Friday, April 19, 2013

Sorry, but I have to.

I apologize now if this is offensive to anyone, that's not intended. 

I have been amazed as I have watched Facebook and other social media sites how many people, in the face of criticism and challenge don't stand up for their beliefs. 

Now, let me say this. am I perfect? Heck no. not even close. 
Are there things I struggle every day? Absolutely. 

But I'd like to think that aside from my insecurities and imperfections that eat away at me, 
when I am standing against opposition, I hold my values strong. 

Lately there has been a heated debate regarding same-sex marriage.
I have watched so many faithful, wonderful, amazing members of the church speak out and stand up for the principles and values of the gospel. 
I admire them and applaud them for their efforts in spreading the word.
It has been on Facebook, instagram, blogs, and other things. 

then I see people who are faithful, wonderful, amazing members of the church go completely against the teachings of the gospel because they don't want to offend their "friends". 
I know its a touchy subject, and in one way or another we are all connected to someone who struggles with same-sex attraction, regardless of where we stand. 
So I know its hard. 
But I also know that we can do more. 
We can be bold but not overbearing. 

People are so quick to say that we are judgmental, and rude, and discriminating against their beliefs. 
"How does that decision affect you?" 
"Don't you want everyone to be able to experience true love?" 
"The can't control how they feel." 
The list goes on and on with some of their reasonings behind it.
All I am doing is saying that I am against it. completely. 
Why are we afraid to stand up and say, "This is what I believe." ESPECIALLY when we know the Lord's way of doing things. All throughout time the Lord has condemned gay marriage. Does He think any less of the people? No. But He has set forth very specific guidelines as to what is ok, and what isn't. About the true nature of the family.

We already know who is going to win this battle of right vs wrong, good vs evil, and some of us are still trying to decide which team to be on. 
It is good, and actually healthy to have differing opinions with our friends and those we love. 
We can stand our ground without being rude, or disrespectful. 

The Lord needs people who are willing to stand up, even if it means standing alone. 
He needs people willing to say, "I disagree", or "I agree" when all of the voices of society are pointing mocking fingers at us. 

Do I need to be better? I absolutely do.
Could I be more open about my beliefs? I could do better every single day. There are so many opportunities that I have to share my testimony that I don't take because I don't recognize it as such. 

And I'm going to be better at that starting today. 
I need to be. 
As things get more and more crazy as the Savior's second coming approaches, things aren't going to get any easier. Its going to continuously get harder to live the teachings of the gospel if we aren't completely sure of our beliefs and firm in our testimonies. 

The parable of the 10 virgins perfectly describes our day. 
Are we going to be prepared when the bridegroom comes? 
Are we going to be faithful up until that point? 
I have a lot of work to do. A lot. 

The Lord is looking for those who are prepared to stand and fight for His gospel. 

I hope to be one of those people. 

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Oh my life...its long, so I don't expect you to read it all.

So I haven't blogged in AGES, thats pretty awesome. 
But I like to blog. So I'm going to. 
And, this is a place where I can openly express my feelings....well kind of. 
But this is going to be a rockin' blog post because for some reason I'm like super chatty. So thats cool. 

I was typing in my journal (I keep my journal on my computer) 
And I was so filled with love and appreciation for my Savior and for His Atonement, and for His gospel. Let me explain a little.

Last fall I got the feeling "You need to leave Fresno, and you need to leave like now" 
And I pushed it aside and pushed it aside again and again. 
(Note to all: Don't do that to spiritual promptings. Just make your life easy and follow, kay?)
But finally I couldn't take it any longer. Fresno was eating me alive and I had completely lost myself and forgotten who I was and what I loved to do.

So after turning in over 200 job applications and nothing turning up, I finally just turned in my two weeks notice, gave my boss a list of doctors to call here in Utah to give me good recommendations, and I came up here for a week of interviews. I got multiple job offers and chose the one I felt was right. And I got housing on the same week, thanks to an awesome connection I had in Draper.

So. My last day of work was January 25th, and my first day of work here was January 28th. 
Everything was falling into place and I felt way more blessed than I deserved. 
I had forgotten how aware of our lives the Lord is and how He really is in the details. 

 Picking up my whole life and moving was so incredibly hard. 
I knew everyone at home, I felt very comfortable in my job, I had good friends.
I didn't want to move. At all. Moving meant change. 
But I had to remember what is most important: my testimony, and really understanding and believing who I was, and that I could accomplish my goals.

But moving here has forced me to rely more on my Heavenly Father than I have EVER had to before.
And since I have lived here, I have been overwhelmed with so many blessings, particularly the last month. 

I have gotten SO much happier. 
I have made some great friends and met some of the finest people ever. 
I have, seriously, the best ward on planet earth. And my bishopbric....holy cow. POWERHOUSE. 
My roommates rock.
I feel the Lord's love on a daily basis as I look for it, and sometimes even when I'm prideful and I don't look for it.
I have remembered how strong my testimony is and seen the blessings that come from living righteously and worthily. 
I have been reminded of the power that is held within the walls of the temple.
I've learned on a whole new level the power of the Atonement. 
I have learned that I absolutely LOVE Utah. (I never thought I would say that)
I have a whole new appreciation and love for my brother's and their wives. 
I have seen so many of my prayers answered like before I get off my knees. 

Basically, my life has taken a complete turn for the better. 
I didn't realize it at the time, but I was miserable in California. 
I miss so many people SO much. My parents, the Crowleys, gals from the ward, etc. 
But today, for about the 10th time since I've been here, 
I've had the strongest confirmation that I am where I need to be. 
And I'm going to go forward with faith knowing that the Lord is in charge, and with His help, and the help of those wonderful people He has put in my path, I can do all things.