Monday, October 21, 2013

makin' me chuckle

Oh my goodness, these made me laugh hahaha.

31 Hey Girl Memes That Only Mormon Girls Will Understand - BuzzFeed Mobile

Will, wow I didn't know you had such outspoken feelings for me!  You know I keep those notes and re-read them before bed, you wanna come read them with me? ;-)

Sunday, October 13, 2013

a note on respect

Recently, I had an experience that made my heart ache. It made me so sad! I feel like I need to write about it, because of the principles I try to stand for. Maybe it will help someone, I can only hope so!

A few weeks ago I gave a friend a copy of a book I consider to be very sacred, and that is very dear to my heart and to my faith - a Book of Mormon. (We believe this book to be a second witness, in companionship with the Bible, of the divinity of Jesus Christ).

Well, this past weekend, a group of people were talking about the Book of Mormon. One person told the group that their pastor informed them that if they ever received a copy, they should burn it. To this, my friend replied that they were going to rip out the pages I had written notes on, and would burn the rest of the book. I wasn't present, but later heard about the conversation from a friend who had been there.

I don't wish to take it personally, since obviously their words were concerning the Book of Mormon, not me. I think the course I'll take is letting that individual know how precious that text is to me, and that if needed I will write on every single page so they don't destroy that book!

But the main principle this brought to my mind was respect. Every person has their own free will, and chooses to believe and act as they may. I am so incredibly grateful that I have that freedom!

With that freedom, I believe it is critically important that we treat others with kindness, respect, and dignity. Although we may have different beliefs and opinions, we should remain respectful and treat each other with kindness.

One part of this responsibility is being respectful of things other people consider to be sacred. If, say, a Jewish friend gave me a copy of the Torah (or another religious text they study) I would never treat that with disrespect. Although I don't consider that book to be part of my scriptures, I would recognize how important that book is to them. I would also - and do recognize - that there is probably actually a lot of good in that book, and some things that we would probably agree on!

One of our beliefs is that we should study and gain knowledge -

"Of things both in heaven and in the earth, and under the earth; things which have been, things which are, things which must shortly come to pass, things which are at home, things which are abroad; the wars and perplexities of the nations, and the judgments which are on the land; and a knowledge also of countries and of kingdoms"
"And as all have not faith, seek ye diligently and teach one another words of wisdom; yea, seek ye out of the best books words of wisdom, seek learning, even by study and also by faith"
To me, I don't see why this wouldn't include a knowledge of other religions and other opinions. Even if you don't believe that it is true, surely there is something of value to have that knowledge. One great thing of value I can see would be being able to understand others, and knowing how to serve them. 

There is one more thing, and that is the burning of books in general. Throughout history, every example I can think of where some group burned books is when that group was trying to suppress a dissenting view that threatened their ideology. This suppression of dissenting views is contrary to freedom - including religious freedom.

Why would someone want to burn a sacred text of another faith? Wouldn't that individual be able to distinguish whether the text were true or false, good or evil, in their own personal study? Wouldn't they have a right to make that judgment in their own pursuit for truth?

I'll be the first to admit that I am such a flawed person. I am not perfect. However, I do try my best to live these principles - respecting other's opinions and beliefs, and standing for freedom so that both myself and others can have the opinions and beliefs that they choose to abide by. I just hope that other's will do the same!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

I love to see

Oh my goodness gracious, the past two weeks have been so awesome.
I don't know what it is about the leaves turning into gorgeous orange, red, & yellow hues,
the crisp autumn wind blowing through the trees,
and occasionally getting wiffs of smoke in the air from your neighbour's fireplace,
but it makes for the coziest, loveliest time of year.
It makes me want to cuddle up in a blanket and drink a steaming cup of peppermint herb tea, in a sweater that's way too big for me and a blazing fire. I just absolutely love it.
Especially when it rains, for some reason... the raindrops pattering on the roof and windows just makes it oh so much more peaceful.
It's just lovely. (:

Fall is definitely my favorite season. I am so grateful I live in a world that has Octobers. This fall, the changes in my life have been almost as beautiful - or even more so - than the vibrant forests and mountains outside!
I guess I've been neglecting my blog for a while, because I haven't announced where I'm going on my mission- woops!
I opened my call...
and it was kind of like this....
Bahahaha, that video cracks me up so much. But really.
I read...
Dear Sister Morris,
You are hereby called to serve as a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. You are assigned to labor in the.....
Arizona, Tempe Mission!!!
It felt so perfect! I can't wait to go and serve. It will be incredible. Just choosing to go and preparing has changed my life for the better.
Tomorrow I get to go to the temple. As excited as I am to be a missionary, in some ways I'm more excited for that (:
The temple is so, so beautiful, and inspiring on the outside.
 As someone whose been there, I can tell you that it is even more beautiful, peaceful, ennobling, and inspiring on the inside.
I'm just so happy, and feel blessed beyond what my heart can say to be able to go.
When thinking about it, the hymn "I Stand All Amazed" comes to my mind.
I stand all amazed at the love Jesus offers me,
Confused at the grace that so fully he proffers me.
I tremble to know that for me he was crucified,
That for me, a sinner, he suffered, he bled and died.
Oh, it is wonderful that he should care for me
Enough to die for me!
Oh, it is wonderful, wonderful to me!
I marvel that he would descend from his throne divine
To rescue a soul so rebellious and proud as mine,
That he should extend his great love unto such as I,
Sufficient to own, to redeem, and to justify.

Oh, it is wonderful that he should care for me
Enough to die for me!
Oh, it is wonderful, wonderful to me!
I think of his hands pierced and bleeding to pay the debt!
Such mercy, such love and devotion can I forget?
No, no, I will praise and adore at the mercy seat,
Until at the glorified throne I kneel at his feet.

Oh, it is wonderful that he should care for me
Enough to die for me!
Oh, it is wonderful, wonderful to me!
The temple is so wonderful!
It's hard to describe to someone who doesn't know what it is, so I guess I'd better practice (since in a month that will be my life for the next year and a half, haha).
It's basically a place where you perform ordinances and make covenants - kind of like when you get baptized, and make a covenant - or a promise - to follow Jesus Christ. The temple is a place where people participate in ordinances that are designed to unite families together forever and help them return to God. Some of these ordinances include performing baptisms for those who have died without having the opportunity to receive the gospel, and also  being married for eternity as a husband and wife. It's a very sacred, beautiful, peaceful place.

 I think this video sums up quite nicely why Mormons build temples (:

and here's some cool facts about them! and also about our chapels.

and, wow this post is way too long - props to you if your still reading - I am just too excited for tomorrow - so here are some pictures of my favorite ones. (: Enjoy!

Salt Lake City, UT during Christmas - my favorite time of year to be there!

hopefully this will be me & my future handsome man someday (:

 the Nauvoo temple (:
My Grandpa helped with some of the sculpting and architecture details.

London, England.

Mesa, AZ - right outside my mission!!! :)

Recife, Brazil

Sacramento, California

Taipei, Taiwan

Toronto, Canada

and, last but not least,

the Washington D.C. temple (: