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Thursday, July 29, 2010

No! Anything but THAT!

Please! No! Not THAT!

I've been going to the same doctor my whole life. Why? Because I've lived close by him my entire life and because frankly-I don't want a bunch of people to know about, ya know...


I remember I use to get strep throat when I was younger, a lot. Well, at least for a 7 year old, 3 times a year is a lot.

"Okay Ryan, you're not quite big enough to take pills so you're going to have to have a shot."

A shot?! Are you kidding me? I don't care that I get a balloon tied to my wrist and a cheap lollipop, I don't want a shot!

So here we are, nurse walks in and tries to act like this is no big deal. (Yeah her!) I'm calm and collected until I see the needle, the source of the pain. I brace myself and then hear what sounds like an angel, "It's okay Ry, it will be over soon."

It was my mom.

We all have someone in our lives that brings comfort during times of pain. As we're going through life at times we face our own "needle",
not getting the grade we wanted, fighting with a loved one or roommate, feeling like the world is crashing in on you...needle.

Interestingly enough, we always have SOMEONE who is saying, "It's okay Ry, it will be over soon."

Or maybe you think that "someone" isn't really there for you? You think they're more like the needle and you shout,

"No! Anything but them!"

When THEM is the only thing that can save you from THAT. like the needle?

I know I don't. Ouch.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Who do you think you are?!

TJ draws better than me, Melissa plays the piano better than me, Tiffany knows how to talk to people better than me,

and Chad is...Chad. Chad = better than me.

Who do they think they are?

Truth is, we all have things we are "better at" than another.

And we have to love them for that. We love them for who they are-despite choices they make, comments they say or things they do.
I read a talk given at a BYU devotional recently by Elder Lynn G. Robbins. I liked his insight he shared using scripture:

Let’s look at the Lord’s list of behaviors showing how He loved the Church and apply it to the loving relationship that should exist between sweethearts. We find it in 1 Corinthians 13 [1 Cor. 13] and Moroni 7 [Moro. 7].

True love—charity—suffereth long.

• Is patient instead of impatient and tolerant of imperfections instead of intolerant.

• Is helpful instead of being critical of weaknesses. Charity does not criticize, is not cranky, and does not complain.

True love is kind.

• Is happy, thoughtful, helpful, interested in others, a good Samaritan, merciful, and true love gives comfort.

True love envieth not.

• Is content, frugal, and grateful for blessings; is not covetous, resentful, jealous, or greedy; avoids unnecessary debt; and is a full tithe payer. Charity is not selfish or vain, and it lives within its income.

True love is not puffed up.

• Is humble and teachable, does not seek attention, praises others, does not murmur or belittle.

True love doth not behave itself unseemly.

• Is courteous, well-mannered, reverent, respectful, and mindful, as well as clean, neat, and considerate of other’s property and feelings; is not crude, indecent, or improper.

True love seeketh not her own.

• Is tenderhearted, caring, sharing, sensitive, compassionate, generous, and united; thinks we, not I; listens; seeks to please God; is not demanding, controlling, or manipulative; does not blame; and says, “I’m sorry.”

True love is not easily provoked.

• Is forgiving, patient, calm, gentle, and respectful; is a peacemaker who does not get angry, irritable, or vengeful; is not abusive in word or deed; does not swear or quarrel.

True love thinketh no evil.

• Is not judgmental but respectful and trusting, pure and obedient; does not think evil of others by gossiping or finding fault; is modest in thought, dress, and speech; is not deceitful, cruel, or dishonest; avoids inappropriate music, pornography, and dirty jokes.

True love rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth.

• Has a temple recommend and wants an eternal marriage; stays close to the Spirit through regular scripture study and prayer; is responsible; is not light-minded.

True love beareth all things.

• Is bold and patient with affliction and trials (this does not mean that abuse victims should silently bear cruelty or follow a spouse who is disobedient to God); is grateful; does not insult others; is not defensive, irritable, touchy, or grouchy; is not weary in well-doing.

True love believeth all things.

• Is cheerful; sees the eternal potential of a spouse; makes the least of the worst and the most of the best; shows by actions that there is a firm belief in eternal families; holds fast to the iron rod; has goals, dreams, a vision, and plans for a happy, successful life together.

True love hopeth all things.

• Is an optimist who looks for the best; praises, builds up, and expresses affection.

True love endureth all things.

• Doesn’t complain or murmur, is steadfast, accepts responsibility, and is industrious while showing initiative.

True love never faileth.

The Lord is describing a love that deals with our behavior. And behavior isn’t something you fall into or out of. Behavior is something you control and decide. Agency is involved here.
—Elder Lynn G. Robbins

Love is a choice. It's not something you expect or deserve, it is an action.

Or maybe you feel you're better than everyone else?

Who do you think you are?

Friday, July 16, 2010

Keep the change

"The total," said the cashier, "Is $19.97.

I look in my wallet, all I have is a $20.

"Keep the change." I say.

As I walk away feeling somewhat charitable.

I like money. I always have. It was the first thing I felt like I really understood how to do in the roller coaster ride of elementary school.

Especially when it came to counting change.
Quarters, dimes, nickles, it didn't matter.

Dad step out of the way, I don't need help with this math!

We all love change. That shiny, noisy, college kids scrape for it in the couch cushins...


I was recently thinking about how I grew up. How I've learned, how I've improved,

And how I've changed.

I love the anonymous quote, "People are in favor of progress, it's the change they don't like."

I agree with that. We can count change all day long but being older now and seeing how "grown-ups" are, I've realized how true that quote is.

We don't like change.

We don't like getting into a relationship, applying for a new job, making new friends, moving new places, why?

The change scares us.

The reality is, that's why we're here. We're here to learn. If you Google the rules of being mortal it's rule number....7 or something.

We're here to learn how to change.

I just hope when all is said and done, and God looks at me and says,

"Did you keep the change that I offered you?"

I can look Him straight in the eye and say,


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

It's nothing...right?

Flying into Albuquerque New Mexico is like nothing you have ever seen before.

No, seriously, it's just nothing.

But it was good to see Dustin get married, and to see how happy he was.

Having been in the temple and just having a lot of time to ponder, I thought about a quote from a book I'm reading called, "The Holy Secret", by James Ferrell.

"Perhaps you have become too attached to activities or pursuits that have become too precious. More precious, even, than what is holy."

That always strikes me in my "I should change" cord. How many times have we let our activities overtake those things that would bring us a little closer?

Closer to serving others, calling a friend, smiling at one who is downtrodden?

Closer to the One who can change a heart.

"Two roads diverge into a wood and I,
I take the one less traveled by,
And that made all the difference."

So what activities or pursuits are too precious for you?

And for me?

It may seem like nothing. But it is something.

And that change will make all the difference.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Stub yourself

You can't teach an old dog new tricks.

If you know me well, you know that I can be loud, funny, sometimes put my foot in my mouth, loving, crazy, plays with illegal firewor---

But, there's something I realized recently that I've intrigued myself with...

I'm stubborn.

I realized after talking to a good friend the other day that I am very set in my ways, and I won't change.

I won't change the things in my life that I feel will hurt me later on down the road if I do change them.
  1. I won't change my dating standards. I'm getting married in the Temple, no questions asked.
  2. I won't stop finding ways to be better today than I was yesterday. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is here so we can "Try a little harder, to be a little better."
  3. I won't back down from something or someone that brings more joy to my life. Even if I'm a little scared.
  4. I won't stop listening...Ever.
  5. I can't stop smiling... Ever.
Find those things in your life that you feel you should stick to.

Then be a little stubborn about 'em.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Become a tree hugger...I dare you!

I dare you....

I'm not going to short change this, or over sell this in any way, shape or form.

I want to be a tree hugger.

I read something recently that really made me think, and I loved how the writer put an interesting "enviormentalist twist" into it.

It's titled, "Save the Earthlings"

About 20 years ago John Javna wrote a nifty little book that became sort of a handbook for do-it-yourself environmentalists back in the day. It’s called “50 Simple Things You Can Do to Help Save the Earth.” For this new movement of social environmentalism I offer (with a tip of the hat to Javna) “10 Simple Things You Can Do to Help Save the Earthlings”:

1. Recycle Kindness. When someone does something nice for you, consider it a challenge to do something nice for someone else. And when someone is mean to you, repay them with kindness (trust me – it’s the best reaction. You’ll be surprised how much a little kindness can improve a relationship. And even if it doesn’t, you’ll have the satisfaction of driving the other person absolutely nuts. Either way, you win).

2. Plant a Kiss. Preferably on someone you love. Or at least know.

3. Conserve Water. Help dry a neighbor’s tear.

4. Stop Air Pollution. Stifle those hurtful, discouraging words. And if you simply must get them out of your system, write them down on a piece of paper and then rip it into tiny bits. You can even throw them on the ground and stomp around on them if you want to. It’ll make you feel better without having to make anyone else feel worse. (Oh, and don’t forget to clean up those bits of paper – for recycling, of course.)

5. Consume Less. Especially things that hurt you and the people around you. You’re doing yourself a favor if you eliminate tobacco, alcohol and drug abuse from your life. And I promise, the world will seem to be a sweeter, more pleasant place. Eventually.

6. Get Tough on Polluters. Refuse to watch television programs or movies that waste your time, drain your energy and make your brain go limp.

7. Don’t Use Plastic. If you can’t afford to pull out the green stuff when the cashier asks “Cash or charge?” – do without. Indebtedness can be devastating to your social health, and it’s never as easy to eliminate as you think it’s going to be. Just ask President Obama.

8. Study Global Warming. If we all became a little warmer to each other and more tolerant of other people and their customs, religions and definitions of the word “football,” maybe we wouldn’t have to worry so much about defending ourselves against prejudice and the ultimate Greenhouse Effect: nuclear conflict.

9. Garden Organically. But keep the ol’ compost pit in the yard where it belongs. No need to allow the . . . you know . . . stuff to pile up in the middle of your personal or professional relationships, where all it will fertilize is uncertainty and mistrust. Be open, honest and candid, and let the “chips” fall where they may. So to speak.

10. Take a Stand. You’ll be surprised to find out how invigorating it can be to stand up for something you really believe in. Of course, first you have to decide what that “something” is – which can be an exciting adventure all by itself.

But do it now. Because of Earth Day. Because you care. Because you want to make the world a better place. And because . . . well . . . “You don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone.”

I hope we can all keep finding ways to improve our "tree hugging" attitudes.

C'mon...I dare you.