Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Popcorn and Kernels

Have you ever observed popcorn after you have popped it? 
Have you ever observed the kernels that didn't fully pop?
Have you ever observed the kernels that half popped?

Each kernel pops differently. Not one popcorn looks exactly the same as another. They may have a similar shape but the ways that they are popped are different. They also pop at different times. Some are popped right as the microwave heats them up while others pop right before the timer goes off and the bag is opened.
The half popped do the similar thing. Not one is identical to another. 
However, the kernels will tell a different story. All of the kernels look exactly the same. 

The story behind the popcorn goes more into depth than just the simplicity of a yummy snack. Each person has their own individual circumstances, trials, strengths, weakness, experiences, and life. We all learn differently, feel differently, and think differently. Some of us come to realize what makes us truly happy early on in life while others take our time to figure that out. Others, may be like the half popped and decide to not fully reach the potential or simply do not have the opportunity to do so. There are so many items that make each of us different!

However, no matter how different we all are, we stem from the same kernel. We are all children of God who loves us. We will have different opportunities of course yet, we are all so great and wonderful. When we are eating popcorn, we don't naturally compare, chose not to eat, or throw away certain shapes of popcorn. If we did do this, we would end up without any popcorn at all. 

Elder Dieter Uchdorft touched on this in the October of 2011 General Conference. "We spend so much time and energy comparing ourselves to others—usually comparing our weaknesses to their strengths. This drives us to create expectations for ourselves that are impossible to meet. As a result, we never celebrate our good efforts because they seem to be less than what someone else does." If we spent all of our time searching for the perfect popped kernel or comparing it to the faults or perfections of others, we would never get to enjoy the snack!

In summary, we are all different and that is okay! We shouldn't compare ourselves to be less or greater than others. We all come from the same Heavenly Father who will help us achieve to be the best HE knows we can be.  I know that we are all so different and I am grateful for that. I am grateful to know that my marriage, schooling, family, friends, skills, weakness, frustrations, and joy is different than others. I am grateful to know that no matter the differences, we can know that we all come from the same creator and all have the potential to be as marvelous as a fully popped popcorn.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Highlights

Today I am home sick in bed unfortunately. I have been experiencing weird migraines, throat infections, and dizziness lately. I also had an allergic reaction to my birth control this month so if anybody has suggestions on a good one, lemme know! October hasn't been my healthy month to say! However, it has been the month I have learned to acknowledge my husband, family, and friends more.

I'm one of those people that goes 100 mph and doesn't stop... even when I know I need to slowdown. I get it from my mama. Anyways, the last while, we have been going like crazy with three weddings, a funeral, school, and work. Maryn, Natashia, and Shalee Jo all got married in September. Their weddings were so beautiful and perfect. Going to weddings, especially sealings, is a great reminder to me of our sealing day. I feel more grateful for Brax each time.

A great friend and classmate of mine made the decision to take his life this month as well. Brandon Birch was a great person. He was so caring and loving. He made you feel like you were his closest friend even if you weren't. He will be missed by many in our small community.

We were able to take care of Braxton's granddad this month as well. He is 90 something years old and suffers from memory loss. He is so cute though and makes you feel special.

We went camping with my family in Dog Valley. The piece that it brings to me in undeniable. It feels like home, it feels secure, and it feels right. I love riding on the dirt roads Grandpa Wally made and unconsciously looking for deer.

General conference! It was so great! I need to read over the talks to make sure that I get something more out of what I heard but I loved how a lot of the talks mentioned going beyond the mark of the Savior. I really meditated what this meant.. I felt as though it meant that we often take the Atonement for granted and we need to look deeper into what he did for us, what he suffered, and what gifts we have because of the atonement. I am currently reading "The Infinite Atonement" by Tad R Callister and the more I read, the more I am able to learn but also acknowledge that I don't know everything about the Atonement and I most likely won't come to a full comprehension of it in this life.

Amanda invited me to a Utah football game. I was super excited because I didn't think I would be able to go this year. Brax and I didn't sign up for the MUSS because it was expensive for him to get on with me and we weren't sure we wanted to commit every weekend to Utah Football (as great as it is). We played University of Arizona and were losing the first half! Amanda and the kid behind us were comical with their yelling and screaming. ;) We ended up coming back and winning which, I'm really happy about because it made Amanda happy the rest of the night. I am so grateful to have met such an amazing lady freshman year and that we are still best of friends.

I also went to Thriller with Braxton's family. The show was great, even if the zombies scare me every single time. If you haven't seen it and enjoy Halloween, dancing, or just a relaxing good time, GO!

That's all the updates for now. Adios.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Standing Alone.

School is started! I transferred back to the University of Utah and it has been such a blessing and challenge. My first day of classes it felt so right to be back and I loved being able to learn more about things that I will use with my career. However, there is one class that has been challenging for me and not with the work load. I am taking Gender and Contemporary Issues. In this class we discuss a lot of issues concerning race, feminists, transgenders, gay rights, and many other touchy subjects. As many of you know, the U is a school with the majority having liberal perspectives and some anti-mormon thoughts and beliefs.

The first day of class, we were informed that we would be watching a rated R movie. Many students questioned why she had to put that in the syllabus as a disclaimer and she explained that some students don't prefer to watch those movies, laughter broke out immediately. After class, I asked the teacher what were the other options for me because I chose not to watch those movies. A peer behind me scoffed at my preference.

The class continued on and a few other incidents occurred like this. I was attacked for not being a feminist and agreeing that men and women should be equal in all things. I was mocked openly for stating that True Christianity did not mean that women were creatures who had no rights, were put down by men, and meant very little to the world. I was informed this was wrong as well.

Each day has been more challenging for me. My testimony has been challenged, my beliefs have been denoted as "unequal, disgusting, and old fashioned." The beauty of this trial has been the opportunity to learn and feel more about my Savior Jesus Christ. He stood alone on the night he suffered in Gethsemane. He died alone on the cross. His teachings were put down and described as false doctrine. I know that even when I feel as though I am completely alone in that classroom and as though I want to just shake them and make them understand, he is prompting me to feel of his love and be his representative. I know that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is the same today, tomorrow, and forever.  The world may be changing but his teachings are not. I am grateful to have this knowledge in a world of change and turmoil. I know that when we stand for what is right, even if you stand by ourselves, we will never stand alone because of the Savior.