I love us :)

I love us :)

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Today's Camrynism

Today Camryn just said, "Mom, I want to sit on your lap with my butt!" What a goof!

Saturday, February 8, 2014


So this week I have been focusing my thoughts on adversity for a lesson I am teaching and I just happened to have read The Hobbit in the last few days and a few things have become a little clearer. I guess my train of thought all started when something occurred to me that never had before. Why was a time of trial and testing so important? Why not just give everybody a glorified body and eternal life from the beginning? Those who are making bad choices here would go on and do the same things but it wouldn't really matter, right? Not when they couldn't actually kill or truly hurt anyone else. But it DOES matter. It IS important.

So why? And then I thought about history and power. Give a man power and watch what happens. Sadly, a lot of the time truly horrible things happen at the wishes and command of a ruler who truly loses sight of what is truly powerful.

Things like love, innocence, honesty, loyalty and integrity.

As children of God we were born already great. We are, in a small but nonetheless extremely significant way, like our Father, the Almighty God. We are already given great gifts. But much like Bilbo at the start of his own story, we all felt little stirrings deep within ourselves that maybe what we had (a tiny hobbit hole) and what we were (just a lowly hobbit) isn't quite enough. Maybe we were settling for a life of contentment just because it was known and safe and expected.

So we accepted Heavenly Father's plan and we came here to Earth. We all of a sudden have to make thousands of choices on a daily basis and be completely responsible for those choices and the consequences that follow. So we venture out. We choose. We choose right and good, but not all of the time. That's okay, we are merely learning how to consistently choose the good. Bilbo sometimes froze, not knowing how to act. Sometimes not making a choice is, in effect, making a choice! But we repent, we change and grow and persevere.

We are also getting ever closer to our own dragon (or dragons). We are finally so close that we have to walk down the long dark tunnel to face the unknown all on our own. And this is what I learned from J.R.R. Tolkien: "It was at this point that Bilbo stopped. Going on from there was the bravest thing he ever did. The tremendous things that happened afterwards were as nothing compared to it. He fought the real battle in the tunnel alone, before he ever saw the vast danger that lay in wait."

No matter what happened to Bilbo when he continued on that path, the battle was already over for him in a very real and true sense. And so it is for us! We all find a time in our lives that we must fight our internal battle. Who will win, the natural mad aided and abetted by Satan or will our true nature as Gods and Goddesses in embryo carry the day? The battle is waging in our hearts and through our choices. We ARE fighting to gain eternal life. The greatest blessing that we have been given freely is a Savior that not only made it possible but is supporting us and carrying our burdens for us every step of the way.

So why was a test necessary? Why must I face adversity? So that I learn who I am. So that I know that with all my heart I will obey my loving Father. So that I fight that battle against my fallen nature, as I face my dragon and know that as I continue on my path the hardest thing I have ever done is behind me. The hardest battle- will I follow my Savior no matter where that path leads?- is already decided because I decide that I WILL do whatever I can. I do NOT want mediocrity and contentment with it. I want to fight dragons and win.