Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Do a Barrel Roll!

    So whenever I think of my Nintendo 64 there are a few games that will always stick out to me. One of them being Star Fox 64. That game was awesome. My brother got it for Christmas one year and we spent a good amount of time playing it. It didn't take long that day to have the phrase "Do a barrel roll" embedded in my memory forever.
    Whenever Fox is in trouble Peppy is right there to help him out, but with the same advice every time. No matter what it is always "do a barrel roll!" At first it bugged me but then I figured out how to actually do a barrel roll and guess what. IT WORKS! Sometimes whenever somebody repeats something over and over it is for one of two reasons.
1. They want to annoy you.
2. It is something important.
I really don't think that Peppy is trying to just annoy Fox here. As his mentor and friend, Peppy cares about him and wants to see him through it safely. So he gives him the best advice he can, do a barrel roll.
    Can you think of times whenever someone has repeated stuff to you over and over? Because I sure can. Every six months we have the chance to listen to a prophet and apostles at General Conference. For two weekends every year we can listen to inspired men give us advice for the challenges all of us are facing. Every six months it seems that the basis of their messages are the same. Why is that? Because it is important! 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The Mega Mel Burger

Question. What do you call one and a half pounds of ground beef, a pound of bacon, a quarter pound of cheese, and lots of lettuce and tomatoes on a bun?

Introducing the Mega Mel Burger
Does this make you hungry?
    Located just 1.5 miles from my home is a little restaraunt called Mel's Country Cafe. Home of the Mega Mel Burger and a favorite place for Mormon missionaries to get some grub. The Mega Mel Burger is one of those things that if you can eat it then you get your name on the wall a t-shirt and the whole thing for free. The rules are pretty simple. The official rules from their website are

  1. If you leave anything on your plate, you will be disqualified
  2. If anyone takes anything off your plate, you will be disqualified
  3. you must be able to walk and talk after eating the Mega Mel Burger
  4. If you get sick at any time, you will be disqualified
  5. You have 2 hours to eat the Mega Mel Burger
  6. We will stop you from eating if at any time we feel you are going to get sick
  7. The most important thing is to remember that the Mega Mel Burger is a fun event at Mel's Country Cafe, so please have fun with it.
    Notice how many of them are to protect you. These rules are just like the commandments that we have been given from God. They aren't to restrict or hinder us, but they are for our good. The Prophet Joseph Smith taught: "God has designed our happiness. … He never will institute an ordinance or give a commandment to His people that is not calculated in its nature to promote that happiness which He has designed."

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Who Let the Cows Out?

    I'm sure when I say "Who let the dogs out" there is a good chance you think of that song from the Baha Men back in the early 2000's. Weird Al soon did a parody called "Who let the cows out." That's about the time my parents bought our property and the cows that came along with it. One of the new things we got to experience was the horror when somebody left the gate open to the pasture. I don't know how many times we had to rescue the cows who were playing chicken with cars on our road. We soon realized the need to double check that the gate was closed because the cows were quick to discover any mistake.
    After a few years of trying to get a garden going we decided that we needed to build a fence to keep out the deer and cows from eating all the plants. It took a few months and lots of work. About 50 post-holes and posts were set. Several hundred feet of fencing was strung. A few set backs happened, like when digging one of the corner post holes we hit the main water line to our house. But we finally had it done. About half an acre was completely surrounded with a 12 foot fence. Nothing could get to our garden... Well that's what we thought.
    One day that spring I went out and found 4 of our cows munching on the fresh grass and plants inside the the garden. By the time I got them chased out it was too late. Our garden that we had spent many hours working on was destroyed simply because somebody had forgotten to close the gate.
    Many people are the same way. We go to church, we read our scriptures, we say our prayers, and we serve others. We put in so much time and effort trying to build our fences but then leave many gates wide open. Bad music, video games, TV shows, movies, books, and countless other things can let Satan into our lives and hinder our spiritual growth. Are you leaving any open? You better double check.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

God is no Fair-Weather Fan

    Alright. So as missionaries we don't watch T.V. or anything of that sort which means we pretty much say goodbye to sports for these two years on our missions. But people still talk about them. When I tell them where I'm from and what school I go to some people are all too quick to bag on my teams, especially since some of them have not had the best seasons recently. Some people would give up and say they are fans of other teams that are actually winning. We like to call them bandwagon fans. Every team has them. I remember back in 2005 when the Astros made a run for the world series. Last year everybody was always talking about BYU's Jimmer Fredette and the awesome
season they were enjoying in Provo. Games were hard to get tickets to. But for some teams, the tickets were about as valuable as toilet paper. Good thing God doesn't work like that. No matter what, God loves all of us. If we mess up, we can always count on him being there for us. It's pretty cool.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Hey Hoser, You're Going the Wrong Way!

The area left of the red line was where we covered.

   So on June 6, 2009, yours truly graduated from high school. Quite a few kids spent the next few weeks enjoying their newly found "freedom." But for me, two days later I started working as a pest control technician. I was an exterminator. Sounds exciting right? Well I actually did get some fun stories from it, but now is not the time to share. Anyways, with the office I worked from, we covered the western side of Houston and I was expected to get anywhere in that area. So I bought a GPS.
    That thing was great, but I did get frustrated with it sometimes. It took me to where I needed to go and if I was going the wrong way it let me know. I once let my brother borrow it and when I got it back, it started talking like a Canadian. (Don't get me wrong, I do love Canadians. My grandma is from there.) I turned the wrong way and it said "Hey hoser, you're going the wrong way!" Also, one time I heard it moo. It caught my attention so I looked at it and it showed that I was speeding. 
    It was a lot like my scriptures I have, except my scriptures are in older English, not Canadian. Whenever I read them I can receive answers as to where I'm supposed to be going. I can also get a reminder of what I'm not supposed to be doing, like when I was speeding. It didn't always work like I wanted it to, sometimes it took me on a route that I thought was pointless. Overall though it really helped me get where I was going and get a good paycheck. The scriptures are a little bit better. The directions they give us are reliable.    

Friday, October 14, 2011

The Tree of Blue Bell?

     I must say, Texas is great. There are countless reasons why I say that but right now I'm just going to focus on one of them. Blue Bell ice cream. The original creamery is located in Brenham, Texas which is only about an hour north of Houston. This stuff is the best. In fact its so good that George Bush had it shipped to the white house. I did some checking and you can have it sent to you too.
    In the Book of Mormon there is a story about the Tree of Life. It symbolically represents our life here on Earth. In Lehi's dream, he was faithful and was able to experience the fruit from the tree of life. The path was not easy but he prevailed. He said: 
And as I partook of the fruit thereof it filled my soul with exceedingly great joy; wherefore, I began to be desirous that my family should partake of it also; for I knew that it was desirable above all other fruit. (1 Nephi 8:12)
Lehi wanted his family to experience it as well, but sadly two of his sons would not stay on the path. They had to choose that for themselves.
    The whole story reminds me of Blue Bell. I always want to share it with others, but because of its limited availability it is only available in certain southern states. Unless people drive or fly the long, sometimes very boring drive, distance from wherever they are at to a store that sells Blue Bell, they will never be able to experience it.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

What a Smart Donkey

    I saw this on facebook and thought I would share. One day a farmer's donkey fell down into a well. The animal cried piteously for ...hours as the farmer tried to figure out what to do. Finally, he decided the animal was old, and the well needed to be covered up anyway; it just wasn't worth it to retrieve the donkey.
    He invited all his neighbors to come over and help him. They all grabbed a shovel and began to shovel dirt into the well. At first, the donkey realized what was happening and cried horribly. Then, to everyone's amazement he quieted down.
    A few shovel loads later, the farmer finally looked down the well. He was astonished at what he saw. With each shovel of dirt that hit his back, the donkey was doing something amazing. He would shake it off and take a step up.
    As the farmer's neighbors continued to shovel dirt on top of the animal, he would shake it off and take a step up. Pretty soon, everyone was amazed as the donkey stepped up over the edge of the well and happily trotted off!
    Life is going to shovel dirt on you, all kinds of dirt. The trick to getting out of the well is to shake it off and take a step up. Each of our troubles is a steppingstone. We can get out of the deepest wells just by not stopping, never giving up! Shake it off and take a step up.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Honesty, More Precious Than Beer.

    Lets rewind to 1983. It was well before my time. But that year a great movie came out called Strange Brew. The movie follows the adventures of Bob and Doug McKenzie. A couple of jobless brothers who run into a problem when they blow their dad's beer money. They hatch a plan to try and get the local beer store to give them free beer by placing a mouse in a beer bottle. But the store doesn't buy it and makes them take it up to the brewery instead.
    Bob and Doug should have stopped the fib there, but instead they insisted on taking it further trying to avoid the consequences. That leads to a lot of problems and some near death experiences. Now we can learn a couple lessons from their troubles.
  1. Drinking is bad. You can learn more about that with the Word of Wisdom
  2. Honesty IS the best policy.
    I don't know how many times I have been faced with he choice to take responsibility for my actions or try to come up with some plan to get out of it. They do end up making it into a good situation though which is the subject of one of my previous blogs. But it would have been a whole lot easier, and much safer if they had just stuck to telling the truth.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

God Love Me, He Loves You Too

    God is our Heavenly Father, and despite what some people say, God loves each and every one of us. Even the worst of sinners. One of the ways that we know this is because of his willingness to send his son, Jesus Christ, to the earth to pay the price for every one of our sins.
 16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
 17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. (John 3:16-17)
    We can communicate with our Heavenly Father through prayer. He wants us to pray to him. Our prayers can be answered through various means including the Holy Ghost, other people, and the scriptures.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

10 Years Later

    Like many people, I remember exactly what I was doing on September 11, 2011. My sister was the first person that told me anything had happened as she picked me up from school that afternoon. I don't really think I was old enough to understand how the events of that day would change my life, but now I do. Victor Guzman, a survivor of 9/11, shares his story in this video with how the events changed his life. He said "Since 9/11 my life has never been the same. It's actually better."
The apostle Paul wrote:
 And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;
 And patience, experience; and experience, hope: (Romans 5:3-4)
We should all follow the example of Victor and use the words of Paul. They both had struggles in their life, but that gave them hope. They turned something bad into something great.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Don't Use It, You Lose It

    A few days ago I was getting ready for the day and I went to get my hair gel but I couldn't find it. I looked everywhere and still couldn't find it. I had that Veggie Tales song stuck in my head. That one that Larry sings about losing his hair brush. But I never actually found it. It had been a couple days since I used it. Then that saying popped in my head. You don't use it, you lose it.
    This is a principle that Christ taught in the Bible with one of his many parables. In the parable of the talents there is a man who had three servants. He gave the first five talents, the second two talents, and the third servant one talent. The first servant went out and using the five talents his master had given him, he earned five more. The second servant did the same and earned two more, doubling what he had. The third servant did not. Afraid of losing the one talent, he buried it. When the three servants reported back to the master he was pleased with the first two but not the third. The master took his one talent away. (Matt 25:13-30)
    Each of us have been given great gifts from Heavenly Father and we should lose them. If we lose those gifts, we can't replace them at Wal-Mart.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Footprints in the sand

    I have always loved the poem "Footprints in the Sand." I am sure many of you have read it before, but it has always been one of my favorite poems.

One night I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord. Many scenes from my life flashed across the sky.
In each scene I noticed footprints in the sand. Sometimes there were two sets of footprints, other times there was one only.
This bothered me because I noticed that during the low periods of my life, when I was suffering from anguish, sorrow or defeat, I could see only one set of footprints, so I said to the Lord,
“You promised me Lord,
that if I followed you, you would walk with me always. But I have noticed that during the most trying periods of my life there has only been one set of footprints in the sand.
Why, when I needed you most, have you not been there for me?”
The Lord replied, “The years when you have seen only one set of footprints, my child, is when I carried you.”
   It reminds me of a saying: Anything is possible for two people, as long as one of them is the lord.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

A Most Excellent Adventure

    I've been asked several times what my favorite movie is. It has to be Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure. For those of you who have sadly never seen it, here's what Wikipedia has got to say about it:
 Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure is a 1989 American science fiction–comedy buddy film and the first film in the Bill & Ted franchise in which two metalhead slackers travel through time in order to assemble a menagerie of historical figures for their high school history presentation.
If it sounds awesome to you and you haven't seen it, watch it as soon as you get a chance. You won't regret it. It is so cool, they even made a breakfast cereal for it.
Told you they made a cereal

    So in the movie Bill and Ted are a couple of high school slackers, but their potential is huge. The "future dude" Rufus starts the movie off by saying Hi, welcome to the future. San Dimas, California, 2688. And I'm telling you it's great here. The air is clean, the water's clean, even the dirt, it's clean. Bowling averages are way up, mini-golf scores are way down. And we have more excellent water slides than any other planet we communicate with. I'm telling you this place is great! But it almost wasn't. You see, 700 years ago, the two great ones, ran into a few problems. So now I have to travel back in time to help them out. If I should fail to keep these two on the correct path, the basis of our society will be in danger. Don't worry, it'll all make sense. I'm a professional. 700 years in the future they are referred to as the great ones, at the time of the movie they are just a couple of kids who are about to fail out of high school. Something changed in them.
    The scriptures have many stories of people changing. Saul of Tarsus was originally dedicated to the persecution of the early Christians but after an amazing conversion he became one of the most influential missionaries of his time. In the Book of Mormon it tells the story of Alma the younger who had a similar experience to Paul's. He grew up trying to tear down the church but he later became an excellent missionary. A missionary by the name of Elder Holbrook had a similar change. You can read about his story in his blog titled Changes. One of my best friends from home had a similar experience. Its amazing to see what kind of changes can happen to someone, especially when they have God on their side. Through the cleansing power of Jesus Christ's atonement, anybody can change from not so good, to amazing. 

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Papa Sabin

    Well Father's Day is coming up shortly. So its my dad's turn to hear me talk about him. He raised me to adulthood. I still have a tough time thinking that legally I am an adult, but he got me there. He was always concerned about my safety. 
    The Family: A Proclamation to the World states: Parents have a sacred duty to rear their children in love and righteousness, to provide for their physical and spiritual needs, and to teach them to love and serve one another, observe the commandments of God, and be law-abiding citizens wherever they live. Husbands and wives—mothers and fathers—will be held accountable before God for the discharge of these obligations.
My dad and Caitlin,
his first granddaughter
    Well I think he's done his best. One time several years back he bought a Honda 300ex four-wheeler. Its one of those sport ones. After about a week or so I went out to go ride it and it was sitting on the four-wheeler jack with all of the wheels off of it. The lug nuts were no where to be found. I guess that was his way of protecting me from myself. He's always taught me to serve others and to work hard. He's taught me to lead by example. Whenever he asked me to do something he would be right there with me digging holes, laying bricks, or whatever he felt like working on at the time.
    I could keep going but I'm about out of time. So to sum it all up, my dad is awesome. When I have kids I hope I can do close to the job he did.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Storms of Life

Hurricane Ike from space
    So this last week in Helena I felt a little tempted to start  building an ark. But seriously it rained a lot and with that rain and the melting snow there came a lot of flooding. It reminded me of when Hurricane Ike hit Houston back in 2008. After the storm hit there was a long road of cleanup ahead. The storm caused the biggest power outage in Texas history with well over two million homes losing power. Mine was one of those. Luckily we were prepared with a generator so we were able to see some of the news Saturday night. I still remember seeing pictures of the destruction on Galveston Island. Along the beach there were many houses lost and you could see the remains of what once stood there. But occasionally you would see a lone house still standing amidst the destruction. They had a solid foundation.
The lone house after Ike hit
    The idea of having a solid foundation is a principle that my parents have taught me, especially when building something. When we built the road to our house, the driver of the concrete truck asked if we were planning on having semi-trucks run on it. The strength of the entire structure depends on the strength of the foundation. So if we are to be spiritually strong, how should we build our foundation? The answer to that comes from one of my favorite scriptures in the Book of Mormon. It is a father teaching his sons.
And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall. -Helaman 5:12
    We have to have a solid foundation if we are to withstand the trials or storms that we will face in life. Its not if we will face them, but rather when we will face them. How will you weather them?

Friday, May 27, 2011

Will You Be Prepared?

     Whenever I hear the phrase "Be Prepared" several things go through my mind. Many memories of my seven years in Boy Scouts go through my mind. Like the time we went on an overnight backpacking trip and planned to sleep under the stars... It hailed on us. Needless to say I learned alot about being prepared in scouts. Something else that comes to mind is that song from The Lion King. If you've seen the movie you probably know the one that I'm talking about. Another thing that comes to mind though is the parable of the ten virgins:
    Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut. Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not. Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh. (Matthew 25:1-13 KJV)
    Recently there was a lot of talk about judgement day coming. Harold Camping's prophecy was that it would happen on May 21, 2011. Well we're all still here so clearly that was not true. There is another well known prediction that the end of the world is 2012. There was even a movie titled 2012 going off of this idea. Personally, I don't have any inclination towards any of the dates people have put out there for the end to come. Though the Bible is clear in telling us that nobody will know the time when Christ will come again, we do know that it is going to come. As it says in Joshua, we must choose who we will serve today. (Joshua 24:15 KJV) We've got to be prepared for when Christ will come.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

My Mom

My family
     Well I'm going with a cliche blog today. Being Mother's Day tomorrow I just wanted to talk about my mom. So lets look at some of what my mom has had to deal with because of me. It was never my goal to be a trouble child, in fact to most people I wasn't. But just because you don't cause trouble doesn't mean you won't cause stress to someone that cares about you as much as your mother.
    We can start now and go backwards. Just over a year ago I left on my mission. From the day I got home from BYU to the day I went into the MTC was exactly 2 weeks. Those two weeks were pretty crazy. In the midst of it I got my wisdom teeth pulled, my little brother had his eagle court of honor, I had to get everything put together for my two year mission, and my mom had to prepare to say goodbye to me for those two years. (Some would say that's a blessing to her but she misses me. I know it.) Through it all there was my mom. Being awesome. Was she stressed? It was a crazy time, who wouldn't be? But she didn't let it get her down.
    Lets rewind another little while to high school. I had fun, I thought I was pretty good at the time. But looking back I can see way to many instances of causing my mom grief that didn't need to happen. Like when I got my truck stuck. You can read about that in an earlier blog called Tow Trucks. Through it all she dealt with me.
    I could keep going but I think I've covered my point that mom's are awesome, especially mine. I sure do love her. In the words of Forrest Gump, that's all I have to say about that.

Friday, May 6, 2011

A Fight for Right.

    So even though I don't watch the news while I'm on my mission, I've still been updated on world news through everybody we see. That means Sunday night I heard about the death of Osama Bin Laden. It has prompted me to write my thoughts on war.
    The Book of Mormon is one of my favorite books. If you are sincere about it you can learn so much from it. One of the many things I have learned from it has been a basis for my thoughts on war. I won't be giving my opinion on the multiple conflicts around the world today but this is just what I have learned about war in general. If you have read the Book of Mormon then you know that it contains several accounts about war. The most concentrated account about it is found in the book of Alma chapter 43. Captain Moroni is a central character in this segment of the book.
    Chapter 46 is the chapter that I want to start with. Amalickiah is described as a "large and strong man." The Nephite people were governed by a group of judges, but Amalickiah wanted to overthrow the government and become king.  And now it came to pass that when Moroni, who was the chief commander of the armies of the Nephites, had heard of these dissensions, he was angry with Amalickiah. And it came to pass that he rent his coat; and he took a piece thereof, and wrote upon it— In memory of our God, our religion, and freedom, and our peace, our wives, and our children—and he fastened it upon the end of a pole. (Alma 46:11-12)
    This is what is known as the "Title of Liberty." Moroni then took it to all the people and encouraged them to fight for the things he had written on the title of liberty. With Moroni, I believe we should fight for God, our religion, and freedom, and our peace, our wives, and our children

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Stop Signs and Traffic Lights.

”stop    One thing I have noticed since being on my mission is the uncontrolled intersections. In every town I have been there is at least one uncontrolled intersection. Two roads crossing without any stop signs, stop lights, or even yield signs. I'm sure they are all over the world but I just haven't noticed them until now. It may be because I'm new at it but I do not like those roads. Though annoying to some people, the stop signs and all the other laws are to keep us safe. 
    Just how we have traffic laws to keep us safe while we are on the road, we have the commandments from God that keep us spiritually safe. As an outsider looking in they may look like a hindrance, just as somebody viewing a kite flying, may say that the string is keeping the kite from flying higher. But as the kite without the string will inevitably fall, people who don't follow the commandments will fall as well.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Great Outdoors

Sunset over Dickey Lake, MT
September 19, 2010
   One of the things that my family did every summer was to take at least one family vacation. You can make it an awesome vacation for a decent price when you go to the great outdoors. So we did that quite a bit. Sometimes we would take four wheelers to the Colorado mountains or sometimes we would go on a river trip on the Gila River in New Mexico. It led me to love the outdoors. Now I've been in Montana for about a year and the saying that Montana is "the last best place" does have some merit. I spent 6 months on the west side and now I'm going on 6 months out in the east side and each has its own beauty. I love to look around and see the amazing things that God has created. I know that none of these things were created by sheer chance.

On top of Mt Antero, Colorado -14,276 feet

    In the Book of Mormon there is the account of Korihor and Alma. Korihor went around teaching that there is no God, no penalty for sin, and no Christ. Alma on the other hand is a spiritual giant. At one point he was ruler over his people but he stepped down so he could focus on his ministry and teach his people about God and the Savior. Korihor went to Alma and at one point demanded a sign from God. He said "If thou wilt show me a sign that I may be convinced that there is a God, yea, show unto me that he hath power and then will I be convinced of the truth of they words." Alma's reply is great, he said "Thou hast had signs enough; will ye tempt your God? Will ye say, Show unto me a sign, when ye have the testimony of all these thy brethren, and also all the holy prophets? The scriptures are laid before thee, yea and all things denote there is a God; yea, even the earth, and all things that are upon the face of it, yea, and its motion, yea, and also all the planets which move in their regular form do witness that there is a Supreme Creator." Alma 30:43-44 So basically Alma told him that we do have physical proof that God exists. That proof is the world, everything on it, its motion, and all the other planets. To see it you just have to open your eyes.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Family: A Proclamation to the World

    Lets rewind a few years to September 23, 1995. The current President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints was President Gordon B. Hinckley. He gave an address at the General Relief Society Meeting which is held every 6 months. In that he read an article which is called The Family: A Proclamation to the World. If you want to read the whole article click here.
The Seattle Washington temple
    One section of it says "the divine plan of happiness enables family relationships to be perpetuated beyond the grave. Sacred ordinances and covenants available in holy temples make it possible for individuals to return to the presence of God and for families to be united eternally."
    One of the truths restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith is that marriage doesn't have to be "til death do you part." Marriages performed in the temple are for "all time and eternity." Through the power of the Priesthood, which is the authority to act in God's name, families can be sealed together. Meaning death isn't the end. But those relationships are for eternity

Saturday, April 9, 2011

O Grave Where is thy Victory?

    Whenever I hear about someone that I know passes away I immediately have a sinking feeling because I will miss that person. I remember that moment almost a year ago that I said bye to my family knowing that I wouldn't see them for two years. That was not easy. Saying goodbye for the rest of mortality truly is harder.
    I am so grateful for the knowledge that death isn't the end. The knowledge that we will be able to reunite when the time comes is the only way I can get through times when someones mortal journey is over.

O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Corinthians 15 : 55-57)

Friday, April 8, 2011

Happy Days

    Well I'm just going to throw it out there: I do not like the cold. It's actually one of my least favorite things. So how is it working out being a missionary in Montana in the middle of winter if you don't like cold? Actually it's not too bad and I survived my first winter.
And at least this didn't happen!
    Back in February there were a couple days that seemed almost unbearable. No matter how many layers I had on I was still freezing. I have found that the only difference between 0 degrees and -20 is how fast you start to lose feeling in your hands and face. It was right around that time that somebody gave me some good advice. I had heard this countless times in many ways but I'm sure the cold made my brain slow down too. He reminded me to look for the good things in whatever situation I'm in. It took some time to get the negative thoughts out but then the good ones started rolling. Shoot at least I'm not in Siberia or something and the people here do speak english... To an extent. Haha just kidding.
    That's the way life goes though. Recently I read an article by President Uchtdorf about looking for the good in things. You can read it here. You can find what you want to find. If you want to angry, you can. But truly if you want to be happy you can be. It just takes some effort.

Friday, April 1, 2011

The Prophet Joseph

    Joseph Smith was born on December 23, 1805. His life and the things he did have affected millions of people's lives including mine. This video tells his story.  

    There are many people who don't believe in his divine role as a prophet. But I can tell you that he actually did what he said he did. He was called by God to restore the fulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the earth. He restored the church which Christ set up during his earthly ministry nearly 2,000 years ago that fell after Christ died. He did not merely make up the Book of Mormon, but indeed, he did translate the record by the power of God.
    The only way you can know this is by turning to the ultimate source of truth: God.
If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. -James 1:5
This is the way that I came to know the truth about whether or not Joseph Smith really was a prophet of God. I kneeled down and prayed. If it worked for me, then it can work for you.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Another Great Day to Serve

    I am so grateful to be here on a mission. As some of you know today is my 20th birthday. I've always enjoyed my birthday. For most people it is a day to celebrate how awesome they are and a day to focus on themselves. For me though, today will continue to be a day to focus on others just like every other day while a missionary. Service to me has become something that I enjoy and look forward to rather than something that I just do for a random youth activity.

And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom: that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow being ye are only in the service of your God. -Mosiah 2:17

    Mohanda Ghandi once said The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others. Through doing service projects while growing up I've seen a little truth of that but for the past 10 months that I've been in Montana I have seen how much has come from serving others. Ghandi also said: Service which is rendered without joy helps neither the servant nor the served. But all other pleasures and possessions pale into nothingness before service which is rendered in a spirit of joy. Truly, when we perform service out of desire to serve rather than being forced into we gain more than we put into it. I am lucky to have this opportunity to set aside the 24 months to serve other people because in serving other people we serve God.

Friday, March 18, 2011


    In life we are making decisions constantly. When we make a decision there always comes a consequence. Whether its a good one or a bad one, we don't get to choose. Well, actually we do choose the consequences when we make the choice that leads to the consequences.
    A few weeks back I got a letter from a friend and she reminded me of a fun trip we took about a year ago. I was going to BYU and the weekend of Valentine's day we went to Rexburg, Idaho. Saturday we went out to the sand dunes. Being the middle of February they were covered in snow which made some excellent sledding hills. We were having a great day sledding until someone came up with a great idea to go doubles. So we did. You can watch the video and see the results for yourself.
    The next few days I was very sore and didn't sleep all that well. We made a decision to ride doubles down a hill and go for a jump. We hit the jump and went in the air. My friend Tyler landed on me and we both hurt pretty bad. Sometimes we make a bad decision that sends us sliding down a steep slippery slope. You get going faster and faster and then realize your decision wasn't such a great idea because you see the consequences in store for you. We need to remember that when we make a decision there are consequences that follow.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Tow Trucks

My favorite tow truck.
    When I was in high school I always had a bad habit of getting things stuck in places. One of the worst was when I was a senior in high school. A buddy of mine wanted to go on some trails in his jeep so we went out to the forest behind my house and just rode on the trails for a while until the jeep stopped moving. We got out and it was sitting on its axles and wouldn't move anywhere. Well without thinking about it much I said "I'll go get my truck and pull you out." We walked the mile back to my house and as I was getting my keys my dad said "You better not get that truck stuck." I should've listened better because ten minutes later my truck was in the same predicament as the jeep, all four wheels buried up to the axles.
    The next couple days after school were spent with shovels and the tractor trying to pull it out but it wouldn't budge. I needed it to go on a trip that Friday, so Thursday night after another unsuccesful afternoon I broke down and called a wrecker to come pull me out. It wasn't until the tow truck came out that I realized how bad it was stuck. With the right equipment it took him several hours but finally the truck was free. I could've spent the next month digging and maybe moved it three feet.
    I realized that sometimes we have to let go of our pride and call on somebody for help. The ultimate help comes from Heavenly Father and His son Jesus Christ. With His atonement, Christ can pull us out from any sticky situation. We just have to humble ourselves and ask.   

Friday, March 4, 2011

Big Puddles

    Well I am so glad that it is finally warming up a bit here in Montana. I still remember getting my mission call and saying to myself, "It gets cold there doesn't it?" But that's a problem I've survived with so far and now were on the upswing... Hopefully.
    Question. How big of a puddle can you have when you have 3 months of snow piled up and 50 degree weather? Well, I have an answer. A lot of really big ones. Trying to keep our feet dry is something that has become a normal task for us when we walk. And yes I said trying, one of us is not doing to great at it. That's me! A few weeks ago we were walking through town talking about stuff. Then sploosh. I ended up stepping in a puddle that was more like a lake. I had a decision to make there, I could get mad or just laugh it off. Elder George helped me out with that decision when he started laughing.

    Everybody has moments in life when we are faced with a similar choice. We can laugh about it or get mad about it. Personally, my favorite choice is to laugh about it. The rest of that day was actually really good. My shoes eventually dried out and the puddles will eventually dry up. Things eventually get better and like President Gordon B. Hinckley said "Life is to be enjoyed, not endured."

Saturday, February 19, 2011

I'm not ashamed

So this past week I decided to make Romans 1:16 my motto. It says:
For I am not ashamed of the
gospel of Christ: for it is the power
 of God unto salvation to every one
that believeth; to the Jew first, and
 also to the Greek.
    The first line is powerful. As a missionary sometimes I feel a little apprehensive about talking with people. But in all reality there is nothing to be timid about. The message we share, that the gospel of Christ has been restored to its fulness by a modern day prophet, is something that has been and will continue to be put up to the test. It will still stand true. I love Elder Jeffrey R Holland's testimony in this video.

    He says it very powerfully, and like him, I too know that the Book of Mormon is true. It is the word of God as well is the Bible. I know that Jesus Christ is my personal savior, that only through Him can we return to live with our Heavenly Father. And like the scripture, Christ's gospel is "the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth."
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