Thursday, March 17, 2011

What I Learned

So now that I have a job again, I've decided to document the various things I learned while unemployed, so that I can always remember them and thus never have to go through that again to re-learn those same lessons.

1. I learned (finally) how to save money while grocery shopping, which has always been my biggest weakness when it comes to budgeting.

2. I learned how to improve my personal scripture study in the morning and make it more meaningful to what is going on in my life.

3. I learned how much I missed the temple and renewed my commitment to go more frequently.

4. I grew a lot closer to my dad through this trial.

5. I learned the importance of constantly having the Spirit with you, especially when times are tough and Satan is trying his hardest to make you doubt and have fear. The Spirit will help dispel those "Satan Thoughts" and help you to see the truth of your situation.

6. I learned sunshine makes me super happy.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Race

The Race
"Quit, give up, you're beaten"
They shout at you and plead
"There's just too much against you
This time you can't succeed".

And as I start to hang my head
In front of failures face
My downward fall is broken by
The memory of a race

And hope refills my weakened will
As I recall that scene
Or just the thought of that short race
Rejuvenates my being

Childrens race, young boys
Young men, how I remember well
Excitement sure, but also fear
It wasn't hard to tell

They all lined up so full of hope
Each thought to win that race
Or tie for first, or if not that
At least take second place

The fathers watched from off the side
Each cheering for his son
And each boy hoped to show his dad
That he could be the one

The whistle blew and off they went
Young hearts and hopes afire
To win and be the hero there
Was each young boys desire

And one boy in particular
Whose dad was in the crowd
Was running near the lead and thought
"My dad will be so proud"

But as they speeded down the field
Across a shallow dip
The little boy who thought to win
Lost his step and slipped

Trying hard to catch himself
With hands flew out to brace
And amid the laughter of the crowd
He fell flat on his face

But as he fell his dad stood up
And showed his anxious face
Which to the boy so clearly said
"Get up and win the race"

He quickly rose, no damage done
Behind a bit that's all
And ran with all his night and mind
To make up for the fall

So anxious to restore himself
To catch up and to win
His mind went faster than his legs
He slipped and fell again

He wised then that he had quit before
With only one disgrace
"I'm hopeless as a runner now
I shouldn't try to race"

But in the laughing crowd he searched
And found his fathers face
That steady look which said again
"Get up and win the race"

So up he jumped to try again
Ten yards behind the last
If I'm going to gain those yards he though
I've got to move real fast

Exerting everything he had
He regained eight or ten
But trying hard to catch the lead
He slipped and fell again

Defeat, he lay there silently
A tear dropped from his eye
There's no sense running anymore
Three strikes, I'm out, why try?

The will to rise had disappeared
All hope had fled away
So far behind so error prone
A loser all the way

"I've lost, so what", he thought
I'll live with my disgrace
But then he thought about his dad
Whom soon he'd have to face

"Get up" the echo sounded low
"Get up" and take your place
You were not meant for failure here
"Get up", and win the race

With borrowed will "Get up" it said
"You haven't lost at all"
For winning is no more than this
To rise each time you fall

So up he rose to run once more
And with a new commit
He resolved, that win or lose
At least he shouldn't quit

So far behind the others now
The most he'd ever been
Still he'd give it all he had
And run as though to win

Three times he'd fallen, stumbling
Three times he'd rose again
Too far behind to hope to win
He still ran to the end

They cheered the winning runner
As he crossed the line first place
Head high and proud and happy
No falling, no disgrace

But when the fallen youngster
Crossed the line, last place
The crowd gave him the greater cheer
For finishing the race

And even though he came in last
With head bent low, unproud
You would have thought he'd won the race
To listen to the crowd

And to his dad he sadly said
"I didn't do too well"
"To me you won", his father said
"You rose each time you fell"

by D. H. Groberg

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Keep Playing

I found this story in a fabulous talk by President Faust, and I thought it was the most adorable thing ever, and I especially appreciated President Faust's commentary after the story:

"Here is a story of a young piano student. His mother, wishing to encourage him, bought tickets for a performance of the great Polish pianist, Paderewski. The night of the concert arrived and the mother and son found their seats near the front of the concert hall. While the mother visited with friends, the boy slipped quietly away.
"Suddenly, it was time for the performance to begin and a single spotlight cut through the darkness of the concert hall to illuminate the grand piano on stage. Only then did the audience notice the little boy on the bench, innocently picking out ‘Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.’
"His mother gasped, but before she could move, Paderewski appeared on stage and quickly moved to the keyboard. He whispered to the boy, ‘Don’t quit. Keep playing.’ And then, leaning over, the master reached down with his left hand and began filling in the bass part. Soon his right arm reached around the other side, encircling the child, to add a running obbligato. Together, the old master and the young novice held the crowd mesmerized."

"In our lives, unpolished though we may be, it is the Master who surrounds us and whispers in our ear, time and time again, ‘Don’t quit. Keep playing.’ And as we do, He augments and supplements until a work of amazing beauty is created. He is right there with all of us, telling us over and over, ‘Keep playing.’" (President Faust, What it Means to be a Daughter of God, October 1999)

I am so grateful for a loving Heavenly Father who is always right there with us, making our feeble attempts masterpieces. :)

Thursday, March 3, 2011


The other day I was having a "woe is me" kind of moment. In that moment I said a prayer, wishing that someone would somehow reach out to me, in a email or message or phone call. I didn't think though that it would happen, because I had just talked to my mom, brother and sister the day before on the phone, so I doubted that anyone would call. Shortly after my prayer however, my phone started to ring. It was my Dad. This was a miraculous answer to a prayer. We just had a short conversation, nothing epic was said, but my dad did let me know that he prayed often for me. That really meant a lot to me, because I knew that it was true. I don't know how involved my dad still is in the gospel, but I do know that he still has a testimony. He doesn't go to church, he doesn't keep a number of the commandments, and I'm not sure if he ever reads the scriptures. But I do know that he is praying, and that he does know that God exists. Though it wasn't the answer that I thought I wanted at first, I am so grateful that it was my dad who was sensitive enough to the spirit to know that I needed a phone call at that moment.