Sunday, October 2, 2011

"It's all about the Work."

This weekend was special because in our church, we have general Conference twice a year. This year it was this weekend. General Conference is when the General Authorities of the church speak to us the members and give encouragement and hope. They up-lift us and impart their wisdom and revelation to us. This year, it has been tough for me to find myself as I navigate my way through grief. My trials that normally seem bearable, seem like they are drowning me. I can't seem to get ahold of my proper footing that I once had at the beginning of the year. I hate to admit this, but I was not happy. This bothered me tremendously. I am not one who likes to wallow in self-pity or play the woe is me card often. I am a problem solver. I get to the bottom of the issues and I solve them quickly if able. I seek happiness often if I find it is absent. Life is too short, not to be happy. But recently, happiness has eluded me and I have been on a mission to find it.

After a most inspiring and up-lifting conference session on Saturday, I left the BYU TV channel on and watched what came on after it. It was first about missionaries going to the Missionary Training Center and what they do there to prepare for their missions. It was pretty neat to watch. I sat there with Austin talking and discussing the future of his mission. Then a movie called "Best Two Years" came on. I had seen this before and really liked how it was done. So, I invited Austin to sit and watch it with me, as Collier and Willie were at the General Priesthood Meeting at church. We sat and watched it. We laughed, I cried a little, and we laughed some more. The part that got to me the most was the near the end when Elder Johnson asks Elder Rogers what it is all about, and how did Elder Rogers snap out of his depression and feelings of homesickness. Elder Rogers replied "Why are we out here on our missions, what is it all for?...It is all about the Work."

"It's all about the Work."

"It is all about HIS work."

We are all born to this Earth on missions of our own; to return as loyal sons and daughters to our Heavenly Father. This life, whatever we think is ours and ours alone, it is because of agency, but those who take upon themselves the name of Jesus Christ through baptism, their lives bare His name and His work. We become His true disciples and serve others in His stead. This becomes our mission in life.

Life has many trials and tribulations that plague us all. At times, these may seem unbearable to carry. Christ is waiting for us to give our burdens to Him. I knew this, but could not get happy until this morning I was praying and thinking of how to let go of my burden of sorrow, homesickness, and many other feelings I was weakened by. The thought entered my mind that as long as I am focused on the work of my Savior, I'll find my true happiness; the happiness that lasts for Eternity, that radiates from deep within and pours out. I immediately felt lighter and happier inside. "it is really all about the work we do; His work. I knew the Lord was there with me and helping my thoughts turn to a person who could take all my sorrow and frustrations away and in turn give me hope, light, and a mission worthy of me. I have been called to serve a mission for my Lord and Savior in this world.

My mission:
To serve my Lord, my husband, my children. To love and serve my friends and family, to lighten other's loads around me. My mission is teaching the children of Franklin the Gospel of Jesus Christ. To serve and work in the Temple. My mission is to shine the light of Christ through my actions and deeds.

Once I stopped focusing on my heartache and on His work for me to accomplish, my life became His once more. I know from my past that when I am immersed in doing good works and doing His work, it fills me with such joy, peace, and satisfaction. It fills my soul and I feel close to heaven.....
...... and ....
.....I become happy.

So, the key to true happiness.....

"It is ALL about HIS Work!"

And that is what I'll do!

Fall Football Frolic ....and Cider

This weekend was full of many wonderful moments. This past Friday evening, the weather turned much cooler. I love the turn of the season when the oppressive heat of Summer gives way to the refreshing, crisp,clean, almost wild weather that is Autumn. The leaves have started to change, shedding their green for deep reds, and oranges that paint the mountains. The World seems to sigh in relief that the suffocating Summer has relinquished her hold. Soon the area will be draped in a bounteous cornucopia of colors. As this new Season sweeps in with strong and stirring winds, the inspiration that comes with it is intoxicating to say the least. It wakes the soul and inspires the creator within. The little child in me comes out to play. So, this weekend...I played. I was able to enjoy a game with my younger two children on the Trampoline and was having such a wonderful time, my older boys could not stand to be left out, so I played with them too:) The following morning, Saturday, the weather being even cooler, inspired me to invite the family to play a game of football. We all ran out side and down the pebble covered dirt road that winds down the mountain. As we set up and decided teams, the fierce north wind blew heavily against our unprotected bodies. We huddled together and shivered. I said "OK, break for sweaters and gloves...then GAME ON!" We each made a mad dash to the house to dig through our winter gear for mittens, gloves, knit hats and so on. As we searched for the notoriously missing "other glove" for each set, we decided to warm up with some orchard fresh apple cider. We filled up our cups, donned our hats and gloves and headed out for some Fall football frolic.

I was so excited to be playing with my kids and husband. I was never good at sports but due to my husband's fabulous coaching through the years, I managed to play a game worthy of my older boys. But what I was most impressed with was watching them suppress their adolescent boy hunger and taste for raw blood in the game and put aside their feelings to play a game in a way that the younger two kids could play and be a part of. Aislynne and Braden both made the touchdowns and begged to be on the older boy's teams. Screams and shouts for all the kids against mom and dad were soon chanted  through the wind. The challenge was on. We played well, but ultimately lost to our children as our five year old swept passed us and headed towards the make-shift "in-zone." Cheers shouted out in victory! The kids laughed and slapped hands in champion hi-fives!

Throughout the game, we would rest a moment to sip cider then back to the game. After the game we all trudged back to the house and sat together enjoying what was left of our hot cider. We swapped tales of fumbles, passes, and touch-downs. We shared much more than that.

We shared our talents, our cider, and our love.

We made a wonderful memory. As parents, both full-time students, Willie and I feel that our Saturdays are the days for our family to gather together to work and play. It is our day to make memories and share happy moments together. It is precious to us this one day of play. From family swimming and diving lessons in the summer to family football in the Fall, we find interests that we all enjoy. This keeps us close and involved in each other's lives.

I must say that as my boys get older, it gets more fun. and I am proud of the example they are to their younger siblings. Collier has surpassed me in height and Austin is on his way to growing up as well. In these moments it is nice to not be the parent, but their equal brother and sister under God. I am privileged to know them.

This morning, the first thing out of Braden's mouth was "Can we play football again?"

How I LOVE my family so very much and hope and pray they remember these simple, fun moments and think back on them with warmth and love.

and I ......

.....I can't wait until we have a re-match!!!

"Go Team Walz"

"The KID's team"

Aisy gettin' passed Austin!

"Touchdown dance"