Saturday, November 26, 2011

Thanksgiving Dinner

I read this to my family at Thanksgiving dinner.  I love this and wanted to share.  It certainly made me think.

"Thank God for dirty dishes:
they have a tale to tell.
While other folk go hungry,
we're eating pretty well.
With home and health and happiness,
we shouldn't want to fuss;
For by this stack of evidence,
God's very good to us.



14 And again, the angel said: Behold, the Lord hath aheard the prayers of his people, and also the bprayers of his servant, Alma, who is thy father; for he has cprayed with much faith concerning thee that thou mightest be brought to the dknowledge of the truth; therefore, for this purpose have I come to econvince thee of the power and authority of God, that the fprayers of his servants might be answered according to their faith." Mosiah 27:14 Book of Mormon.

This struck me as powerful because it was a angelic witness of the fact that the Lord hears our prayers (whatever religion you belong to) and that he wants us to know the truth.  If you believe in a greater power (our Heavenly Father), you are sincere in your prayer and attitude, you can receive an answer to your prayers. 
Our prayers are not always answered the way that we want, or the way that we expect.  They may not answered immediately, but that is when we have to exercise our faith.  It teaches us to trust the Lord.  We may believe in Christ, but do we believe the promises (covenants) that he made to us.  He promised that if we were faithful and willing to live a good life, he would be there for us in the ways that we need him to be.  That does not mean that he will remove trials and tragedy from our lives, but he would help us to survive them.  He would help us to come out stronger and with increased faith. 
I have learned that our definition of okay is often different from the Lord's definition of okay.  Our task is to trust that everything he does, and allows us to go through is for our good.  I know this because I have faced so many horrible moments in my life, and I can honestly say that I have grown.  I struggled, and suffered, but I have grown in my faith and it is stronger than it ever has been.  It was not easy to get to this point, but I have learned to trust our Heavenly Father.  I am a parent and the same way that I want my children to learn, grow, and be happy, so does he.  We are his children, and although we would do anything to prevent our children from suffering or struggling, they have to face somethings with only the knowledge, skills, and talent that we try to instill in them.  The Lord has the same dilemma.  He does not want us to suffer, but some lessons have to be learned for ourselves.  He does promise though that he will support us, and provide those things we need to get through it and will offer us peace and strength through our struggles.
Will he hand it to us?  NO, we have to search for his help, his answers, his strength, and we have to strive to be worthy of his support.  If we are making choices that are not right, or are not in keeping with the way he has directed us to live our lives, he cannot help us the way he would want to.  
I have been there.  As a teen I was caught up in living a life that lead me away from Him.  I was lost and confused, and making choices that got me into trouble.  I felt alone and depressed, even suicidal.  I felt worthless, incompetent, stupid, useless, and unnecessary.  What I realized though, is that despite all of my problems, troubles, and choices, God was still watching over me.  He never stopped loving me, and never stopped wanting me to succeed.  When I was ready and he came to help me, by providing with a (eventual) husband who loved me for who I was.  He loved me despite my issues and flaws.  He loved me despite my anger, distrust, and limitations.  We grew together, and today I am happier than I ever thought possible.  I have more faith than I ever hoped that I could.  I also have a reason to be proud of myself, and for no other reason than I finally realize that I am a good person, and a child of a Heavenly Father who loves me.  
  I still struggle, and I still get down and depressed.  I still feel lonely sometimes, and I want to  discover my potential, develop my talents, contribute to my family, community, and church.  I want to be better, in so many areas of my life, but I know that I cannot do anything without my Heavenly Fathers approval, support, and inspiration.  
He does hear our prayers, He does want to help us, He wants us to be happy, but He will not hand it to us.  We have to earn it, and we have to do our part.  Too many of us expect relief, but that is not how it works.  We have to ask for help, pray for inspiration on how to solve our problems, change those things that are holding us down and back, and look to those around us for their support, friendship and love.  He often answers prayers through those who care about us.  We have to allow them to bless our lives, and help us.  
We have to "believe" Christ.  

Wednesday, November 23, 2011



Have you counted your blessings today?
It is a shame that it takes a holiday to remind us to do that, but none the less, I am blessed.  I am learning to do that on more of a daily basis, but I will be honest, it is not always easy.
We learned about gratitude in church this past Sunday and I am so grateful that we did. However, I am thrilled to say that it made me think.
So much can go wrong in our lives and it is so easy to complain, but how does that effect you?
Did you know that the saying, "depression hurts" is true?  It is.  I attended a pain clinic, for chronic pain, for 5 weeks, and I learned that that is 100% true.
My husband and I both suffer from depression and P.T.S.D.  I also have P.M.D.D.  (PMS on steroids is how I describe it).  We also suffer from Fri bro Mialgia, and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.  We suffer from joint and muscle pain and fatigue and had to try a number of medications to deal with it.  The Pain clinic was a last resort.  However, we found that depression DOES hurt.  Your body does the only thing it can, it forces your stress out.  It wants to warn you and make you aware that something is wrong.  I found that the best solution is to find a way to deal with that stress in a more positive way helps.  I had to make a big move, and change my pattern of living.  I had to search for those things that make me really happy, not the things that made me temporarily happy.  We all have different definitions for what that means or what those things are, but you know what I mean.
Writing, drawing, visiting with friends and family, taking a walk, going to the park and doing some photography, or doing a puzzle.  Reading a good book, making a craft, sewing, having some quiet time, or painting a picture... whatever it is that you enjoy it still needs to be something that has real purpose, not just fleeting gratification.  I'm sorry chocolate, but you are not a long term happiness, but you do help in emergency cases.
I was taught to have an attitude of gratitude, but it is sometimes easier said than done.  When you are in the midst of a trial, or you are struggling, either emotionally, physically, spiritually, it is hard to see the point of what you are going through.
If you think negatively, and begin to feel sorry for yourself, how do you start to think?  Does it get harder to find hope or hold on to faith?  Absolutely!
If you try to remember those things that are good about your life, who is good in your life, and what still makes you happy, or at least smile, how much easier is it to endure and more than that... recover?
Being someone who suffers from different types of depression and having grown up with a parent who suffers from depression, I can say that when you begin to feel helpless, hopeless, and struggle just to have the desire to get out of bed, than it is so much harder to find joy again and gratitude than those times when I have a contented attitude.  I find that having gratitude everyday for those people and moments in my life that make me smile, or make me happy, I find that it is so much easier to endure those difficulties in my life, or at least I can be more supportive to those around me who are struggling.
What is my point?  You will be miserable if that is what you surrender too.  You might struggle, but it is okay to allow yourself to have a day of sweats, junk food, and laziness.  However, if you allow that lazy day to stretch into another, and then another, and another, and the pain begins, and the sorrow deepens, then life begins to lose its joy.  We begin to lose site of our blessings, those little moments that life worth living, or sometimes bearable.  We have to make a choice.
There will always be struggles.  There will always be bad days.  There will always be something or someone who makes you crazy, but all of this can be easier if you remember on a daily basis that there are still moments of love, laughter, silliness, and peace to be had.  Even if we have to look for them.
I hope that the holidays will be a wonderful time of rejuvenation and that it is filled with moments of silliness and happiness.
Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!  I hope it is wonderful for everyone!

Saturday, November 19, 2011


I watched my daughter explore a new side of herself today.  She started to really try her hand at photography.  She started it a few months ago, but today she took pictures of one of that families we met through our church.  We went to Freestone Park and I sat drawing and writing while they went off to take some family pictures.  It was wonderful, revitalizing really. I got rid of my writers block and I drew a pretty good picture, at least the kids liked it.  I am so happy.
I am also very proud of my daughter.  She is so gifted, but more than that she has such a kind, loving and compassionate spirit, which comes across in her dealings with others.  Do you know how some kids, when they have to pose for pictures become cranky and upset when having to stay in one place for to long?  They get distracted, irritable, and bored, but these kids did not.  They were smiling, happy, and excited about what they had been doing.  One of their boys even remarked, "I'm not nervous any more."
I was so proud of her.  I listen to her explain the intricacies of how to use the camera, different techniques, effects that she can do when she edits the pictures, etc.  I am amazed.  I truly believe that God blessed her with this ability.  I come from a long line of artists.  However, each one of us is good at something, every one of us has a different medium that we can work with, but we all are creative in some way.  I believe that each one of us has a gift, sometimes buried within us.  It is not until we explore those things that make us happy or curious that we find them.  But I believe that everyone has something, some talent, some gift.  We just have to take the time to try something knew.  It is a very primary, and simple thing to say.  Something you might even say to a child, but I believe that it is the simple things in life that can bring you the most joy.
Ask yourself, what is it that is holding you back, because it is often our own fears, insecurities, busy lives that keep distracted, and keep us from finding ourselves.
Who are you?  What are you capable of?  What makes you truly happy?
I hope you will make the time to find it.

Monday, November 14, 2011

A Film about the life of our living prophet, Thomas S. Monson

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Moroni 7:19

19 Wherefore, I beseech of you, brethren, that ye should searchdiligently in the light of Christ that ye may know good from evil; and if ye will lay hold upon every good thing, and condemn it not, ye certainly will be a child of Christ.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Mormon Channel Video

Mormon Channel Video

The Heart of a Woman

A woman's heart is an ocean.
In the depths of that ocean, deep in the sand, is where we bury our treasure; that precious thing that makes us who we are.
We bury it there to protect it.
We bury it safely, deep in the sand to keep it safe, but sometimes our experiences make us lose sight of our treasure.
We wander away from that spot.
We get lost, and forgot about that treasure, until we lose sight of it all together.
We forget what it is that made us special, and unique.
We begin to face the tempests.
We get caught up in the waves.
The current drags us further and further away from who we really are.
How do you find your treasure again?
You have to search.
You have to dive deep within yourself and fight against the currents, the waves and the tempests, and then dig with all you've got.
It will never be easy, but in the end, it will be worth it.
Imagine, finally reaching your destination, getting your bearings, your treasure calling out to you like a beacon, guiding you back.
You reach your destination.
You uncover that treasure and there you are.
We all have a treasure.
That special something that makes us different form the rest.
That makes us worth knowing, and loving.
But sometimes, during the throws of a storm or when we get caught up in the current, we get lost.
Even when that happens, the treasure always remains buried safe, secure, and unmovable.
It is us that begin to wander to far, but it is never to late to make your way back.
Rediscover your treasure.