My adventure in becoming a [Good] Mormon

Archive for October, 2010

A picture of something I love

NOTE:From the big blue flower up my Bro-in-law/my niece took the photos.

There was no way, with, between my bro-in-law and I’s 6000+ pics I was going to post only one.

What I love: Meadows. You haven’t seen them till you’ve been to Mt.Rainier.

My family:As crazy as they all are, I love em to bits.

Sunsets.

Walking barefoot in the grass and meditating in gardens.

My flip flop tan.

The little details that no one notices really (ie.Berries on flowers…DO NOT EAT THE BERRIES THEY NUMB YOUR TONGUE THEN BURN!!!)and being grateful for each one I find

Standing in the spray of a waterfall thinking: “Holy crap, He had freaking amazing ideas.”

Eating food with friends.

Laughing at Corey’s funny faces and his humor in general.

All manner of geekery…And sexy Jedis (Sorry Corcor, you’re not a sexy jedi XD)

My friends

Crazy flowers

Pipe organs that completely tower over me and make me feel super tiny.

Stained glass with epic lighting

God

Standing at the head of the path into a big misty forest with gigantic trees and feeling the urge to just start sprinting into the adventure ahead

Breathing deeply in said forest and listening to the mist as it condenses and drips off the leaves.

Gregorian chants

Climbing rocks (The lighting in that pic pretty well describes how hot it was that day. If you can’t understand imagery just know:My nephew touched a piece of metal for all of 2 seconds and got a pretty nice burn. I think we were on the border of a desert type thing)

Being tanned because I’ve spent so much time adventuring and exploring a great creation

Epic rock formations and waterfalls

Standing on the brink of a cliff thinking ‘What happens if I jump?’. Not a suicidal thought, but a general curiosity.

Standing on a more metaphorical brink thinking of all the options, all the things I might do and not having any plan in front of me. It’s very exciting.

Having, what I think to have been, (not sure how close it really was, though from what I’ve heard, relatively close) a near death experience and, when completely exhausted, being perfectly calm in accepting and knowing where I’d be headed next and being mildly excited by that. Perhaps a super test of faith? Being pulled out fighting the rescuers while trying to find my nephew but stopping when I saw him, who wasn’t there once I was in the boat (Call me crazy, I know what I saw and I grabbed the guy’s wrist). Then realizing afterwards, had previous events not occurred, there would have been no way I could’ve accepted my circumstances.

The Temple. Standing in front of it, dying to go in. Then being happily surprised that I could. See the four memories post for more.

 

Day 01 – A recent photo of you and 15 interesting facts about yourself
Day 02 – A picture of you and the person you have been closest with the longest
Day 03 – A picture of you and your friends
Day 04 – A habit that you wish you didn’t have
Day 05 – A picture of somewhere you’ve been to
Day 06 – A picture that shows your true self
Day 07 – A picture of someone/something that has the biggest impact on you
Day 08 – A picture that makes you laugh
Day 09 – A picture of the person who has gotten you through the most
Day 10 – A picture of someone you see yourself marrying/being with in the future
Day 11 – Your celebrity crush
Day 12 – A picture of something you love
Day 13 – A picture of something you hate
Day 14 – Picture of someone you could never imagine your life without
Day 15 – A picture of something you want to do before you die
Day 16 – Someone you would want to switch lives w/ for one day and why
Day 17 – Your favorite song
Day 18 – Picture of your biggest insecurity
Day 19 – A picture of someone you miss
Day 20 – A picture of somewhere you’d love to travel
Day 21 – A picture of something that makes you happy
Day 22 – A picture that confuses you
Day 23 – Something you crave for a lot
Day 24- A picture of yourself and a family member
Day 25 – Picture of yourself and a family member
Day 26 – A picture of something that means alot to you.
Day 27 – A picture of something your afraid of
Day 28 – A picture of you last year and now, how have you changed since then?
Day 29 – A picture that can always make you smile

 

Just a thought….

What would have happened if a)Jesus disobeyed God’s will and never died for our sins(which is complex to imagine, considering God is Jesus…Which still confuses me)? or b)Jesus never came at all? Would there be any possible way to be saved? Would it only be through our behavior alone that we were saved because we couldn’t rely on the Atonement?

If there was no Atonement, would people strive harder to be better? Not just accept some slips and say it would be alright because they’d be forgiven.

Perhaps I’m being controversial. This is why I keep my questions to myself 😛

Church talk+other stuff

Talk went really well…But I messed something up, got more nervous and I think I kept speeding up. Supposedly, I’m a good story teller. But it went well, the congregation’s reactions to my jokes was better than I expected. And I even saw one woman crying, which both made me happy and sad. It was very touching that my words actually caused emotions that strong in someone but I wanted to run down to her and give her more Kleenexes.

I’m extraordinarily bummed out about Halloween this year. I can’t even muster the motivation to carve my pumpkin….

Anyways, as promised, my talk:

Good morning my brothers and sisters,

 

I’ve been asked to speak on my conversion to the Church; how I found out about it and as I began to convert, my experiences with the missionaries and all those who’ve taught me, as well as my thoughts and feelings throughout the journey that was my conversion.

 

First, just a little history so you have an idea as to where I’m coming from: Before I joined the Church, I was pretty much opposed to the idea of Church. My siblings, who were all baptized LDS but are no longer practicing, had dragged me along to various churches, all of which I found myself to be a loner in and very uncomfortable with everything about them. To be honest: I hated Church and would do anything to keep from going to it.

 

I first found out about Mormonism, besides the little bits I knew from my family, not long after I met my best friend; Corey Crapo. He mentioned and did things that I found odd but intriguing. He wouldn’t drink coke or pepsi, which baffled me, wouldn’t swear like others, which, once again, baffled me and he would occasionally mention doctrinal things, which got me interested but he would only tell me a bit then tell me to ask the missionaries. But there was no way I would call them up back then so I did what any self respecting teenager would do: I googled it.

 

Just a little note so you can understand this better: Before I actually met any missionaries, I was pretty much terrified of them. I had absolutely no desire whatsoever to speak to two guys I’d never met before about my interpretation of God, the Bible, etc. And I was especially terrified of them coming over and saying “You don’t believe what we do? You’re horrible!” A very unreasonable fear, but that was how I was.

 

Anyways, besides researching Mormonism on the internet, I found I had an interest in the religious ideals of all faiths. So I spent much of my spare time looking up all sorts of different religions, from obscure branches of Christianity down to nature-focused Polytheistic religions. Besides being on a quest for knowledge, some part of me was hoping that in all my research, something would hit me and I would know ‘This is it; this is where I’m to belong’. While it never actually hit me like I was expecting, I was consistently coming back to Mormonism. Finally, I determined I liked the ideas of Mormonism, but certain parts didn’t make sense. So I decided, for lack of anything better, to be ‘98% Mormon’, while I still waited for something to hit me and push me towards Mormonism.

 

Five or so years passed and I began to have a sense of urgency concerning what faith I was going to belong to. I went back to researching, but with the same results. Corey told me about ordering a Book of Mormon online and that gave me an idea. I figured, if I ordered one and read it through, then I would know for sure whether I would join or not. So I went online and started ordering a Book of Mormon. After I filled out my mailing address and clicked to send it in, the most terrifying pop up I’ve ever seen appeared on my screen….”The missionaries will arrive shortly to deliver your Book of Mormon”. Keep in mind, as I said, I had a fear of missionaries. Clicking the ‘back’ button was completely futile, they already had my info and I was scared. I started trying to plan how to get my Book of Mormon without having to actually let the missionaries in. I couldn’t exactly open my door, grab the book from them and slam the door closed in their face. As scared as I was, I did have some manners.

 

At around the same time, something did hit me in a way; the spur-of-the-moment desire to try going to a Mormon church. Figuring my life was over anyways, I emailed Corey to ask for a ride to Church the following Sunday. Very surprised, he told me when they’d be by to pick me up. That week was probably the most nerve wracking I’ve ever been through. The missionaries, much to my displeasure, came knocking a few days before Sunday. I had no idea they’d actually teach me one of the lessons at that time too, but in they came and I actually, once my nervousness wore off, thoroughly enjoyed myself. That was when I met two of the most awesome guys ever: Elders Drummondo and Lewis. We agreed on another lesson the following week and I finally had my Book of Mormon, which was filled with many circled scriptures for me to find, as well as Elder Lewis’ testimony. If I had to pick a point exactly when I decided to convert, it would have been when I read his testimony. That was the hit, though it may have not exactly been a hit, I had been waiting for, I’m not sure why. I didn’t even know him at the time, but something in it helped me make the connection and I knew where I was headed. But just in case, I didn’t let anyone know my ideas at the time.

 

However, my struggle wasn’t complete; I still had to endure my first voluntary attendance at Church. But it went much better than I expected, The Crapos were totally awesome, they were even willing to give up their permanent front row seat for the sake of my feeling comfortable if I wanted, and Mrs.Crapo made sure I understood everything. I couldn’t ask for a better first time experience. The only bad part was when my Sunday school teacher, not realizing I was new because I believe he was new too, asked me to say opening prayer. Hoping to look like I knew a bit more than I did, I stood, crossed my arms and bowed my head…And that was as far as I got before I whispered to Corey “How do I pray?” Thankfully, he took over for me before I made myself look even more foolish.

 

The next week, the missionaries took my mother and me on a fascinating Church tour and Brother and Sister Pierson were there too. At the end, we were sitting behind the pulpit, enjoying the quiet. The Elders were going to leave us there after we had a closing prayer so that we could ponder what we had learned. But before they left the room, they asked me if I would agree to get baptized. Without hesitance, I said yes. In fact, looking back, I think my answer was out before I even fully knew what they asked. I’m pretty sure if my mom hadn’t been wearing glasses, her eyes might have just popped out of her head in her surprise. After they left, my mom, as much as I love her, didn’t seem to grasp the idea that pondering meant quiet. I was bombarded with “Are you sure!? This is huge! You didn’t even think about it!” while Brother and Sister Pierson giggled good naturedly at my mom’s surprise and my ignored hushings. I have to say, my mom, even with all her doubts, was the one who consistently supported my decision full heartedly. Had she not, I’m quite sure all this would have been extraordinarily difficult to go through.

 

I began going to seminary, reading scriptures regularly, doing personal progress and attempting to catch up on the five years I had missed when I was trying to get over my unreasonable fears. Over the course of April I finished my missionary lessons and met another fantastic person during that time: Brother Hornberger. He explained the one thing I never before really understood: The Holy Ghost and he helped me to understand and listen for it better than I ever could have hoped before.

 

I don’t think I really told anyone besides my mom, the Piersons and the Elders I was planning to get baptized until a week or two before, which resulted in emails and phone calls from many shocked and…we’ll say disgruntled…people. Looking back, that could have been avoided had I expressed my interest in and knowledge of Mormonism back when I started researching it.

 

I was baptized on May 1st 2010 and because I figured it would be suiting since he introduced me to Mormonism, I asked Corey to baptize me. It might have been wise to ask someone with a little more experience to do it though, because Corey almost dropped me. Overall, my baptism and the month leading up to it are all pretty much a blur but I remember most pointedly that it was the happiest month of my life, despite my nervousness going into it.

 

I’d just like to say a bit about the Elders who taught me, since I kind of skipped over them. I’m sure all missionaries are awesome, but of course, these two stick out in my mind because they’re the ones who taught me. I’m quite sure I weirded them out very often with my odd sense of humor, but besides that we had a great time. The things I remember most were two things: Elder Lewis’ motto of “Did you pray about it?” and Elder Drummondo’s explanation of the Atonement, another thing I had a bit of an issue understanding.

 

Whenever I would tell them about any issues in my life, Elder Lewis would unfailingly ask “Did you pray about it?” While usually quite funny at the time because of the way he would ask it, he drilled it into me over the weeks. I think it is a reminder we could all use on a daily basis when we’re faced with uncertainties. I know, personally, I will often consult many other things before even thinking to pray about things and I’ve come to know, it should be the other way around because the best and most straightforward solution for life’s troubles comes from prayer.

 

Elder Drummondo explained the Atonement the best way I’ve ever heard it. He said to imagine you wrote a test but it was impossible to score 100%. But the one who could score 100% was Jesus and He helped you get there. In short: Jesus would meet you wherever you were at and bring you the rest of the way. This both explained the Atonement for me and gave me hope. It was one of my favourite lessons.

 

In my time so far as a member here, I have met some of the most amazing, inspiring, loving, determined, beautiful, creative, joyful, spiritual, knowledgeable and in short fantastically wonderful people here. I have given a short mention to some of you, but there are so many more of you and so much more I would like to say but I’m pretty sure I’m already pushing my time limit. Pretty much, if I have met you, you fall into the categories I’ve listed. If I haven’t met you yet, I’m sure you belong in one of those categories too. Please know I love you, my brothers and sisters, so much and I am so grateful to all of you for helping me realize where I belong.

 

Because of the missionaries, the friends in the Church I knew and made and all those who have taught me, I’ve learned quite a few important lessons. I know that with prayer and scripture study, usually quite a bit of it, you can find answers to all the big questions concerning life and spirituality. Through these methods, I have come to know that we are guided by a living prophet today and that this is the true Church of God. To know that brings me great joy and I am so grateful to our Heavenly Father for blessing us with a modern day seer and revelator. I am also grateful that we were blessed with Joseph Smith, whom I have also come to know to be a prophet and the translator of the Book of Mormon, without which, we would be lost still. I am exceptionally grateful for the Holy Ghost and the guidance it gives and I know that, no matter where we are in life, Jesus will meet us where we’re at and, through the Atonement; we will be forgiven and lifted up.

 

I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ,

Amen.

Live long & Prosper!!♥

The ever continuing thoughts

Forget the times he walked by, Forget the times he made you cry, Forget the times he spoke your name, Remember now your not the same. Forget the times he held your hand, Forget the sweet things if you can,Forget the times & Don’t pretend, Remember now he’s just your friend.

Moving on is simple,it’s what you leave behind that makes it so difficult

The hardest part of loving someone is knowing when to let go, and knowing when to say goodbye.

Deep down you know it’s best for yourself,

but you hate the thought of him being with someone else.

The heart does heal and you will love like this again… only when you do, you will deny you ever felt like this before.

I cried when I knew I lost you, afraid I had lost it all.Then I realized that losing you, didn’t have to mean I lost me.

I wish I was a kid again,because skinned knees are easierto fix then broken hearts.

It’s like my mind knows what’s right but my heart is being retarded and still cares

why is there a “you” in “me”but never a “me” in “you”?

She’s got him falling head over heels for her and I can’t even get him to stumble..

I miss you a little, I guess you could say, a little too much, a little too often, and a little more each day.

I wish I had the guts to walk away and forget about what we had.But, I can’t because I know you won’t come after me, and I guess that’s what hurts the most.

Every few nights or so you pop into my dreams,I just can’t get rid of you like you got rid of me

Days continue to pass, stars continue to shine. Why do I have tears in my eyes todaywhen he was NEVER mine?

I’m Starting Think The Times We Are Happy Together Aren’t Worth The Times I Cry Alone

I always fall for that one guy, who is out of reach, but close enough to make it hurt

Its a lot easier to say I dont like him anymore than to explain all the reasons why I still do

Tears are just unspoken words a broken heart can’t bare to speak

I dont run from you, I walk away slowly and it kills me because you dont care enough to stop me

I felt he loved me, and I went crazy about it but soon enough I found out that he never loved me, I was the one in love with him

While you gave her flowers, you gave me thorns.While all she did was smile, all I did was mourn.While she was so happy, I felt so blue.Because while you loved her, I was loving you.

I knew from the very beginning that you were just a flirt, And yet I fell in love with you, knowing I’d get hurt. I’ll conceal my broken heart behind a smiling face And though you thought I never cared, no one can take your place

The worst way to love someone is to sit next to them, knowing they don’t love you back.

I can’t talk to you anymore, it’s not that I am mad at you, it’s just that when I talk to you I realize how much I love you and when I realize how much I love you, I realize I can’t have you right now and that makes me love you even more.

Love is as much of an object as an obsession, everybody wants it, everybody seeks it, but few ever achieve it, those who do will cherish it, be lost in it, and among all, never… never forget it.

The couple that fights the most is the one most in love… it shows they care enough to notice the other one screwed up and care enough to mention it to the person so they can fix it. When you stop fighting it means you stopped caring.

Anyone can be passionate, but it takes real lovers to be silly.

I get the best feeling in the world when you say hi or even smile at me because I know, even if its just for a second, that I’ve crossed your mind

remember when getting high meant swinging at the playground.the worst thing you could get from boyswas cooties.your worst enemy were you siblings.race issues were who ran the fastest.war was a card game.the only drug you knew was coughmedicine.& wearing a skirt didn’t mean you were a slut.the only thing that hurt were skinned knees.& the only things that can get broken were your toys.life was simple and carefree,but what i remember the mostwas wanting to grow up

if he’s dumb enough to walk awaythen be smart enough to let him go

everyday people ask me “are you two going out?” && you dont realize how painful it is to reply no we’re just friends

&& a million tears wouldntgive me what i wantbecause what i want is you

&& just incase you’re wondering, you mean everything to that girl.

its so easy to love himyet so hard to tell him

[maybe] i’m over you[maybe] i’ve moved on[maybe] i like someone else[but maybe] i’m a perfectly good liar

i want you to throw rocks at my windowat midnight;;and tell me imperfect for you

& she waits for that phone call…the one where he says he madethe biggest mistake of his life inletting her go & that he wants to be with her again…even thoughsheknows it will never come

Boys make us cry, laugh, and throw a fit all at the same time;;; and yet we never stop loving them??

&& Its so hard to tell everyone I dont love him, when hes the only one ill ever L O V E

School isnt where you find your husband, its where you find your bridesmaids

&&I keep telling myself i cant like this guy, but i see your gorgeous eyes and im not going to lie, i cant get over this guy

Life Ain’t BurgerKing Y0U CAN’T ALWAYS HAVE iT Y0UR WAY

if  we  go  down we go down together because when i saidbestfriends i meantforever

its almost like you had it planned;  its like you smiled,  hugged me, & whispered    hey i’m about to screw you over big time

best friend is someone who screams to you in the hallways, saying “I LOVE YOU!”not caring if anyone thinks they’re a lesbian, just caring that you hear them every time

You’re everyting i want,Cause you’re everything im not.

Open your eyes kid, cant you see, she’s in L O V E with you?

There’s this boy who kinda borrowed my heart and forgot to give it back

Off the same friend’s Fb. italics mean something to me.Non-italics just make it flow.

She just smashes quotes together and oftentimes I find a bit of me in them. This one’s a little more depressing that normal though, but only the happier(ish)ones apply to me.

My first Mormonized Halloween

We had a ‘trunk or treat’ since Haloween in on a Sunday. Very enjoyable. People kept coming up to me and rubbing my head. I had fun blindfolding lil kids and getting them to touch nastiness. They’re so cute!

I’m very seriously considering keeping my 80’s rocker look. Bonnie Tyler hair+blue/purple/pink eyeshadow. You can definitely tell my eyes are green with that on.

*relaxed sigh*

My Gallery on deviantart

If you haven’t already checked it out, I would love it if you did!

If I get this darn social project finished, I may work on some art to add.

This is the first saturday in about a month where I can sit and relax (mostly, besides the project). I am enjoying it thouroughly.

I also have this intense craving for cheese >.>

My costume from yesterday, I like it. Just need to find a way to make it all seem more smooth and realistic:

Q’Apla!!!

So I haven’t destroyed my hair…But it’s now overly oily with gelatin…Which will eventually leak into my eyes >.>….And, while putting on my Klingon, I forgot I wear glasses. So now, it’s relatively hard to see, but i’ll be ok I’m sure.

I also magically got Saturday off work…WHICH MEANS I GET CANDY!!!

I’m not sure which forces were responsible, but I love them either way ^^.

Waiting for my head to cure, then I get to powder (I haaaate that step….Always gets in my eyes) and find a way to color the stuff…Right now I look like bones are sticking out of my forehead….But it looks pretty decent. Silicone is way more comfy. Doesn’t fall off as easy, way lighter and best of all NO BURNING!!!Of eyes or skin :D.

But I don’t feel so great right now. I think its cause I’m up so early….

I is so happy!

Live long & Prosper!!♥