Monday, March 21, 2011

Birthday Surprise

Let me set the scene. I was turning 23. I was still in college, was unmarried, and had not served a mission. I felt like a loser and the last thing I wanted to do in the world was celebrate my birthday. I am usually very excited about birthdays but I let it be known, no parties, no dinners, no celebrations of any kind were to be had. Enter my sisters.

My sisters decided that they would throw a surprise party but not a birthday party. It was a cheese party (because they know I love cheeses) and it was great. They had a friend take me out for a few hours and when I returned, they had me change into a fancy dress. I came out and they were all dressed fancily for my cheese party. We played games and I miraculously won every game. For each game won, I received a "prize" (really a present). They were so creative in finding a way to celebrate me without focusing on my age. I love my sisters and am so grateful for them and their support. What a blessing for me to live so close to them and have their friendship.

This year for my birthday, my family gave me another surprise cheese party. I don't have the age baggage I had the first time but it was a great surprise with my whole family present. I am so grateful for the knowledge that families are forever and so blessed to be in my family!!!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

All Is Well! All Is Well!

This has been an interesting few weeks as I have studied adversity. I can't think of a better way to bookend this thought process than to include the lyrics of a favorite hymn.

Come, come, ye Saints, no toil nor labor fear;
But with joy wend your way.
Though hard to you this journey may appear,
Grace shall be as your day.
’Tis better far for us to strive
Our useless cares from us to drive;
Do this, and joy your hearts will swell—
All is well! All is well!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Response to Adversity, cont.

Still thinking how we are supposed to respond to trials and tribulations. I was re-reading the talk that inspired this blog and felt impressed to share the last little bit of it (for the full talk, click here).

"What does the Lord expect of us with respect to our challenges? He expects us to do all we can do. He does the rest. Nephi said, "For we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do."

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Example of Overcoming Adversity

I saw this and had to post it. An amazing example of overcoming the sting of adversity. People are amazing. Love is binding. Life is eternal.

"A Son asked his father, "Dad, will you take part in a marathon with me?" The father who, despite having a heart condition, says "Yes". They went on to complete the marathon together. Father and son went on to join other marathons. The father always saying "Yes" to his son's request of going through the race together. One day, the son asked his fater, "Dad, let's join the Ironman together."

To which, his father said "Yes".

Monday, March 7, 2011

Stephanie Nielson's Adversity Response

As a follow up to the adversity post, I was thinking again about Stephanie Nielson. I think of her often when I think of adversity. She is the sister who was in a plane crash with her husband and a flight instructor when the plane crashed. The instructor was killed and she and her husband were burned severely. Stephanie was burned on 80% of her body and has had all sorts of surgeries since then. I am amazed as I read her blog and hear how she handles her trials and struggles...her but if not moments. (Click here to watch the video she taped with the Church to share her story.)

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Responding To Adversity

"As part of Heavenly Father's plan of redemption, all people experience adversity during their lifetime. Trials, disappointments, sadness, sickness, and heartache are a difficult part of life, but with the help of the Lord they can lead to spiritual growth, refinement, and progress.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Where Much Is Given

I have been thinking lately about Luke 12:48 where it states, "For unto whomsoever  much is given, much is required." As a person who has been born in America, into the Gospel, into a family with two parents that have been together 35 years, I have been given much. I have been wondering what is required to my world family. What contribution to society should I be making with all that I have been given? I am not sure of the answers yet...just doing some ponderings.