Thursday, September 23, 2010
Monday, September 6, 2010
Where Jesus Walked:
Though hesitant at first and fearful of the unknown
I took a step and followed the prompting shown.
It led me to a place of conflict as well as diversity.
And so, in the Holy Land I attended the Mormon University.
I was determined to learn all that I could,
And like most students, buy something nice made out of olive wood.
Though I knew the itinerary, I did not understand what lied in store,
for deep down my heart would be changed to the core.
As I walked through historic places
They became for me, sacred spaces.
From Egypt across to Jordan and up to Galilee,
From Dan to Beer Sheva and of course Gethsemane,
The Garden Tomb, the Temple Mount
There are too many memories for me to count.
Hezekiah's Tunnel and the Dead Sea
From Shepherds Field to Mt. Sinai, these places came alive for me.
I cannot express the feelings of my heart
But with gratitude I thank the Lord, for from the start,
He's led me down paths I could have never known,
He's led me to places where I have grown.
More dependent on Him than ever before
And searching for enlightenment I asked for more.
I realized I could never walk where Jesus had walked,
For he alone could travel the path where he would be scourged beaten and mocked.
He would heal the sick and give sight to the blind,
Bring life to those dead, and teach all those he could find.
But His greatest gift was his love for you and for me,
And oftentimes we fail to see,
That he would lay down his life
And that he might willingly give it up for all mankind.
This thought of grace brings joy to my heart and my mind,
For I never walked the path that Jesus walked,
He's walked mine.
From the moment we heard "Bus 1 and Bus 2"
We knew we would be guided like cattle all the way through
Field trips and flies, beautiful sunsets and skies,
And even a sunrise view of Sinai.
Through friendships forged and made,
We hope our memories will never fade.
Sometimes we'd guess what they'd have in the oasis for dessert at dinner.
We all knew we weren't getting any thinner.
Senior couples and teachers are here to help and bring joy each day
Learning in our classes in the morning, then we're off to the old city to play.
Everywhere we go a familiar question is asked,
"Are you mormon?" after each merchant is passed.
"Good price for you and half off too!"
They can tell we aren't Muslims or Jews.
Some say it's the light in our eyes,
But we know there's something more that shines.
The light of the gospel can't be supressed.
Though most of our time is spent in jest
Fighting for bean bags or having a snack at the Shalom Shack,
Poprocks chocolate is the best treat to pack
For the long bus rides to distant places
It always brings a smile to our faces.
Ancient cities and numerous tels
Or on the Red Sea or Mediterranean collecting sea shells,
We've spent much time studying and playing together
We know this is a special time and our hearts become tethered
To not only a sense of understanding and love,
But also to the One who pours out blessings from above.
Sunday, August 8, 2010
If through the years this meeting were never to occur,
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
It's a good one!
Sunday, July 18, 2010
So this last week the clinic paid for all of it's employees to go see Willy Wonka at the Scera shell outdoor theater in Orem. This brought back a million memories of going to plays in the park with my family, as well as random roadshows we did- one in which I really was an oompa loompa (that was only a few years ago). I have to say that it was worth it. I love being outside, and I love the arts. There is something about going to see a play that just brings imagination to life. As I sat there with my friend Katie and her two kid cousins, I just felt moments of joy. I can't explain what it was, but it has really been a long time since I felt like that. I honestly can't remember the last time I couldn't stop smiling because of happiness. It was like all cares, worries were lifted off of my shoulders. It may have been Willy singing "there's a world of pure imagination". The production wasn't anything fancy, and I can't say that there was anything particularly special about the performance, I think it was just a combination of just letting everything go and enjoying the moment.It was about remembering what it was like to be a kid.
Sunday, July 11, 2010
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Tonight I did something incredibly stupid. At least- I really wasted an opportunity to get to know someone. All I can say is I am a moron.
So here's the deal. I was headed to institute tonight since I haven't been in awhile, and knew that I could use it tonight. I had just finished crossing University Ave, when I could hear someone on a bicycle coming up behind me. So I moved to the side to get out of their way. He saw that I was holding scriptures and walking somewhere and asked if I was going to institute. My first impression and thought: Runaway! Because that's the first thing I think when I smell an excessive amount of aftershave that has a strong hint of Old Spice- I like the commercials, not the scent. Second thing that I thought was he probably isn't looking for the same place. He was adamant that we were going to the same place on campus. He had good features, and a Spanish accent. I asked him where he was from- Uruguay but claimed Spain as his home. (He became a little more attractive at that point) (Shallow. I know. I know.) I asked him which building he was looking for- he said he was looking for one close to a museum- I knew that the museums were on the complete opposite side of campus. We started talking- he slowed down on his bicycle and told me that he was getting his masters degree in Civil Engineering and planned on going back to Spain when he was done. (The old spice scent had magically disappeared when he said he was a grad student) (Even more shallow. Right.)All this time he kept insisting that he was headed in the right direction- ie. following me. At one point I asked him what his institute teacher looked like and he said that his teacher was a man- He was definably not going to the same place. My teacher is a girl.
Ok. We have a problem- well a couple. I usually cut through buildings to get there because it's faster. He was on a bike, and didn't seem like he was going to get off and walk. So now I know we are looking for different places and I am about to cut through a building that he can't take his bike through. So I tell him that I am going to the grey building- and he will have to go through the parking lot to get there while I cut through the building. I was unsure at this point if he wanted to come with me to my class or if he still wanted to find his own. So I gave him the directions and he took off. I should have just told him to park his bike and that we should just walk together.(I thought of that an hour later).
I cut through the building and he's come around the building much faster than I walked, and he's back on the sidewalk, headed towards me but not... I don't know. So at that moment in time I was thinking he was trying to get to his own class. He waves, and I wave back, but he doesn't follow me, so I figured he was going to his own class. I walked on and sat through institute- (which happened to be about marriage tonight)..As I thought about the encounter I had- I realized he was probably trying to wave me down so I would walk with him to my institute. MORON! Why don't I think about these things when I am situations like that..here I am talking with a guy who's nice, attractive, athletic, foreign, and I just let him wander around with no hope of knowing where to go. Wow. Can we say genius? The worst part? He was telling me about how nice it was to be here in Provo around so many nice people and especially how he loved to be around members of the church. Then I just dropped him and let him fend for himself. Real cool Risa.
So he either thought:
A. Wow. I take it back, people aren't nice here.
B. I still need directions!
C. That girl is a moron- I specifically stopped her to flirt, and she just kept walking.
The things I can glean from this:
A. Don't judge a man by his old spice.
B. I need to be a better communicator- at least so I can give better directions.
C. FLIRT BACK you Moron!
D. I've always wanted to visit Spain.
E. Some men really can pull off facial hair. Did I mention he had facial hair?
F. Bicycle man- I ever see you again, we'll go get ice cream.
G. If a man doesn't know where he's going, hop on the handle bars and show him the way.
Monday, July 5, 2010
Of all the things I’ve said,
Of all the dreams I’ve wished come true,Of all the tears I’ve shed,
There’s only one thing I wished you knew.
Of all the things I’ve written,
Of all the clichés, whims, and sayings so trite,
Of all the times I felt smitten,
There’s only one thing I hoped with all my might.
Of all the things I’ve done,
Of all the silly games I’ve played,
Of all the times I’d thought I’d won,
There’s only one thing for which I prayed.
Of all the times I’ve tried
Of all the times I’ve failed,
Of all the times I’ve cried,
There’s only one thing I wish I’d nailed.
Of all the times I wanted to give my heart,
Of all the times I tried to be true,
Of all the times I lacked the smarts
There’s only one thing of which I had a clue.
I only wanted to say I love you.
As in- articulate and without words expressed,
I tried to act so you’d be impressed.
I only managed to alienate and deter,
If only I could have acted in a way you would prefer.
Oh how clumsy and foolish I’ve been
Only to realize my actions and words were to your chagrin.
I’ve become “that crazy girl” in your life,
I really didn’t mean to cause you any strife.
I hope one day you’ll see
I just wanted you to get to know me.
Unfortunately I’ve portrayed myself most poorly.
If you only knew me, you’d understand surely.
You impressed me with who you are,
To find one better, I’d have to search among the stars.
You are one who is honorable and true,
I was a fool to try and pursue.
So here I am trying to apologize,
Yet there’s more to learn from this, I surmise.
One put on a pedestal inevitably falls,
Just like the boy who never calls.
I liked the idea of you,
But you never gave me the chance to see if the idea was true.
I liked the potential that was there,
Only to find out I hadn’t a prayer.
So know this, I am done.
Agony never was any fun.
Why do we put ourselves through torture?
Flames of love only become scorchers.
One thing I have learned,
Besides finding out how to get burned,
It’s something for which I’ve got a knack,
To learn to love someone who will never love you back.
So I wish for you all the happiness you could possess.
As I seek for other lives to bless.
Please just don’t forget ,
There is still one who has loved and loves you yet.
Of all the things I could have told youOf all the things I wished you knew,
Of all the things I’ve wished from above,The only thing I really wanted to give you was love.
Thursday, July 1, 2010
Purify My Heart
Purify my heart- this is my prayer.
Make it holy that to heaven I may come there.
A broken heart is a simple yet sincere token.
Help me to do as Thou hast spoken.
Contrite in spirit,
This is the only way I can be healed of it.
Consume this ache and make me whole.
Help me, that to Thee may come my soul.
Charity must come
That Thy will may be done.
Sanctify me through Thy grace
That I may one day see Thy face.
Bring me closer to Thee
So in Thine arms I may be.
Purify my heart, heal my wounded soul.
Calm my cares around me, hear my plea o Lord.
I am determined to progress
and help others of Thee confess.
My life has changed,
Oh help me to those blessings obtain.
Thy understanding is eternal and complete.
Thy mercy is meet.
Thy love is unspoken yet fully felt.
Do not depart oh Lord, and tarry to be my help.
Thanks be to thee for all thy love.
Purify my heart that I may dwell with Thee above.
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
I Heard the Lord and I Obeyed:
(written April 15, 2009)
I heard the voice of the Lord and I obeyed.
From that time until now nothing would bear sway.
It was as if I was the only one around
Who could hear His words and hearken to the sound.
But more than sound was the call to action in my breast.
A feeling most urgent which was not to be suppressed.
If the Lord felt it was important for me, who was I to oppose?
My heart was changed and I have become as I never supposed.
He knew my name for He had blessings to impart.
He knew my will would bend so he could change my heart.
The path towards that change was only walked by obedience.
And though I stumbled, I continued, regardless of inconvenience.
I heard the voice of the Lord and I obeyed.
In the hands of the Master I was made.
For only He can understand who I was and who I am.
With all His knowledge, He is not only the Savior, but the Great I Am.
Only He knows what I can become.
Only He knows how that is to be done.
If I can be obedient to His voice the rest of my days
I know through His mercy and love, He will show me His ways.
With worries forgotten, sins forgiven and trials endured,
As I listen and obey, sanctification through Him will be my cure.
Then at last I will proclaim at that final day,
I heard the voice of the Lord and I obeyed.
Obviously I am not at that point yet where I can say I have been obedient to every command, but this is a poem of a great hope of mine that I will one day be able to say such a wonderful statement. Even more grateful would I be if the Lord in His goodness would be merciful to someone so inconsistent such as I am right now to forgive and mold me into something better. I know it can only be through the atonment that anything could happen. As obedient as I want to be, I definately fall short, but this was written in a moment hoping for that one day. There are certain moments in everyone's life when, if they are listening, they can hear the voice of the Lord. I believe that with all my heart. I believe it because there have been moments in my own life when I could not deny that I had heard it in my mind and my heart.The conviction that followed those experiences were real. There are some references to that in the poem. But I still have a long way to go in consistently following and acting on those promptings. I only hope that I can as Brigham Young said, "know the will of the Lord and to do it."
Saturday, June 26, 2010
I went last night to Lehi Round-up rodeo with my roommates Amanda and Kindy. This time the steer wrestling wasn't as good mainly because the guys kept missing the steers. The bullriding was phenomenal though. Those were some angry bulls. I also enjoyed thier entertainment just before the bull riding contest, they a couple guys from the canadian airforce came and did some Motocross stunts and those guys were crazy too! Talk about performers! One of these days I'll have to go to the X-games and watch because that was amazing. All around I had lots of fun, and I think I have become converted to watching attractive cowboys do their thing at these rodeos. I recommend it to anyone who has never seen one of these to go and be entertained. It was awesome.
Thursday, June 24, 2010
I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Many people know us as "Mormons" a nickname given because we believe in sacred literature that was translated by a prophet named Joseph Smith. This book is called the Book of Mormon. It is an account of people that lived on the American continent before and after the time of Christ's mortal ministry. It declares along with the Bible that Jesus is the Christ, our Savior and Redeemer. It proves that the Lord is no respecter of persons, and that Christ not only showed himself among the people of the Middle East, but also here on this continent. He taught them as he taught his disciples in Galilee. This book has a magnificent promise contained in it, that if you desire and have real intent, that if you ask the Father in the name of the Son if it is true, then by the power of the Holy Ghost, you may know the truth of it's witness for yourself. I know that promise is true. I know that the Lord does not leave us alone. He has given us opportunities to search for and find the truth. I know that He answers prayers through the Holy Spirit. I know that you can find that truth yourself if you sincerely ask and intend to follow through on what the Lord has to say to you. I believe in personal revelation. I would not be where I am today without that. I know that because the Lord has answered my prayers, he can answer yours. I know the Book of Mormon is true! I know that who I am today stems from the teachings of that book. I am grateful for the sacrifices people have made for the publication of that sacred testament. I am grateful to Jesus Christ and for his sacrifice and his love most of all. It is only through His grace that makes eternal life possible. I know it is a possibility.
My membership in the church makes up mostly who I am. There are other things that I do enjoy though many aren't as important as the Gospel of Jesus Christ. My family makes up the rest of me. To me they are everything. I know that because of the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ, we are an eternal family. We are definitely not a perfect family. We are very far from it. But we will be together forever, whether they like it or not! Everyone better be there in the end...and we all better be going to the same place, because heaven would not be heaven without them. I could not imagine it without them. In our church, families are sealed for time and all eternity by the power of the Priesthood in holy temples. My parents were sealed in the Salt Lake City Temple for time and all eternity. All future children were then sealed to them when they were married. This makes us an eternal family. I am so grateful for that sealing. It's a promise that as we are faithful, that blessing cannot be broken. I hope to one day marry in the temple. At this point I don't care which temple it is, as long as I can be sealed to my spouse and my future family and continue that chain that leads into eternity. It is one of the deepest desires of my heart. These things are the foundation of my faith, and of who I am. I am not very eloquent, and have great difficulty expressing the things of my heart that I deeply wish to express. Hopefully as I get more experienced with "blogging" things will come easier. That's all for now.