Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Family Matters!!

This is one of my favorite "Mormon-Ads". 

This is a note to myself: Sometimes it's easy to lose sight of what's important in life.  I don't want to pass through this life and then realize that I missed out on what was most important-family relationships.  If we desire a close relationship with our children, then we MUST spend quality time with them on a regular basis.  That effort has to be made, regardless of how busy we are.  How many times do our kids hear us say, "Not right now...maybe later."  Too many times, that "later" never comes. I am SO guilty of this!! I need to learn how to stop what I'm doing, and show my kids that they are important to me by making the time for them. And if I truly am too busy for this, then I need to take a step back, take a real good look at my life and reprioritize.  Too many times, our days are filled with clutter.  Our days might even be filled with "good" things, but not filled with the most important things. In the end we will realize that so much of what we spend our time doing each day doesn't even matter.  What will matter? Family! That's what will matter!

Family Matters!!   

"If you want your children to turn out well, spend twice as much time with them and half as much money on them."

-Abigail Van Buren

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

What are YOU thankful for?

How grateful I am for all of my many blessings. I have so many wonderful blessings in my life.  Even so, it's not always easy to have a grateful heart...to count my many blessings.  Too many times I focus on the things that go wrong in my life.  It's so easy to dwell on my trials, challenges and my imperfections.  It takes effort to change focus and to dwell on the positive.  But I know that when I  make that effort to be grateful and to express gratitude to my Heavenly Father and to my fellow beings, I AM happier.  When my heart is filled with gratitude, even amongst the trials in life, life becomes easier, more enjoyable, and more peaceful.  Who doesn't want more of these things in their life? I definitely do!  Gratitude is a choice. 

"Gratitude is a mark of a noble soul and a refined character. We like to be around those who are grateful. They tend to brighten all around them. They make others feel better about themselves. They tend to be more humble, more joyful, more likable." (Joseph B. Wirthlin)

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Why Does Heavenly Father Love Us?

An excerpt from an Oct. 2009 General Conference talk by Dieter F. Uchtdorf (2nd counselor in the first presidency) entitled, "The Love of God"

Think of the purest, most all-consuming love you can imagine. Now multiply that love by an infinite amount—that is the measure of God’s love for you.

God does not look on the outward appearance. I believe that He doesn’t care one bit if we live in a castle or a cottage, if we are handsome or homely, if we are famous or forgotten. Though we are incomplete, God loves us completely. Though we are imperfect, He loves us perfectly. Though we may feel lost and without compass, God’s love encompasses us completely.

He loves us because He is filled with an infinite measure of holy, pure, and indescribable love. We are important to God not because of our résumé but because we are His children. He loves every one of us, even those who are flawed, rejected, awkward, sorrowful, or broken. God’s love is so great that He loves even the proud, the selfish, the arrogant, and the wicked.

What this means is that, regardless of our current state, there is hope for us. No matter our distress, no matter our sorrow, no matter our mistakes, our infinitely compassionate Heavenly Father desires that we draw near to Him so that He can draw near to us.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Mormon Myths

Last week at school, my son Parker (who is in 5th grade) was talking to some friends about Halloween. One of the girls knew that Parker was a Mormon and was really surprised that Parker would be celebrating Halloween. Parker assured her that Mormons do indeed celebrate Halloween. She then started talking about some of the other things that Mormons supposedly can’t do. She said that Mormons aren’t allowed to eat meat, and Mormons aren’t allowed to drink soda.

That got me thinking about the many Mormon Myths that seem to continually circulate around. Some of these myths have been around for AGES! Mormons actually get a kick out of some of the myths that we hear. It would take too long to go through all of the myths, but I’ll mention a few.

A Few Mormon Myths:

*Mormons don’t celebrate Halloween-False. Here are my kids in their Halloween costumes this year. :)

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*Mormons aren’t allowed to eat meat-False.

*Mormons aren’t allowed to drink soda-False. I think that this misunderstanding comes from the fact that many Mormons don’t drink caffeinated pop. We all know how addicting caffeinated drinks can be, and many Mormons choose not to drink caffeinated pop. However, there is no rule against drinking soda pop-caffeinated or not.

*Mormons practice polygamy-False. With all of the Mormon polygamy jokes that go around, it’s no wonder that people believe this. Here’s an example from Saturday Night Live:

“According to a new study, Mormon teenagers fare better than regular teenagers when it comes to staying out of trouble and doing well in school…Although, you would too if you had two Moms yelling at you.” (Saturday Night Live)

It’s actually a pretty funny joke. It made me laugh. However, the problem is that jokes like this encourage the false belief that we practice polygamy.

*Mormons aren’t Christian-False. Like I said, Mormons get a kick out of most of the ridiculous myths that go around about us. But this one hurts. Although many people will try to convince you otherwise, we are ABSOLUTELY Christian. Jesus Christ is the center of our religion. We use the King James Version of the Bible just as other Christian churches do. We believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the Savior of the world. It is only through Him that we can obtain salvation. There is much more that I could say about this subject, but I will leave that for another time.

The truth is that Mormons are much more mainstream than some people realize. No, we don’t drink alcohol or smoke, and we may have some beliefs that are different than other religions, but we’re not as different as some people believe.

This subject reminded me of a quote I once heard:

“Falsehood will travel the world, while Truth is just getting its boots on”

Monday, October 26, 2009

Primary Presentation

My 2 boys participated in a “Primary Presentation” at church yesterday. “Primary” is the organization in our church for children ages 3-11. Towards the end of every year, the Primary kids put on a program where they share with us some of the things they have learned throughout the year. Every child has a small speaking part and the kids sing all of the songs that they learned throughout the year. The theme in Primary this year was, "My Eternal Family".

I was so proud of Parker (11 yrs) and Dallin (5 yrs). They both did such a good job on their speaking parts. They had their parts memorized and said it with confidence. It’s so fun to see all the kids get up in front of the whole church congregation to say their parts at the pulpit. They are so brave!!

Parker’s part was:

“One of President Monson’s favorite quotes is, ‘The family that prays together stays together.’ The Prophet has asked us to pray together as a family because it helps to unite families. I can set an example and help my family to have family prayer. When we have regular family prayer, our family is happier and kinder to each other. Praying as a family helps me feel safe and helps me feel close to my family and to my Heavenly Father."

Dallin’s part was:

“The Family Proclamation also says that, Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ.”

It was so cute to hear him say those big words!

As I mentioned before, the family is an integral part of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The Family Proclamation declares to the world our beliefs in regards to the family. To read the proclamation, CLICK HERE.

**Thanks to all of the fabulous Primary leaders who worked so hard in putting together the primary program.  It was wonderful!

Sunday, October 18, 2009


The other night, Stan and I watched the movie "Fireproof" (starring Kirk Cameron). I really enjoyed it. It's a low budget film and yes a little cheesy in parts but the story is enjoyable and well worth watching. I believe that it was put out by the Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany, Georgia. It consisted of an all-volunteer cast, and mostly volunteer crew. Every married couple needs to watch this show. We all need to "Fireproof" our marriages.

Our church believes that, "...marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God and that the family is central to the Creator's plan for the eternal destiny of His children." (Family Proclamation).  Of all relationships, the marriage relationship is the most important. We all know however that marriage can be a challenge and it takes consistent hard work on the part of both partners. Divorce has become so prevalent in this day in age, and it can happen to anyone. Although there are cases where divorce is the best decision, this movie shows us that divorce can be preventable. In so many cases the culprit is selfishness. It’s so easy to focus on our own needs over our spouse’s needs. But I think it’s when we decide to unconditionally love our spouse (despite all the things they do that drive us crazy!), and focus on their needs that we find real fulfillment in marriage. I can attest that it’s not easy. It’s something that I continually have to work on, but I know that it is worth it.

I wonder how many marriages could have been saved if they had taken on “The Love Dare”?

Many of you have probably already seen this show, but if you haven’t take a look at the trailer.

"Don't treasure up past wrongs, reprocessing them again and again.  In a marriage relationship, festering is destructive; forgiving is divine.  Plead for the guidance of the Spirit of the Lord to forgive wrongs . . . , to overcome faults, and to strengthen relationships." (Dallin H. Oaks)

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Family Relationships

I'm so grateful for the strong emphasis that is placed on families in our church.  The family is central to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Family relationships can be a struggle sometimes and requires a lot of effort, but life's greatest joys can be found within the family. 

For many years, the church has produced "Mormon commercials".  You may have even seen one on TV.  These commercials promote healthy family relationships.  They are so much fun to watch.  I'm sure that I will be posting many of them in the future.  Here's one that I really like.

What is the official name of our church?

I mentioned in my blog heading that one of the purposes of this blog is to try to clarify some of the misconceptions about our church…and believe me, there are MANY misconceptions! I don’t want to just stand by as others inaccurately define who we are. Through this blog I hope to clearly explain who we are and what we believe.

Well, what better place to start than the name of our church? What is the official name of our church? I had to chuckle when I heard about one particular recipient of humanitarian aid during the Katrina disaster that remarked, “There were two groups who really made a difference, The Latter-Day Saints and the Mormons.” I chuckle because The Latter-Day Saints and the Mormons are not two different groups…they are one in the same. Sometimes we are called “Mormons”, and sometimes we are called “Latter-Day Saints” or “LDS” for short. Although these titles are correct, the official name of our church is 
“The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints”.