Lessons from Liberty Jail

Wow. I didn’t realize how long it had been since I wrote on here! Life has been busy…a good type of busy, but busy nonetheless. I really love writing and sharing my thoughts, so I do plan to post on here, but not as frequently since I have school, work, and other things to do ūüôā Anyway…onto my thoughts for the day:

In one of my classes, we had the opportunity to watch the talk given by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland titled “Lessons from Liberty Jail”. I absolutely love this talk. If you haven’t read or heard it before, I highly recommend you drop everything you are doing and go listen to this talk¬†right now.¬†Elder Holland’s talks are always powerful, but I think that they are even better when you hear them from Elder Holland himself, so if I were you, I would watch the video… ūüôā¬†I’ll even make it easy for you…just¬†press play!

For class, we were asked to write our thoughts from the talk, I thought it would be nice to share them here as well….

The three Lessons from Liberty Jail:

Lesson 1: Everyone is going to face difficulties and trials in their life.

We came to this earth not to live perfect lives, but to learn and grow; that is what trials and difficulties do for us. I love when Elder Holland says ‚Äúeveryone, including, and perhaps especially, the righteous, will be called upon to face trying times.‚ÄĚ Trials are not always punishment for sin, but they are gifts from God to help us become more like Him.

Lesson 2: Even worthy people are going to have struggles

Like I mentioned before, even righteous people are going to go through trying times. Elder Holland mentioned the song ‚ÄúNearer my God to Thee‚ÄĚ. He explains that while in our prisons or jails, (aka when we are in distress or experiencing a trial) is when we are usually most near to God. We are usually more humble and seeking truth when we are at our lowest or in darkness, therefore we are inviting God into our life.

Lesson 3: Be and stay patient, calm, and forgiving

I absolutely loved when elder Holland told us that we do not have the responsibility or power to seek revenge on those who did us wrong. It is however, our responsibility to do as Christ would, and forgive those who have done us wrong. We also need to stay calm and patient as we wait for the storm to pass and the sun to shine. We have to remember that storms are never continual, and the sun will soon shine again.

How do these apply to me personally?

Every time I hear or read this talk, it resonates with my soul and heart. This time especially, I needed to hear this talk. About a year ago there was someone who did something to me that sent me into a really dark place. I was extremely depressed, sick, and caught in the anger and despair of what had happened. I let it consume me and become my identity. I didn’t understand why Heavenly Father would let this happen to me, when I had righteously been striving and putting my entire effort in following His path for me.

Looking back, I realize that this experience really helped me grow closer to Heavenly Father and helped me to realize that I am never alone, I have strength to overcome anything life throws at me, and that I am HIS daughter. I realize that it’s not my job to hold onto that anger, I need to forgive people for the things they did to me so that I personally can have peace in my life. Even though the path might not always be smooth or easy, the destination is worth every single obstacle that gets in the way, and that we have God on our side helping us get through those obstacles.

Thanks for reading! If you have read/seen the talk, let me know your insights and thoughts!

‘Till next time,

Kiara ūüėÄ

 

Forget yourself and Go to work

LDS Forget Yourself and go to Work Hinckley quote Printable 8x10 DIGITAL DOWNLOAD:

I love President Hinckley. He was such a tender, loving man. Many people know that one of his favorite¬†motto’s was “forget yourself and go to work”. I too love this saying. As of recently, I have really learned how to apply this to experiences I¬†have had in life. Here are three ways I have applied this quote to my life:

  1. Don’t wallow or¬†self-pity.¬†We are all prone to disappointment, discouragement, and pains in life. As humans, it is a natural part of life. While feeling sad or upset at times is also natural and human, we shouldn’t spend our time thinking about things that make us sad. With the Atonement, all of our struggles are healed through God’s love, there is no reason to be miserable on purpose with that knowledge!
  2. Service is always a good idea.¬†When you are genuinely serving others, you feel good. Service is such a key part of Christ’s ministry, so it makes sense that as we serve others, we feel good too. Service takes your mind off of yourself and your woes, and helps you to recognize the blessings you have and talents you can share with others.
  3. Hard work is good work.¬†I really like to think about “forgetting yourself and going to work” in many ways. One way is activeness vs. laziness. This one I mean in a broader sense, from going to church to moving your body. While rest is important and healthy, as members of the church, we are taught not to be “slothful and not a wise servant”. We should put our efforts into things that truly matter, going to church meetings, spending time with your family, going home/visiting teaching, etc. We should forget about our wants to pamper ourselves or watch TV for extended lengths, we should go to work, even if we may not consider it “work”. We should get involved in the world around us.

What do you think of this list? How do you apply President Hinckley’s quote to your life?

Meekness, Not Weakness

People are constantly telling me I’m “too nice”. I honestly don’t understand what they mean by that. Don’t we as humans enjoy being around people who are genuinely nice, goodhearted people? I don’t think there is anything wrong with being super nice, it is who I¬†am and I am not going to change my personality because others say I¬†should. But, what is the difference between being kind, meek and soft, versus being weak and fragile?

I have had some experiences with people where I was in a situation where I was the target of hateful words and actions. Sadly, most of you will probably empathize with me on how awful it feels to be attacked, especially when it is by people you thought you trusted. When situations like these arise, it is easy for emotions to cloud our judgement and get the best of us. We can either retaliate and give them the same treatment they gave to us, or we can be meek.

What¬†IS¬†meekness? Elder Neal A. Maxwell said in a talk titled Meekness‚ÄĒA Dimension of True Discipleship

“Meekness, however, is more than self-restraint; it is the presentation of self in a posture of kindness and gentleness, reflecting certitude, strength, serenity, and a healthy self-esteem and self-control.”

I really appreciate how this explanation of meekness was worded. I think it is important to remember that there is strength and self-esteem in meekness. It is different than weakness, where many of these qualities are lacking. Meekness is recognizing who you are and who you belong to. We are God’s children, we should act like we¬†know¬†we are children of¬†the¬†king. When you think of kings and queens in fairytales and books, you most likely think of very royal and poised people.¬†In the books I have read, the kings and queens are always the wise, kindhearted people who have confidence and strength, without being overbearing. We should strive to act like the kings and queens and children of God that we are.

What did Christ do when he was provoked and attacked by his enemies? He never yelled, he never insulted, never condemned. He¬†responded with love, mercy and meekness. There are many examples and ways that Christ responded to persecution, but it was always in a meek manner. The most familiar, and in my opinion, the greatest example of meekness is when Christ was on the cross of Calvary. He wasn’t cursing the Romans¬†who nailed him to the cross, he didn’t harden his heart; he was praying for them and forgiving them. If Christ, a perfect person without fault, displaying pure meekness and Christ-like love can pray for and forgive such cruel and hateful people, then we should forgive our “enemies” too.

I don’t think we need to respond to hatred with hatred and rudeness. It is important to have respect for yourself and to stand up for what you believe but we don’t need to add to the meanness of the world. Be the bigger person, be the meeker person in situations where others are attacking you. Don’t be an argument starter, be an argument ender. Turn the other cheek and strive to be meek.

Time Out for Women - 15 Ways to Be Happy:

 

In The Lord’s Hands

Have you ever had the feeling like you just got hit by a ton of bricks? I have. And let me tell you, a figurative feeling is much better than a literal feeling.

It was a four hour drive. I had made it to the city my friend lived in and I was so excited to see her and spend the 3 day weekend with her. As I was turning onto her street, the weekend took a dramatic turn. I had gotten into a car accident, and it was bad. Both cars were wrecked  (probably totaled), my phone died, the car horn was constantly going off, and I was in pain.

It is scary to be in situations like that regardless of the circumstances, but this sort of thing had never happened to me before so I was extra shaken up. It was particularly difficult for me because I felt like I was all alone. I was in a new place, by myself, and I couldn’t really talk to my parents. I didn’t know what to do or how things worked. All I¬†wanted at that time was to be with my family, in the comfort of my home. Sadly, that was the last thing that was going to happen.

During the accident, I hit my head on the window; I got bruises and whiplash, which is very uncomfortable, but considering the impact and damage done, I truly am blessed to not have any serious injuries. Some people may say that it is luck or coincidence that nothing serious happened to me. But I know what really happened, it was more than luck. It was stronger than coincidence, I was protected by the Lord. I felt his love for me as I thought about the accident and everything that had just happened. He kept me safe. I truly believe that there were angels surrounding me, helping me to stay calm and protected during such a chaotic and stressful time.

In life, we will all have times when we get into literal or figurative “car crashes”. During these troublesome times, we may feel completely alone, hurt, confused, and heartbroken. There may be damage done that will take a long time to heal and move past. Sometimes, there will be a permanent scar leaving a reminder of our errors and trials. Although we may feel discouraged, never forget that we are children of God. He loves us more than we can imagine. While we may feel lonely¬†and confused, remember that you are never alone. Heavenly Father is alway there for you and with you, and in your times of distress, He will carry you when you cannot walk on your own. He knows every pain and struggle we face, he loves us more than words can begin to explain. I think of the scripture Joshua 1:9 “Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the¬†Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.” He will give us comfort and peace when we are at our breaking point. He will not abandon us. he is always there. We just need to let Him into our hearts.¬†Love this picture or Christ perfectly depicts his understanding and love for each of us:

 

Baby it’s COLD outside!

5 Degrees.

That’s what the temperature is where I live right now. On my weather app, it says it “feels like” -1 degree. I am a fan of being cooler rather than hot. I hate warm temperatures and feeling hot. Although I¬†am one of the few optimists during winter weather, there comes a point when it is so cold that I¬†can feel my nose literally freeze. At this point, it is so cold that no one really wants to go go outside unless they have to; no more sledding or building snowmen. Most people get bored and stir-crazy when it comes to the winter months. I am going to share with you some of my favorite “it’s so cold I¬†may freeze to death, so I will stay inside” activities!

  1. Read a Book –¬†I love to cozy up and read during winter months. There is something so relaxing about lighting a candle, turning on my strand of Christmas lights, and reading as snow gently drifts to the ground.The Fine Art of Staying In Print by HNIllustration on Etsy A special illustration near and dear to my own heart... enjoy <3:
  2. Craft- If you are a pro crafter or your first time hearing about Pinterest, there are many fun things to do when you are stuck inside. Some crafty things that I enjoy doing are knitting/embroidering, make paper decorations, scrap booking and doing crayon art. Creativity is all about doing what you want and making your visions come to life! The 14 Best Places to Buy Craft Supplies Online  | Photo by: Shutterstock | TheKnot.com:
  3. Bake Treats-¬†It is so fun and easy to grab a cake mix and make cupcakes! for an extra dose of fun, separate your mix into 3-4 different bowls and add different food coloring to each bowl and make tye-dye cupcakes. Get some cool sprinkles and you are good to go! (you can go the extra mile and put the cupcakes in clear plastic cups, wrap them with saran-wrap and tie it with a ribbon. Stop by an elderly neighbor, new mother, or your best friend’s house and give them a treat!)¬†Now I have a way to give out individual cupcakes to people I like without them getting all smushed!:
  4. Spa day- Every once in awhile, it is important to take time to care for yourself. winter is a great time to treat yourself to relaxation! Use your bathtub as a foot spa, put a face mask on, paint your nails, and just relax! Spa Party Birthday Ideas:
  5. Watch one of your favorite movies-¬†This may seem boring, but sometimes watching a personal favorite is just what the doctor ordered. You also can rent a¬†movie from Redbox¬†if you feel like watching something new. (I am a “chick-flick” kind of girl, so my go-to movies are “Letters to Juliet”, “The proposal”, “Leap year”, “Ever After” and the 2015 “Cinderella”.)¬†Stay at home movie/date night with a creative flair. Or a good package for someone who loves movies ...:
  6. Get your body moving-¬†Sometimes you just need to get up and move, especially when you are stuck inside for long periods of time. One thing I like to do indoors to get my body up and going is yoga. Yoga is great because it doesn’t really require any tools, and it is something that you can easily do inside. Not to mention all of the health benefits of doing yoga. You can also organize a closet, vacuum your floors, or just clean your house in general. You will end up with a clean living space, so you wil hit two birds with one stone!¬†Yoga Illustration Mixed Media:
  7. Game night–¬†Whether you have a big family, or you invite your neighbors over, classic board games are always a great way to make friends and be entertained. some of my favorite board games are Mad Gab, Dominoes, The Logo Game, Apples To Apples, Boxers or Briefs, and Imaginiff.¬†Paper and Cake | Game Night party: NEW release | http://www.paperandcake.com:
  8. Build a fort- Remember when you were young and you would gather all of the blankets in the entire house and make a fort? I remember those days, and they were magical. I made my own little sanctuary. Who says that forts are only for kids? A great activity for a cold winter day is to build a fort! Grab some blankets, a strand of christmas lights, and camp out for the night, or weekend! Build a blanket fort that can stand the weight of us, food and a mini cinema screen #blanketfort #bedfort #chilled:
  9. Have a tea party-¬†Going along with the “youthful” theme, tea parties aren’t just for little girls who dress up in their mom’s heels and jewlery. Buy or bake a treat (Russian tea cookies, lemon loaf bread, or mini pastries) and make some tea. If you want a real tea cup, you can usually find cute, individual ones at thrift stores for really cheap. Invite your friends to bring their own and it is really neat to see the different designs!¬†Then make a herbal tea, usually green or lemon and ginger...#ESPA and #de-stress:
  10. Karaoke- There is nothing better than belting out your favorite song! turn up the music and make it a party! If you have Spotify, you can bring up the lyrics to almost any song and turn the day into one big musical! Before you go out and belt out your favorite tune, check out these top 7 rules for karaoke night.  Love #5 and #1.:

The list goes on, but for now, these 10 things should be a good start! What are some of your favorite things to do on a winter/rainy day?

Thanks for stopping by! Whether you are in the tropics¬†and it is boiling hot or you are basically in the north pole, freezing cold, I hope you have a wonderful day! thank you for stopping by! ūüôā

*I do not own any of the pictures, I found them on pinterest

Keeping up with Appearances

Hello friends! Can you believe January is almost gone?! I have heard that time passes by faster as you get older, but I also have heard that time flies when you are having fun. So…am I just having so much fun or am I officially old? I like to think that at 20, I am just having WAY too much fun ūüėõ

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Anyways… enough about that. Today I just had a few thoughts about clothing and dress code. ¬†Clothing is a very interesting thing; on one hand, it shouldn’t matter what we wear, it is the heart of a person that really matters. I truly believe that, and I wish that people would be less judgmental when it comes¬†to the article of clothing one is wearing. We are all God’s children and outward appearances are trivial when it comes to personality and character. On the other hand, the clothes you wear say a lot about you. For example, If you wore your coziest pajamas to a job interview, the interviewers probably ¬†would be less likely to give you a second chance. Why? Because You may have thought that being comfortable is the most important thing during an interview, but a business would consider your outfit as a sign of laziness, lack of effort and lack of respect for the workplace.

As an LDS youth, I remember the lessons in young women’s about modesty and how our appearance sends a message to others. In the “Strength of Youth” pamphlet, it says:

Through your dress and appearance, you can show that you know how precious your body is. You can show that you are a disciple of Jesus Christ and that you love Him.

I¬†will be the first to admit that as soon as I get home from work or class, I change into yoga pants and my favorite hoodie…boy do I LOVE the feeling of taking off my high heels and putting cozy socks on instead! But it also makes me feel so much better about myself when I dress up and take care of myself. I am not saying that we should worry about wearing designer clothing, spend hours and hours on our appearance, or worry about¬†looking better than others. I am saying that we are all beautiful, unique children of God and we should put the effort into reflecting that to ourselves and others.

Now I want to know what your preference is! If given the choice, would you rather only wear casual, comfy clothes for the rest of your life or would you choose to¬†wear “dressy/professional” clothes for the rest of your life? Personally, this question is really hard! But I think I would rather wear “dressy” clothes. I have always loved playing dress up ūüôā Let me know your choice in the comments!

Have a great day!

-Kiara

Hello…Its Me!

I’m back!!! I haven’t posted anything for 3 years, HOLY COW! I have had many amazing things happen to me over the last few years. To name a few things I¬†have done: I left home, started¬†college, got a job, became president of a student club, and went¬†on some exiting adventures¬†with amazing friends.

While I am beyond thankful for all of the experiences and opportunities that warm my heart and put a smile on my face, there have also been some really difficult trials over the past few years as well.¬†What I¬†am about to say may shock some of you, but I¬†truly wouldn’t change a thing, not even the lowest of lows. If it weren’t for the trials I had to go through, I¬†wouldn’t have learned some valuable, even priceless lessons.

So, what have I learned? The biggest thing I¬†have learned is that just because we are faced with something that is hard for us to do, (whether it is a math project, mental/physical illness, balancing work, school, and a social life, or going to college and¬†moving out on your own (or, in my case, all of the above)) doesn’t mean we can’t do it. It just means we have to prove to ourselves that we are stronger and braver than we think.¬†It is okay to try new things and to step outside of our comfort zone.

To the degree we’re not living our dreams, our comfort zone has more control of us than we have over ourselves.

Peter McWilliams

 

As a whole, I think humans are extremely hard on themselves. The things we say and think to ourselves not only are lies, but they are hurtful. We never would tell our friends or a stranger that they are dumb, ugly, or a wimp, so why should we accept that verbal abuse from ourselves?¬†None of us are perfect, and while it is good to motivate ourselves and strive to be the best we can be, we shouldn’t wallow in our failures and point out every flaw we have. Just remember,¬†you are capable of doing hard things. Don’t beat yourself up. Step out of your comfort zone.¬†It is astonishing what can happen when we let go of our fears and live life to the fullest, even if the task at hand is hard.