Tuesday, June 26, 2012

"Kindness Begins With Me" ~

I had a delightful day in the temple on Saturday. It was my turn to give a short lesson in Preparation Meeting. The topic was showing Courtesty and Appreciation. To me that means to Be Kind.
     One of the reasons that I love to work as an Ordinance Worker or as a Patron in the temple is because it is such a peaceful loving environment. In the temple the workers and patrons that come are always kind and appreciate whatever you are doing for them. There is really no contention in the temple. At least I haven't ever noticed any.
     There was a motto that I remember from my youth that states: "I will always try to do and say the kindest things in the kindest way." This motto is a wonderful one.
      Sister Betty Jo Jepsen gave this thought in the Woman's Conference in Oct. of 1990: "Kindness has many synonyms; love, service, charity. But I like the word kindness because it implies action. It seems like something you and I can do. Kindness can be shown in so many ways. My favorite examples of kindness come from what Jesus did. He spent his ministry searching for the weary, the sick, the poor, and the lonely, that He might show kindness towards them." (Betty Jo Jepson: Ensign, Nov. 1990).
      In our day to day moments we will come across those who are misunderstood, tired, sick, poor, lonely, and weary. Sometimes, we all may feel like this. There are days that I feel  weary.
Here are some thoughts on kindness: 
      1. Remember to smile and express appreciation at every occasion.
Many years ago when I was working as a nurse; I had an evaluation that wasn't as good as I  thought at the time it should have been. I was told that that I appeared unfriendly and didn't engage much with those I worked with. I was rather shocked at first. I tried to think how I could change that perspective. For one thing; I was very shy then; so I knew that was a problem to deal with. I finally decided that I would just smile more. I would smile at my fellow workers and the patients that I cared for. I would start a conversation more often. With in a few months I was evaluated again and the outcome was very good. It was that simple.
Remember to smile more.......
      2. Always treat those you come in contact with as you would desire to be treated.
 I have another nursing experience to share. I was working in an Intensive Care Unit. There was an older nurse who seemed to resent it if I was assigned to be the charge nurse. I felt like she was judging me all of the time and that I fell short of her expectations. I discussed with my husband what he thought I should do to change this situation. We finally decided that I would engage her in a conversation and try to find out more about her. One night it was very slow in the unit and I had plenty of time to talk with her. I set out to find out more about her. I asked her all sorts of questions about her life. I learned many wonderful things about her. It was such a good experience and she seemed to enjoy telling me her life experiences. In the end we became friends and enjoyed working with one another.  
 Remember treat others as you would desire to be treated; be interested in them.  
      3. Our temple has a lot of handicap patrons that come to do temple work. Often times we are anxious to help them in everyway, but this may not be what they want or need.
I learned a quick lesson one day when I was the worker. There was a blind sister that came in and I was trying to help her move about and do correctly what she needed to do. She finally told me that she could do it by herself. 
Remember to ask how you can assist a person that is handicapped.
      4. Think before you act and respond to others.
I am sure we have all had experiences good and bad on this one. I know that I can react quickly to something I think is wrong or correct someone if I think they are doing something wrong. I suppose there are moments when this is ok; but always be kind. Remember that they are possibly doing the best they know how. In the temple we don't correct patrons very often. We assume that the patron is doing his or her best.
Remember to always be kind in whatever you say or do.
      Here is a sweet story that was told by Sister Betty Jo Jepsen in her conference message: "Derek was born with serious physical handicaps. In his five years on earth, he knew little of the world of those who run, play hid-and-seek, skip rope, or feel free of pain. But he knew how he could feel better, when things were tough, when he suffered and those around him were weary and discouraged, he would hold up his arms and ask, "Let me hold you?" In his innocence, he knew he could kindly lift others-even while he endured hardship.
       Our Savior Jesus Christ showed such kindness to all that he met in his ministry. One touching example was one of His final acts when He washed the feet of his beloved Apostles during the Last Supper. Jesus took a towel, poured water in a basin, and began to wash and dry the feet of his disciples. I am sure their sandled feet were dirty from walking the streets of Jersuslem. Peter the senior Apostle said; "Thou shalt never wash my feet." Perhaps Peter resisted because he felt that Jesus their master should not stoop to perform this act. But Jesus insisted washing all of the feet of his apostles and even the feet of Judas, whom he knew would soon betray him. I feel that he deeply loved Judas too. After the Savior had washed their feet, he said; "Know ye what I have done to wash one another's feet." For I have given you an example that ye should so as I have done to you..." If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them. The Lord completed one more loving, kind, charitable act by washing the feet of His beloved Apostles; thus teaching them to Love One Another.
       I have wondered about how the Apostles felt. I had an experience with washing of the feet. I had been a Hospice Home Health Nurse for a couple of years when I was told I had to take the Volunteer class. I wasn't very humble. I thought I knew all I needed to know to care for my patients. On this memorable day those in the class were asked to bring a basin and wash cloth to class. There were probably around 14 volunteers present. The class instructor divided us up and then told us that we were to wash each other's feet. I was given a gentleman as my partner in this experience. I volunteered to wash his feet first. He was a complete stranger and needless to say I felt very uncomfortable.
       We were instructed not to talk with one another while doing this assignment. As I began to wash his feet; I could tell that he was uncomfortable with me doing this. I didn't know what to think. I thought that perhaps he had ticklish feet. I looked deep into to his eyes and sensed he was in pain. As I recognized this fact I gently washed his feet trying hard not to cause the pain I had seen. I took each of his feet one at a time and placed them on the towel to wipe them. I placed the towel over his feet and again gently dried his feet. After we were allowed to speak he told me that the bottoms of his feet and been severely burned and that not only the water but any contact was painful. He thanked me for my kindness and gentleness. I also at this time found out he was a member of my faith. This was a profound moment for me in which I was deeply humbled and the washing of the Apostles feet took on a greater significance to me.
       A closing thought by Sister Jepson:
“No act of kindness is every wasted. You cannot do a kindness too soon. Acting kindly can change the giver and the receiver for good.”


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

A Small Moment ~ "He Made Me Whole"

Today, I want to share with you some thoughts from my youngest daughter, Tiffani. Over the past three years she has had some physical struggles that have been very hard for her. She has experienced an ectopic pregnancy, a miscarriage, and two different surgeries. During those moments she has battled with some depression. She has worked hard to bring into focus her love for the Lord and her faith in his plan for her.
Here is the introduction to her blog:
 " A Small Moment..."
It's during the small moments in life whether good or bad that we must keep our eyes and ears open to what it is God desires us to learn from these moments. Then use that new found knowledge He gives us to help others who are searching through the darkness to find a lighted path towards Him.
More of her journey you can find here.

Enjoy listening to my daughter Tiffani sing this special song of faith written by Sally Deford~

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Father's Day To All The Father's In My Life ~

May all the father's in my life have a wonderful Father's Day filled with  love, recognition and devotion.
First of all, I am forever grateful to have a Heavenly Father that I can kneel before each day and give thanks to Him for all the tender mercies that I receive each day. I am truly blessed by Him.

I am so grateful  for His Son, my Savior and Redeemer. I know beyond doubt that they are both aware of me and know me by name. I know that through the good times and the struggles of life; I can turn to them in prayer and through the Spirit of the Holy Ghost I can receive the peace and comfort that I seek.

I am so grateful to have been blessed with a very good Father of my own. He blessed my life in many ways. He was such an example of love, patience, kindness and example. May he know that I love and miss him.

My husband is a very good man. He shows me on a daily basis the love he has in his heart for me. I thank him for each of our dear children that have blessed our lives. He has been a fantastic Father and has great love for all of them.
We have been blessed with 6 outstanding sons and 6 exceptional son-in-laws. I feel they are all my sons in every sense of the word, son. They are all faithful members of our church and have been married and sealed to their eternal companions, my daughters. They have all earned their Eagle Scout Awards and served two year missions throughout the world.

Sean, our oldest is honest and talented ~

Travis our second is brave and faithful ~

James our third son is brilliant and loving ~

Brandon our 1st son-in-law is true and steady ~

Michael our 2nd son-in-law is friendly and devoted ~

Dave our 3rd son-in-law is fun loving and steadfast ~

Our Two Grandsons ~
Jed is respectful and kind~

Jacob is creative and smart~
They are having their first baby in September - He has three Step Children


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Dance With Me Tonight - Happy 45th Wedding Anniversary to My Dearest Love, Roger

Many years ago we started with a Dance. Through the twirls and whirls of life; we have become as one in love, in purpose and our love will last forever~ 
I have often asked myself why I have been so blessed to have such a good man to be my eternal companion. I feel like I have loved him forever and perhaps I have. He has brought such joy into my life. He is a kind, gentle, loving, forgiving, caring, and attentive husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather. His children have been deeply blessed to have him as their father. What once was thought of as a lecture by children is now wise counsel as they go to him in troubled times. 
 He has brought into our marriage a love for our Heavenly Father and Savior Jesus Christ which is strong and true. He is a faithful follower of Christ and I feel that he emulates so many of the Savior's divine qualities. Perhaps not perfect in them all; but he strives to be a disciple of Christ. 
I feel so privileged to be his wife and the mother of his children.
I thank him for the countless hours that he has given to provide for our family. I thank him for loving me, and supporting me in all my endeavors. I love him with all the fiber of my being. Thanks you Roger for the last 45 years of a marriage filled with deep and abiding love. I would say with out doubt that we have established a "Partnership of One".
As found in the book; "I Challenge You" by Paul Dunn comes the following thought:

Is the objective of marriage.
It is a synergistic oneness where the whole is greater
than the sum of its parts,
A oneness where the husband and wife are
joint heirs together (1 Peter 2:7),
A oneness where the man is not without the woman
nor the woman without the man in the Lord (1 Corinthians 11:11).
Again, oneness does not mean loss of individuality,
oneness means one song,
where two separate string, each with their own vibration,
harmonize to create one composition......
The oneness God sees for man and wife
is a glorious thing, with
each supported and strengthened and inspired by the other -
rejoicing together (Proverbs 5:18)
finding joy together (Ecclesiastes 9: 9).
It is the oneness through which each partner
says to the other,
"With your love, all else in the world is bright."

Let's bring our song and dance away the night ~

Saturday, June 9, 2012

A Forgiving Heart ~

A forgiving heart; how does one develop a forgiving heart? The Lord has told us clearly in Doctrine and Covenants 64:10 that; "I, the Lord, will forgive whom I will forgive, but of you it is required to forgive all men."
I  believe that families are the training ground for learning to have a forgiving heart. We tried to teach our children to not fight and quarrel with one another.  This can be a hard job to do.There is a scripture in the Book of Mormon in Mosiah 4:14; "And ye will not suffer your children that they go hungry, or naked; neither will ye suffer that they transgress the laws of God, and fight and quarrel one with another; and serve the devil, who is the master of sin...".  Now we watch as our children try to teach these concepts to our grandchildren.When you are dealing with an unforgiving attitude; you need to be aware and remember that little eyes are watching you.
I know that through the years there have been many instances where I have had an unforgiving attitude towards someone. I found that I did not give up these feelings easily. I would review the event in my mind many times over. I would remain feeling unkind and hateful towards the one I felt had offended me. The days would go by and I wouldn't be able to stop thinking about how wrong the situation was. Sometimes, I would even have gut wrenching physical pain; sometimes even painful headaches and other physical difficulties. At first I didn't know how to stop this cycle of sin; because it is a sin to feel such anger towards another individual. I wondered how could I get rid of this anger in my soul? I will admit that I have had several such experiences in my life time to learn the lessons of forgiveness. I am still not perfect in forgiving other's. However,I have learned some important steps to take to bring forth the healing gift of forgiveness. I know when I apply the following thoughts, the hateful feelings inside of me will begin to dissipate.
One thing that has helped me through the years is to write down all my feelings about the situation that caused my unforgiving attitude. Basically, once it is on paper it seems to lessen the pain.  
Prayer was one of my greatness gifts in the this process. I have many times been on my knees asking my Heavenly Father to grant me peace of mind and a forgiving heart. Prayer is one of the most important sources of healing.
Partaking of the Sacrament was a time of reflection where I would go over in my mind the importance of letting go of the anger and seeking the high ground of forgiving. A time to make a covenant to change my thoughts toward another whom had offended me.
Step back for a moment and put yourself in the offender"s shoes. I found quickly that doing this made a big difference. Perhaps they didn't really mean to hurt you at all. There may have been circumstances in their life that you are not aware of. I guess back to the adage; found in Matthew 7:1;  "Judge not, that ye be not judged."
The scriptures are a key source of learning about forgiveness. Pray, ponder and read the stories of forgiveness that you find in the scriptures.
Remember the story of Joseph of Old who forgave his brothers after they had dug a pit, placed him in it and left him to die. I can't even imagine how hard this would have been. Just think these were his own brothers. 
As found in the Book of Mormon; the stories of  Laman and Lemuel who more than once tried to kill Nephi, their brother. At one point they even tried to kill Lehi, their father. The cycle would begin with their disobedience and then they would  become angry and hateful towards Nephi. They would then be caused to be humbled, have remorse and then Nephi would frankly forgive them. Nephi had a forgiving heart. He loved his brothers and would not give up on them. I pray we will never give up on our own families; that we will forgive one another.
I am presently reading a book about the Prophet Joseph Smith and the court hearings that he went through just before his Martyrdom. It was all so unfair; yet the Prophet knew his time had come and he was willing to give up his life for the cause of the Church. He held no malice towards those who were so devious in getting him arrested. The saddest part of all is that the one apostate who caused the uprising was once a councilor to him in the First Presidency.
In The New Testament the last hours of our Savior's life are unimaginable. He was arrested, put on trial, mocked, spit at and beaten. He carried the cross and was placed upon it. The brutality did not end there. Even in his thirst he was given vinegar. Some of the Savior's last words in Luke 23: 34; were; "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do."
Just as we can choose to have a good attitude, choose to be happy; we can choose to forgive.
Elder Osguthorpe in a BYU Conference address in April of 2011 stated the following:
"We all need to develop a forgiving heart so that when someone wrongs us, we can frankly forgive them. No need to think it over. No need to make them feel bad for what they have done. No need to remind them how much they hurt us. Just forgive them. Then we can forget all the pain and move one."
He also stated: "So forgiveness is a choice. It is a choice that leads to a personal characteristic -- a way of being. It's really a choice to follow the Savior. It's a choice to do His Will and not ours. It's a self-forgetful choice. It's a way of getting outside ourselves, going beyond our own weaknesses, and doing what God wants us to do. As difficult as it may be, first we must have a desire to forgive. And when our desire grows to forgive and  forget and move forward --that's when we develop a forgiving heart....Each time we forgive, we learn. We give up anger. We give up revenge. And we change. We learn....Nothing can bring us closer to the Lord than forgiving as He forgives. We are learning our way back to the presence of God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ. We are learning our way back home.
Sister Osguthorpe added;"....It's by forgiving ourselves and others over and over again until our heart is so filled with forgiveness that no one can offend us. No one can hurt us. No one can "act upon us."
Choose today to learn and develop a forgiving heart. Ask your Father and Heaven in prayer to help you have a forgiving heart.
Next time we can tackle how to forgive ourselves. This is another important topic for another day. There is more to this miracle of forgiveness.

Wait for the for the video to come on ~
Take a moment to view this video; it will change forever your thoughts on forgiving ~

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

My First Barn Picture for Barn Charm ~

This is my first picture post for  Barn Charm.
  Cheryl and Debbie I hope you will see this one. I always love seeing their weekly barn pictures. This barn picture was taken just outside of Monroe, Utah over the
 Memorial Day Weekend. 
 I love barn pictures because it brings back memories of my youth. In another post I will share with you some of my ranch and farm memories. Take a moment and look at all the wonderful Barn Charm pictures here.


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