"Oh remember, remember . . . I urge you to find ways to recognize and remember God's kindness."

President Henry B. Eyring

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Center Place

I woke up remembering a curious dream. I was in the middle of some kind of treasure hunt, along with many other people. Of course we were using amazing technology to try and pinpoint a place in a very large, busy, noisy city. It was a center place, which if found, would have strange and amazing characteristics. There was even a rumor that a very few people who had entered that place, had simply vanished, never to be heard of again. I found myself getting very, very close and could sense that it was like being in the eye of a storm, completely quiet, serene, soothing and magical, and then I woke up!

All morning I have been pondering this strange dream and what it’s source could be. I realized I have been reading some old classics as well as searching the scriptures again on the topic of the New Jerusalem the center place. After my scripture study, I started the Wizard of Oz, and then went on to Jane Eyre. I love the first part of Jane Eyre when Jane meets Helen Burns. Jane and Helen are particularly singled out for persecution by some of the teachers and the cruel benefactor of their charity school. Jane (like myself) does not react well to the persecution; she is angry and full of despair and indignation at the unfairness of it all, but Helen exhibits complete Christlike patience, humility and serenity through it all. Since the day I first read "Jane Eyre" as a youth I have wanted to be like Helen, but my natural tendencies have always kept me kicking against the pricks.

The lesson I taught this week in my Gospel Doctrine Class was on the "gifts of the spirit" and the most over-riding impression for me was the quote (on the side bar of my blog) by George Q. Cannon. We cannot just excuse our faults, but must pray for the gifts of the spirit that will help us correct them.

Well, it amazes me how dreams can pull such varied thoughts and experiences together and I reached a very profound conclusion about the meaning of my dream. Though while writing this blog it occurred to me, this could be a great plot for a science fiction/spiritual self-improvement/adventure book all in one! (What genre is that?) I could keep people turning the pages through adventure to reach a very profound spiritual conclusion in the end.

Soooo . . . maybe, I won’t tell you what insight I had about the meaning of this dream yet. Would you be interested in such a book? I’ve had friends bug me lately about writing a sequel to my “out of print” book, but I have felt that I don’t have anything more to say, but maybe . . . .

Let me know if you would be interested in such a book.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Virginia & Philadelphia!

I had such a wonderful visit with my beautiful and lovely daughters back east! Kristi's home is so lovely, she just remodeled her kitchen, put in sod in the backyard and had her deck painted! I got aquainted with her dog again. Acadia is a beautiful 80 lb and growing 10 month old! He is a very good dog and a wonderful companion to my darling daughter! I also got to go to the Cherry Blossom Festival with her! So great!

Then Julie and my little darling Aubrie came on Sunday and Kristi cooked a wonderful meal for us. The next day we were planning to see more D.C. sites, but it rained buckets! So, we just drove to Philly in the pouring rain and I got a cold and then gave it to Aurbrie. It was a really mean one too! We hung out in Julie's darling row house most of the week in Philadelphia because Grandma and baby were sick, but it was sooooo wonderful to cuddle with my little girl again! Jules is a wonderful cook and fed me wonderful meals every night! Brent is so considerate and kind. Wow, am I blessed or what? They did show me downtown and I got to attend church with them. I have to tell you everyone just loves Julie and she is the most amazing teacher ever! I was so very proud of her. She and Brent are doing so much good in their ward! The ward pretty much consists of very new members (mostly black) and students. They learn so much from those amazing young people. (Especially mine!)

When I was teaching seminary at West Jordan High School more than a decade ago, we were taught many wonderful things in our inservice meetings. One of them was that our study time was ours, but the lesson time was the Lord's, that it is His sacred time to teach His children. That puts a little different take on it, than if we view the class-time as belonging to the students (because they can sometimes take the class in a very weird direction and we were taught to have very good control of the discussions, making sure they were edifying!) Or that the time was our soapbox to share what we had studied.

We were taught in CES that because it is sacred time that we need to do what the Lord would have us do with this time. If He inspired us to lecture that day, then lecture we should, making sure that lecture were the words of the spirit to His children in the class. If we were to play in seminary that day then the Lord had a lesson to be learned from that. And, if the spirit took us in a totally different direction than our hours of preparation called for that day, then were to freely give away our study time and not try to impose it on the class, when the Lord would have us rather follow the spirit so that He could instruct His children. We were to learn to be the vessel!

I have to say that Jules absolutely teaches this way! She is awesome! I wish I could hear her every week! Way to go Jules!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Cherry Blossom Festival

I attended the national Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington D.C. with my daughter Kristi. It was a crisp windy beautiful day! The blossoms had peaked just two days before. I've always wanted to see this!