Sunday, March 27, 2011

With Real Intent

As a member of the LDS church, I participate in many prayers given throughout the day. Prayers in the morning and night, prayers to bless food, prayers given in class, prayers offered among roommates, prayers in church settings, and so on and so on. When having a discussion with my boyfriend a couple weeks ago, we talked about the feelings we have when public prayers are given. He brought up a point that really stuck with me. More often then not, is seems as though some prayers are offered very monotone, beginning middle and end, and that the feeling is very plain. There are those that pray like this, but there are others that really do pray with real intent and with emotion. After he mentioned this, it made me reevaluate the way that I pray.

On Sunday, I volunteered to give the closing prayer in Sunday School. As soon as I stood up, I remembered those things that my boyfriend mentioned, and I made the concious decision to pray with real intent and with emotion.

It was powerful.

Although this experience was only a couple days ago, it is still resonating strongly throughout my body. When praying like this, I am more aware of my personal relationship with God, and I am more inclined to give so much more thanks for those things that I know I am grateful for but typically wouldn't think about. Thanks to my boyfriend, I have been reminded of how powerful and important prayers really are. We are opening in the name of our Creator, our Heavenly Father. We are closing in the name of our Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ, the Son of God. How powerful and meaningful prayers really are. I am so grateful for this key form of communication we have with God, and I challenge those reading this to become more aware (if you aren't already) of the way that you pray, and take it to the next level if necessary in order to make it more meaningful to you.

Much love :)

(image from here)

Saturday, March 26, 2011

10 Minutes of Silence...

In todays world, how often do we give ourselves true moments of silence for an extended period of time? With phone calls and texting, busy schedules of classes and work, iPods, and the distractions found all around us, it isn't suprising to find that most people only quiet down when going to sleep at night or when preparing to take a nap. What would our lives be like if we made sure to schedule at least 10 minutes of quiet time to think, pray, ponder, and so on?
This morning, I went to the temple by myself to do baptisms for the dead. After sleeping for only 3 hours, I was ready to just get in, and get out so that I could shower and go back to bed for a couple hours before starting my busy schedule. As I was sitting in the temple though, I had to question myself as to why I was there. The more I thought about my reasons to be at the temple, the more I came to realize how much it didn't matter how long I ended up being in the temple. I followed this thought process to the point that I became grateful that things were running slowly and that I wasn't doing the whole "get in and get out" process that I tend to do on a day to day basis wherever I am due to busy schedules and such. Because of the slow moving lines for confirmations and baptisms, I was given the opportunity to truly ponder and let my thoughts take me to places that strengthened my testimony. I was given the time to consider those things that I should "KISS" in my life: Keep, Increase, Stop, and Start.
So the next time you have the chance and you remember to, put aside whatever may be distracting you or causing "noise", find a quiet place, sit..... and just think. Think, and listen for the promptings of the Spirit.
(I do not take credit for this photo. I found it when using "Stumble Upon" and forgot to save the website)

Friday, March 25, 2011

Serving the Lord

I am very pleased and over-joyed to announce that my older brother got his mission call! He will be serving in the Puebla Mexico Mission!!!! And he leaves August 3rd. This is just super happy :) To be honest, out of all of the friends that I have had leave for missions over the years, my brother was the very first person I have ever witnessed open a mission call. It was very power and super memorable.
I am very excited for my older brother to serve his mission. This fall, I plan to leave on my own mission, and my younger brother is getting set to leave on his mission this year as well. It is unbelieveable!!! Just being there when my brother opened his call was a tender mercy as the spirit manifested once again in my life that this is the true church on the earth, and that Jesus Christ, our Savior, is the head of the Church. I pray for the missionaries every night that they will find those that are ready to hear and receive the gospel. I am so proud of my brother and his desire to serve God for the next 2 years of his life. It is miraculous. I love you bro :)