Christmas Stars

Stars are something that always pique my sense of wonder and amazement. And I think they make a wonderful metaphor for Christ and some of the lessons we can take from this Christmas season.

Christmas Stars

In the bustle of the trees
The presents, the wrapping,
The parties, the traveling,
The fun and the family,

Don’t forget the stars. 

The stars that remind you 
Of the first Christmas,
And of the shepherds who left their flocks
To witness the Lamb of God.

The stars that belong together,
And remind us of the Shephard’s flock.
There are lambs left to be gathered
Even when the tree is packed away.

The stars that point us ever onward,
That show to us the Way,
Our path back home,
And the covenant mile markers.

The stars that I hope we each see,
This Christmas season,
As we reflect on the Light of the world,
And our sky He lights with stars.

Gratitude Day 4: Nature

One of my favorite verses in the Book of Mormon is Alma 30:44. Alma declaims that the wonders of nature denote the existence of a God. I personally also believe that the beauty of nature denotes the goodness of God, and today I want to #GiveThanks for the wonders of God’s nature

Nature

If the earth has the power of volcanoes and lightning,
How much more powerful is earth’s Creator?
If the earth has the kindness of butterflies and sunsets,
How much kinder is the earth’s Savior?

If the earth makes us stand in awe with sunsets and mountains,
How much more in awe will we be of earth’s Almighty?
If the earth has the love of the rain and the sunshine,
How much more loving is earth’s Lamb at the Slaughter?

Sunset Happiness

Sunset Happiness

The miracle of a sunset to bring me happiness
Isn’t dependant on

How nice people have been to me,
How lucky I’ve been that day,
The grades I get in class,
How late I have to stay up to do my work,
Who wins the next election,
What people shout about politics,
How many friends I have,
How many friends have hurt me,
The storms I’ve had to weather,
The storms yet in the future,
The lightning frightening me now,
The thunder in the distance,
The wars the world is waging,
The rumors of wars to come,
The anger, the racism, the hate,
The yelling, the abuse, the pain,
The millions depressed or addicted,
The billions poor and dying,
Or any other aspect of the sadness or the wonder in the world.

If I can find something in the world beautiful
Without things outside my control going well,
That is joy.

Life Lessons Learned on an Ice Skating Rink

I went ice skating this week, and it occurred to me that there are a lot of life lessons that can be learned from some time on the rink:

Life Lessons Learned on an Ice Skating Rink

If you aren’t falling down or coming pretty close, you aren’t trying new things.

When you do fall down, just laugh at yourself and get back up.

When you focus on what other people are thinking of you, you mess up what you try to do.

Rarely, if ever, will you be the best skater in the arena, and that’s okay. There’s room in the arena for amazing people and people still learning how not to fall down.

Don’t forget to have a fun time.

You can look at the amazing skaters and think, “dang, why am I not like that?” Or, you can look at them and think, “what are they doing that I can copy, to be like that, too?”

Sometimes, you try something and it turns into a flailing 720° spin. Some people may look at you and think about how bad a skater you are. Just laugh at yourself and keep on skating.

Nobody in the arena is happy to see you falling down.

There are a couple of different really great moments. The moment you master a trick. The first time you do something hard right. Just feeling the wind in your face. Teaching somebody else how to do something.

You don’t have to be doing the same thing as everybody else to have a really fun time.

When a song comes on that you don’t like, remember that it’s just a couple minutes. When a song comes on that you do like, figure out how to dance with ice skates on.

Don’t forget to laugh at yourself.

Frosted Flowers

Originally published 03-15-19

Frosted Flowers

I saw the flowerbed
In the winter morning sun–
Mulch, with
Strong short tulip sprouts,
And white and purple pansies.

In the middle, a statue–a man, a woman,
And a child taking early but encouraged steps
In a joyous, bronzed moment–
And in their shadow, frost.

The frosted flowers, I saw,
Weren’t dead,
But drooped,
Vibrant petals
Hanging down,
Slumped, dejected.

The sun had just climbed enough
that the shadow abandoned one slumping pansy.
It twitched.
The head slowly lifted
And the flower drooped
Not quite as far.

Further from the shade,
I saw the bright purples standing tall,
Proud, stripped of frost by
Bright sunlight,
Becoming bright nature,
And the day seemed warmer.

And I walked away warm inside,
Feeling that however long
And cold
The night,
The sun will come,
And I can rise, bright again.

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