When faced with life's challenges,
it is Important to Remember
that although Daniel was saved from the lions,
he was not saved from the Lion's Den.


Friday, October 31, 2014

Becoming Like Him - day 31 - Leave

Today is Five minute Friday, this is the day when a group of us get together over at Kate's Place and share our own stories in just five short minutes.  The rules are easy:  Write in five minutes flat without caring about whether it is just right or not.  Go over to Heading Home and link up your post.  And visit the person who linked up before you to share a comment about their writing.  See, easy.
This is also the last day of a month of five minutes a day writing.  I made it all the way through, although I wasn't sure that I would.  I hope you enjoy reading my writings on my month of Becoming Like Him.



The prompt today is:

Leave

START

Oh how I hate leaving.  I like things to stay the same.  I am the person who never moves the furniture from one side of the room to another.  I am the person who likes things to not change.  I love going to visit, but hate when it is time to leave. Especially when it is visiting my grown children.
It seems to me that there is one constant in my life, and that is leaving.  I have beautiful children.  I wanted them to live next door and be close to me for the rest of their lives.  I wanted to own an entire block where everyone has their own house and the grandchildren could come to my house whenever they wanted.
Of course, that is not the way it has worked out.  No one lives that close, and the grandkids don't get to come that often.  That makes leaving for me, very difficult, because I don't know when they will be coming again.
One thing that I have learned on my own journey, is that everyone will leave. They might not mean to, the might not go very far.  But they will leave. However there is one person who never leaves us.  That person is always there, even when we feel alone and lonely.  That person is our Heavenly Father.  He knows us, He loves us, He is with us.
We are never alone and we can never do something that He doesn't see.  And that is okay with me, because He loves us in spite of our worst selves.  He loves us even in our sins.  His mercy and His grace are enough for us.  He has paid the price for each one of us to return to Him.
So, in my heart of hearts, I know that I am not alone.  I know that I am His daughter.  I know that He makes me enough, and I know that He will never, ever leave.

STOP

Now, what can you write in five minutes?  Don't forget to link up with the rest of us over at Heading Home and share those thoughts.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 30 - First

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.



I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.



Today the Prompt is:  
FIRST

START

For me, one of the ways that I strive to become most like Him is in my family life.  I make lots of mistakes, but I keep working on it and I love my family absolutely and unconditionally.  I don't get enough time with each of them, but I want them to know how much they mean to me as well as to their Heavenly Father.  
This is your very first day of being 16.  Happy birthday my sweet girl!  The very first time I saw you, I knew I loved you.  You opened your one pirate eye and looked right at me.  You melted my heart.  It filled right up with a love that never goes away, no matter what happens.  I want you to know that I will stand by your side and love you.  I will cherish you, sooth your hurts, and help you through your pain.  I know that it is hard to be in the middle.  And you are right in the middle of the final three girls.  You  have had to endure older siblings and a younger sister.  You have had to find your place in an already crowded world.  
The first time I heard you cry, I wanted to fix it.  But I couldn't.  You had a hard time adjusting to the busy place that we call home.  I carried you everywhere, until your dad got home.  From the first time he saw you, you became his.  He would take you outside and softly bounce you on the trampoline until you fell asleep in his arms.  
We were there for all your big firsts.  Your first smile was for daddy.  You first step was between our arms.  Your first soccer game and your first day of school.  We loved you through it all.  Suddenly, you are 16 and most definitely a young woman now.  You had your first permit and your first day of driving.  You are working on getting your first driver's license.  How did time fly so quickly?  You have had your first boyfriend and you are looking forward to your first date.  
I love your laugh.  I could listen to that all day long.  It makes me happy.  You might not be my first daughter, but you are loved as if you were.  You have a place in my heart that only is for you.  There is no competition in our family my sweet daughter, there is only love, and plenty of firsts for you to try.  

STOP

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 29 - Unite

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.



10 For thou art great, and doest wondrous things: thou art God alone.
11 Teach me thy way, O Lord; I will walk in thy truth: unite my heart to fear thy name.
12 I will praise thee, O Lord my God, with all my heart: and I will glorify thy name for evermore.
The Prompt today is:

UNITE

START

How hard is it to unite our hearts?  I have a rather large family.  We blended two families together and had a few more children to form a large blended family.  It was not an easy journey.  Sometimes, my children thought that they should be loved best, and sometimes his did.  One of the hardest things to teach them was that they are all our children.  They are each loved individually for themselves.  They are needed and wanted and each a blessing in our lives.  
Uniting together is one of the best things we have ever done.  It was a rough journey at times with a lot of potholes along the way.  Yet, it has been so rewarding and I would not change it for the world.  
Uniting our hearts together to God is not easy either.  There are so many things that would interfere with our relationship.  The world would have us believe that the Sabbath is just another part of the weekend.  It is a time to have fun and forget about everything else.  I know that the sabbath is a day of worship.  As I used to tell my children, Heavenly Father has given us everything and right now He is only asking for a little bit of your time.  
Uniting ourselves for His purpose is such a blessing.  Gathering together helps each of us to strengthen our own testimonies as well as the testimonies of others.  It helps us to find ways to remain strong and faithful.  For me, going to church, fulfills a need that is deep inside my heart.  A need to be more like Him.  It is a chance to teach, learn, listen and love. It is a choice that places my feet in the right direction for the rest of the week.  
Uniting my heart in His glory.  
I can't think of a better place to be.

STOP

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 28 - Wake

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.


One day, someone is going to hug you so tight, 
that all the broken pieces will stick back together.

Today the prompt is:

WAKE


START

When my older children were teenagers, they often had a hard time waking up in the morning.  Every single one of them did not like getting out of bed, getting ready for school, or eating a decent breakfast.  I usually made oatmeal or grits or even rice breakfast.  Those ones were filling and I could make a lot, but I really got a little grouchy when the teens would not listen to me and wake up and rise out of those beds.  
As a matter of fact, several mornings saw them pull covers tightly over heads and snuggle back down for more sleep.  It probably wouldn't have been so bad, except they kept missing the buses and making me late for work.  I could not afford to lose a job because they didn't care whether or not they made it to school on time.  
I tried everything I could think of to make it easier for them to get up, they all had their own alarm clocks, I would turn the lights on, we made everyone go to bed earlier and we even went to bed ourselves.  
It never seemed to matter.  When it came to sleeping in, those kids were right on top of it.  Finally, in desperation, I threw a glass of water on the heads of two of the biggest culprits.  The boy, leaped out of bed and shouted "MOM!  What are you doing?"  The girl cried big alligator tears because she just knew that I ruined her bed.  
However, they do joke about it today.  They could both swear that I took a garden hose to the beds and nearly drowned them in ice cold freezing water, (in reality, it was about 4 oz of water, lukewarm out of the tap and not even cold).  They have told all the younger siblings, so I have never again had difficulty getting anyone else out of bed in the mornings.  The youngest girls get themselves up even if we don't do it for them.
I really wasn't trying to be mean, I just needed those teens to respect what I was doing for them.  As much as they complained at the time, they never made me late to work in the rest of the years they lived at home.  They have grown into responsible adults who wake themselves every single day.  
It makes me wonder if Heavenly Father ever gets tired of telling us to wake up and look at what is going on around us.  The scriptures tell us many of the same things over and over again.  I am guessing, that the reason we have to hear things more than once, is because we too can be just like my sleeping teens.  We don't always want to open our eyes and wake to reality.  We don't always listen when we should.  Sometimes we have to be reminded.  We need that startling wake up call that makes us remember those things that are most important.  


STOP

Monday, October 27, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 27 - Free

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.

John 8:32  And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
Today the prompt is:

FREE

START

I used to not understand this scripture.  You would think that it would be easy, but I was taught from an early age to lie.  I had to learn to tell my parents what the wanted to hear and not the truth.  If my mother decided something was the truth, than anything else you told her was a lie, no matter what the truth really was.  So, I learned to lie very, very well.  
I am not proud of that fact, and I made a vow to my Heavenly Father when I got married that I would never lie to my husband.   It has not always been an easy vow to keep, especially when I first started, but it has been one that I have never violated.  I want my husband to know that I love him enough to always tell the truth, even when the truth is a hard thing to face.  
Telling the truth is a freedom for me.  I never have to remember what I said, because I always remember the truth.  It is freeing because my sweet husband accepts me, even with all my faults.  I am free because God gave me that gift.  I am free to live and worship and have a family.  
I love the old saying,
"You are free to make your own choice, but you are not free from the consequences of that choice." 
I am so grateful that Heavenly Father gave me free agency to choose.  Sometimes I choose right, and sometimes I make mistakes.  That saying is so true.  When I make choices, there are always consequences for them.  Sometimes the consequences are hard things to bear, sometimes, they are easy, but they are always there.  

STOP

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 26 - Visit

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.




James 1:27  Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.

Today the prompt is:

VISIT

Start

It is easy to get caught up in the busyness of our daily lives.  Sometimes, I think that might be out greatest weakness.  We don't have time to take time with others.  We are so busy making a living and getting our kids everywhere that they need to be, that it is too easy to put off other things that are just as important.  I love the scripture from James.  I think it puts things in perspective for me.
In our church, we have something called Visiting Teaching.  It is a calling where we are given several women to visit every month.  We are supposed to notice if anything is wrong and find ways to help.  It has been such a good experience for me throughout my life.  I must admit, that some of the best friends I have made have been because I visited with them as a visiting teacher.
I have a feeling that Heavenly Father does not expect us to go through our lives alone.  That He expects us to take care of each other.  He wants us to cherish the good in each other and to visit each other and be friends with each other.  I am a social creature.  It means a lot to me when someone cares enough about me to visit.
Religion is more than a church.  It is a people doing the best they can to remind each other of who they really are.  It is taking care of others and serving them.  For me, it exceeds the boundaries of any church.  I have met several good religious people that do not believe the same things that I do, nevertheless, we are all sons and daughters of God, doing our best to get home to Him.
I think often of the story of the Good Samaritan.  Samaritans were looked down upon by the Jews.  They were despised.  They were considered the lowest of the low.  Yet, a samaritan is the one who saved a man that had been robbed and beaten when no one else wanted to get involved.
It reminds me time and again that my job is never to judge.  My life is not to be lived alone.  Rather, I am to visit and love all those whom He would love also.
In becoming like Him, my life needs to reflect His service.

Stop 

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 25 - Enjoy

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.


ENJOY THE LITTLE THINGS, 
BECAUSE ONE DAY 
YOU WILL WAKE UP AND REALIZE 
THAT THERE WERE NO LITTLE THINGS.

START

One of the things that I am trying to do more of in my search to become like Him, is to enjoy the little things around me.  To make room for them.  To give them a place in my life.  I think that I am not much fun.  It is hard for me to "take time out and smell the roses" as my husband says.
I believe that Heavenly Father made this beautiful world that we live in, for us to enjoy.  For us to take time out to breath and to foster relationships and to even have a little bit of fun.  Why else did He make such amazing places?
Today was a beautiful day.  We wanted to spend a little bit of family time together and one of my older sons and his wife were coming up for the day.  We met them at the lake with our kayaks and our dogs.  They met us with their dogs and we had a great day.  I have a boot on my foot because it is broken, so I was the dog sitter with three yorkies and one mastiff at the side of the lake.
As you can see, the family is having a great time.  I did too.  It was so nice to sit and enjoy the peace and the beauty in the world that we live in.



I really think one of the things that brings me so much closer to Him is to acknowledge His hand in the world around me.  I love seeing the many creations that surround us.  I really enjoyed my day at the lake with my family playing on the waters.
Enjoying our blessings makes them so much more valuable to us.  It give us a chance to regroup and recharge and show our gratitude.

STOP

Friday, October 24, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 24 - Dare

Today is Friday.  Five - minute - Friday to be exact and I can't wait to share.  This is where a group of bloggers gather together over at Kate's Place every single Friday to share their writing on a single prompt, without worrying about whether it is just right or not.  To find out more, or just link your own story with ours, join us over at Heading Home with Kate.


"Let us dare
To read,
Think,
Speak,
and Write."
John Adams

The prompt for this week is:

DARE

START

I spent so much of my life afraid.  Afraid to be who I am, afraid to speak out, afraid to be offended, afraid to dream, afraid to become.  In my struggles, I have learned that I only grow by being challenged.  Life, all by itself doesn't always teach us.  It is when we have to develop the courage to step up and speak out that we really start to learn.
I have learned that it is okay to be different and not like everyone else.  I have learned that none of us are perfect, no matter how much we pretend to be on Sunday.  I have learned to love, in spite of the choices of those I care for.  I have learned to forgive, even when it is harder than I ever imagined.
Sometimes, we just have to dare to be more than we thought we could be.
Today was a hard day.  Someone was in the office yelling and screaming at me.  They called me names and were just plain hard to deal with.  I left that confrontation with hate in my heart.  It is hard to get rid of hate when it wants to take up residence.  So, now, I am working on forgiving.  I don't know how successful I will be, but if it puts me in a better mood to deal with tomorrow, than I will have been successful.  I think that daring to be outside your normal self is not that easy.  It is a challenge.
I write because I dare to share my heart.  I dare to put my words out there to be judged.  I dare to share what He means in my life.  I struggle often to be the person that I want to be.  I have to put aside so many old habits and embrace new ones.  Sometimes, I slip back into yesterday and find myself lost for a time.
Yet, the more I dare, the surer I am of my direction and my path.  The less that I allow fear to govern my journey.  As I seek to become more like Him, I find myself daring a little more often to choose the right.  I find myself seeking those things which are true.  I find myself thinking things through, speaking up, and even speaking out.  I find myself daring to be just a little more like Him, one moment at a time.  One marvelous word.  One tiny thought.  One single step right into His arms of love.

STOP

Now it is your turn.  What can your write for your own version of Five-Minute Friday.  Don't forget to link back with the rest of us at Kate's Place.  

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 23 - Look

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.


It isn't what you look at that matters,
It is what you see.

Start

All my life, I have heard the saying, "seeing through rose-colored glasses", I never really understood that, my problem is more that the glasses I am looking through are dark and smudged.  They see the endless trails instead of the eternity of possibilities.  
I am trying to change.  As I think of becoming more like Him, I can't imagine that He only looks at my sins.  I don't think He focuses on what is always wrong.  I somehow think that He is willing to forgive my many faults and look past them as I struggle to move forward and past those things myself.  
And so, I have to ask myself, when He really looks at me, what does He see.  I am pretty sure that He sees me so much differently than I do.  I focus on the dark places, the blackness, the depression, the anxiety and the mistakes.  I focus on the could have's and the should have's.  I am not very gentle with myself.  
Last week, I got to paint for the first time in years and something really stood out at me after we were through.  We started with a white canvas and painted it all black.  We needed the black in order to recognize and appreciate the colors that we going to be placed on top.  When I finished, the picture isn't black at all.  The trees are white, the foliage is orange and red and yellow and green.  There is a darkness looking under the trees as if it is coming onto twilight.  But it is not simply black.
Perhaps, I need to see myself like I see my art.  I need to realize that I am only focusing on one part of my life.  In the tapestry that weaves my life together, there are darks and lights all worked into the weaving.  You really can't have one without the other.  They bring about beauty in the world around us.  
Perhaps I need to learn to open my heart and see with His eyes instead of my own; to feel with His love instead of my pain,  To find my heart beating in rhythm with His.  I think it is time to find His version of "rose-colored glasses".  

Stop

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 22 - Expect

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.


When you release expectations, 
you are free to enjoy things 
for what they are, 
instead of what you 
think they should be.  


Today the prompt is:

EXPECT

START

I am grateful to have this prompt today.  Too often in my own life, I expect things to be a certain way.  I expect my children to behave a certain way, or smile, or laugh or have fun.  I expect them to be reverent in church and to listen to their teachers.  I expect them to treat me like they love me.  In case you haven't guessed, I am a mother of three teenagers and absolutely nothing goes the way I expect it to.
I am learning, way too slowly, in my journey to allow them to be themselves.  In all their teenage glory and righteousness.  But I am finding, as I release the expectations that I am holding them to, these beautiful and wonderful spirits hidden beneath my own requirements.  The young ladies that they are becoming are so much more than I ever dreamed they could be.
I have also had very high expectations for myself in my life.  Usually so high, that I can't possibly succeed.  Making me a failure before I even begin.  I am also learning to be a little more kind and gentle with myself.
In the scriptures it tells us that we are required to forgive all men, I believe that includes ourselves.  Sometimes, what is easy to forgive in another is so much more difficult to forgive in myself.  I always think that I should have, could have and needed to know better.
I am so grateful for a loving Savior who knew that I would need His sacrifice.  Part of becoming more like Him is to recognize how very much I need Him in my life.  It is to know, intimately, His Mercy and Grace.  When I stop having unreal expectations for myself and everyone else, I become free to recognize the tender mercies that I am surrounded with in my life.
May you also learn to enjoy and absorb those things that are real, instead of expecting them to be something else entirely.

STOP

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 21 - Second

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.


Sometimes, we don't realize our own strength,
until we come face to face
with our greatest weakness.

Today the prompt is:  SECOND

START

What a beautiful weekend we had.  We were able to go down to Phoenix and tour the open house for the new Phoenix Temple.  It was a beautiful opportunity to share with others the strength and love of our beliefs.  
As I traveled, I thought about what I wanted to share for today and I was so excited when I realized the prompt was second.  
You see, I believe in a Heavenly Father who gives second chances.  One who knows that we would not possibly be able to accomplish perfection, and so He provided a way where we could return to Him.  He gave us His Son.  
He not only gives us second chances, but sometimes thirds, fourths or even fiftieth.  He gives us what we need until we finally get it right and move on to the next.  He is there to guide us.  He will lift us up and help us to move on, if we will only come to Him.  
In His house, there is always room for second chances.  There is room for prodigal sons and daughters.  There is room for you and me.  In His house, there is love, forgiveness, compassion and mercy.  Every single one of us are imperfect and flawed.  He knows that, yet He loves us in spite of our worst selves.  He wants us anyway.  
In my quest to become like Him, I am trying to forgive others who have wronged me.  I figure that I He gives second chances, who am I to deny someone else that blessing.

STOP

Monday, October 20, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 20 - Fear

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.


Fears are stories
We tell ourselves.


Today's Prompt is:

FEAR

START

There have been so many things that I have been afraid of.  Sometimes, it is what people think and what they believe.  Sometimes it is what might be happening or being humiliated.  I love the quote above about fear because I have come to find that most fears are actually things that might not come true.  I worry more about the "what if's" than about what is real.
This week, I tried something new.  I put aside my fear of "what if it looks really bad" and took a painting class.  It is only for one evening, and you can choose the night you want to go and the painting that you want to do.  I chose this one!  I know, it doesn't look like much yet, but I did the entire thing by myself.  The teacher showed us the strokes on his painting and I painted mine in about 3 and 1/2 hours.  I was so afraid it would be worse than everyone else's.  I was so afraid that I couldn't do it.  But I did.


This is me, filling in the background on the black and just painting.  I could not believe that it was so much fun!  How long have I denied myself chances to achieve simply because I had too much fear to even try.  Yesterday, I could never have imagined that I could ever do this.  Today I know I can.  


I am planning on doing this once a month for awhile.  It was so much fun and even if it is not perfect, I can at least tell what it is supposed to be.  That is a start, and an accomplishment.  I did something today that was beyond my fear.  As I am seeking to become more like Him, it makes me wonder how many things have held me back because I was too afraid to even try.  He is the one who gave us talents to use and enjoy.  He is the one who sends us blessings and tender mercies to share with others.  As I strive to become more like Him, I am also seeking to overcome my fears and to nurture the gifts that He has given me.

STOP

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 19 - Honor

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.




"The purpose of life 
Is not to be happy.
It is to be useful,
To be honorable,
To be compassionate,
To have it make
Some difference
That you have 
Lived and lived 
Well."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

START

I love Ralph Waldo Emerson.  What a beautiful way of expressing those things which are important.  The Bible teaches us to honor our parents, to do good the those that despitefully use you, to be kind, to be unselfish.
The world would have us believe that everything should be all about ourselves.  That our past is the fault of our parents.  That only fun is important.  That we should pursue happiness above all things.
I have learned, as I strive to become more like Him, that true happiness only comes when I am serving Him.  When I am trying to be kind, when I am compassionate, when I am useful to others.  I have learned that when I serve others, I am also serving Him.
I am happiest when I am doing the things that are right.  When I don't have to worry about the choices I am making.  I am happiest when I am with family.  I am happiest, when I am not seeking to be happy.  Instead, I have to look beyond my own needs and care about making a difference.
My life has been a life of service.  A life devoted to my family, my church, my community, my job and my friends.  Sometimes I feel very overwhelmed, then something will happen for just a moment that will change my outlook and make everything worth it.
I believe that part of honoring our parents and our ancestors comes from forgiving them.  We all make mistakes.  Heaven only knows how many I have made myself.  I know, as a mom, that I hope and pray someday my children will forgive me for my own wrongs.  I don't believe that I should deny that same forgiveness to those who have gone before.
I believe that God is the only one who can truly judge our sins.  That I don't have too.  That somehow, in a way I don't understand, all things will be made right.  I believe that if I can honor the good and forgive the bad, I will be better because of it and I will become more like Him each and every day.
To my children, I would say the best way to honor me would be to become better than I am.  To honor the things you have been taught, and the love that you have known.  To honor your God in every aspect of your life.  To become more like Him.

STOP

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 18 - Taste

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.


"We write to taste life twice,
in the moment, 
and in retrospect".
Anais Nin

START

Oh how I love this quote.  It is amazing and really reminds me why I write.  Life is amazing, and without writing, it is easier to forget the good times and to get lost in the bad.  Most of my memories of my childhood are not so good.  I really wish that I could remember good things because I know they where there, but in childhood, the hurt far outweighed the happiness.  So, I remember the hurt.  Oh how I wish that someone had taught me to write back then.
Writing is much like cooking.  When I first got married, I was 17 years old and I knew nothing of following a recipe of cooking.  My mother cooked with cans and boxes and pre made food.  I really wanted to learn to cook homemade.  
I remember my first stew.  It cooked all day and we had company for dinner.  The potatoes weren't done yet and we still crunchy.  I cooked it too low.  Everyone ate, no one complained, but my husband said, (after the company had left), please don't cook that again.
So, I didn't, but I made other things and I learned.  I used to cook amazing cinnamon rolls and sweets.  I made homemade candy and breads and pretty much any dessert you can think of.  I even got good at it.  It took years of practice and lots of failures, but I learned.  
When I married my husband now, the hardest thing to blend was the cooking.  My kids, loved my cooking.  His kids loved his cooking.  So we had to learn to blend things together into new flavors and new traditions that became our own.  
He does a lot of the cooking.  He enjoys it and I don't mind at all.  The only thing everyone insists that I have to cook is gravy.  That is the must have on Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Mom's gravy is still number one.  Like I said, I took years to perfect it. 
As an adult, I have written a lot.  I write poems, I write articles, I write about my love of God.  Because so much of my writing focuses on my testimony of the Savior and His love for me, I live it again in the words.  I live it first in my thoughts and feelings, then savor it again in the words when I write them down and finally taste my heart in the words again when I reread them.  
My hope has always been that my children will someday want to really get to know me, for something besides the recipe to gravy.  And that these parts of my life that I taste will somehow inspire them to reach just a little bit higher than they ever imagined.  

STOP

Friday, October 17, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 17 - Long

Oh yes!  It is Friday again.  Still one of my favorite times of the week.  This is the day that a bunch of us write for five minutes without worrying about whether it is just right or not.  Then we link up our posts over at Kate's Place.  This month, there are also a bunch of us that are writing for five minutes all month long, every single day.  I am really enjoying the efforts!  I hope to see you over at the link up for your very own version of Five Minute Friday.  This week, the prompt is:

LONG



Don't let something that is long gone 
continue to control you.
It is time to let it go.

START

When I was very small, I longed to be like the big kids and never need a nap.  That two hour period of time seemed forever for my small body, and I was desperately afraid I would miss something while I slept.
When I was a child, I longed to have friends.  I longed  to be liked and loved and appreciated.  I longed for people to want to be with me.  Instead, I found myself the outsider, the one that was always in fights defending myself.  The one that was picked on, the one that was bullied.
When I was a teen, I longed to be anywhere but my house.  I longed to drive and drive and never come back.  I longed for escape and sometimes found it in the pages of the books that I loved.
When I was a young adult, I longed for a husband to love me, children that would be a blessing and a real home where I was never lonely or afraid.
I always thought that life would be a long, long time.  I never realized how short it really is.  
You blink and the toddler is a child.  You yawn and the child is a teen.  You sleep and the teen is a young adult.  Life happens, time passes, it is not nearly as long as I thought. 
Now I am older and realize that I long to let the past go.  I long to forget the bad and just remember and take joy in the good.  I long to forgive and forget and put it behind me.  I long to be better than I have been before.  
I have learned that we choose those memories that we carry with us.  As we long for something else, they become more easily recalled.  As we long to forget the bad time, they become closer to the surface of our minds.  
If we don't let go of the bad, we will never find ourselves in the places we have longed to be.  I am learning to let go of all the things that have happened to me and focus on the blessings that He gives me.  I long to become more like Him and less like the past.  I long to give it up, let go and trust that He can carry all the burdens for me.  I long to belong to Him.

STOP

Now it is your turn.  What can you write in your own five minutes of fun?  Don't forget to join us over at Heading Home with Kate and link up!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Becoming like Him - Day 16 - Adjust

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.



We Can't Direct The Wind
But We Can
Adjust The Sails.

START

This is one of my favorite quotes.  I love it because it reminds me that life is all about how we adjust.  We don't control any thing that happens to us, certainly not the weather, or events, or even the feelings of others.  But we always get to choose how we adjust our sails and change our own course.
I used to have my own small sailboat and took it out on the lake from time to time.  I learned to sail, usually with one other person.  As someone who lives in Arizona, I found out quickly that you really, really want to have wind when you are out sailing.  
On a calm day, the boat can be a little hard to move, and oars are not so pleasant as a sail.  
Most of the time, you can find a wind by adjusting the sails and tacking from one side of the lake to another.  You have to be careful of the boom though, or you will end up in the water when it moves!
In a lot of ways, sailing taught me about life.  
Adjusting can be so hard.  Usually, it means to change.  For me, change is not something that I look forward to.  Actually, I tend to be a little on the pessimistic side.  I know it will probably be good for me, but still, I like the known quality about the place I am currently in. 
I am surrounded by change and adjustments.  Every.  Single.  Day.  There is no way that I can escape any of it.  If I try and stay still, the boom of life will knock me right into the waters of discouragement.  Moment by moment and step by step, everything changes.  I worry too much about the meaning of things instead of just enjoying the moment.  
I cannot direct the wind, I cannot change one part of anything that has happened in my life, but I still have power.  I have the power to choose how yesterday affects the rest of my today and my tomorrows.  I can choose to do better, to live better and to become better.  I can choose to adjust the sails.  

STOP

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 15 - Life

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.


Because, when you stop and look around, this life is pretty amazing!

START

Sometimes, I have a hard time remembering that life is for living.  It is for growing, climbing, becoming, experiencing and even for making mistakes. Heavenly Father never expected us to get everything right the first time, although we sometimes expect it of ourselves.  
One of the most important things I have learned about life is that it is the experience that counts the most.  It is trying over and over and getting up in between all the falling down.  It is becoming just a little better today than you were yesterday.  
As I seek to become more like Him, I find that I still make mistakes.  Just deciding to change, doesn't mean that I change all at once.  I still struggle to read my scriptures every day, I still sometimes forget to pray, I don't always like people who are mean to me or my children, and no matter how hard I try, I am not perfect.  
I am learning that life is pretty amazing in spite of myself.  I am learning that life is filled with ups and downs and back and forth's and a merry-go-round of emotion and trials and endings and beginnings.  It is sometimes easy to get stuck into the moments when we wish things would just change for the better.
I am also learning that getting stuck, is sometimes the thing I needed most of all. It reminds me to keep going.  It helps me to see the possibilities.  
When you think about it, that is one of the greatest things about life, the hope that our tomorrows will be even better than our today's.  The hope that change is good.  The hope that His tender mercies will be enough for even our worst sins. His hope for my life is simply that I will follow Him.  

STOP


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 14 - Away

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.


Today the prompt is:

AWAY

START

Sometimes, home seems so far away 
And I feel so alone
I want to see His face again,
I want to feel at home.
I want to hear His voice again
And feel His gentle touch.
I want to look into His eyes
And know I am enough.

I need to feel His peace right now
To know His love is near.
To have the spirit whisper soft,
Don't worry, I am here.
I need to know how much I'm loved
And that He knows my pain
I need to know that He is there
I'll see Him once again.

With faith to guide my footsteps,
And His words to touch my heart,
It isn't hard to find Him
When I try and do my part.
I fall upon my knees to pray
and plead with all my might
That His tender mercies I will find
In the darkest dark of night.

And as I pray, my heart is stilled
and peace now fills my soul,
There is no question He is near
What was broken is now whole.
His Spirit isn't far away,
I am now bathed in His light.
I only needed to acknowledge Him
And trust with all my might. 

STOP



Monday, October 13, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 13 - Work

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.

I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.


You are what you do;
Not what you say you will do.

START

Our community has a yearly day of service.  All the churches work together, all the people sign up for jobs and we get things done.  I love this day.  It is a day when differences are put aside and people just learn that they are really the same at heart.  
Usually, I am part of the road crew.  Everyone gets a vest, and a garbage bag.  We have a mile area that our group is responsible for.  With so many people working together, the entire area all the way through town gets done.  
This year, I was asked to be in charge of making cards for the military.  My husband was asked to help with the food (how does he do that???).  I have a lot of crafts at home and I bought more for the event.  Everyone had a great time making cards and writing in them for those in our town that are serving, that have served, or family members that are currently serving.  
The young women liked it so much that they want to do it later in the year as a project.  I think that is a great idea.  
After our service projects, we all met at the park for a lunch of hot dogs, chips, drinks and brownies.  I am sure that is most of the communities favorite part.  Nothing costs anyone anything.  It is a day of service to make our town look better and to bring people together.  
They have already asked me to do the cards again next year.  
What a wonderful way to come together and to get to know those of other faiths.  It is an amazing way to strengthen our community and learn what it means to be a neighbor.

STOP

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Becoming like Him - Day 10 - Five Minute Friday - Care

Just so you know, I wrote this on Friday, but I only had my tablet and it would not let me cut paste, or post.  So, it is getting published today in spite of all the problems of the week.  Today is five minute Friday.  This is where a group of us write for just five minutes without worrying whether it is just right or not.  The rules are simple.  Write for five minutes and link back over at Kate's place.  Then leave a comment for the person who linked up before you.  (or several if you choose).  Today the prompt is:
CARE



START

They come into your life so small and helpless.  With eyes that watch you and ears that listen to your songs.  They smell of milk and birth and heaven.  They win your heart with a single glance.  From the very first kick, before you have even seen them, you are hooked.  You can't wait to meet them.  You can't wait to get to know them.  You know, somewhere deep inside, that them come right from the arms of God.
It is so easy to care when they are small.  I will never understand how people could not care for an infant.  I will never understand how anyone could not care about a child.  And yet, we go on our way day by day and don't remember to care for those around us.  The man in the street, is somebody's son.  The women selling tamales door to door is someone's daughter, someone's wife and someone's mother.
Most of all, I find it hardest to care for myself.  When I remember the things that I have been through,  the mistakes that I have made, it is rather like watching and thinking of myself as an adult in a child's body.  Therefore, everything has always been my fault.  Yet, when I see a grand child the same age as I was, I would never, ever think of placing blame on their small shoulders.  Yet, I have placed that blame squarely on my own for years.
We need to care about others around us, those who struggle, those who are weeping, those who are hungry and those that are heartbroken.  But we also need to learn to care about ourselves.  We need to be able to look upon our selves with compassion and forgiveness.  We need to understand that we all make mistakes and we all hurt and we all are broken.
The Savior's love can heal our hearts and our minds.  His atonement can help us find forgiveness and compassion.  His teachings can help us find our way back when we have been lost and broken.  Because He cares, His words will always guide us home.

STOP

Now it's your turn.  Don't forget to join the rest of us over at Kate's Place at Heading Home.  I can't wait to see what you write in your own five minutes.  

Becoming Like Him - Day 12 - Rest


For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.
I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.



START

The Savior said, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).

"And he said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest".  (Exodus 33:14) 

Many of us are carrying burdens that seem too hard to bear.  Many are lost.  Many have stumbled.  Many have fallen away.  There are heartaches and heartbreaks.  There are trials of every kind.  Often, we feel alone and overwhelmed, and just plain tired.  It is times like these when I remember that the Savior did not promise that we would feel like this forever.  He actually promised us rest from our labour.  All we have to do is "Come unto Him".  
The scriptures contain many accounts of how the Savior helped those who were heavy laden.  He caused the blind to see, the deaf to hear and the lame to walk.  He healed the sick and raised the dead.  He fed the thousands and comforted the weary.  He taught of peace.  He taught of love.  He taught of kindness to both friends and strangers.  
He endured His own trials during His mortal ministry.  He was called names and beaten.  He was spit upon and mocked.  He was hung on a cross while a murderer went free.
Life is not, and never has been fair.  But I believe in Him and in His promise of rest.  The time will come when our burdens will be less sore and our hearts will be healed and our eyes shall see Him.  

STOP

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Becoming Like Him - Day 11 - Teach

For my 31 days of writing, I am linking up over at Heading Home and over at the Nester. There are several of us that are taking the 31 day writing challenge. Kate has suggested that we spend 31 days of Five minute writing. You can use the prompts or write about anything you would like, you just need to write.
I am sharing my journey for 31 days as I strive to become more like Him. My prayer is that you can find hope and peace in my words.



START

I have been teaching since I was 14 years old.  I love to teach.  I love to help others to learn the things that matter the most to me.  I haven't always been a good teacher, I had to learn what worked and what did not.  I believe that teaching is one of the most wonderful things that we are called to do.  Not all of us teach school, not all of us are mothers or fathers, not all of us teach in church, but we all come in contact with people.  We all have an opportunity to touch the lives of others.
There is a scripture in Matthew that describes teaching really well.  It says:
"Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven".  Matthew 5:19
Think about it for a minute.  We are accountable for what we teach others to do.  If we set the example of doing wrong, and encourage others to go along with us, that we are not good teachers.  But if we do what is right and teach others to do those things, than we become the teachers that God need us to be.  I think we all have chances in life to teach.  What makes a teacher truly great is that they teach by the Spirit.  They teach with compassion and kindness and love.  They teach with stories and humility.  I think they teach like the Savior.
Some of the very best teachers that I have ever had, were not rich or learned.  They were humble.  They were kind.  They were Christ-like.
It didn't even matter what religion they were, they were the ones who loved everyone, even if you weren't popular or didn't understand.  Even if you asked lots of questions and had lots of comments.  They were kind and caring.  They believed in me and taught me to believe in myself.  They taught me to be more than I thought I could every become.

Teach your children that strength 
doesn't come from what you can do,
but from overcoming the things 
you thought you couldn't.