Monday, February 27, 2017

#52 Stories Da Bomb Friendships

What have been the most important and valued friendships in your life?

I've already talked about some of them, but a few specific people come to mind. One of my best friends named Jill was instrumental in getting me to come out of my shell. For whatever reason, I just felt like I could be myself around her and I attribute a lot in my life to my friendship with her. A friend named Abby comes to mind because when my husband and I decided to move to Colorado, I was nervous and the only thing I prayed for for months before we moved was a friend. God provided in a big way. Again, I felt like I could be myself around her. I guess that's huge for me. Another meaningful friendship is with one of my sisters. Sharee and I have been pretty tight ever since I was seventeen and repented of my big sister meanness. She is a gem. My friends Amy and Misty have been huge lifesavers and continue to love and support me on a regular basis. When it comes to friends, I am blessed in big and miraculous ways.

Oh yeah, and my husband is an amazing friend. :)

Saturday, February 25, 2017

#52 Stories Friend Qualities

What qualities in friends do you most admire?

I love being around people who make me laugh. I also value a really good listening ear, authenticity, presence, and loyalty. I think I'm a very loyal friend. I may not be in touch with a lot of my friends on a regular basis, but to me, those friendships are just as strong as ever when it comes to loyalty. Friendship, in my book, never dies.

Friday, February 24, 2017

Missing My Girl

My oldest daughter is in Mexico right now. And I miss her, even her shadow. Today I went to Columbia with my daughters for an appointment and to have lunch with my husband. I had a Jimmy Johns sandwich for lunch, my first in over a year. I've been eating gluten free for about a year, but am testing it out to see if I still have reactions to it. So far, so good. Fingers crossed. We did a bit of shopping on the way home and then I took my daily homework plunge. Textbooks make me squirmish so I'm taking a break. Chicken tacos for dinner in the crock pot. It smells amazing here. That's my day.

#52 Stories Best Friends

When I first read February's questions, none of them really grabbed me. I'm not sure what that was all about, but I've decided to take the plunge and keep this story of my life going.

Who was your first best friend? Are you still in contact with each other?

I had a few meaningful friendships in elementary school. One of my best friends was a fun, spunky girl named Jill. We got back in touch on facebook several years ago, but I've decided I only like social media in moderation so I'm not even on facebook anymore. We lost touch when middle school began and other than a few short years of social media contact have been out of touch ever since. Another friend from this time in my life was Jolinda. Jolinda is one of the kindest people I've ever known. It's pretty much the same story: lost contact after elementary and had a short facebook friendship. Another best friend from elementary was Darla. Even though Darla moved away, we stayed in touch a bit for years. I even sent her a Christmas card recently, but it was returned so I've lost touch for the time being because she's obviously moved. Hopefully I can find her again.

Time out. I just found her pinterest. Can people ever really be out of touch anymore?

By the way, I'm really not anti-social. I don't have a facebook account anymore, but I am on pinterest as Melissa Lemon and on instagram as lemoninkwell. The problem is that social media tends to bring out my obsessive side (and other undesirable qualities) so I try to stay away from it as much as possible. Not to mention that I feel like social media is a bit anti-social, or at least anti-relationship, which is probably a post for another day. I know I've also wasted a lot of time on such venues so I think they need to be handled with care.

When it comes to friendships, I value quality time, and that is something social media can't really provide.

How did I get on this topic, anyway?

In middle school, I developed some really strong friendships that lasted through high school and college and still continue today in the form of a get together whenever possible. We got together last summer while my family was visiting Utah and is was SO good to see them. Even thinking about them brings a flood of fantastic memories. I have always been blessed with excellent friends.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Full Throttle

I'm in the middle of my fifth week of the semester at school and it has been taking so much time and energy that I haven't had much time to blog.

Of course, there has been some excuse making and the like as well.

I'm enjoying my courses for the most part, although, the load is a bit much and I don't think I'll take so many classes at a time in the future.

I thought I'd include this picture. It's from a couple of months ago, but I love my author friends so it's an official announcement that Misty Dawn Pulsipher's new book is out. Mansfield is now available on Amazon. I love reading Misty's books because they make Austen more accessible to modern readers. Random confession: Pride and Prejudice is the only Austen book I've officially read all the way through. Misty is the perfect author to do Austen re-writes because she is just as witty as the late Miss Jane Austen and knows the stories well.

I can't wait until the day I have enough time to read for enjoyment. Textbooks can be so dull and dry. Stories are the stuff of life.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Hidden Gems--Power

Have you ever looked up the definition of that word? It's pretty awesome.

the capacity or ability to direct or influence the behavior of others or the course of events. (from Google)

I had a powerful moment when reading about power at the end of the Book of Mormon a few weeks ago. And in starting the Book of Mormon, there was that word again, exercising power over me, striking something in my mind and calling my attention.

Moroni 10: 7 (second to last page of the Book of Mormon)
"And ye may know that he is, by the power of the Holy Ghost; wherefore I would exhort you that ye deny not the power of God; for he worketh by power, according to the faith of the children of men, the same today and tomorrow, and forever."

1 Nephi 1:20 (third page of the Book of Mormon)
"But behold, I, Nephi, will show unto you that the tender mercies of the Lord are over all those whom he hath chosen, because of their faith, to make them mighty even unto the power of deliverance."

The power of God is one of the things I've been pondering in recent years. I've learned a few things about that power, and having access to it. As both of these scriptures mention, FAITH is a key factor in accessing the power of God. Another thing that is important, is VIRTUE.

Have you ever looked up the definition of that word?

behavior showing high moral standards. (from Google)

In the New Testament, a woman presses her way to Jesus, unbeknownst to Him, and grasps his clothes believing this alone will heal her. She is healed, and this is how the story is related from the Savior's perspective:

Mark 5:30 "And Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes?"

It was his virtue, that gave him the power to heal her. And this woman wasn't the only one to see the power of God in Him manifest by his virtue.

Luke 6:19 "And the whole multitude sought to touch him: for there went virtue out of him, and healed them all."

A powerful example of the access to God's power that virtue can provide is the story of Joan of Arc. I love this documentary done by BYUtv

Along with FAITH and VIRTUE, there is something else that provides access to the power of God, and that is HUMILITY, or I sometimes prefer the word MEEKNESS, because it implies another key ingredient: SUBMISSION.

A good reference for this idea is a talk by Richard C. Edgely called "The Empowerment of Humility."