Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Being Thoughtful

After seeing or hearing a lot from people who have read "Mere Christianity" by C.S. Lewis, I decided to read it too. I really enjoyed his "Chronicles of Narnia" and the religious comparisons, and figured this would be fun too.

I have really enjoyed it. I am amazed at how he parallels my beliefs in so many things. There are a few things that he has very different views from me on, but the similarities are amazing. He really must have been a very thoughtful person.

One of my thoughts lately has dealt with the reality that there is a God. Everything good points to the fact that he is real and his hand is in our lives. I have many favorites songs I love to sing or play on the piano, but there is one in particular "From Cumorah's Hill" by Steven Kapp Perry and Brad Wilcox. There is a song, The Power of God, that goes with these thoughts. The chorus says:

"For the power of God is plain to see, there are wonders on every hand
To those who will see through eyes of faith beyond the mind of man

For how could we hope to see his face who never could see his hand?"

Recently as I was singing this song, I really thought about that last line, "how could we hope to see his face who never could see his hand", and I came to see that if we don't attribute blessings we receive to God and see that he is in our lives, we will not know him even if we saw him. Our faith must not be based on actually seeing Him, we must first have faith that he is there and blessing us (and recognize when he is helping us) then we will come to know him better so when we will see him we will know him at once.

Another favorite song I love singing and playing on the piano is "Learn of Me" by Janice Kapp Perry. The second verse says:

"When I was yet a child so clean and pure,
I doubted not and knew God's love was sure.
I knew he lived, for every bird and tree,
By breath and leaf were witnesses to me.

But now the world would fill my mind with doubt.
And so my soul, in search of truth cries out.
How my I know? I plead to Him above
Then I recall these gentle words of love:

Learn of me and listen to my words,
walk in the meekness of my light
And I shall give you peace,
my love will never cease,

For I am Jesus Christ.
Learn of me.

I have loved this song for many years and has taught me that we are blessed when we recognize Christ's hand in our lives. Even by just looking at birds and trees we can know that Christ lives. As we learn of him he will bless us with peace and happiness, he loves us.

So, although we have struggles and there is much of chaos and contention in the world, that doesn't mean there is no God, because if we turn around and see all the good and see it with an eye of faith, we can all see there is a God and go forward and spread that light and happiness.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Temple Vacation

We decided to take another little vacation. Instead of making our monthly trip to the temple in one day, we decided to make it in three days. We drove down to San Antonio on Monday and came home on Wednesday. On Monday we went to the zoo and spent most of the day playing there seeing all sorts of things. I think it is fun that we have been to the San Antonio Zoo a number of times and yet we can still learn new things each time we go. We even rode the train this time.

Monday night we had family home evening at the temple, which was a fun treat since we haven't been able to visit a temple just to see it in a couple years. Even though we were able to go on the temple grounds we had fun sitting on a bench across the street and singing about the temple.

Tuesday we parked at the zoo and rode a "Sight Seeing Special" bus downtown to the Alamo.

Then we walked down the street making our way to the Children's Museum and we saw this fun building. I think it was a Texas museum, but we thought it was funny to see the animals on the walls.

At the Children's Museum we had fun letting the children explore all the fun. We especially had fun with this exhibit. Do you recognize these faces? (after we had fun sticking our faces in it, we realized we probably weren't supposed to... oops)

Clark and Maryann

David and Rebecca

Benjamin being cute

Wednesday we played in the hotel room in the morning, which is what the children enjoyed the most I think. They love pretending it is home. Then we checked-out and went to the temple where they dropped me off to do a session. (Clark was able to go the night before) While I was in the temple, Clark took the children to play at a park.
David pushing Rebecca on the swing

Rebecca has grown so much, she can do so many things at the park now.

We had fun being together. I love the chance to be together as a family. Family is everything.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Sweet Children

Here are a few pictures that make you smile. Children can make your heart burst with love with all their sweetness. Today I was able to help at a baptism by playing the piano. While I was playing prelude my sweet children would sneak up next to me and hug me and whisper "I love you!" They are so sweet.

Benjamin enjoying his meal.
David feeling proud, Rebecca feeling beautiful. David did her hair.
Kisses for a little brother.
My sweet children.

Monday, March 9, 2009


This last Saturday our family joined our Stake Service Project and did the CROP Walk. Here is the site: http://www.main.org/cropwalk/interfaith.html We have been able to attend each year since we have moved. Not only is it just fun being together as a family, but we get to contribute to something great.

David took this picture, he wanted to capture all the vines in the trees.

Our family

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Silver Lining

I woke up really not looking forward to today. I noticed the beautiful morning and decided to sit in "mommy's special room" as the children call it, and watch the morning. Here in our area in Texas there is usually a low cloud cover every morning that gets burned off as the sun rises. Those low clouds usually blow by very fast letting rays of sun shine down here and there.

As I was thinking about how beautiful it was, I had this analogy come to mind. The clouds could compare to the darkness and wickedness in the world, and the sun represent the Son of God or Jesus Christ. These clouds look thick and daunting and often make me think it is going to cloudy and dark the whole day. Then, suddenly rays of sun light start shooting through the clouds as the sun rises in the sky. Just as the Son's light shines higher and stronger on the earth the clouds and darkness will be burned away, unable to withstand the intensity of the light. Finally, Christ light will break forth and burn away all the darkness and filling the earth with light. Even now we see the rays of light bursting forth throughout the earth shining light into the darkness, and someday in the fast approaching future His light will fill the earth and the wickedness will be burned away.
I am thankful for the quiet moments here and there that teach me.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Studying the Scriptures

I was able to have a few moments to myself again this morning. I love having a quiet time to read my scriptures and really think about them. I just read the last chapter in "The First Book of Nephi" (22). This is where Nephi's brothers ask him what Isaiah's word meant that Nephi had just read to them in the last chapter. You can read chapter 22 here if you would like.

As I was reading my testimony of the Book of Mormon being true was reaffirmed. As I read, I see prophesies being fulfilled; I gain better understanding; I am enlightened.

Joseph Smith translated the Book of Mormon into English through the gift and power of God. He said that it is “the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts, than by any other book” (History of the Church, 4:461).
-“Chapter 10: Scriptures,” Gospel Principles, 52

This isn't to say we don't study and learn from the Bible as well, but that the Book of Mormon is also the word of God. As stated in the eighth Article of Faith:

We believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly; we also believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God.

I know that the Book of Mormon is true, it is a book of God. I know Joseph Smith is and was a prophet of God that helped to bring the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ back on the earth again. I know that President Thomas S. Monson is our prophet today and holds all the priesthood keys for this dispensation and time.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Good Old Days

We have had a friend over to play with us each week and have had a lot of fun. I was trying to think of new things for the children to do together, and then I came across something I forgot that we had. A few years ago my mother found this "children's parachute game" and gave it to us. We have played it a couple of times, but I often forget things when they get put away. (a lesson to learn: never put away toys, right?)

I pulled it out yesterday and the children loved holding on and waving their arms up and down. The game ended with just me waving the parachute up and down while all three children laughed and giggled underneath.

It reminds me of elementary school...