Saturday, March 1, 2014

Choose to be Happy :)


I know I have neglected to write in this in a while, but I just wanted to take the opportunity to write about something that has been running through my mind. This past week we have been studying about faith and hope as a mission. Faith has to be one of my favorite Christlike attributes to study about because it doesn't matter how many times you study it, you're always learning something new. This week I've also learned a lot about hope. I've learned that no matter what we are going through the hope of God's eternal plan is what keeps me going. We live in an imperfect world with imperfect people, but all of that is temporal. God's plan on the other hand is ETERNAL. Do we really understand what that means? I promise that if you get down on your knees and really think about God's eternal plan for you. You will see the glimpse of love our Heavenly Father has for you. The more we come understand where we are going the more we will see that life trials are only temporary. One of my favorite scriptures in the Book of Mormon is in Ether 12:14

"Wherefore, whoso believeth in God might with surety hope for better world, yea, even place at the right hand of God,which hope cometh of faithmaketh an anchor to the souls of men, which would make them sure and steadfast, always abounding in good worksbeing led to glorify God." 

I know that even though the hardest trails good things are ALWAYS ahead. If your struggling to have that hope today, don't give up. Just keep going!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Our Journey Back

The other morning I was hearing a talk by President Uchtdorf "Your Wonderful Journey Home". It brought me back to an experience I had a couple of years ago:

It had been snowing for weeks. I was on way home and like always, my favorite, traffic! I was probably 1 mile away from my house, but sitting in that traffic felt like I would never get home. Knowing I could do nothing to change the situation I turned up my music a little higher and waited. Finally the traffic was moving, finally, I could get home! There was one street that took forever to turn left because there was always cars going the other direction that didn't let you pass, so knowing this town well, I decided to take a little shortcut. There was a yield sign, but with all the snow that had been pushed to the side walks I could barley see where I was turning. I waited for a while and treated the yield sign more like a stop light. I waited and waited until it was clear. No cars. As I slowly moved forward making sure I looked at both sides I proceed to make a left turn. The next thing I could remember was people talking to me and asking me if was okay. When I realized I was okay I stepped out of the car and started to look around. I started to get a little sad and frustrated with myself. Maybe I should be have waited a little longer. Why has this happened to me? I quickly humbled myself and was just grateful I was still alive. 

Even though the talk " Your Wonderful Journey Home" was directed to the young women I think it relates to all of us. I love what President Uchtdorf said at the end of his talk : "There will always be things to complain about—things that don’t seem to go quite right. You can spend your days feeling sad, alone, misunderstood, or unwanted. But that isn’t the journey you had hoped for, and it’s not the journey Heavenly Father sent you to take. Remember, you are truly a daughter of God! With this in mind, I invite you to walk confidently and joyfully. Yes, the road has bumps and detours and even some hazards. But don’t focus on them. Look for the happiness your Father in Heaven has prepared for you in every step of your journey. Happiness is the destination, but it’s also the path. “Peace in this world, and eternal life in the world to come” is what He promises. That is why He commands us to “be of good cheer.”

Even though trails may come, never forget that there is a loving Heavenly Father who has sent us here for a reason. Do not fear, God is always near. If we trust in him we can all make our journey back home.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

One by One


Last year during this time I was traveling back to CT from Salt Lake City. Here I was sitting in the Salt Lake City airport awaiting my oh-so-great red eye flight. As I looked around I could feel the stress on everyone's face. Every one was anxious to get home to their families (including myself). My flight had been delayed once again, but I tried not to let it get to me. As I boarded the plane I rushed into my window seat, plopped my pillow, put on my seat belt and just before I was going to fall asleep a lady tapped my shoulder. She asked if I could switch seats with her so she could sit with her husband. I immediately said yes, not thinking that her seat was all the way in the back of the plane. Thinking about this experience I realized that Heavenly Father had prompted me to forget myself and just help that "one". She said "thank you" and smiled. 

Even though we only have a couple days before Christmas I would invite all of you to step back for a second and reach out to just "one". I know that Christmas craziness can sometimes feel inevitable, but if you look to the Lord for guidance I promise he will lead you to someone that you can serve. It may be something as simple as holding the door, smiling, or letting someone ahead of you in line. Whatever you do, if you do it with love those around you will feel the same love the Savior had when we came down to earth. 

"And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom; that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God." Mosiah 2:17

READY, SET, GO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

God's timing

"Humility is willingness to submit to the will of the Lord and give the Lord the honor for what is accomplished"

When I was applying to go to college I applied to 8 different schools, two of which were BYU and BYU-I. It wasn't until I had submitted all my 8 applications that I realized that I really wanted to go to BYU. I felt that I had received an answer to my prayers, but I tried not to get used to the idea because I was still waiting for the oh-so-notorious-acceptance letter. I talked to a bunch of people and every one told me "oh you'll definitely get in". My guidance counselor at the time made it one of my "target schools". I got more and more used to idea and so here I was picturing the next 4 years of my life in Utah. Every one was putting up where they were going to go to college on Facebook and some of my church friends had received their acceptance. I fearfully and excitingly logged on to my computer and there it was DENIED. Now, it wasn't those exact words but I felt like they were. I honestly don't even remember reading the whole letter through. I just ran to my room and began to cry. I was annoyed, frustrated, but mostly disappointed. The next couple of weeks didn't get easier. I had gotten an acceptance to BYU-I, but ignored it because there was NO WAY that I was going to be moving to Idaho. Plus it was the "easy" school. I spent a lot of time on my knees the next couple of weeks.Finally I came to a conclusion that I needed to go to BYU-I. I wasn't 100 % sure why but I knew that I had to go. I knew that going to a church based school would do me a whole lot better than going to a school where I would have to fight a lot harder for what I believed in. I slowly started to warm up to the idea and I even got a little excited for it. A lot of things happened after I made that decision. I moved across the country, made a ton of new friends, but most importantly my testimony grew. The temple was about 5 minutes from my apartment, life was pretty great. Now what does this have to do with humility? Looking back at this whole experience I realize now that God already knew exactly what he had planned for me.It was hard for me to understand that plan at the time, but he knew that I was going to be happy at the end. Moving to Idaho was one of the best decisions I  have ever made. As my testimony grew I knew I had to serve a mission. When the age changed I battled with myself if I should go, but like always heavenly father made it happen. This happens a lot in our lives. Elder Maxwell said, "The issue for us is trusting God enough to trust also His timing." Sometimes that takes some humility because although we accept our change of plans we may not always see the Lord's hand throughout it all. I know that the Lord knows exactly where I need to be.  
And for right now it is in North Carolina :)

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Faith is the power to act

"The future is as bright as your faith”
-Thomas S. Monson

When I say Greenwich is a "small" town I don't really mean it was a small town, but compared to many of the cities around me Greenwich, where I spent most of my life was a SMALL town. One of the things I loved about living in small town was that you got to know people pretty fast. We had one high school so you were bound to end up in the same place. That sometimes had its downsides, but it taught me a lot of things. Growing up I had a couple of good friends that I would consider like family. We all lived down the street from each other and did just about everything with each other. When I was preparing to go on my mission. My friends had a lot of questions about what I was going to do for the next 18 months of my life. Since most of them were not members of the church it was a foreign idea that I would just pick up my things and go. 

I remember one day my friend and I went out on a walk. We attempted to go on a "run" but those always failed because we just ended up talking the whole time. One of the other things that I love the most about where I grew up was how close I was to the water. It was definitely not the Mediterranean Sea or anything, but it worked. We walked to the docks and sat down and continued to talk. We talked about how long and short 18 months was going to be. What was going to happen? As time goes by we tend to ask ourselves that question a lot. Where am I going to be in a year from now? Where am I going to be 5 years from now? Who am I still going to be friends with? What job will I have? What kind of trials will I go through? 

I love President Monson's simple phrase “your future is as bright as your faith" It reminds me that although looking ahead is a good thing that there really is no other way of knowing until I act. It wasn't doing any good talking about what the next 18 months of my life until I actually did something. I had all the control in the world. Of course God already had a plan for me, but I ultimately had to choose my own path. I think in life we tend to wait for the big moments to change or to act. We wait until the last minute to plan or we wait on other people to make decisions for us. One of the biggest things I have been working on being on my mission is having more faith. When I have faith I tend to look at the bigger picture. My outlook expands when I gain more faith and I don't wait and dream what will happen, but I trust the Lord and make things happen. I know that God lives and that he has this amazing plan for us on earth. I know that when we act on that faith we gain more of a glimpse on our specific plan of earth. Do your part and God will do his :)

Sunday, October 27, 2013

The simplicity of God's creations

I am an East Coast girl . Although I kicked and screamed when I realized I was going to the middle of no where (Rexburg, Idaho) I knew that it is where I needed to be. One of the things I quickly learned to love about Idaho were the sunsets. One of my favorite things to do was, running to the Rexburg temple at night and being able to see the sunset on my run back. I always stopped and looked how the sun settled on the temple. There was always a peaceful feeling that came from watching the sun go down. It reminded me that God lives and that he is in charge of everything on this earth. It reminded me to slow down and enjoy the beauty on the earth. It reminded me how blessed I was to have a temple so close to my apartment. It reminded me exactly why I was there and why I need to be in Idaho at the time. There have been many instances in my life where simple things in nature have reminded me to stop for a minute, stand back and enjoy the moment. I think we often get caught up in blessings we want to receive, but don't enjoy the day to day blessings we already have. May we all stop and enjoy the simple things in life!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Once upon a rock..

I'd never gone REAL rocking climbing. Sure I had been to a rock wall or two, but that's not exactly the same. My roommate had to fulfill one of the requirements for one of her classes so I decided to join her. On our way to the canyon I realized how inadequate I was. Every one in the car was talking about the other times they had been rocking climbing and I just stared at my roommate. " What did I get into?" I thought. After most people had gone up one of the instructors that came with us said if I was ready to give it a try. My roommate was going to belay me and although I trusted her I was still scared. I think she could see that I was a bit frightened so she asked, "do you trust me?" I quickly replied " Uh..yeah" So off I went. I did trust her, but I didn't really trust myself. What if I stepped on the wrong rock? What if the anchor would come loose? What if the rope just broke? Every bad thing that could happen was going through my brain. On the other hand I was ready for the challenge or else I wouldn't have came. I took a deep breathe in and up I went. My roommate and instructor started telling me which rocks I should step on and where I should put my hands. It became easier as I could feel where I was going. Looking back at this experience I learned a lot of different things. I learned that although I may not always know what I am doing or where I am going if I put my trust in the Lord he will guide me exactly where I need to go. The Lord has put different people in our lives like family and friends to help guide us through this journey. We may not know everything, but if we are up to the challenge and take things as they come 

The Lord will never leave our side...