Sunday, April 24, 2011

Rocks, Pebbles, Sand

I recently heard a story about a professor that stood in front of his class with a jar. He filled the jar with small rocks until they reached the top. He asked if the jar was full. The class said yes. He then took out a container of pebbles and poured them into the jar. The tiny pebbles filled in spaces between the rocks. He asked the class if the jar was full. They hesitantly said maybe. The professor pulled out a container of sand and poured them into the jar. The sand filled in the rest of the spaces. The professor declared the jar full.

This can be taken as a lesson on priorities. But it came to me as a lesson on giving. Often I'm afraid of giving too much. (This seems like a silly thing to be afraid off as I write it.) But I worry about running out of energy, patience, time, or imagining some sense of hurt if the service is not well received.

I realized, while listening to the story and it's application, that I shouldn't be worried about these things, especially the last one as the Savior will cover all of them. As I give, relying on the Savior, these things will never run out and it doesn't matter how it is received. He will replenish these resources and allow me to give more. He will always bless us as we strive to serve the people around us.

This Easter Day, I am grateful for the Savior and the choice He made to lay down His life so that we can repent and return to live with Heavenly Father some day.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Discovering the Book of Mormon (Again)

Last month, Elder Bednar came to speak to the Young Single Adults in the region. He did a Q&A session that was amazing. In response to one question about ways to come to know the Savior, he said to get a new copy of the Book of Mormon and to highlight all references to the Savior.

I have attempted this in the past using various colors for different things about the Savior (characteristics, attributes, names, quotes), but I always got bogged down in remembering what color to use or some other detail that was distracting from actually comprehending what I was reading. But I wanted to try again.

I pulled an unmarked copy off my shelf (you can get one here) and pulled out my nifty multi-color marking pencil and started reading. This also somewhat coincided with my desire to get out of bed 20 minutes earlier each morning to do my scripture study before work. At first it was slow as I wondered "should I be highlighting this?" As I pressed forward, the highlighting became second nature.

I am amazed at how often the Savior is referred to. I always knew it was a lot (3925 references in 531 pages), but to actually highlight it and visualize it has had a huge impact. I have also discovered that reading with a purpose changes the way you see and understand the book. Verses that have always been there are read as if for the first time. It changes the way I understand and digest what I'm reading. This exercise has also renewed my passion to read the Book of Mormon. I'm excited to get up in the morning, getting ready as quickly as possible and even reading past the normal time I leave for work, just so I can read as long as possible.

The Book of Mormon has changed my life many times as I learn more about the Savior, his teachings, and the plan that can lead us back to our Father in Heaven. I can see it changing me now as I feel more constant assurance of His love and peace. I look forward to the changes that will come in the future as I continue to read with purpose and heed the teachings of the prophets in the Book of Mormon and the living prophet today.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Confession: I check Google Reader about 3 times a day, sometimes more, sometimes less, and not usually on Sundays. I subscribe to a blog about the city I love, newsfeeds about my church, and a blog written by a woman I've never met who makes me laugh. But mostly I subscribe to my friend's blogs. I hungrily wait for them to post so that I can look at pictures of their children or of their latest vacation or read what their reading or feel like I know something about them when seperated by time and distance. I get lost in their worlds and in their words. I have amazing friends. I'm grateful they write.

I've found myself wondering lately, does this make me selfish? My friends share and I take, but I rarely share back, except for an occasional comment. Is this because I feel like I have nothing to share or that I don't make it a priority or that I'm not sure what to share? So here is to sharing a little more about me, the things that make me feel blessed and the little things that make my life complete.