Thursday, December 13, 2012

Missionary Reminders

     HOLY COW!!! This is my second to last entry for the year! I cant believe I kept my new years resolution to have this gratitude blog! It seriously has been thee best thing I've done. I cant tell you how many times I've looked back at my entries just to remember how blessed I truly am! This year has been so amazing, memorable, shocking and fantastic. I'm so glad I was able to record some of my favorite blessings!
      As I start my second to last entry, I want to say how grateful I am for Missionary Work!! It literally is the life blood of the church and am so glad so many people sacrifice to keep it going. I think of all those who have served a full time mission and those who are missionaries everyday! They are making a difference! And I cannot wait to be able to serve! Exactly 2 months left from today!! I CANNOT WAIT!!

     So my entry today is a great one! My grandparents gave me a book called, "A Little Book of Missionary Reminders" by Mark W. Newman! It has over 400 instructions, suggestions or observations for being a great missionary! I thought I'd use this entry to tell you some of them! Now some are hilarious, but some are seriously prophetic!
#6-After opening your call, write a brief letter to yourself and seal it. 3 Months into your mission, read the letter to remind you of your eagerness to serve.
#18-Remember that companions are just Siamese twins joined at the Spirit.
#33-Take photos of the common, everyday scenes from each area (laundromat, supermarket, apartment).
#40-When your companion gets transfered, make sure you claim the apartments best mattress and blankets.
AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST... It's definitely my favorite!
#90-When a big dog chases you, remember you only have to outrun your companion, not the dog.
     That just barely scratches the surface! There are so many other tips that are amazing and funny! I know for sure they'll come in handy. I've already done the "Letter to Self for encouragement." I'm very grateful to be able to turn to that in the future for a reminder of how excited I am, even though it'll be hard! I'm so grateful for my wonderful inspired grandparents who thought to give me this book! I love them and love this book!

     And I feel I must end this entry a bit different since it's almost my last one... I just have to tell anyone and everyone who reads this how true this church is! It's amazing to me that I'll be given the opportunity to teach others about it. That I can be an instrument and declare truth to those around me. I seriously could not be more excited!!
     I'm so beyond grateful for the examples I've had around me my entire life. I feel their strength as I prepare to serve. I'm so grateful for my knowledge of this gospel, for all that it means and represents! I hope all will come to know of the truth for themselves!

Love always,
Sister Samples :)

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Music!

     FINALLY DECEMBER IS HERE!! The month I wait all year for! Honestly, nothing is better than Christmas time! May we all remember what Christmas is really about! That we can really prioritize and remember what is most important! This time only comes once a year! So spend your time wisely and with those you love!!

     I think this entry will be short! But I thought I'd share with you a challenge I gave myself. When the announcement came out I knew right away I was going to be going on a mission a lot earlier than before planned. Many of you know that I'd always planned on a mission, but thought it was still so far away. So as the events transpired, I realized I needed to get intune with the spirit and be sure this is what I am suppose to do!
     In my efforts to find an answer I realized I shouldn't listen to any more non-church music, so as to not offend the spirit. Not that I listened to bad music by any means, it just didn't exactly invite the spirit. So I only listened to a certain cd with church music on it!
     I received my answer a bit later and confirmed to me what I thought as well. It was the greatest :)!! But then as I started to prepare to really serve now by filling out my papers and such, I tried to transition back toward my old music. And in so doing felt so guilty for some reason! It seemed so odd! And after a lot of praying about it, I realized that there was nothing for me right now in my old kind of music! That this new change I had made had helped my life in more ways than I noticed. And to prepare for such a hard work, I should be starting those good changes now to help me.
     So long story short, from then on I do not want to listen and will not listen to anything besides church music! It really has been so great!!! Dont think my life stinks or anything, I've become so much happier and just smilier... If that's a word! I get church songs stuck in my head, I mean what's greater than that!!
     So incase any of you feel like you need an added measure of the spirit in your life, go listen to Pandora and choose the station LDS HYMNS OF WORSHIP! Super modern church songs that help your stressful day SO much!!

Here is the link to one of my FAVORITE church songs of ALL TIME!!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0xwzItqYmII
"I Can Only Imagine" by MercyMe! Do enjoy :)

Love always,
Tuned In ;)

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Day of Giving Thanks

     I'm sure you were all expecting this entry, but I would be ungrateful to NOT have a post about Thanksgiving! It's the real start to the holiday seasons in my opinion. The family traditions, recipes and jokes come out! It's the greatest time of year!!

     So a few years ago in Seminary we were challenged by our teacher to create a gratitude list of 100 things we are grateful for! Now at first glance that seems somewhat challenging, but do able. However, he also challenged us to be as specific as possible. Now that made it easier. Because instead of being grateful for my family, I can say I'm grateful for my mom, my dad, my sister, etc...!
     I'm sure he noticed how that made the challenge easier for us. So he then promised that if we would truly be sincere in our gratitude, think of why we are grateful for each and every item, and then pray to our Heavenly Father with the list in hand, we would have a better holiday season. Seemed like a great thing to do the night before Thanksgiving and so I did!
     My list began with the common things such as, family, friends, technology, transportation, the church, my testimony, the covenants I've made, opportunities given to me, my education, my future, and so forth. Sadly, once I got to around 40 I believe, it became harder... I didn't want to foolishly write down things just to fill the space. I really wanted to have a list of things I really was grateful for! After sitting for a good while, pondering what I had written and what I was missing, thoughts just started flowing. Slowly but surely I was being reminded of so many blessings. Such as, being raised in the great state of Utah, having the culture that I do, having so many temples near by, being able to be an example to my family and friends, having food so easily available 24/7, never going hungry, safety, having a wonderful working car, a warm bed, enjoying the beauty of all 4 seasons, my health, my youth, the clothes on my back, the support around me, the gospel around me, love all over the place, examples all over the place! Sheesh the list cannot stop!!!
     It was the greatest thing ever to have filled out that list and then some with honest items I felt so grateful for. I love the holiday seasons so much! Its always filled with love, humility, gratitude, and service!

     I challenge you all to create a gratitude list of 100 items as well! Once you have felt you have completed it with honesty in every word, pray to your Heavenly Father and read it off one by one. You're eyes will be opened to all you've been given and man is it a humbling experience!
     I love you all and wish you a very safe and loving holiday season!

Love always,
Attitude of Gratitude

    

Sunday, November 18, 2012

CALLED TO SERVE

     This week my appreciate for the Brethren of the church, namely the Prophet Thomas S. Monson, his counselors and the 12 apostles, has grown beyond comprehension. For many reasons, most of which are too personal to share.

     But to answer the question that was brought up in my last post... I GOT MY MISSION CALL!!! I have been called to serve a full time mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the California, San Jose mission. I will report to the Provo Missionary Training Center on February 13, 2013. I will preach the gospel in the Tongan language and will serve for 18 months!!!
     I was blessed enough to have opened my call surrounded by the majority of my family and my close friends! It was one of the greatest experiences of my life! The spirit was so strong and I knew that wherever I'd be sent was where I needed to go!!
     So the time has come to really truly prepare. I feel like I've been preparing my whole life, but now is the time to really know the doctrine. I can now picture where and who I will be serving! It makes it all that much more real and important! In a morningside at my highschool Larry Gelwix, a rugby team coach taught up about hardwork. He said, "We can either feel the pain of HARDWORK or the pain of REGRET!" And I feel that is especially important when it comes to missionary work! The number one thing I do NOT want is regrets! So in order to accomplish that I'll need to remember President Monsons words. "Life by the yard is hard. But life by the inch, is a sinch!" And lastly, the greatest quote in reference to missionary work has to be the one given my Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the quorum of the 12 apostles. He said, "Much of the time we are just too casual about all of this. This is eternal life. This is the salvation of the children of God. Eternity hangs in the balance!" Oh how I pray I wont take my mission lightly. That I will work hard every single day because the people I'm serving deserve that. This is much too serious!

     I am so grateful for my calling to serve in San Jose, California! I'm grateful to serve the wonderful Tongan speaking individuals and more importantly, the Lord. I know this call came from God and that the apostles that decided on it and the prophet who signed off on it, are men called of God. They are here to direct His church. They are righteous men who are doing their best to be more like our Savior. We would all be wise to follow their counsel.

Nofo A,
Toko Ua Samples

( goodbye and sister in Tongan (: )

Sunday, November 11, 2012

D&C 100:6

     Holy cow!!! This week I am super thankful for institute! I am learning so much and my mind is somehow being able to take it all in, along with all the school junk that has to be slammed into my brain as well!
     Some exciting news to share!!! MY MISSION PAPERS ARE IN!!!!!! Last Sunday I saw my Stake President and he told me he'd submit my papers to church headquarters that day!!! AMAZING!!!! So the call should be here in about a week! I'll be sure to write all about it for my next entry and let ya know where I'll be serving the Lord for 18 months!!

     So in preparing for the mission I am in the temple prep class for Sunday school! It has been thee most amazing class and I feel like I am learning so much!! Last week we were taught about qualifications for the temple. Why we have to be worthy, what it means to be worthy, how to become worthy, ect...
    Our teacher used a great analogy! He said that going to church, fulfilling callings, going to seminary, and mutual was all like Elementary, Middle and High School things. They are really just there to prepare you for the University, or the Temple!! It completely relates in the sense that you cant skip any of those, you might be able to skip little grades, but definitely not the whole step. Also along with the thought that everything you learn in the younger grades is exactly what you learn in the higher grades. The only difference is that it is more in depth, with more information, but the same stuff!
     So since the majority of my family aren't members or aren't active, what could I do to help explain the reasons why they aren't allowed in the temple. My teacher was totally inspired! He said, well it's not that Heavenly Father doesn't love them! That's not it at all. He does love them and want them in his home as much as possible. However, there are a lot of reasons why someone cannot enter into his home. First off, within the temple you gain further knowledge about principles taught at church. If you are unwilling to go to church or dont like it, you wont like the temple. Another, going to church strengthens and grows your spirit. By not doing so, it shrinks. Therefore your spirit wouldn't be able to comprehend things within the temple because it hasn't grown enough, nor become strong enough. (He listed someother things, but these are just the ones I liked the most.)   
     I hope that made sense. Another thing I thought of was just the fact that the Savior, Jesus Christ has walked the halls of His home. If you were unworthy you wouldn't want to be there. You'd want to be clean in His presense wouldn't you? It's the same thing!

     So that's my thoughts on it anyway! If you have questions, feel free to ask!!
     I love this gospel and the peace is brings to me! I'm very excited to be found worthy of a temple recommend and covenant with my Father in Heaven. That I will keep His commandments, do what He would do if He were here and love everyone like He would love them!!! This gospel is true! It's what He needs His children to know and understand in order to come back to Him!!! I cant wait to serve a mission for Him!

Love always,
WHERE AM I GOING?!!!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Entitlements

     This week I am grateful for my church leaders especially! They are helping make my life so much easier, better and way more spiritual!

     We've been talking in institute a lot about entitlements. Like how someone can feel entitled to someone or something. We were asked to ponder about something we feel we justify even though we shouldnt.
      I hope that made sense.
      But my entitlement was anger. For those that know me, it really takes a lot to make me angry. I just stay bottled up inside until I explode... Not healthy!!! But I always feel entitled to anger. I'd say to myself, ya know, you never get angry. So it's okay to be mad now, they deserve it!
     Man was I wrong!! What makes me entitled to such a feeling??

     So this was really short and way random, but wanted to share. If you want, you should ponder about things your do that you feel you're entitled to feel. Then ponder all that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ are entitled to, seeing as they created you. And yet they are constantly giving you the freedom to make choices, loving you and blessing you. Then decide to be better and become more like Christ!

     Sorry if that didn't make any sense!!

Love always,
Not Entitled

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Unless You Let It In

     Today I wanted to share a great poem I'm sure many have heard! It's one that teaches me so much and makes me feel the spirit because of how true it is. I think of Christ and how He is trying to teach me something with this poem. I think of all of His children, and how He wishes they could hear it and understand that we have our agency. And that it means a lot more than you might think.
   
     So without further delay...

     All the Water in the World, By Jack M Lyon.

All the water in the world,
However hard it tried,
Could never sink the smallest ship
Unless it [gets] inside.
 
 
And all the evil in the world,
The blackest kind of sin,
Can never hurt you the least bit
Unless you let it in.
 
     We must remember brothers and sisters that it is our choice to sin. We could be strong and not let it inside us, but sometimes we aren't that strong. Our Heavenly Father knew that. He knew that sometimes our ships would get leaky and that we would be tossed over board. So he provided a way to seal and patch up every single whole, every single thing that needed repair could be completed resolved! That was the Atonement of Jesus Christ. He died for me. He died so I could repair the holes in my sinking ship, because they were inevitable.
 
     I know that my ship is still a float because of Christ and what He did for me! I have to thank my Heavenly Father for creating this entire plan and helping me everyday of my life become better, repair my leaky ship, and continue on in the hopes of being more and more like Him. So that I can hopefully one day live through all eternity with Him!!
 
     I love this gospel and know that it's true!! Please study it out for yourselves and come to know of the joy that it has brought me! You can have so much more peace in this life, hope in the next, and direction through it all! I love my Savior and my Father in Heaven! This church is true people, and I pray you'll study it, accept it, and go to the rescue yourselves, to all those without this light in their lives!
 
Love always,
Ship Samples
 
 

Sunday, October 7, 2012

MISSION!!!

     Well as many who have ears have heard... Haha the missionary age for young men and women have changed!!!!

     Young men can now leave at the age of 18, while young women can now leave at the age of 19!!!!!! Lucky for me I am already 19! We just found out yesterday and I already have a meeting with my bishop on Wednesday.

     Now to all you doubters who think I am just doing this because I can! Think again!!!! I have wanted to serve a mission since I was 16! My cousin Vanessa had just gotten home from her mission in Brazil! Next to go was my cousin Tina, who was called to Chile!! I knew I was meant to serve as well! I had told all my friends and family! I would wait till I was 21 and then go on a mission!

     My friends made fun of me a ton saying I would be antient by the time I'd get home! And making fun because I wouldn't date anyone who was an Return Missionary, because they are looking for a wife! And I cant get married haha!!

     I thought I still had another year and a half before I could get my papers! And 2 more years till I'd be outta here, serving a full time mission for my Heavenly Father!! But NO!! The time is already at hand and my my is it great timing! I had been saving money for a Humanitarian trip this summer to Fiji!! And was also about to sign a contract till March for an apartment!!!! Now that things have taken a 180 I no longer will sign the contract and continue living with my WONDERFUL aunt and uncle who allow me free rent, so I can keep saving!! AND will no longer go on my Humanitarian trip because that money needs to go towards my mission!!!

     Can you say perfect timing??? I think so!!!!

     Sorry this is all over the place!! I am just freaking out!!! Hopefully I can have my call before Christmas and be gone!!! I'm SO EXCITED!!!! I'll keep you updated!!

Love always,
SISTER SAMPLES!!!!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Forgiveness Flour

     IF YOU DONT WANT TO READ ANY OF MY OTHER POSTS, PLEASE JUST READ THIS ONE!!!!

     We were given this story in my New Testament Institute class. We were reading in Matthew where Jesus teaches forgiveness. The following is a poem about forgiveness and it's amazing!!! It may take some rereading to fully understand, but my my my!! I LOVE IT!!!

FORGIVENESS FLOUR
by Marguerite Stewart

When I went to the door, at the whisper of knocking,
I saw Simeon Gantner's daughter, Kathleen, standing
There, in her shawl and her shame, sent to ask
"Forgiveness Flour" for her bread. "Forgiveness Flour,"
We call it in our corner. If one has erred, one
Is sent to ask for flour of his neighbors. If they loan it
To him, that means he can stay, but if they refuse, he had
Best take himself off. I looked at Kathleen . . .
What a jewel of a daughter, though not much like her
Father, more's the pity. "I'll give you flour," I
Said, and went to measure it. Measuring was the rub.
If I gave too much, neighbors would think I made sin
Easy, but if I gave too little, they would label me
"Close." While I stood measuring, Joel, my husband
Came in from the mill, a great bag of flour on his
Shoulder, and seeing her there, shrinking in the
Doorway, he tossed the bag at her feet. "Here, take
All of it." And so she had flour for many loaves,
While I stood measuring.



     AWESOME RIGHT?!!! The thought that forgiveness is given by giving flour. But that if you give too much, you're saying that it's okay to sin. And that if you give too little, you're being to judgemental! So as she stands there measuring, her husband tosses a huge bag of flour to the girl. Maybe knowing the true agony of asking for forgiveness! My doesn't that make you fell bad haha!! We must all be forgiving! Without strings attached!!!

Larry E. Dahl commented on this poem saying:
     "How often it seems,in our daily encounters with one another, we "stand measuring" rather than naturally and generously giving of our love and support and forgiveness. All of us, to one degree or another, stand at the door, in our shame, asking for forgiveness flour from our neighbors, anxiously hoping that they will somehow understand our need. And all of us, at other times, will be on the other side of the door with the flour to give to an errant neighbor.
     As we contemplate these shifting roles, perhaps we shoud also ponder a future time when all of us will stand at another door, the door of eternity, asking forgiveness flour of him who is the Bread of Life. He has made it clear that the measure of forgiveness flour we receive at that time will be a reflection of how we measured forgiveness flour to others throughout our lives."

     Amazing lesson in institute!!! I hope to never forget it!

Love always,
Flour Asker and Flour Giver

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Doing Good!

     Well good morning!!! This one will be short and sweet!

     I heard an amazing quote a couple years ago and thought I should stop keeping it all to myself and tell people... So here it is:

               "RIGHTEOUSNESS ISN'T BASED ON HOW MUCH BAD WE DONT DO!!"

     Read that again... Righteousness ISN'T based on how much bad we DONT do!

     Hmm... That makes you think! Just because you didn't drink, or didnt do drugs, or didn't swear, or didn't whatever... That doesn't make you righteous. You cant count the bad things you didn't do and then say you're good! NO! Righteousness is based on the good that you do! You should be counting those and asking for more opportunities to do such righteousness!!

     It reminds me of the song, "Have I done any good in the world today, have I helped anyone in need? Have I cheered up the sad, or made someone feel glad? If not, I have failed indeed!"

    So yeah, short and sweet! Very happy to have learned that lesson. It has made me more aware of my actions and the hope to end every day, knowing that I have served my fellow man with some degree of righteousness!

Love always,
Have I Done Any Good?

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Movies!

     According to this title, you may think I will be some critic on movies or something... On the contrary! I would like to express my love for movies... Church movies specifically!

     I am one of many people who refuse to see R rated movies. I know I know, I sound super lame! But I just dont see the point! Why pay money to see a movie that will load your mind with fiflth, that you cant get rid of? That sounds like a really really bad idea to me! And I dont even watch a lot of PG-13 movies for the same reason! Some may say that they couldn't tell that the PG-13 movie was going to be bad. But I disagree, for the most part you can totally tell that a movie, no matte what it's rating, is going to be sexually, pornographic, violent, or anyother discriptive word that would rot your mind.

     I had an experience with this just the other day. I heard about this movie from a friend and he said it was hysterical! I thought, alright, well if he'd see it, then it's gotta be a good one. I go and rent the movie from redbox that weekend and sit down to watch it. I put the movie in, start watching, and about 15 minutes into it, I'm really debating turning it off.

     Why you ask? It's not that the first part of the movie was awful, or really bad or anything like that... It just wasn't good. It was just suggestive in its humor, defiling important things like the family unit. I dont know! To me it seemed mean, rude, and wrong. To another it may seem harmless, but I couldn't watch it anymore. I turned it off, but it back in its case and returned it. Wasting $1.30 on it and didn't even blink!

     I'm grateful for the presence of the Holy Ghost as well as the absense of the Holy Ghost. With the presence I feel comforted, safe, and peaceful. The second it departs I feel lost, scared, or worried. The loss of the Spirit is what made me realize I should have been watching that movie. Yeah, nobody would have known, I was home alone in my room. Yeah it wasn't totally bad, it was only rated PG-13.... That's what the adversary wants you to think!! BUT remember, it's not worth it!!!!!!! It really isn't! What's the point??

     I'm glad I stopped that movie before I heard or saw things I could never erase from my mind. I'm grateful I am able to recognize the Spirit enought to know when it departs, and then realize why. I love my Heavenly Father and know there are things on this earth that would love to seperate us. But I wont let that happen!

Love always,
A Mind That Matters

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Infinite Atonement-again :)

So I am learning a ton from my book The Infinite Atonement! I am almost finished with it and though I would use this post to randomly write thoughts I've had throughout reading it! Just what I've learned or felt... Here goes nothing :)


     *Well the ultimate purpose of the Atonement was to make us like God! In other words, exalting us! And those exalting ordinances are only found in the temple! Then in the temple, there are constant symbols everywhere about the Atonement. Symbolism of Christ suffering! Thus creating a complete cirle to remind us of Christ, God, Eternity, Family, and much more!

     *I loved how Tad Callister, the author, used a quote by President Gordon B Hinckley in his book. It really pointed out that we go to church every Sunday to be reminded about Gods great love and power! So then throughout the rest of the week, we can better remember Him! Then Callister emphasizes how it is a feast, a spiritual feast every Sunday. And that it is our duty to come with a fork in hand, starving for spiritual food, in order to feel satisfied and ready for another week!

     *The Atonement makes it possible for us to receive gifts from our Heavenly Father to make us more like Him. So nobody can say they are fine with no need to progress or change. It's all about receiving the gift we need to overcome a weakness and using it wisely. Then humbly seeking to impove the next weakness! There is always room for improvement!


This is just a few cool things I've learned over the last couple of months reading this beautiful book! I again encourage you to get it yourself! It's about 300 pages and worth everyone! I love it so much and have changed because of it! I thank my Heavenly Father and older brother so much more and with deeper clearity for this wonderful plan and that I'm blessed enough to be apart of it!

Love always,
Repeat Offender haha :)

Sunday, August 26, 2012

School!

     Well another school year has begun! Now I am down at Utah Valley University to start their nursing program!! I miss good ol' Utah State, but I know I'm meant to be here!

     How blessed am I, and my fellow students to be getting higher education. I think some of us take it for granted. I think it's a bit harder for me to take it for granted... Seeing as I have to pay for tuition and books on my own. However, it still can be seen as boring or useless!

     I would just like to publically say how grateful I am for my education. For all that I have learned up to this point and all that I have yet to learn! It's amazing that I have the dream of becoming a NICU Nurse and that I am the only thing standing in my way of becoming it! If I put all my energy into it, there will be nothing that can stop me!

     Dreams come true people! And no matter how hard it may be, I will stay happy! Because mine is almost within reach!

Love always,
Student Samples

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Sister Samples

Can I just say how grateful I am for this blog! It keeps me focused on Heavenly Father every Sunday and recognizing his blessings throughout the week! And I have the difficult decision of picking which one I will speak on!

I have had the pleasure to attend over a dozen farewells so far with many more to come! It's amazing for me to watch these guys that I've usually known for quite some time shape up and put those name tags on, forget themselves, and do what the Lord needs them to do! I get to hear their testimonies before they depart into strange lands to suffer unknown tribulations and to do it with absolute faith that they will change someones life forever!

I also had the great pleasure to see my cousins leave on missions and return with even stronger testimonies of this church!

Which brings me to my point!! I have less than 2 years until I can receive mission papers and turn them in and get my call!!! And boy am I excited!! Just like these Elders, I cannot wait to share this gospel message! I cannot wait to see people change because of the light this gospel brings!! I cant wait to trust in the Lord fully and watch my own life change because of it!! I CANNOT WAIT!!! I am so grateful to have the opportunity and wish it wasn't so far away. BUT I will have pacience, and I will not get married haha!! If 'the one' comes along before I leave, then great!! If we're really meant to be and if he is really 'the one' then he will wait! He'll understand the importance of me serving a full time mission! To hopefully give a small percent back to the Savior that created me and is helping me every second of every day!!!

I love this gospel and cannot wait to share it with everyone I meet! Believe me that I am trying to be a missionary now, I'm not just waiting for the name tag ;)!!!

Love always,
Sister Samples!!!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Ofa Atu

This is gonna be short and simple!

I just wanted to point out my family and how great they are to me! Ever since my mother moved to Arizona I have just been all over the place from, Logan, Salt Lake, Draper, California, and now Springville with my awesome Aunt and Uncle who took me in!

I am just constantly being looked out for and cared for no matter what! My family is thee biggest blessing I have in my life! They are always there and I would be nothing without them!!

I always thought I was actually missing out a lot since my parents got a divorce right after I was born. I was raised by my mother and occasionally saw my dad growing up! So I thought I was, for lack of a better word, neglected by not having the 'ideal' family! But now as I'm growing up, I realize how truly blessed I really was and still am! I may not have had a very active Father in my life but I had the next best thing! I had Uncles that cared for me so deeply! Along with Aunts that took me under their wings! Not to mention my wonderful cousins who treated me like a sister!

I am so blessed to have the family that I have! We have our difficulties and our drama haha, but I wouldn't trade them for the world!!!

Ofa Atu,
Wolfgramm, Gerber, and Samples Girl :)

Sunday, July 22, 2012

They Wouldn't Know

     Well I am back again!! This one will be shorter I think! I just had this weird experience last week and want to write about it for my gratitude post! If you think I'm physco... you're not alone haha! It was just a weird thing I observed!

     While driving with my aunt, uncle and baby cousin one very late night, I was day dreaming while stairing out the window. I hope I'm not the only one that does that! Well I looked at the moon and thought to myself, what would I do if it turned red right now. For those of you who aren't members of the LDS church, we believe that that will be a sign of Christ's Second Coming. So I thought, am I ready to meet Christ right now? Would I be okay with being judge right this very second? And it was very unsettling. I didn't feel ready at all. I haven't been to the temple, bore my testimony, or really even talked much about the gospel in a while. Yes I was going to church, and institute, and saying my prayers. But I didn't think I was really doing my best!
     So that was the first thing I learned on this drive! To really start doing better! Serve and sacrifice more because I want to be ready!!
     The other thing is what is kinda weird haha. So I started to think of the moon as the gospel. Like it's always there, people know about it, people know it will always be there, and so on. Then all of a sudden it was covered by clouds. And my mind started drifting off again like it was before to tv shows, boys, friends, parties, ect. And flashed back to the moon a while later and it was still gone! So I kinda made it into a life lesson... Sometimes non-members know about the church, but dont seek to know anything else really. And then one day it's gone or just not in front of them anymore and they dont even recognize that it is missing! They dont realize the difference because they never really appreciated it when it was there!
     I hope that makes sense! So this taught me to really tell people about the gospel. Not only for the obvious reasons of bring them to a knowledge of Christ and receiving all the blessings He has waiting for them. But so that when it's gone, and when it's dark... When life is too hard to bare, they wont be confused as to what to do, but can look to Christ and find strength.... They can see the light of the moon and be guided where to go!!
    
     I'm sure I sounded insane haha, but it was such a cool lesson that kept growing in my mind on this peaceful car trip! I have to thank my aunt and uncle for playing church music at the time or I may not have received such an awesome realization!!
     I am so blessed all the time! Constantly praying for understanding of His gospel is definitely happening! I challenge you to find symbols of the gospel all around you because I know they are there! It just takes some pondering to uncover them!!

Love always,
Crazily Inspired :)

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Doing Your Part

     Well looky here!! I am over half way done with this year, with only occasional slacking on my new years resolution! I think that is something to be very proud of :)!!! This blog has been amazing. I have to focus more now so I can have something wonderful to write about! I have to realize my blessings in order to count them and that has been thee biggest blessing of all!! When you can see how much you are really given on a daily basis, your mind set changes a bit! Mine has gone from a pretty selfish or just ignorant look on life, to a daily questioned life. And that question is, what have I done for Christ today? What have I done to prove to Him how thankful I am to know His gospel and what am I doing to bring this joy to others?!! Never thought I would've changed so much already :)!

     This week I wanted to share something really cool I learned. Well we were talking about doing our part in this gospel! How we all have something we need to contribute to keep this work progressing. And we learned that all the active members within the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, would need to baptize 2,100 people personally, so that anyone who has ever lived and everyone left to live would receive the gospel! CRAZZZYYY! Right?
     Haha I thought, well that's impossible! But I thought about it in terms of Baptisms for the dead. And if I did 2,100 people who have already died as my part. So I got to calculating!.... If I went to the temple 4 times a month, baptizing 5 people each time, I would reach the goal in 2 years! Now 4 times a month is a stretch now since I am not really close to any temples, so if I said twice a month then it would just take me 4 years. And also, sometimes you baptize 10 people instead of 5! So honestly it really is possible for us to literally do our part to bring the gospel to everyone we need to!
     Now I dont expect myself to keep track, but it definitely is a huge goal of mine to go to the temple much more often now! I want to bring this truth and light to anyone and everyone I can! Also another reason I plan to serve a mission in 2 years when I am 21!!

     Well I have learned a lot over these last 6 months. I've enjoyed writing about them, explaining all that they really mean to me, and most importantly appling them into my life!! It's been an amazing journey! And I encourage you to keep even just a small gratitude journal weekly! Constant reflection on what Heavenly Father has done for you will strengthen you to do whatever He asks and with enough faith to know you can!

Love always,
25% Completed :)
   

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Infinite in Power!

     So just like I said last time, The Infinite Atonement by Tad Callister, is thee best book ever! I have a ton I'd love to share, but you just need to read it yourself haha! You'll get so much more out of it! But after reading a few more chapters, I have to share one thing!

     In a few nearby chapters Tad explains how infinite the atonement is. How it is infinite in time, divineness, and my favorite, power!! Now this is gonna be nice and short and very sweet!!! Because I would like whoever reads this, to concentrate on this one thing! It's amazing and mind expanding and to spend a day just pondering this one concept could strengthen your faith, as it did mine!
     So you know how people say the ironic statement of, the more you use something the more it grows! For example, your testimony or love or knowledge. That the more you use it or say it, the stronger and bigger it gets! Well Tad says it's the same with powers!
     Then perhaps the power it took Christ to endure the Garden of Gethsemane, the sins of every single person. Perhaps all that agony and strength to get through that, may be the exact way Christ had the power necessary to break the bonds of death!
     I wish I could explain it as good as he did, but I am trying to really just summarize it in a few sentences!
     I am so grateful Christ endured the Garden and has the power to resurrect us all! He loves us and wouldn't have done all this if He didn't! He has made the sacrifice, all we need to do is use it!!

     I am obsessed with this book! It's amazing and mind boggling! I am so grateful for all that I am learning and love sharing it!

Love always,
Amazed!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Best Book Ever!

     I am so grateful for wonderful authors, LDS or not, that explain gospel principles so wonderfully! In the beginning of June I started reading, The Infinite Atonement by Tad Callister! It is insane how wonderful this book is and how much I have learned from it! I am sure that my next few entries, or until I finish reading it, will all be dedicated to this magnificent book! I will talk about what I have learned so far!

     Alrighty, so I suggest you read this book because once again, I wont give it justice! (I got it for $20 off of Amazon, just FYI) Well a couple chapters in it talks about how you must understand the Fall of Adam before you can really comprehend and appreciate the Atonement. So then it goes on to talk about the fall and how it was meant to happen! Well my testimony got strengthened so much, like it's crazy strong now haha! So we, as the LDS church, believe the Fall of Adam was meant to happen, that it wasn't a mistake. While most other religions believe it was a mistake and that we are all punished for it! But Tad Callister points out the scripture, Genesis 2: 17 that says....
    (Heavenly Father talking about the tree of knowledge of good and evil)- "In the day thou eatest thou shalt surely die!"
     Which proves we've got it right! Heavenly Father doesn't say "If thou eatest!" No He says, "In the day thou eatest!" Heavenly Father knew it would happen because it is a weakness of the flesh! It was apart of the plan, so we could all be brought into mortality to progress!
     So that proved to me again that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the one and only true church of God!

     So that is just a pinch of what I have learned so far! It's been amazing to read and learn so much about the greatest event to ever take place on this planet!! I suggest you all read it and then give it to someone else to read after haha!

Love always,
Meant 2 Be

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Focus!

     Let's be honest. Sometimes Sacrament meeting is boring. Sometimes we doze or what not, because of it. However, this last Sunday, it was exactly what I needed! And I'm so thankful that I was able to focus and get the most out of it! One persons talk in particular really made me think.
     This guy just got home from his mission a few months ago and his talk was on desires. Long story short he talked about righteous verses wrong desires and challenged us to make a list of our desires. And I did that last night. And one of them was to 'live in the Celestial Kingdom!' And then from there comes what I learned!

     I feel like at my age, which is 18, and others just older than me, we are really taught to focus on the "now." Being single adults, this is when we are making the most important decisions that have life-long and eternal consequences. Such as, furthering our education, picking a major, and eventually an eternal companion. We are taught to really focus on those things, so we can make the best decision!
     But I propose that we change that! Perhaps, if we focus on where we want to end up at the end of our life, rather than what is going on at the moment, we can be much happier with our choices. For instances, picking a job now based merely on what will provide you with a paycheck the quickest, may not provide you the happiness you want throughout life. But if you chose your job because you want it to provide for a family and also allow you to raise a family, your choices are now more selfless and more Christ-like. Or when choosing a companion. You should decide by who is going to help you achieve the celestial kingdom, not just who is ready for marriage or who has the prettiest face haha!
     I just feel if we look at our choices as if they determine eternity, which they do, we'll be so much more careful about them! We'll seek Heavenly Fathers guidance more!

     I am very grateful for this time in my life, to be making huge choices and asking Heavenly Father what He wants for me! I love this church, it's warmth, it's spirit, it's hope and it's faith that it brings to me! Heavenly Father knows how to get us back to Him and will give us the answers we need, if we just ask!

Love always,
Choosing The Right

Thursday, May 31, 2012

The Book of Ether!!

     This past week I have really tried to express my gratitude to my Heavenly Father for the Book of Ether. I am obviously very close to finishing the Book of Mormon for the second time and have a new found appreciation for the Book of Ether! I decided to dedicate this post to all that I have learned from it! This wont give it justice because I will only point out a FEW things that I found, so read it for yourself :)! It's only 15 chapters and definitely worth every word!

     First, Ether 2! The brother of Jared, his family and his friends are going to be lead to the promised land and Christ is like laying down the rules for being able to stay in this amazing land. He repeats over and over that if they become "ripened in iniquity" they will be cast out or swept off the land. What I loved was how Christ doesn't say, the second you sin you're gone. No, He realizes that they are going to make mistakes! He realizes that they are going to have to repent, so He gives them time. If they decide to repent and do better then perfect, that is what He wants and they can stay on this choice land. But if they start doing really bad and dont change and have no desire to change, THEN and only then, they wont be allowed to stay there anymore!
     Second, Ether 6! More specifically verses 5 and 10!
     Verse 5= So they are traveling to the promised land now in a barge (like a huge ball) and they are describing this awful wind that is sending them all throughout the ocean. It's making them go full force into waves and become completely submerged under water. What I loved about this was that this wind, to anyone in this barge and to most outsiders maybe watching, the wind is this awful thing. It's making their trip a million times harder and is just another bad thing to happen to these righteous people. But it states in verse 5, "The Lord God caused that there should be a furious wind blow upon the face of the waters, towards the promised land..."  Now you see, this 'awful' wind is actually something everyone should be so grateful for! It is what is actually getting them to where they want to go. This taught me that I only see so much of the picture and Heavenly Father sees it all. He knows what has to happen to get me where I need to be and that it wont make sense at the time, and it may never make sense, but it will get me where I need to be! So I cant complain about hardships, because they may just be what saves me!
     And lastly, same chapter but now verse 10! PLEASE IF YOU DONT WANT TO READ ANYTHING ELSE, JUST READ CHAPTER 6! Verse 10... Oh I hope I can describe what I learned from it! So they are still in this barge traveling across the sea, still being tossed around by the wind. And it states, "And no monster of the sea could break them, neither whale that could mar them..." So in the mist of this awful, hard, long trip to the promised land, they are actually being blessed a ton by not getting eaten alive by sea creatures! This taught me that in trials, we cant just focus on what is going wrong. You cant just focus on the wind and how you rolling around in this barge. You should focus on the fact that you aren't drowning, that you are on your way to a beautiful place! That in hard times you are still being blessed more than you even know!!!

     I LOVE THE BOOK OF ETHER!! A must read people! I learned to much more that I couldn't express in words even if I wanted! So read it for yourself!!

Love always,
A Big Fan of The Brother Of Jared
;)

Monday, May 21, 2012

An Anchor

     I'm not sure how to start this post... So I think I'll just share my experience last night while reading, The Book of Mormon Student Manual. But first I have to give some background on why what I read was so awesome!

     As you may know, a lot of my friends have recently become engaged!!!! Very exciting I know!! And I couldn't be happier for them! We grow up dreaming of that special someone, that you'll love forever and ever! And they'll love you forever and ever! So I have found myself constantly pondering on marriage. I thought about how he's purpose, the wedding day, having children, getting old. All the really great stuff about marriage! And then, I am sad to say that my mind wondered quickly to divorce.... And then it's impact on my life coming from divorced parents. Then.... I saw the families around me, related or not, that are getting divorced.... I mean I have no idea their circumstances and I couldn't possibly know their situation, but it shows the opposite end of the spectrum for me and how marriage doesn't always work out. How marriage and divorce is broadcasted all over television and how stats show your more likely to get divorced than to have twins.
     With all of this rummaging through my brain, too fast for anyone to deal with, I cried. As you have realized from reading this blog, that's all I ever do! But I started pointing out all my flaws, all the things that someone couldn't possibly love. Someone could never love that I am a neat freak, that I can be so anal about truly dumb things, that I get lazy a lot, that I'd usually rather spend my Saturday night with a movie and nail polish over anything else!! That I LOVE country music, that I usually cant stand rap, that I cry at everything, that I am sadly obsessed with pinterest, that I have a crazy tongan family... And the list goes on... Like seriously, nothing about me seems easy to understand or to like haha, not kidding!!
     But I moved on, I settled with the thought that it's not important right now. But Heavenly Father knew I needed some help!
     While reading my Book of Mormon Student Manual, Gordon B. Hinckley was quoted saying,

"We live in a world of uncertainty. For some, there will be great accomplishment. For others, great disappointment. For some, much of rejoicing and gladness, good health, and gracious living. For others, perhaps sickness and measure of sorrow. We do not know. But one thing we do know. Like the polar star in the heavens, regardless of what the future holds, there stands the Redeemer of the world, the Son of God, certain and sure as the anchor of our immortal lives. He is the rock of our salvation, our strength, our comfort, the very focus of our faith!"

     Now I hope you got out of that what I did! Things may be bumpy, and this "world of uncertainty" may be too hard to handle on our own, but if we have f.a.i.t.h. and Forward All Issues Toward Heaven, we dont need to fear! Christ is constant and if we make Him our goal, everything else will fall into place! Everything!! I need more hope and less doubt, more faith and less fear! Lets be honest, it's gonna be hard to love me with all my flaws, but Heavenly Father does. So I'll find me a man who wants to be live Him. That's a good start :)

Love always,
Removing All Doubt

Monday, May 14, 2012

The Sacrament!

 Every Sunday I have always been grateful that I can partake of the sacrament! But especially yesterday!!

     You see, for the past 5 weeks I have been busy on Sunday for one reason or another. For one Sunday I was driving back from Arizona, or flying to California, or visiting my grandparents or it was Stake Conference, or I was late to sacrament meeting... Haha and so I didn't receive the sacrament for over a month!
     I didn't realize how much it really meant to me until I wasn't having it weekly! And then on Saturday, just a couple of days ago I was reading in 3 Nephi chapter 18 and it is when Christ administers the sacrament unto the multitude! It further emphasized my want to partake of the sacrament on Sunday.
     So yesterday, I made sure I was early to church, got a good seat, and could not wait to get to the sacrament!! The first hymn seemed incredibly long and so did the prayer and the sacrament hymn!! I had just waited so long and forfeited my right to the sacrament, and now I could finally have it again! I finally got that bread and nearly took out the poor kid handing it to me with excitement hahaha! Seriously felt so whole again!!
     I felt so incredible after and will never take the sacrament for granted again!
     I am so grateful for the sacrament, for all it represents, for all it means to me and will make sure I never miss it again!! :)
Love always,
Sacrament Samples

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Blessings From Staying Pure!

     I am super grateful for a wonderful lesson that was given on chastity on Sunday! That topic can be really awkward, but it wasn't! I learned valuable truths that taught me so much and I want to share it!

     So on the topic of chastity in Sunday school, a guy related everything to the story found in Alma 47 in the Book of Mormon. (I am going to try and explain this chapter as best as I can haha, but you should read it yourself! It is so powerful!) Quick thing, just so this makes sense is that Lehonti can be referred to as the good guy and Amilickiah as the bad guy!
     So in this chapter Lehonti flees with his army to a high mountain top away from Amilickiah and his army who are trying to murder them! Amilickiah knows he cannot attack Lehonti on the mountain because he is stronger there, so he calls for Lehonti to come down and meet him! But Lehonti knows he will be overpowered there and does not go. However, Amilickiah calls for him 2 more times, still getting rejected! Now on his last try he says he will meet Lehonti half way if he will just come and meet him. Lehonti doesn't now see the harm, and agrees! Amilickiah talks to Lehonti and convinces him to join their armies, that Lehonti can be the main ruler as long as Amilickiah is second in command! Lehonti agrees to it all and it is only a matter of a few days until Amilickiah then poisons Lehonti's food, killing him, and now making him ruler over thee entire army!
     Hope that all makes sense. If it doesn't, go read Alma 47 haha and this next part will make ever more sense!
     So to relate that all to chastity, we are Lehonti, above Amilickiah aka Satan and we know better than to completely immerse ourselves around Satan and his "army"! So when tempted with certain things, we can quickly say no or reject them because we are in our element (on top of the mountain) so to speak and Satan cant get us to give up entirely our safe zone. BUT! He knows he can make actually dangerous things seem okay if he puts a spin on it and does it gradually! Just like how Amilickiah said he would meet Lehonti half way, Satan will do the same! Satan cant get us to all of a sudden abandon all of our values, but he can do it slowly! We slowly do things that aren't okay in the eyes of God, but Satan convinces us that it isn't a big deal, so we justify it! And we keep justifying things until the next thing you know, you are "dead" just like Lehonti...
     It can all be tied with chastity and morality. Satan doesn't try and convinces us that sex out of marriage is okay. He starts by telling us that passionately kissing is okay and then touching is okay and so on and so forth! And along the way we justify our actions until we have gone "all the way" which we would never have done in the beginning.
     What I learned and what I am hopefully trying to tell you, is that Satan is smart. He will work patiently and hard to get you to fall. He has his strategies and will use them to his advantage! Remember in all your actions who you are ultimately following, who you are trying to please, and who you are becoming! We have a Savior who took all our sins upon him so that we dont need to suffer them! If we will just turn to Him, whether we have already gone down the mountain or are still on top of it, He is there for us! He will make us stronger and smarter against the adversary!
     I again hope that all made sense!! I am so grateful for that lesson, absolutely loved it!
Love always,
Not Lehonti haha!!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Easter!

Easter Sunday! First Easter I have ever spent without family, but it was alright! Just want to share a story that was shared in Sacrament Meeting, touched me deeply! I know it is long, but I promise it is so worth it! You'll never think of the Atonement in the same way... It's called Seminary Donuts!


There was a boy by the name of Steve who was attending Seminary in Utah. In Utah, Seminary classes are held as part of the curriculum. Brother Christianson taught Seminary at this particular school. He had an open-door policy and would take in any student that had been thrown out of another class as long as they would abide by his rules.

Steve had been kicked out of his sixth period and no other teacher wanted him, so he went into Brother Christianson's Seminary class. Steve was told that he couldn't be late, so he would come in just seconds before the bell rang and he would sit in the very back of the room. He would also be the first to leave after the class was over.

One day, Brother Christianson asked Steve to stay after class so he could talk with him. After class, Brother Christianson pulled Steve aside and said, "You think you're pretty tough, don't you?"

Steve's answer was, "Yeah, I do."

Then Brother Christianson asked, "How many push-ups can you do?"

Steve said, "I do about 200 every night."

"200? That's pretty good, Steve." Brother Christianson said, "Do you think you could do 300?"

Steve replied, "I don't know... I've never done 300 at a time."

"Do you think you could?" again asked Brother Christianson.

"Well, I can try," said Steve.

"Can you do 300 in sets of 10? I need you to do 300 in sets of ten for this to work. Can you do it? I need you to tell me you can do it." Brother Christianson said.

Steve said, "Well... I think I can... yeah, I can do it."

Brother Christianson said, "Good! I need you to do this on Friday."

Friday came and Steve got to class early and sat in the front of the room. When class started, Brother Christianson pulled out a big box of donuts. Now these weren't the normal kinds of donuts. They were the extra fancy BIG kind, with cream centers and frosting swirls. Everyone was pretty excited - it was Friday, the last class of the day, and they were going to get an extra early start on the weekend.

Brother Christianson went to the first girl in the first row and asked, "Cynthia, do you want a donut?" Cynthia said, "Yes." Brother Christianson then turned to Steve and asked, "Steve, would you do ten push-ups so that Cynthia can have a donut?"

Steve said, "Sure," and jumped down from his desk to do a quick ten. Then Steve again sat in his desk. Brother Christianson put a donut on Cynthia's desk.

Brother Christianson then went to Joe, the next person, and asked, "Joe, do you want a donut?" Joe said, "Yes." Brother Christianson asked, "Steve would you do ten push-ups so Joe can have a donut?" Steve did ten push-ups; Joe got a donut. And so it went, down the first aisle. Steve did ten pushups for every person before they got their donut. And down the second aisle, till Brother Christianson came to Scott.

Scott was captain of the football team and center of the basketball team. He was very popular and never lacking for female companionship. When Brother Christianson asked, "Scott do you want a donut?"

Scott's reply was "Well, can I do my own pushups?"

Brother Christianson said, "No, Steve has to do them. "

Then Scott said, "Well, I don't want one then."

Brother Christianson then turned to Steve and asked, "Steve, would you do ten push-ups so Scott can have a donut he doesn't want?"

Steve started to do ten push-ups. Scott said, "HEY! I said I didn't want one!"

Brother Christianson said, "Look, this is my classroom, my class, my desks, and my donuts. Just leave it on the desk if you don't want it", and he put a donut on Scott's desk. Now by this time, Steve had begun to slow down a little. He just stayed on the floor between sets because it took too much effort to be getting up and down, and a little perspiration appeared around his brow.

Brother Christianson started down the third row. By now, the students were beginning to get a little angry.

Brother Christianson asked Jenny, "Jenny, do you want a donut?" Jenny said, "No". Then Brother Christianson asked Steve, "Steve, would you do ten pushups so Jenny can have a donut that she doesn't want?" Steve did ten; Jenny got a donut.

By now, the students were beginning to say "No" and there were all these uneaten donuts on the desks. Steve was also having to really put forth a lot of effort to get these push-ups done for each donut. There began to be a small pool of sweat on the floor beneath his face, and his arms and brow were beginning to get red because of the physical effort involved.

Brother Christianson asked Robert to watch Steve to make sure he did ten push-ups in a set because he couldn't bear to watch all of Steve's work for all of those uneaten donuts. Robert began to watch Steve closely.

Brother Christianson started down the fourth row. During his class, however, some students had wandered in and sat along the heaters along the sides of the room. When Brother Christianson realized this; he did a quick count and saw that there were now 34 students in the room. He started to worry if Steve would be able to make it.

Brother Christianson went on to the next person, the next, and the next. Near the end of that row, Steve was really having a rough time. He was taking a lot more time to complete each set.

Steve asked Brother Christianson, "Do I have to make my nose touch on each one?"

Brother Christianson thought for a moment, "Well, they're your push-ups. You can do them any way that you want." And Brother Christianson went on.

A few moments later, Jason came to the room and was about to come in when all the students yelled, "NO! Don't come in! Stay out!" Jason didn't know what was going on.

Steve picked up his head and said, "No, let him come."

Brother Christianson said, "You realize that if Jason comes in you will have to do ten push-ups for him."

Steve said, "Yes, let him come in.

" Brother Christianson said, "Okay, I'll let you get Jason's out of the way right now. Jason, do you want a donut?"

"Yes."

"Steve, will you do ten pushups so that Jason can have a donut?"

Steve did ten push-ups very slowly and with great effort. Jason, bewildered, was handed a donut and sat down. Brother Christianson finished the fourth row, then started on those seated on the heaters. Steve's arms were now shaking with each push-up in a struggle to lift him against the force of gravity. Sweat was dropping off his face and, by this time, there was not a dry eye in the room. The very last two girls in the room were cheerleaders and very popular. Brother Christianson went to Linda, the second to last, and asked, "Linda, do you want a donut?"

Linda, too choked up to talk, just shook her head. Brother Christianson asked Steve, "Steve, would you do ten push-ups so that Linda can have a donut she doesn't want?" Grunting from the effort, Steve did ten very slow push-ups for Linda. Then Brother Christianson turned to the last girl, Susan. "Susan, do you want a donut?"

Susan, with tears flowing down her face, asked, "Brother Christianson, can I help him?"

Brother Christianson, with tears of his own, said, "No, he has to do it alone."

"Steve, would you do ten push-ups so Susan can have a donut?" As Steve very slowly finished his last pushup, with the understanding that he had accomplished all that was required of him, having done 350 pushups, his arms buckled beneath him and he fell to the floor.

Brother Christianson then said, "And so it was, that our Savior, Jesus Christ, pleaded to the Father, "Into thy hands I commend my spirit", and with the understanding that He had done everything that was required of Him, collapsed on the cross and died - even for those that didn't want His gift."

I am so grateful for my Savior and the sacrifice he made for me! I love him and love the gift he freely gives to me and everyone, whether they want it or not!

Love always,
Easter Bunny

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Future Blessings

So you know how this whole blog has been about how grateful I am for all the blessings I receive?.. Well I thought I'd switch it up! This entry is dedicated to future blessings I will can receive if I remain true and faithful!
     First... One day I will be blessed to be sealed in the temple to a loving companion for time and all eternity! I have thought about this a TON lately since my bestest friend Whitney just got engaged and my oldest sister Kim just got married!! To me marriage is so much more than a ring on your finger or a live in male roommate. It is a bond, an infinite bond made between husband and wife to always be there for eachother no matter the circumstances. To cherish, protect, love, nuture, and encourage eachother! I come from divorced parents and so I have seen first hand the toll it takes when bonds are broken! But I know, if I live righteously and worthily, I will meet my husband when the time is right! And it will be me, him, our children and heavenly father against the world! And we will be together forever! And I am so grateful for that knowledge and the opportunity!
     And second... General Conference! It will be here in 4 days and I am so utterly excited! I am so grateful for those who have been preparing to speak, for all their dedication in bringing forth words of wisdom meant for our time! I am so grateful that I have friends inviting me to come and watch it at their home since I have no where to watch it haha! I am so grateful for the time I am blessed to live at, that I have the church restored and apostles and prophets telling me what to do better at and teaching me how to get to the Celestial Kingdom! I simply just get so excited about conference! It's a huge opportunity to get advice specific for todays world and todays challenges. It helps me to know that God loves us just as much as he did all the prophets of old like Nephi and Isaiah. That He is still speaking to us and guiding His church!!

     I am grateful for so many things in my life! And am so happy to realize how grateful I am for blessings I haven't even received yet!! I love this gospel, I would be so lost without it and take so much comfort in all it teaches! I am so excited to one day serve a mission for the LDS church and spread this knowledge to everyone around me! I love my Heavenly Father and all the general authorities and look forward to their wonderful messages!
  
Love always,
Already Grateful :)

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The Temple!

Today's Gratitude Thought:     Alright, time to be real! So every month I make a few church type goals for myself. They are usually about scripture study, the temple and then a random one that I feel I need to work better at. And I have been doing this for a while now, but recently have been slacking on the temple goal. I am sad to admit it, but I hadn't been to the temple in over a month... And it's really sad because in the beginning of the year I went once I week! I was homesick and it always made me feel better and now that I am not so homesick I am not going as often!! So I stepped up my game!

     Today I went to the temple... Finally!!! It wasn't really busy so I was flying through. After I did baptisms I was waiting for an available shower. It's hard to explain... But the girl I was waiting on didn't know I was waiting, so I was standing there for a bit really cold since I was all wet from the baptisms haha! And it made me think how people in the spirit world are just like me! They just sit there in awful circumstances, freezing cold (metaphorically), waiting to be in a better place! They are waiting for us to do their work!! And until we realize that, they are stuck! We have the privilege to help those who have already passed on! And it should be our duty to give them our time and service!
     I dont know if anyone reads this blog haha, but to my future self if I ever read this, go to the temple!!!! So many people are waiting for you to do what they cannot do! There is nothing better you could do! I love the temple, I have missed it soooo much!! I am grateful to have one so near! I realize my duty to my brothers and sisters on the other side and am so happy and grateful to help them in every way I can!!

Love always,
Temple Taylor :)

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Worth It!

Holy cow!!! I am a slacker! Only the third month and I completely spaced on this blog!! One because spring break made me way lazy and the other because I simply forgot! But I am going to make up for it! This blog makes me happy because I get to put into words all that I am grateful for! So I need to recap for this month and all the blessings I have received!I will write 2 more this week to catch up :)

For today:
     A couple of Sundays ago someone either said in a talk or lesson that we need to look past our current trails! To really see beyond the pain we feel right now and look to the future! It made me realize my struggles with school, as in my classes, getting good grades, money, and just where to go, it's all going to be worth it. It got me to also stop complaining about its difficulty! No I wont be necessarily happy with the hard things like huge exams, but complaining belittles the great work I will be able to do because of them! I hope that makes sense haha! Just that all the stress in my life because of school will ultimately give me what I want! To have a career and one that I absolutely love! I will be so grateful for schooling when I get there, for all I have learned so I can best serve in my job! So for right now I am gonna put on a brave face, take what comes to me and know that it is worth it! And this couldn't have come at a better time!!!

You'll hear from me again in a couple of days haha :)
Love always,
Future NICU Nurse

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

I am grateful for:-College
-The Holy Ghost
-Faith

     I am so grateful for the Holy Ghost! On Monday I was looking back at my week and realized how unproductive and crummy it was. I kept thinking why? What made that week so awful, as to not let that happen again this next week! After pondering it a while I realized I never went to the gym... That was the only thing out of the normal schedule that didn't happen! So following that prompting I made sure I would go after my last class. When I came home after the gym, I was feeling great! That's how anyone would feel! But then I miraculously made thee most perfect list for that night so I could get things done! Also made a list for what I would then need to do tomorrow! And by 8:30 all of my homework was done, all that I needed to do was done, and I was looking at a great relaxing evening! Now this is a strange thing to be grateful for! However, I feel like if I wouldn't have been prompted to go to the gym (or even just pondering on my crummy week) and pump some iron haha, then I wouldn't have been so productive and enjoyed a great evening with my roommates! I also realized that I need to take care of my body more and it will take care of me haha!
     Also on Monday I had a test for Chemistry! I was so worried about it all weekend. Not knowing what to study, what I would need to have memorized or anything like that! I made some flashcards to help me a bit and prayed that I would be prepared for the exam and be able to represent all that I've learned through it! I get to class and am about to take the test, going through my flashcards, seriously panicing if this is going to ruin my grade! I get the test and holy crap!!! Practically everything I studied was like word for word the first half of the test! Took a second to say a quick prayer being ohhh so thankful that I at least wouldn't fail this test! After finishing I go back to the questions I * (stared)! <I star all the questions I am not positive about so I can have a second look when I am done.> And to my surprise only 3 are stared!! And today I got my score back... 91%!!! My my how the Lord is on my side!! He definitely wants me to be a nurse haha! I realized I HAVE to do my best, that is a must! And that if I do He WILL do the rest! I need more faith :)!
   
     Anyway that was just these first two days! I can tell this week is going to be a lot better!! If you want a better week pray for the Holy Ghost and Faith to look at every challenge or opportunity with hope!!
   
Love always,
Fitness Fighting Failure
^hahaha

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

L.O.V.E.

HAPPY VALENTINES DAY!!! :)I hope all of you have somebody to love today and know that you ALWAYS have someone to love you! I want to share with you how I have felt love in my life and hopefully it can give you comfort on this, singles awareness day haha!!

Well just one day I realized I hadn't talked to my family in a while and that I really missed them! And I tried calling a few people, but nobody really had time to talk so I stopped. I got a little sad and prayed for some extra comfort because I was missing everybody so much!
I went to bed that night and woke up the next morning to 2 voxers from my cousin!! (Voxers are like voicemails FYI haha!) I guess my cousin Sariah had gotten bored and so "voxered" me and was saying that I needed to come visit and see all of them! And she put my baby cousin on and she said that she loves me! It seriously was the littlest thing ever that made me so beyond happy!!

I may not have a "significant other" hahahaha but I am still so very very loved!! I am grateful that I know love is real and that it comes in all different shapes and sizes! That their are many types of love, but all stem from Christ's example of love!! I love myself, I love my family, I love my life, I love my Savior, I love my Heavenly Father, AND I love you!!! Seriously, you! Yes you!! :)
Have a great Valentines day, a great month and a great year! Remember that I love you, He loves you, and that you will one day, if not already, find someone who loves you beyond explanation!!

Love always,
Cupid ;)

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

I KNOW!

So this week was filled with so many blessings, as every week always is! But one very special one happened on Sunday!...
     Sunday: Fast Sunday! I was fasting for help to know if moving to California was the right thing to do this summer! When I was first thinking about the move I felt like it was so right! Everything was falling together nicely so I assumed it was because it was meant to be! But then 4 nights in a row I was having nightmares and they all revolved around me living in California! One was me fighting with the family there, one was that I ran away and was homeless haha! So obviously I got worried! And that is when I realized I never really asked my Heavenly Father if it was the right thing! So on Sunday I fasted to know!
     Fast and Testimony Meeting: Sitting by my roommates listening to the great testimonies. Then a girl got up and was talking about how she use to live far away from the temple! How she is shocked to be able to walk to a temple here in Utah and then challenged us to live somewhere where you are far from a temple! So that you can really appreciate it more! --- Was that it?! I said to myself haha was that the answer to my prayer? To live somewhere where the temple isn't in close proximity? I think so, but it gets even better!
     Then another girl gets up and talks about how she doesn't have a 5 year plan. She was saying that she was so worried because everyone else kind of has a 5 year plan for their life and she didn't. So she prayed about it one night and realized that any plan that goes along with the Plan of Salvation and is focused on Christ is the right plan! --- And right when she's saying this I was pondering my neice Madison and how much fun it really would be living with her! And that was all I needed :)!
      I now KNOW this move is whats right for me! I think that maybe those scary dreams were to help me rely on the Lord more and maybe just prepare me incase something does go wrong, like a fight or something, that I can be a peacemaker and not let my nightmares come true! I know fasting works and that Heavenly Father is in control, that He knows what He's doing, and that He will us guide if we are seeking His guidance!

I am very grateful for this experience and my testimony has grown so strong and firm! Especially when it comes to prayer and fasting! If any of you have doubts on those subjects, feel free to talk to me! Haha because I know WITHOUT A SINGLE DOUBT that prayer and fasting are real and they work :)!!

Love Always,
Fasting Freshman

Monday, January 30, 2012

Daughter Of A Queen!

The 3 things I am grateful for this week:-My momma for everything she does for me!
-My roommates for all the laughter and easygoing atmosphere!
-The Apostles, specifically Holland for his testimony!

So I am going off script today a bit! It is my mothers 48th birthday and want to dedicate this entry to her!

     To really show our relationship I'll back up a bit!
     So I grew up in a non-lds home, but I still went to church and achievement days/young womens every week with my cousins. My mom and dad were both inactive after their divorce and I was born only 6 weeks after, so I never had that influence. Long story short it was difficult at times. My mom was never really against the church, but at times she certainly wasn't for it! However, times, luckily have changed!!!!
     It first started with conference. I was watching the Saturday sesson in the livingroom, while my mom was cleaning the kitchen. Randomly she just came and sat down by me during one of the talks. We didn't say anything, just sat and listened. And then when the talk was over she carried on. Nothing drastic, but it felt so good! Who would've guess that that would be the start of my mom coming back to the church.
     Then one Sunday, that I am so beyond thankful for, I went to church like normal. But came home after sacrament, balling. I remember feeling left out somehow, like I didn't have friends at church and felt really alone so I walked home in tears. I came rushing inside and my mom was in her room and just hugs me! She is beyond worried, but just lets me sob for a while. When I catch my breath I explain what I was feeling and her heart just broke. She promised me, from that day on, she would then just attend sacrament meeting with me so that I didn't feel so alone!! Great mom right?! Doing something she hated for my sake!
     The first month she would bring some other things to keep her attention on and rush out so nobody would talk her into staying hahaha. But slowly she couldn't help but listen to the speakers! I soon found her taking notes and looking up scriptures that were shared, in my book of mormon. One day she was flipping around in Alma and came across my mission scripture Alma 26:27 and written next to it, in big, bolded letters was written, MY MISSION SCRIPTURE. She asked me if I was going to go on a mission, and I said yes! She was surprised, but kept on her way. To my surprise she was growing in testimony all this time. She started praying again and going to sunday school. She still wouldn't go to relief society however hahaha, but beggers cant be choosers.
     Fastforward to now, mom has become a full fledged member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints! She lives in Arizona, holds a worthy temple recommend and often serves in the Mesa, Arizona Temple!! She is amazing to me and just proves that the Atonement works and Repentance is real! She shows to everyone that no matter how lost you get, you can always find your way back!

     I cannot express how grateful I am for the life I have lived! Everything, every hard time, every disappointment or pain was all worth it! Now my mom and I have true joy and peace that comes with knowing about where we came from, why we are here, and where we are going! We get to live each day to the fullest knowing the great plan that we are apart of! We do have more people to bring to the gospel and all it's happiness! But as for right now, I couldn't be more grateful for my mom! For the strength she had to admit her mistakes, use Christ's Atonement, and become the person she knew she was created to be! I follow her example and grow by her testimony! I wouldn't be who I am without her and cant even imagine this life without her. I use to wonder why I was sent to the family I was. And now would hate to be anywhere else! Heavenly Father sure knows what He is doing up there! And I have so much trust in Him and faith that everything will be okay!!!
     This church is true!

Love always,
Daughter of a Queen!