Sunday, July 26, 2009

Summer of Temples

As I was walking through the Oquirrh Mountain Temple Open House on Saturday, I had a thought, which I am starting to think wasn't my own. So here's the plan: next summer when I get done with another semester at BYU-Idaho, I am going to go on a little road trip. So far, it's just me going, but I think I'll get some more friends to come along. We'll start in St. George and end in Logan, visiting each temple as we go. There are 13 temples in Utah and 11 that are sort of lined up next to each other. The only two I won't be visiting are Vernal and Monticello. I can tell this is going to be a good summer vacation...11 temples in 14 days! And since they are so dang beauteous, here's some collages of where I will be spending my summer, all in order of when I will be visiting them (click on the pics to make them bigger):

Monday, July 20, 2009

Let's play a game...

Using only song names from ONE ARTIST, cleverly answer these questions. No repeating song titles.

Pick Your Artist: Imogen Heap

Are you male or female: Angry Angel

Describe yourself: Candlelight

How do you feel about yourself: Just For Now

Describe your current boy/girl relation situation: Have You Got it In You?

Describe where you currently live: Not Now, But Soon

If you could go anywhere you wanted to go: Sleep

Your favorite form of transportation: The Walk

Favorite time of day: Goodnight and Go

If your life were a TV show, what would it be called: Shine

What is life to you: Sweet Religion

What is the best advice you have to give: Breathe In

How I would like to die: Loose Ends

I TAG: Mom, Dad, Chelsea

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The Reason Everyone Cried in Class Today...

"Well, my dear sisters [and brothers], the gospel is the good news that can free us from guilt. We know that Jesus experienced the totality of mortal existence in Gethsemane. It's our faith that he experienced everything- absolutely everything. Sometimes we don't think through the implications of that belief. We talk in great generalities about the sins of all humankind, about the suffering of the entire human family. But we don't experience pain in generalities. We experience it individually. That means he knows what it felt like when your mother died of cancer- how it was for your mother, how it still is for you. He knows what it felt like to lose the student body election. He knows that moment when the brakes locked and the car started to skid. He experienced the slave ship sailing from Ghana toward Virginia. He experienced the gas chambers at Dachau. He experienced Napalm in Vietnam. He knows about drug addiction and alcoholism.
Let me go further. There is nothing you have experienced as a woman that he does not also know and recognize. On a profound level, he understands the hunger to hold your baby that sustains you through pregnancy. He understands both the physical pain of giving birth and the immense joy. He knows about PMS and cramps and menopause. He understands about rape and infertility and abortion. His last recorded words to his disciples were, "And, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world." (Matthew 28:20) He understands your mother-pain when your five-year-old leaves for kindergarten, when a bully picks on your fifth-grader, when your daughter calls to say that the new baby has Down syndrome. He knows your mother-rage when a trusted babysitter sexually abuses your two-year-old, when someone gives your thirteen-year-old drugs, when someone seduces your seventeen-year-old. He knows the pain you live with when you come home to a quiet apartment where the only children are visitors, when you hear that your former husband and his new wife were sealed in the temple last week, when your fiftieth wedding anniversary rolls around and your husband has been dead for two years. He knows all that. He's been there. He's been lower than all that. He's not waiting for us to be perfect. Perfect people don't need a Savior. He came to save his people in their imperfections. He is the Lord of the living, and the living make mistakes. He's not embarrassed by us, angry at us, or shocked. He wants us in our brokenness, in our unhappiness, in our guilt and our grief.
You know that people who live above a certain latitude and experience very long winter nights can become depressed and even suicidal, because something in our bodies requires whole spectrum light for a certain number of hours a day. Our spiritual requirement for light is just as desperate and as deep as our physical need for light. Jesus is the light of the world. We know that this world is a dark place sometimes, but we need not walk in darkness. The people who sit in darkness have seen a great light, and the people who walk in darkness can have a bright companion. We need him, and He is ready to come to us, if we'll open the door and let him."

(Chieko N. Okazaki, Lighten Up, Preface, p. 174)

Monday, July 6, 2009

Need change? Don't ask you-know-who (rhymes with O-llama)

I changed my blog! Te gusta?! Please tell me so I can either leave it, change it back, or change it all over again. That's all I got for today...
P.S. It is stinking hot here in Apartment 506! At least I know what it's like to live in subtropical countries with zip air conditioning now, right?

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Babies I Wanna Hold!

Click on the pic to see it big!
(left to right: Ammon Livingston, Grace Browning, Rylee Livingston, Gavin Holyoak)