Thursday, April 28, 2011

Becoming Childlike

As 19 and 20 year old missionaries, we have to do the best we can to be dignified, mature representatives of Jesus Christ. We're teaching the most important thing in the world right? We teach a very serious message about how Jesus Christ's church has been restored to the earth. We must do everything we can to show that we should be taken seriously. Then something like this happens:

Yes that's my companion Elder Donohue in the Batman mask holding the sword. Is he going out to fight crime? I'm not too sure. But what I do know, is that sometimes its hard to suppress our childlike sides. Even at 19 years old, swords and Batman are pretty cool. But is that all bad? Jesus Christ taught in Matthew 18: 3-4

"3 And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
4 Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven."

Jesus Christ said it Himself! We must become as children to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Its that important! When we are truly childlike, we will do anything we can to listen to the commandments of our Heavenly Father, just as a child listens to their parents.  Christ taught again, this time to the people in America, in 3 Nephi 11:
"37 And again I say unto you, ye must repent, and become as a little child, and be baptized in my name, or ye can in nowise receive these things.

38 And again I say unto you, ye must repent, and be baptized in my name, and become as a little child, or ye can in nowise inherit the kingdom of God."

There it is again! When we humble ourselves, even as a child is humble, we become willing to take the simple steps of following Jesus Christ's example. We can all humble ourselves before God and be willing to listen to what He has for us, because He obviously knows a lot more than us. As we do as Jesus Christ says, and humble ourselves as a child, we can find more happiness in our lives and receive many more blessings that our Heavenly Father has in store for us. So I invite everyone to embrace those childlike feelings we all have, and turn to Heavenly Father for help.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Bike Ride!

So this P-day we decided to do something crazy and go on a bike ride instead of playing basketball. First off this is crazy because we all love basketball! How could we skip it?? And second off, I'm definitely not a bike rider! But when we heard about these awesome bike trails out by Old Hickory Lake, we had to hit them up.

But first off, we had to get some grub from everybody's favorite place, Wendy's! I enjoyed a nice chicken sandwich and a delicious Frosty, which may have been my first mistake!

So we get to the beginning of the trails, and we're just feeling awesome and excited, even with our dorky helmets on.

We're feeling awesome, we just had what I thought was a good meal, and we were going to something wholesome, healthy, and good for us.
By the time we get done with the trail, I'm dying! I'm totally out of shape, and as mentioned before, I'm not a bike rider. Plus eating Wendy's before over-exerting myself was just no good. So we barely get back, and I'm seeing spots and ready to throw up. Leaving me in a condition like this...

So why did I feel like this? Was it because it was good and healthy? Doubtful. Was it because I'm so fat? Quite possibly. But I'm pretty sure it was all the Wendy's!

We can relate this lovely story to our lives. Are we filling ourselves with things like bad media, profanity filled music, and anti-Word of Wisdom things? Although they might not seem too bad at first, just like my frosty, but they always end up hurting you. Even if we go to church and read our scriptures and do whats right and healthy, like a wholesome bike ride, we will always end up hurting ourselves.

When we fill our lives with only good things, like celery and yogurt, everything comes out better! There's no better substitute for junk than the Book of Mormon! The Book of Mormon can teach us so many things and tell us what we can do to avoid situations that end up making us feel like garbage.

So I invite everyone to cut the "junk"(old blog post! check it out!) out of your lives so that when we do these truly wholesome, enlightening things like reading the scriptures and going to church, they can really make a difference for the better! We can grow closer to our Heavenly Father and better notice His hand in our lives. I know that as we strive to constantly improve ourselves, we receive more blessings.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Elder Dallin H Oaks

I've had a huge lack of ideas lately, so what better to do then to rely on somebody who can say everything so much better than I can?

I love this talk about desire. It really goes to show how important our desires are in our lives. Its when we start desiring something that we begin to make changes.

Alma 32: 27 says:

"But behold, if ye will awake and arouse your faculties, even to an experiment upon my words, and exercise a particle of faith, yea, even if ye can no more than desire to believe, let this desire work in you, even until ye believe in a manner that ye can give place for a portion of my words."

Everything begins with our desires! Elder Oaks speaks wonderfully on the topic, better than I ever could.

Plus he's got a cool name.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Well I don't have anything super huge to blog about today! Is that sad or what? I guess I can just talk about what I read recently! I've been reading in the Doctrine and Covenants lately, which I love! There is a lot of cool stuff in here. One scripture I read recently is in Section 8 Verse 2:

"2 Yea, behold, I will tell you in your mind and in your heart, by the Holy Ghost, which shall come upon you and which shall dwell in your heart."

This is exactly how the Holy Ghost talks to us! When the Holy Ghost talks to us, it never is anything huge! Its just a feeling you feel in your heart! A feeling you get when something you read or hear is true! I love Elder Bednar's talk in this latest General Conference The Spirit of Revelation.

He likens revelation from the spirit to light! He compares the difference between flipping on a lightswitch and having immediate light; to the rising sun, which slowly brightens the sky until it is finally day. The spirit works in the very same way! Sometimes it comes around with a 2x4 and smacks you in the head. Thats when you immediately know something that God wants you to know. Sometimes our answers are more gradual, and it takes time to realize and figure out what God wants you to know.

So while you're praying and pondering whatever is going on in your life, keep in mind the MANY different ways that Heavenly Father answers prayers. Sometimes things just fall into our laps, and other times we have to work for it. Just stay dilligent and working hard, and Heavenly Father will always answer your prayers.

Saturday, April 9, 2011


Sometimes we accumulate junk that we don't need in our lives. We plan for sometime when we might "need"it, but it almost never gets touched or used. We got to experience this first hand in the parking lot of our apartment building. One day, we came outside and there was a lone shopping cart, just hanging out in the parking lot. Nobody knew where it came from, or what purpose it was for. A couple days later, along came another shopping cart!

There's a red one by the tree if you can't see it.
Now we're just wondering whats going on. What is the deal with these shopping carts? Surprisingly enough, a couple days later, there was a third shopping cart! Its like they were budding from each other or something! We never truly understood the reason for the shopping carts, or where exactly they came from. But soon enough our parking lot was full of this "junk" that we didn't want.

Our minds can fill up with junk in the very same way! While it might not be bad things, shopping carts aren't bad, but they get in the way of the better things. We may occupy our minds with the things of work, school, or anything else that is going on, and forget to fill it up with the things of Christ.

But how can we fill our minds with the better things? Think of a hymn! Something as simple as that can push bad thoughts out of our mind, and bring in good thoughts. Reading the Book of Mormon is also an amazing idea! Helaman 3:29-30 says:

"29 Yea, we see that whosoever will may lay hold upon the word of God, which is quick and powerful, which shall divide asunder all the cunning and the snares and the wiles of the devil, and lead the man of Christ in a strait and narrow course across that everlasting gulf of misery which is prepared to engulf the wicked—
30 And land their souls, yea, their immortal souls, at the right hand of God in the kingdom of heaven, to sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and with Jacob, and with all our holy fathers, to go no more out."

Sounds pretty powerful! If we fill our minds with the "word of God" we really can be brought the the right hand of God. I know that as we keep our thoughts completely on Him, everything else around us falls into place. I know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God, and it truly tells us everything we need to do in our lives.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Not Enough

Sometimes things just aren't enough. Eight hours of sleep just isn't enough when you need 12, vanilla ice cream isn't enough when you wanted rocky road, and meat loaf just isn't enough when you wanted steak. Have you ever had this problem? When nothing is ever enough? We experienced this in the MTC.

When we got to the mtc, they gave us a little packet about staying healthy. (Can you believe that? Missionaries are totally the most healthy people ever.) Included in this packet was a silly excercise band. Essentially a big rubber band.

Yeah, pretty exciting eh? How are you supposed to exercise with that?? Maybe I was doing it wrong, but it just was not enough. So then we had a different, more effective idea.

Yes, thats right. We did squats with our companions on our shoulders. Thats my lucky companion Elder Goodwin right there. Then we finally reached that "enough" level that we were looking for.

Joseph Smith had the same concern. Which church was it that had "enough"? He wanted the best he can find with the most truth, the right teachings, and the true power of God. Joseph Smith finally prayed to God to find out which church it was that had "enough".

The best way to describe his experience is in his own words. He said:

"I saw a pillar of light exactly over my head, above the brightness of the sun, which descended gradually until it fell upon me.When the light rested upon me I saw two Personages, whose brightness and glory defy all description, standing above me in the air. One of them spake unto me, calling me by name and said, pointing to the other—This is My Beloved Son. Hear Him!"

Joseph Smith saw God the Father and Jesus Christ, and was told that none of the churches had "enough" to be called Christ's church. Joseph Smith was called as a prophet to restore the very church that Christ had set up here on this Earth. This church would have "enough" to let us return to our Heavenly Father again. With Christ's restored church we have a full knowledge and power to help us return to Him. We truly have "enough".

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Green Jello

What's with Mormons and their green jello? I'm pretty sure its just a Utah thing, I dunno. But coming from Utah green jello is a pretty awesomely big deal. Even with crazy things like fruit, carrots, or anything else healthy found in the fridge. For St. Patrick's day I was lucky enough to have my best friend back home send me some delicious lime jello.

See that excitement in my face? That's how amazing green jello is. And yes that large pink bowl was the best thing I could make it in. It was quite delicious.

So once again, why are we so obsessed with this? So what, its jello! We love it because it is delicious and it makes us happy. Just like the gospel! Being a member of the restored church of Jesus Christ makes us so truly happy that we can't hide our obsession with it, just like the jello! You don't make a batch of jello just for yourself do you?? No! You make it for everyone! Everything about the gospel is meant to be shared, just like jello. We know that this is true and how much it blesses our lives, and we want everybody around us to experience that. This is why I chose to spend two years of my life teaching of this perfect gospel. It'd be selfish not to share it with every single person that I can!

The gospel of Jesus Christ is truly a happy thing. The knowledge that it brings really gives us the strong foundation we all need in our lives. Unlike jello, which is all wiggly and unsupportive, Jesus Christ is the strongest, surest foundation that we can build ourselves upon. Helaman 5:12 says:

"12 And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall."

Jesus Christ can help us through anything that is going on through our lives. No matter what is changing, I know that our perfect older brother Jesus Christ is always there for us. I know that during our afflictions, there are even better things we can turn to than green jello, despite its jiggly deliciousness. The restored gospel of Jesus Christ can give us true satisfaction and peace that we are all looking for in this life.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Ugly Couches

Everybody has sat in them before; that ugly, old flower couch. Many people have grandparents with couches like these. The ones that instantly grab your attention and give you the great need to plant yourself right in the middle of it. They're almost always comfy, and are always weird combinations of colors and flowers. Who even designed these couches anyways???

Luckily enough, we have one of these couches in our apartment. Its orange, and also incredibly comfortable.

Don't you just want to sit on that? It just beckons for a nap! Luckily enough for us, we have a matching chair as well!

Why am I blogging about this couch?

Just as ugly couches call for us to sit in them, the prophet and apostles call for us to listen to them! See the connection?? Alright fine its a stretch, but I just love this couch.

With conference coming up, what better opportunity do we have to come and listen to them? Especially since we can watch them from our couches! As we sit and listen to their talks, we can find the peace and comfort we are looking for in our lives. The prophet and apostles show us the way to find the perfect joy that comes from our Heavenly Father.

Our old, ugly flower couches can give us the physical comfort and rest we need, and the prophets give us the spiritual rest that we need. See the connection? Just as we want to sit on every old, comfortable couch; we want to listen to every word that is said by the apostles and prophets. They might be old as well, but they know way better than anyone else of what we need to do to feel more of God's love and return to Him.

I know that as we listen to conference this Saturday and Sunday, we will be led to the spiritual comfort we all are looking for. I know that as we prayerfully watch conference, we will be blessed with the information that we need. Conference is something that everybody can get something out of. Just as we all enjoy sitting in comfy couches. Prophet Thomas S. Monson will never lead us astray. As we follow him we will find true spiritual comfort, better than any comfort any old couch can provide.