your soul, and I know that is true.  I think that is why sometimes we are scared to look people in the eye.  We are maybe afraid of what they'll see or maybe even what we'll see!!! I love what Christ teaches though, because it is a pretty deep concept.  I don't think he necessarily meant that when you see someone you'll know right off if they are full of light or not, but that if they are focused on the Lord,  If there eye is single to His glory then they will be full of light.  Their life will be centered on Heavenly Father and on His son Jesus Christ they are looking forward to the day when they can live with them again. Knowing that makes me want to have my vision single to God's glory.  I want to be seen as someone that is looking forward to the Savior with hope, optimism and faith! How do you see your future?!