Change, Oh Goodness!

Connor at the Airport

Connor at the Airport

 

“I need to let him go.”
Marie Lu, Prodigy

“When I leave, I won’t tell you goodbye—but only because I’m taking you with me.”
Jarod Kintz, Whenever You’re Gone, I’m Here for You

“Thank God I found the GOOD in goodbye.”
Beyonce Knowles

 

You’d think that sending out your third kid on a mission would make one a seasoned, poised veteran of goodbyes.

Nope.

Bidding farewell to my son, Connor, was a compounded kind of difficult. I was a massive ball of nerves. Partly because he was younger (he was 18. Ashley was 22 when she left on her mission, Lauren 19), and a great deal to do with is he ready?

Oh, don’t get me wrong. He is beyond his years brilliant, responsible, highly social, and has a commanding knowledge of the gospel, but organized…weeell, somehow that gene did not latch on to his DNA.

So I fretted about things that mothers are good at fretting: I worried he would lose his wallet or forget his credit card at a store. I envisioned him leaving behind a suit when moving apartments or misplacing his head if it weren’t screwed on tight.  How do you imbue someone with more awareness?  I’ll tell you, you can’t. You just cross your fingers that when they know mom’s not around, the efficiency kicks in gear.

There were many sleepless nights before Connor left. Surprisingly too many. Why am I such a nervous-wreck boob?  To me, the fear seemed beyond worry-wart mom allowance. So I’d question.  Am I not trusting God? Do I not trust Connor? What’s really going on here?

Then the answer hit me:   Continue reading

Persevere

perseverance

Persevere:
Patient endurance of hardship:
Persisting in a state of enterprise in spite of difficulties and discouragement.

“Let us run with patience the race that is set before us.”
Hebrews 12:1

So a bunch of us missionaries were on our way to leadership training in Lyon (very cooly referred to as Jedi Council by my mission president) when I receive a phone call from my mission president.  We small-talk for a sec and then he asks me a question about a letter I shared with him a couple weeks back. It was a portion of my pep-talk letter to my brother, Connor, in which I shared my personal difficulties. Apparently he loved it and wanted me to read it at Jedi Council.

Even though I was slightly freaked out, I said yes cuz I didn’t want to decline and weird out his presentation. So I prayed about it that night and felt good, but that didn’t remove my nerves the next morning. This would open me up to huge vulnerability.

Yikes. Continue reading

Omit “Overwhelmed” from Your Vocabulary

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“I’ve got my country’s five hundredth anniversary to plan, my wedding to arrange, my wife to murder, and Guilder to frame for it. I’m swamped.”
Prince Humperdinck, The Princess Bride

“A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of Overwhelming obstacles.”
Christopher Reeve

Yeah, I know. ‘Tis the season…for BUSY. Am I right?  Your plate is full.  The lists, the planning, the work, the assignments.

Then…it gets fuller.

Expectations, duties, obligations, requirements, want-tos, have-tos. Then comes the proverbial curve-ball and things get officially wack-a-doodle. And you are tempted to say, because you have every right to, that you are honestly and truly “Overwhelmed.” But don’t. Continue reading

This is Why We Practice

Training Wheels

 

“The future depends on what we do in the present.”
Mahatma Gandhi

“Plan for what is difficult while it is easy, do what is great while it is small.”
Sun Tzu

“Practice makes the master.”
Patrick Rothfuss

 

True story:  There was a gal who made a spiritual journey to India to meet the Dalai Lama. The timing of her visit was an interesting one because a week before she and her friends arrived, tragedy struck among the otherwise peaceful Buddhist community. Some monks had been brutally murdered – alarmingly, by fellow monks!

The disturbing news of course couldn’t help but undertone the trip, so when this gal and her small group found themselves in a private audience with The Dalai Lama, their first words to him were ones of sympathy. His response was stunning. Continue reading

Hinge Moments

McLaren-SLR-51

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“It has long been an axiom of mine
that the little things
are infinitely the most important.”
Arthur Conan Doyle, Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes

“Let me tell you something big:
Give importance to little things.”
Mehmet Murat ildan

“Sometimes the little opportunities
that fly at us each day
can have the biggest impact.”
Danny Wallace,  Yes Man

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My son, Connor, loves cars.  One of his favorite shows is Great Britain’s Top Gear (and we thoroughly enjoy the show along with him). Whenever I point out a car on the road, “Oh, that’s a pretty car,” Connor will chime in with the make/model/year, gas mileage, perks and quarks, and if a competitor’s version is better or worse.  He’s no expert, but if you hang around Connor long enough, you gain an appreciation for fine cars.  Maybe that’s why this car caught my eye. Continue reading

The Lord is Pleased

good 'nuff road - sign

“When you find your path,
you must not be afraid.
You need to have sufficient courage to make mistakes. Disappointment, defeat, and despair are the tools God uses
to show us the way.”
― Paulo Coelho

“Have no fear of perfection –
you will never reach it.”
― Salvador Dali

I have been keeping up with some of my missionary friends since being home from my mission. One in the field told me they were feeling down because they thought they weren’t doing enough to talk to people and that they were failures because of this. Hearing this, I dusted off my soapbox and gave my two cents on the matter. I thought the advice was equally important for those who aren’t missionaries to hear as well. So here we go –

Continue reading