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Monday, September 27, 2010

Religious Background

A small agenda item, my family is Mormon or members of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I’m not ashamed of it, but I want you to know from the start because sometimes I use words that are unique. This is the area where I have debated blogging because my faith is very personal and directs the things I choose to do.
As a professional, I don’t typically reveal this fact to others but this isn’t a professional blog. I am not being paid to blog or make a profit in any way.
I am not a typical Mormon. I attended church with Nazarene grandparents through my whole childhood and teenage years. I asked Christ into my life in several of those services and continue to ask him into my life during the LDS services. I loved vacation bible school and still have many of the Bible quotes memorized.
I feel this background is important because my fundamental belief is centered on our Savior and the lessons he taught.  Most Mormons consider themselves Christian and our services are centered in Christ, but you have to listen closely to hear it. This is debated and confused because our churches do not have crosses and many don’t even have pictures of the crucifixion. I feel that our focus is on the resurrection of Christ and the promises that come with it. 
Regardless of labels, I agree with people who are trying to do the best they can with what they have been given. Mother Theresa is a role model to me and even as a teenager when she passed I mourned for her and the people of India she served.
There are good people to be found throughout the world and who am I to judge another?

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Weekly Giveaway 9/26 to 10/2

Weekly Giveaway

$25 Gift Certificate
(Winner selected Oct 9th using

Mandatory Entry:  Become of follower of Bright Approach (leave a comment saying you did)
Extra Entry: Visit and comment on what service you or someone in your family could benefit from.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Relief Society General Meeting Thoughts

Tonight's meeting was very uplifting. I didn't feel chastised for not doing everything I should and there was a peace that accompanied the messages. If you didn't have time to watch the session, be sure to read the inspired words. I took a few notes during the meeting, but this is just what I got from it, and each of us receive our own message when we listen and read the words of our leaders.

I love the idea of turning back to our heritage and re-evaluating the purposes and goals of Relief Society as an organization. I believe that the organization is essential in building Zion. Emma was wise in combining the efforts of all of the sisters to serve the sick, needy, or weak.

The talks on Christ-like service and visiting teaching tied right in with the mission of the organization. Sister Thompson's understanding of the challenges that are inherent with visiting teaching was in-line with some of my own experiences. I think it's important to note that she did not allow those challenges to excuse not serving the sisters we are assigned. I am glad that she is making the shift in visiting teaching being centered on service and relationships, rather than numbers and statistics.

I appreciated the candor of President Monson in describing the judgements that women pass on one another. He seemed to empathize with those of us who avoid the RS meetings because we don't know who to sit by.

I know I spend ten to fifteen minutes changing clothes, changing shoes, and then a few minutes before we leave to change again. The problem isn't that I feel judged by the women in my ward. I think my problem lies in the judgement that I lay on myself. The comparisons I make on myself, to those around me. I know I never measure up in my own eyes.

I don't believe that any one really even notices others that they see on a regular basis. I couldn't tell you what so and so wore last week, and I doubt that anyone notices me. Maybe I'm the only one like this, but I think that I'm not. I'm using this general meeting to convince myself that I need not judge myself so harshly. Instead of focusing on how I don't measure up, I will try to focus on how I can lift others up.

How are you serving those around you?

My Window

Holding my new born infant and sitting by the window, I look out and see the
dark clouds that surround us.

I also notice the green trees, the white and yellow flowers moving back and forth from the gusts of winds. When we look through a window, we can focus on the beautiful colors of nature or the dark and gray clouds that surround everything.

Each person has a different perspective of the world. For some people, the colors of the flowers and trees stand out and embrace their hope and sense of belonging. For others, the gray clouds just remind them of the darkness that they feel inside.

I know that it is difficult to see the color on a gray day, but look hard.
There is beauty all around us; even in the gray distance as we look out the
window. And beauty might be closer than we think.