Wednesday, May 25, 2011

We're All On the Same Team

If this isn't inspiring, I don't know what is.  I just loved this clip.  I know that no matter what stage of life we are in, how old we are, where we live, who our friends are, the gospel is for everyone.  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints blesses all people.  The gospel helps us all and is truly the only way to find happiness.  This video makes me smile, because these teenagers get it.  They both understand that the gospel is the most important thing in life. 

Brandon found that the gospel helped him change, and Teren loved the gospel and understood how it helps us all change and be happy.  We are all just like these two teenagers.  We are either like Brandon and searching for truth and happines, or we are like Teren and we know what true happiness comes from living and sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ.

I feel like Teren everyday.  I know how great it is to share the gospel, to share the thing that makes me the most happy with others.  There is nothing greater than the gospel.  Joseph Smith and others in the church received revelation from the Lord about how sharing the gospel and inviting people to change will make us feel.

The Lord said to them, "And if it so be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this people, and bring, save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father!  And now, if your joy will be great with one soul that you have brought unto me into the kingdom of my Father, how great will be your joy if you should bring many souls unto me"(D&C 18:15-16).

I often think that the one soul that repents and comes unto Christ is us.  Once we accept and follow Jesus Christ through baptism by immersion by someone holding the priesthood authority of God, we are then responsible to share the gospel with others so they too can find joy in this life.  And the Lord's promise to Joseph Smith is also promised to us when we share His Gospel, "Great will be your joy."

I know without a doubt that inviting others to repent and accept the Gospel of Jesus Christ truly bring the greatest joy.  I see it everyday, and I love it! 

We're all on the same team here.  We are here to help each other make it back to our Heavenly Father, and following Jesus Christ is the only way back.  "Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me" (John 14:6)

Friday, May 13, 2011

Embrace it! Embrace Life!

President Thomas S. Monson said, "Life's journey is not traveled on a freeway devoid of obstacles, pitfalls, and snares. Rather, it is a pathway marked by forks and turnings. Decisions are constantly before us. To make them wisely, courage is needed: the courage to say, 'No,' the courage to say, 'Yes,' Decisions do determine destiny. The call for courage comes constantly to each of us. It has ever been so, and so shall it ever be."

Life is a journey.  There are bumps in the road, hard times come, but each day we wake up and we have to decide whether or not we are going to get out of bed, and make it the best day, or the worst day.  Just like the newsies sing in Disney's Newsies, we must "Seize the Day." 

Each day is a day to wake up and turn it all around.  Life gets hard, life gets crazy, but we get to choose what we are going to do with the rough path.  Do we put our trust in God?  Do we laugh at the hard things?  Do we ask for help when we need it?  Do we make the hard decisions?  Life will not go as we want it to.  But that does not give us an excuse to give up just because things are hard.  Just like President Monson has said, when the rough times come we have to keep making the right decisions, hard and painful as they may be.

In college when I would complain about life, or school, or whatever seemed to be going wrong at the time, my sister would always say to me, "Embrace It."  Just enjoy it.  We only will be where we are for a short time.  So we have to embrace it.  Embrace the struggles, the curves, the things you don't plan for.  Take the challenges that come and find a way to deal with it. 

Often times the biggest decision we have to make is the decision to be happy.  At the very beginning of my mission I got a letter from my very wise father.  He wrote something that really changed  my perspective and attitude about my mission, and about life.  He said, "You choose what kind of day it's going to be.  Each day choose to make it the best day.  And always keep smiling!"  

He probably doesn't know it, but that changed my mission, that changed me as a person and how I view decisions.  Things have gotten hard at times, and they will continue to be hard the rest of my mission and the rest of my life I am sure.  But Heavenly Father has given us all the great ability to have choice.  We get to choose to be happy.  We get to choose what kind of day we are going to have. 

2 Nephi 10:23 in the Book of Mormon says, "Therefore, cheer up your hearts, and remember that ye are free to act for yourselves—to choose the way of everlasting death or the way of eternal life."

This scripture inspired the name of this blog, it's kind of become my life motto.  We have choice!  We have the wonderful ability, to get over the hard things, and choose to smile, and just be grateful that we have another day to make choices.  We get to choose happiness!   Happiness is a choice.  And often the hardest choice we will ever have to make, but knowing the Savior, and knowing His love for us happiness is attainable each and every day regardless of how awful or depressing life may be around us.  We have to make the choice to be happy. 

I'm including a talk that really puts it into perspective on how to be happy.  I love this talk. 

"Our Search for Happiness" by: President James E. Faust

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Remember, Remember

In my life I have often been classified as the "Dumb Blonde" and I guess you could say at times I live up to that stereotype.  It happens.  As a missionary I tend to have moments where I just can't remember things.  Actually it happens a lot.  I had one of those moments the other day and I had like a major brain block.  I was sitting there trying and trying to remember what I was going to say, and naturally I couldn't remember.  So I ended up just pondering on the word "Remember."

The word remember actually means to recall to memory.  As I was thinking about the word remember my thoughts were turned to a scripture.  Actually about half a dozen scripture references that use the word remember.  (I have decided you know you are a missionary when everything relates back to the gospel.) But anyway, one of those scriptures was Helaman 5:12, which states, "And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty stormshall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall."


I love this scripture because it really puts it into perspective.  We must really be remembering all the time where our foundation lies.   Where do we place our trust?  Is it in Jesus Christ?  At the end of the day can we say that we have done all that we can to follow the example of the Savior, and have we trusted in Him completely?  If we remember that He is the foundation of our life, we are promised that when the storms of life come, we will not fall.  We will not find ourselves in the depths of despair.  Through remembering Jesus Christ we can get through anything. 

As I look back on my life I realize that when I was having the hardest time it was beacuse I was forgetting where my foundation truly was.  I was not remembering that my foundation has and always will be Jesus Christ.  I have learned that when the hard moments in life come, I have to remember my testimony.  I have to remember the many times I have felt the spirit.  Everyone has been given the light of Christ which allows us to feel the Lord's love in our lives and allows for the Holy Ghost to witness and testify truth to us.  Most often we barely recognize these moments, especially if we are not looking for them, but they do happen often. 

When life gets hard and we catch ourselves forgetting those moments where we have felt the spirit or felt God's love.  We must remember!  Remember those moments when the Lord testified of truth to us, and strengthened our faith. We must remember what we have been taught.  Remember that we are all children of our Heavenly Father, and  that He loves us.  We truly must remember who we are!

I like what Moroni says in Moroni 10:3 about reading from the Book of Mormon,  "Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts."
When we forget our foundation, we have to find it in ourselves to look back and remember how much the Lord has blessed us and given us.  When we recognize and truly remember the blessings from our Heavenly Father we can again become grounded in life with the Savior as our foundation!