Monday, May 20, 2013

right number

In seminary this morning one of my seniors asked what the requirements were to "letter" in seminary. I had no idea, as I had never heard of such a thing. I told him I didn't know but I would find out today and report back in the morning. Then I promptly forgot about it. Several hours later I am sitting at work when my cell phone rings. It is the area supervisor for seminary asking for Brother Bushman...nope. Not at this number. He was apologizing for dialing the wrong number when I stopped him and said, "but wait! Don't hang up! I needed to ask you what the requirements are for lettering in Seminary." I wouldn't have remembered if I hadn't seen his name on my phone when he called "in error." But we both know it wasn't an error at all, was it?

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Daily Dose

Saw this article and loved the sweet, simple testimony that is recognition of the gifts of God in our lives. He hears us and answers our prayers! I have begun teaching an early morning seminary class with about 10 high school juniors/seniors. One student lingered after class today and said, "Isn't it great when you pray about something and right away, Bam! an answer is right in front of you?!" He didn't elaborate on what his prayer had been or what the answer was, but I agreed that those special God-winks are wonderful to receive--those divine messages that our Heavenly Father is close, He hears us, loves us, and wants to bless us with what we need and sometimes even what we want. I cherish this opportunity to once again immerse myself in the scriptures and prayer as I prepare daily for this hour with these valiant young people who give up their sleep and time to get a spiritual start to their day. It's humbling and exhilarating at the same time as I feel the Spirit reaching them through these lessons.

Sweet Synchronicity

These chocolate chip cookies were leftovers from a library program today and were sitting in the break room tempting me. I don't usually like store-bought cookies, but I've been experiencing a sweet-tooth lately and couldn't resist. After I ate it, I of course, felt bad. BUT THEN....I was checking my email and clicked on a link from my newsletter, which led me to the new aafes bx/px Facebook page. Where I found this. The first post on the page announced that today is National Chocolate Chip Day!! Got to love a coincidence like that, so...I ate another cookie!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Just say "yes!"

I was asked yesterday to teach a class for a women's group on green smoothies next month, as I have become a vocal advocate of their yummy goodness in my circle of family/acquaintances. I had a "deer-in-the-headlights" moment at first, thinking, "uh oh, that is going to involve research, preparation, time (of which I seem to have a diminishing quantity daily) etc., as they would want to know the whys and wherefore of including specific ingredients, the nutritional values and other weighty aspects. But I said, "sure!" because...that's what I do. Then this morning, in my inbox there appeared this lovely newsletter article providing exactly the information I need. Love it when the planets align so tidily.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Who are your villagers?

We all know the phrase, "It takes a village to raise a child," but have you ever applied it to your own experience? Who are the influential people in your life, past or present, who have shaped and influenced you?

Here's my top 10:

1. & 2. My parents. Of course. They are the first influences on any child. My mother's example is one of generosity, love, humor and selflessness. She is always putting others first. She can laugh at herself and has a flair for bringing smiles to others. I'm sure my love of service and the gratification it brings is her legacy. My dad, also very selfless, was the first person most of his family and friends thought of if they needed help of any kind, and especially in the department of mechanics. Growing up I thought he was the smartest person ever. When I went away to college I would call him and describe the noises my car was making so I could get the right diagnosis before going to the local mechanic. His love and trust in me gave me the wings and the courage to succeed. They both epitomized unconditional love.

3. & 4. Holly (Olson) Hastings and John DeVilbiss. Friends during high school who had the courage to reach out to me and share the gospel of Jesus Christ with me. Their examples of righteous living amidst teenage angst and peer pressure were extremely important and served as role models for me. Don't even want to imagine where or who I'd be without their influence.

5. & 6. Missionaries! The two missionaries who taught me the gospel (once I was directed to them by Holly) were Orson West and Larry Johnson. I'm so grateful for their willingness to sacrifice two years of their lives to serve in that capacity. They were very patient with me as I questioned them again and again, but they were firm in their testimonies and convictions so that the Spirit could reach and teach me. Our family is still in contact with Orson, forty years after our baptisms. He is an example of the scripture in D&C 18:10, 15-16:
10 Remember the aworth of bsouls is great in the sight of God;
15 And if it so be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this people, and bring, save it be one asoul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father!
 16 And now, if your joy will be great with one soul that you have brought unto me into the akingdom of my Father, how great will be your bjoy if you should bring many csouls unto me!

7. & 8. Teachers. In high school it was William Boyle, who taught Latin, and Rita Mallahy, who taught English. Their enthusiasm and love of their subjects helped me to not only want to learn those subjects, but to want to learn, period. I could tell that they really loved their students and teaching as well. Having a teacher show interest in you at that age is very nurturing.

9. & 10. Gospel teachers, Jim Foley and Vern Wolf. Jim was my seminary teacher in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  Seminary is the religious instruction for teens. He taught me the Book of Mormon that year and his classes were so interesting! I learned about Chiasmus, and likening the scriptures to my life, and looking for the positive in every day. Now I am a seminary teacher (again!) and call up the inspiration and influence of Br. Foley as I teach the youth each morning. Vern Wolf was a Gospel Principles teacher I had at Brigham Young University. He took my knowledge and testimony of the gospel to a whole new level. Every day was inspirational and thought-provoking. He challenged us to write out our testimony and conversion story and that exercise has remained a reference point for me to this day.

Who are your villagers?