Sunday, March 28, 2010

Gratitude in a Random Sort of Pattern...

This is one of my all-time favorite students. Former students. (She graduated early and entered BYU-I in January, so our last lesson was in December.) She invited me and the Mister to her last concert of the semester...the Brahms Requiem with the BYU-I combined choirs and Symphony Orchestra. It was amazing. Kate makes me proud. She's why I teach. It was a sentimental journey to see one of my students playing in the same concert hall I spent literally hundreds of hours playing in as well. She is so talented and dedicated. I am grateful for her example, talent, ambition and dedication. And I forgive the fact that she's a Utes fan all the way. I can look past that. At least she's not a democrat.

Monday I went to bed not feeling well. When I woke up at 6 the next morning in preparation for my early morning group lesson, I found that the Mister had stayed up late sweeping and mopping all of our floors! (And believe me, we have a TON of tile on our main floor.) I love that guy. I'm grateful for his love.

During FHE this week, 4-year-old Caleb made the comment, "Satan doesn't have a very good future, does he? But we do, right Dad?" I'm grateful for the lesson Caleb taught me that night...what a literal doctrine--he gets it.

Today for the closing hymn in sacrament meeting, we sang "He Is Risen." I could not hold back the tears of gratitude and love I feel for the Savior. Jeffrey R. Holland once said, "Because the tomb is empty, our lives are not." I know that He lives. And I love Him.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Unprecedented day in the history of our nation...

"I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them."
~ Thomas Jefferson

"But behold, I am consigned that these are my days, and that my soul shall be filled with sorrow because of this the wickedness of my brethren."
~Helaman 7:9

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Sunday thoughts

(photo taken in American Fork Canyon from the road)

I love my calling. I teach Relief Society once a month. I love the Gospel Principles manual we use to teach from. I'm learning so much as I prepare and study the material. This week's lesson was on The Creation. Who isn't fascinated (if not moved) by God's creations? I'm sure each of us has quietly observed a starry sky on a warm summer night and wondered about the grandeur of it all.

But what does the Creation have to do with me on a personal level? Aside from the knowledge we have that the Lord created a beautiful earth because we, his children needed a place to dwell, there are some other things to consider.

I am trying to divide light from darkness every day in my life. It's not easy sometimes. Like God, I am trying to create beautiful places in my home and in my life; sometimes out of chaos or unorganized matter. Each of us is seeking to bring forth order and beauty in our relationships and in our lives, in hopes that we, like God, can claim our creations "good." Sometimes to create something beautiful, we have to descend trustingly into the darkness before we can create necessary light, just as God did in the first creative period. Maybe we are struggling in a difficult marriage or with addiction; or maybe we are simply trying to create a beautiful space in our home. Whatever the case may be, we can learn to be a creator of good things, unorganized things or chaotic matter in our lives.

And so I pose (what I consider to be) a few poignant questions:

1) How can we show gratitude for the gift of the Creation?
2)Which of God's creations are especially beautiful to you?
3)What are you busy creating these days? Are you actively engaged in the creative process and in learning how to be a creator like our Heavenly Father?
4)How can we, as women of God, better "fill the measure of our creation?" I heard it put this way ~ "Filling the measure of our creation is learning to behave how the Creator intended (it) to behave."

I have lots of these thoughts swirling around in my head. I'm so thankful for the sisters in our class today who shared their insights. It gave me so much to think about it. I feel a good Family Home Evening coming on...