Sunday, September 30, 2012

better than a hallelujah

This is at the same time the saddest and the most beautiful music video I have ever seen.

I just love this song though...

We pour out our miseries... God just hears a melody.
Beautiful, the mess we are...
The honest cries of breaking hearts..

Are better than a hallelujah.

It makes me think about how God loves when we turn to Him for help.

He knows we aren't perfect and only wants to help us and lift us up.

He asks for a broken heart and a contrite spirit.

(Contrite means repentant or remorseful basically... you probably already knew that, but just in case...)

I wonder what a beautiful thing it is to Him to hear us ask for help...

Because He offers relief... if you just ask.

Happy Sunday.

Friday, September 28, 2012


Okay so we have been talking about the Sermon on the Mount in seminary this week...

And we've talked about some pretty cool stuff.

Harold B. Lee said that the beatitudes are the constitution for a perfect life.

So be meek. Thirst after righteousness. Be merciful, pure in heart, and a peacemaker.

Actually, watch that video again and write down all of the beatitudes and the blessings you will receive if you live this... constitution. 

I will start you off. If you are poor in spirit... the Kingdom of Heaven is yours.

And that's just the beginning.

Something interesting that my seminary teacher talked about yesterday was fulfillment.

He talked about how when Christ was ministering to the people... he made the Sadducees and the Pharisees nervous and upset. The people followed the Law of Moses. They worried that they would lose their authority and power to this Savior.

Well... I guess that theirs is another story, but understand that Christ didn't come to destroy the law, but to fulfill it.  

Matthew 5:17- Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill.

Okay so I know that this is really hard to see. It is a worksheet that explains how the Law of Moses was fulfilled, not destroyed. 
Instead of just not killing, you also aren't supposed to get angry or (get this) mean. (crazy, right?)
Instead of saying don't commit adultery, he adds more. Keep your thoughts clean, too.
Don't just love your neighbor, love your enemy.
(etc, etc...)

See what I mean?

The same applies to the Gospel as a whole. Often times people will explain to you that they don't need religion. They are happy the way they are. 

I've had this happen to me...

And they are right. People can still be happy without being Mormons... that is important to remember.

The Gospel fulfills.

Living the teachings of and believing in your Savior simply makes things more... what's the word... hmmm... peaceful. 

It removes doubt.

Take people of other Christian faiths, for example. From their church they are building a solid foundation and learning to have faith in Christ. Sharing the Gospel with a friend helps build upon the foundation that they already have.

Don't look to change the person... look to maybe... complete them?

(I hope this all makes sense... I'm kinda thinking aloud here... Well... at least thinking through my fingers, haha.)

Everyone should understand that God loves them. No matter who they are. No matter what they believe. No matter the choices that they make.

Never think that God isn't proud of you. Not for one second.

Don't think that He won't be happy to receive you.

The heavens will cheer when you return.

Your mistakes do not define you. The past is past, so leave it there.

And start with just little changes.

Something else we talked about in seminary was Christ calling his very first apostles.

They were mending their fishing nets when the Savior asked them to follow Him.

And they immediately left.

They left behind their livelihood... their careers... their families...

Because they were committed. They were willing to give up all they had for the Savior.

They knew they would be blessed for doing so.

So what are you being asked to give up? What is the Savior asking you to leave behind?

Probably smaller things than Peter, James, John, and Andrew left behind.

Remember that God is on your side. He wants what is best for you.

He wants you to turn to Him.

I think that you are always, always worthy enough to pray.

So learn what His will is for you.

And start learning the constitution for a perfect life.

And the Kingdom of Heaven will be yours.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

high school happenings...

High school happenings this week...

Powderpuff game on Wednesday...

 Us attempting a fake photobomb shot... :) I should have made a creepy face.

Storm the field!

Trying to show Sydney the back of her ponytail after gym...

Homecoming game...

Real photobomb.

Why didn't Kennedie get the shirt memo?

Sewing at my grandma's house... Check out this amazing old sewing machine she has!

I would trade my arm for a lifetime supply of these.

Anyways... That's about all I took pictures of. 

I'm on a quest to document my entire high school experience by taking lots of pictures.

Haha. I just realized that it's after midnight...

I better start mentally preparing myself to go to sleep... :)

Happy Sunday!

Monday, September 17, 2012

who are you?

In Nov. 1975 Elder Vaughn J. Featherstone tells this story:
"Many years ago I heard the story of the son of King Louis XVI of France. King Louis had been taken from his throne and imprisoned. His young son, the prince, was taken by those who dethroned the king. They thought that inasmuch as the king’s son was heir to the throne, if they could destroy him morally, he would never realize the great and grand destiny that life had bestowed upon him.
They took him to a community far away, and there they exposed the lad to every filthy and vile thing that life could offer. They exposed him to foods the richness of which would quickly make him a slave to appetite. They used vile language around him constantly. They exposed him to lewd and lusting women. They exposed him to dishonor and distrust. He was surrounded 24 hours a day by everything that could drag the soul of a man as low as one could slip. For over six months he had this treatment—but not once did the young lad buckle under pressure. Finally, after intensive temptation, they questioned him. Why had he not submitted himself to these things—why had he not partaken? These things would provide pleasure, satisfy his lusts, and were desirable; they were all his. The boy said, “I cannot do what you ask for I was born to be a king.”
We are all born to be kings in the kingdom of God. Our Father is a king, and just as the king’s son was exposed to every vile and perverted thing in this life, so you will be exposed to much of the filth and degradation of our generation. But you Aaronic Priesthood bearers and Young Women are also born to be kings and queens, priests and priestesses."
(Click here to read more...)

"Simba, you have forgotten me."

"No, how could I?"

"You have forgotten who you are, and so forgotten me."

"Look inside yourself, Simba. You are more than what you have become. You must take your place in the circle of life."

"How can I go back? I'm not who I used to be."

"Remember who you are. You are my son, and the one true king. Remember who you are."


Do you remember who you are? I guess... I guess I forget sometimes. 

You are the daughter/son of a King. A great, mighty, merciful, and glorious King.

A King who is waiting for you to return to Him, to claim the blessings that are rightfully yours.

You are Cinderella, you are Belle. You are Snow White, Fiona, Rapunzel, and Mia Thermopolis.

You are Prince Eric, Prince Charming, and... and Prince Zuko.

And like the fairy-tale characters above, you have come a long way to be where you are now. 

And you have a long way to go.

But nothing could be more important than the choices you make now.

Your eternity is riding on them. 

I know I have used this analogy before, but imagine a never-ending string of Yogurt Cheerios. (Because they are yummier than normal Cheerios...)

That never-ending strand represents your eternity. And a single Cheerio on that strand represents your earth life. 

The choices you make now, during this minuscule period of time, they affect your eternity. 

The time you spend here is very important. 

(So all you YOLOers should stop YOLOing...!)

D&C 25:10 - And verily I say unto thee that thou shalt lay aside the things of this world, and seek for the things of a better.

That's my very favorite scripture, you know. 

A beautiful and perfect realm awaits you. 

Remember who you are.

Thursday, September 13, 2012


My aunt does this thing on her blog that I'm kinda going to steal for today.

Cuz it's fun.

Dear high school... I love you. I really do. You are different and you make me feel grown up. Ha. But I hate the mounds of homework I have been having. My workload has literally tripled so far all because of you. But... you're forgiven. Go Vikes!

Dear best friends... you're the real reason I love high school. I've never had a more honest, genuine, considerate, and altogether fun group of friends as you guys are. I look for you guys in the halls from the moment I enter the building until the moment I leave. You make me so happy.

Oh and a special shout out to Kennedie... goooooo Mitt Romney! Hehe. Lunch wouldn't be the same without all of our arguments on controversial topics. You should be a lawyer. And evolution's not real!

Dear December 21st... why can't you come sooner? I am ready for you. And my paper learner's permit is getting all wrinkly and covered in crayon. I need something more... oh... plastic.

Dear Covert Affairs writers... oh my heavens you are too good. Never saw it coming. I've already watched this week's episode twice.

Dear sleep... ugh. Why are you so hard to come by? My whole body aches at the end of every day because I do not get enough of you... so why do I put Drop Dead Diva and... blogging before you every night?

Dear Roland digital piano... I love you so much. And you have been good to me and taught me to love music and to work hard. I have come so far with you... but I kinda want to break up. I want a real piano. One with strings and hammers and no buttons. One that fills the house when you play it and one that doubles as a beautiful furniture piece. It's not you, it's me. (Actually no, it is you. Why are you suckers so incredibly expensive??!!)

Dear Mazda (stick shift)... my dad was right. You are more fun to drive. Once I got past the initial anger that you even existed... you weren't as hard as I thought you would be.

Dear Poison Study... I wish I could forget every single detail of your story and then I could read you again. I will be forever indebted to Sydney for introducing you to me.

Dear cool weather... COME!! PLEASE!!

Dear blog... how come I never feel like you look cute? I change your design all the time and am never satisfied. I should ask for a custom blog background for my birthday. That's a brilliant idea, actually.

And lastly, Dear Bill Nye... thank you for not being dead. I was practically grief-stricken when I heard the rumor that you had died... You taught me pretty much everything I know about science. Please don't die anytime soon.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

"we owe to god the same faithfulness that he gives to us..."

Sorry... a day late. I just remembered this video this morning...

"For me, He's never been more real."

Last year in seminary, our teacher gave us a copy of the following article, and I kept it in my binder the whole year...

(article written for the Washington Post found here.)

9/11 destruction allowed us to spiritually rebuild

By Thomas S. Monson

The calamity of September 11th, 2001 has cast a long shadow. Ten years later, many of us are still haunted by its terrible tragedy of lost lives and broken hearts. It is an episode of anguish that has become a defining moment in the history of the American nation and the world. This week, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, along with Tom Brokaw, will pay its own homage to the unforgettable events of September 11, 2001.
There was, as many have noted, a remarkable surge of faith following the tragedy. People across the United States rediscovered the need for God and turned to Him for solace and understanding. Comfortable times were shattered. We felt the great unsteadiness of life and reached for the great steadiness of our Father in Heaven. And, as ever, we found it. Americans of all faiths came together in a remarkable way.
Sadly, it seems that much of that renewal of faith has waned in the years that have followed. Healing has come with time, but so has indifference. We forget how vulnerable and sorrowful we felt. Our sorrow moved us to remember the deep purposes of our lives. The darkness of our despair brought us a moment of enlightenment. But we are forgetful. When the depth of grief has passed, its lessons often pass from our minds and hearts as well.
Our Father’s commitment to us, His children, is unwavering. Indeed He softens the winters of our lives, but He also brightens our summers. Whether it is the best of times or the worst, He is with us. He has promised us that this will never change.
But we are less faithful than He is. By nature we are vain, frail, and foolish. We sometimes neglect God. Sometimes we fail to keep the commandments that He gives us to make us happy. Sometimes we fail to commune with Him in prayer. Sometimes we forget to succor the poor and the downtrodden who are also His children. And our forgetfulness is very much to our detriment.
If there is a spiritual lesson to be learned from our experience of that fateful day, it may be that we owe to God the same faithfulness that He gives to us. We should strive for steadiness, and for a commitment to God that does not ebb and flow with the years or the crises of our lives. It should not require tragedy for us to remember Him, and we should not be compelled to humility before giving Him our faith and trust. We too should be with Him in every season.
The way to be with God in every season is to strive to be near Him every week and each day. We truly “need Him every hour,” not just in hours of devastation. We must speak to Him, listen to Him, and serve Him. If we wish to serve Him, we should serve our fellow men. We will mourn the lives we lose, but we should also fix the lives that can be mended and heal the hearts that may yet be healed.
It is constancy that God would have from us. Tragedies are not merely opportunities to give Him a fleeting thought, or for momentary insight to His plan for our happiness. Destruction allows us to rebuild our lives in the way He teaches us, and to become something different than we were. We can make Him the center of our thoughts and His Son, Jesus Christ, the pattern for our behavior. We may not only find faith in God in our sorrow. We may also become faithful to Him in times of calm.
Pretty cool article, right?
Something to remember...

Monday, September 10, 2012

enemy territory.

I had a YW leader tell us in a lesson a while back that the minute we step outside our house, we have entered enemy territory.

There are very few safe places left in the world... because we are attacked by so many things coming from every direction that have a horrible influence on us every single day.

Think about the fact that humans have lived on this earth for about 8,000 years. Of course there have been periods of time when people were incredibly disobedient and prideful...

But it is shocking to see how many new horrible influences have popped up just in the last few decades. The media is a huge one...

We are being told every day that immodesty, immorality, homosexuality, and profanity, (etc, etc...) are all okay! That these things are normal, in fact.

Well. They're not. They're not okay. Or normal.

It's as simple as that.

Even though sometimes it seems that we're the abnormal ones.

I'm not saying this to offend anyone... I'm really not.

The problem is... the more you are exposed to these things - no matter how strong you think you are - they start to have an effect on you.

Maybe it's simply that you become less sensitive to them...

Or maybe it's something bigger.

"I promise you that you will be protected and sealed from the attacks of the adversary if you will heed the promptings that come from the Holy Ghost. The gift of the Holy Ghost, if you consent, will guide and protect you and even correct your actions. He is a spiritual voice that comes in your mind as a thought or a feeling. Take hold of your life and order yourself to be better. You will be watched over and protected that you yourself will know, by the promptings of the Holy Ghost,  which way to go. I promise you that it will be so."
(Boyd K. Packer)

Maybe you are fine and you are managing just fine in your daily life.

Or maybe your priorities are becoming blurred. Maybe the enemy really is breaking you down.

Well it's okay. At least it can be. Everyone is impacted by these things. Don't beat yourself up if you aren't in the place you wish to be. Heavenly Father knows how you feel. He knows you better than you know yourself.

Start with little things. Try to put yourself in positions where you can feel the Holy Ghost.

Heavenly Father will know that you are trying.

And I promise that you will feel the Spirit.

When you see something that is inappropriate or wrong... well... the fact that you know it's wrong is a prompting from the Holy Ghost.

At EFY... they talked about the Light of Christ... which everyone has. It is your conscience.

The ability to know right from wrong is a God-given gift.

Whether you decide to act on those promptings... well... that is up to you.

But I know that you will be immensely blessed just by trying a little harder to eliminate the negative influences in your life.

Work harder to avoid them, rather than just to resist them.

Little by little.

And you will make your Father proud.

And no matter who you are... isn't that what you ultimately want?

A happy, healthy, and fulfilling life - living in a way that makes God proud of you?

Give it a try.

That life may not be as far away as you think.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

school again... and find me on!

I'm a sophomore. Have been for three days... actually.

I can already tell I am going to have lots of homework. I've had quite a bit in these couple nights alone, so if that is any indication of how the rest of the year is going to be... yikes!


I love high school. Already.

And I'm super excited for this year... and the couple after that.

And I'm already in the process of joining clubs. And I'm going to a football game tomorrow.

Sweet. (I've been waiting my whole life for this, you know... )

I even bought a Vikings shirt today.

Anyways. Enough about that.

I set up a profile! Click here to see it!

They're really easy! You should make one!

Or do you have one? Let me know! I wanna see it!

Yeah. Anyways.

Have a lovely Thursday.

P.S. Do any of you watch Covert Affairs? Aaaah!!! AH!! I neeeeed the next episode! It was such a cliffhanger this week! Aah!!

Monday, September 3, 2012

the goodness of people

"If you can help somebody... do it!"

This makes me so incredibly happy to watch.

I love this show. Like, loooove love.
And I could watch wwyd clips on youtube for hours probably.

Some have better results than others, but experiments that turn out like the one you just watched... they totally restore your faith in humanity.

I love people.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

half full.

There once was an oyster
Whose story I tell,
Who found that some sand
Had got into his shell.

It was only a grain,
but it gave him great pain.
For oysters have feelings
Although they're so plain.

Now, did he berate
the harsh workings of fate
That had brought him
To such a deplorable state?

Did he curse at the government,
Cry for election,
And claim that the sea should
Have given him protection?

'No,' he said to himself
As he lay on a shell,
Since I cannot remove it,
I shall try to improve it.

Now the years have rolled around,
As the years always do,
And he came to his ultimate
Destiny ­ stew.

And the small grain of sand
That had bothered him so
Was a beautiful pearl
All richly aglow.

Now the tale has a moral,
for isn't it grand
What an oyster can do
With a morsel of sand?

What couldn't we do
If we'd only begin
With some of the things
That get under our skin.

~author unknown

Do you guys have any idea how good you have it? You could be the poorest person in America... but you would still live in America. 

Wherever you live... you are reading this, which means you have access to the internet. 

I'm sure you've used a telephone in your life sometime and you've probably had a good education.

That's not to say that hard things haven't happened to you. I'm willing to bet you've seen and experienced things that I never will in my lifetime. And vice versa. 

Happy people are people that make the best of everything. 

I've heard from family and friends that have travelled to far away - perhaps third-world - countries that even though so many people in so many places have so little... these people practically personify love, gratitude, kindness, and happiness. Though they have so little compared to some, they are the first to show how grateful they are for what they do have.

The truth is, our circumstances are only bad compared to something better. But others have been through much worse. I've read enough history to know you and I are lucky to be where we are, when we are, no matter how bad it seems to us compared to our fantasies. It's a sane thought and worth thinking. 

-Adam Kahn

Remember the video I posted just yesterday? (here)

About typical people?

And how less than 25% of people in the world have a bank account...

And many people have to work the whole day just to obtain a little water...

You have it good.

So start seeing it that way.

If you aren't already, become an optimist. 

See things how they are, or better than they are, but don't look at bumps in the road like they're the end of the world. 

See the glass half full. 

It's kinda fun taking optimism tests on the internet... 

Just google optimism tests and see what comes up. I like the one on

I got only 4 optimistic answers out of 15... haha. 

I guess I have some work to do.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

"typical is always relative..."

Remember the cool video I posted about social media here?

This one is kinda similar. Both freak me out just a little bit.

It's just hard to wrap your mind around...

Us Americans aren't the center of the universe... not even close! We have it so good!


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