Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Getting Back Up After a Fall

My good friend, Yvonne Miller, gave a fabulous Relief Society lesson on the talk by Pres. Uchtdorf, "You Can Do It Now." She used the cute video clip of a mother duck who had gone up a couple stairs and her ducklings struggling to follow her. It was a great visual image of how sometimes we are on the bottom stair but our Heavenly Father is always there for us, waiting patiently, and knowing that we can do hard things. Just like the ducklings tried and tried again even though they kept falling, that is what we can do also.

I also appreciated the comments by a sweet woman, Shirley Noble, who shared her experience trying to learn how to walk again after being near death and in a coma for over a month. She said that she had taken a walk outside alone at the rehab center just as she was initially struggling to walk and fell but couldn't get up. The staff came and rescued her and then when she was working with her physical therapist, who knew about her fall, the therapist had her fall over and over again so she could learn to get back up on her own.

Isn't that a great lesson on life. If we can't get back up again on our own, it is possible that there will be people there to help us up but life will keep pushing us down again so that we get strong enough to get back up on our own. Life isn't about never falling. It is about learning to get back up again.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Stay on the Path

It use to be that the path was fairly smooth and the boundaries clear as in the first picture.  Just like the wooden railing, we have been given guidelines to stay on the path--prayer, scripture reading, attending church, keeping the commandments, etc. We might have taken those things for granted when the going was easy.

Now it seems like life can certainly be more treacherous. With morality slipping and addictions more prevalent, falling off the path is easier and easier to do. Thus all those guidelines have become more like the chain link in the bottom picture. We have to hang on for dear life.

Because it is so easy for me to get distracted, I have always found that there are certain morning rituals that bless my life. Praying and scripture reading and journal writing keep me focused on what is important and give my life stability and direction. Attending church each week and being reminded of the sacrifice of my Savior and feeling gratitude and renewed commitment and being surrounded by people with the same desires help me stay on the path.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Feeling Wronged? Or Feeling Gratitude?

A favorite scripture of mine talks about a people who became "wild, and ferocious, and a blood-thristy people," all because they believed in the tradition of their fathers who taught that they had been "wronged." (Mosiah 10:12) What a powerful message. If we see that we have been "wronged" by other people or the circumstances of our life, we are vulnerable to become bitter and possibly revengeful. Instead, if we can find gratitude in ALL things, then we can become purified by those same events. 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Dealing with Pain

I know this is true. That is why when I feel pain, I don't want to dull that pain artificially. Unless it is with a little chocolate or nachos, mind you.

I have experienced my share of emotional pain and anxiety, but I have also experienced the birth of new understanding and the opportunity to learn from it and become stronger, wiser, and more refined. That is why I don't want to dull those opportunities by using something artificial and temporary to take away the pain.

I want to embrace the pain and embrace the healing power that comes from a loving Heavenly Father who is there to help me cope and more importantly help me learn from the experience.

Because of my Savior's death and rebirth, I can be reborn spiritually, and it is usually and more effectively done through pain.

Sidenote: I don't really believe God causes our pain. We do that to ourselves. Other people often help; but in the end, it is our own reaction to what they do that causes the most pain.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Does Religion Cause Pain?


This is a link to an article by Robert Kirby from the Salt Lake Tribune that I find very interesting.  Great food for thought.

For me the bottom line is that religion should create love and faith, not resentment and fear. If I am feeling overly anxious and angry to the point of feeling pain because a loved one doesn't believe or behave in the way that I want them to, then I am simply not practicing my beliefs like I should. It would be a sign that I need to draw closer to my Father in Heaven and have faith that His love and my love and positive example is sufficient, and then to proactively pray for direction and strength to know how I can best support and love them.

I feel peace when I work on having a great and close relationship. I also feel peace knowing God loves them a heck of a lot more than I am capable of, and I just get to try and mirror that kind of love. 

Thursday, July 10, 2014

7 Most Alkaline Foods

This morning I made a smoothie with all of these 7 foods. I added coconut water, frozen mangoes, and a banana for sweetness, and some flax seeds and chia seeds. Who would have thought those chia pet seeds weren't just amazing Christmas gift ideas as advertised but were healthy to eat?

The smoothie was delicious and even better, I know it is doing my body good. If I want my body to perform well, I have got to take good care of it. I am drinking to good health. Cheers.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Bubonic Plague

On a tour in London, I learned an interesting bit of history about the Bubonic Plague in the Middle Ages. According to this tour guide, when the disease started to spread they assumed that cats and dogs were the carriers of the infection and so they killed hundreds of them. Because it was really caused by the rats, killing their natural predators allowed the rat population to grow and made the disease worse.

In this is an interesting parallel. Right now it seems a lot of people are discounting and even calling the commandments detrimental to a happy and carefree life. Believing that it is those expectations that cause stress and pain, they are being ignored. In this way "killing" the very thing that can serve as a protector and ultimately leads to freedom and joy.

Just like killing the cats who prey on the rats and thus allowing the disease to run rampant, we can take away the very thing that can protect individuals and a society from slow but real destruction. I say, keep the commandments.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Gotta Love Dead Man's Pose

The best thing I have ever done is get addicted to exercise. One of the best exercises I do is Bikram Yoga. I sweat, I stretch, and most importantly, I enjoy the dead man's pose.

I am determine to stay physically fit so I can enjoy a long, active life. I like to walk, swim, dance, hike, ski, bike; but I can tell the best thing for a healthy body is doing yoga. It keeps me flexible, helps with balance, and strengthens my spine. I tune more into my body and strengthen and stretch muscles that don't usually get a work out. I love the mind/body experience and the cleanse as I end drenched in sweat. It is the hardest exercise I do but I also feel the best. I think our minds and bodies are always seeking a challenge, and practicing Bikram yoga delivers that physical challenge that I crave. And I get to play dead.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Akaline & Acid

I simply have to get serious about eating healthy. I haven't been as careful and I can feel the negative affects of an acidic body--aching joints, headaches, lethargic, negative attitude, etc.  I know that if I want to live a vibrant life that I need to eat foods that are more alkaline and thus support good health. The chart above says it well--It is really living the Word of Wisdom. It shows the importance of not only avoiding certain foods but eating a lot of fruits and vegetables that create a healthy system. If it is to be--it is up to me. At my age, cheating isn't an option anymore. Dang it. Good to know that at least I don't have a problem eating too much liver since it is high in acid. I am just sad that chocolate is.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Poison Ivy

On my Saturday morning hike, I noticed that poison ivy was on both sides of the trail. I am glad that from experience with it in my own back yard, I can recognize it and know to stay away. I was also able to warn other hikers that didn't recognize it as harmful

I have experienced other things "in my own backyard" that I now know are important to stay away from.