a thought in response to the supreme court rulings

June 26, 2015

Max shared this with me after seeing a friend of his post this online. As always, Elder Neal A. Maxwell expresses himself and the Gospel of Jesus Christ so eloquently, and now I miss miss miss my job at the Maxwell Institute!


"In short, brothers and sisters, not being ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ includes not being ashamed of the prophets of Jesus Christ! We are now entering a time of incredible ironies. Let us cite but one of these ironies which is yet in its subtle stages: We will see a maximum, if indirect, effort made to establish irreligion as the state religion. It is actually a new form of paganism which uses the carefully preserved and cultivated freedoms of western civilization to shrink freedom, even as it rejects the value essence of our rich Judeo-Christianheritage.”

“Your discipleship may see the time when such religious convictions are discounted. M. J. Sobran also said, ‘A religious conviction is now a second-class conviction, expected to step deferentially to the back of the secular bus, and not to get uppity about it’ (Human Life Review, Summer 1978, pp. 58–59). This new irreligious imperialism seeks to disallow certain opinions simply because those opinions grow out of religious convictions. Resistance to abortion will be seen as primitive. Concern over the institution of the family will be viewed as untrendy and unenlightened.”

“Before the ultimate victory of the forces of righteousness, some skirmishes will be lost. Even in these, however, let us leave a record so that the choices are clear, letting others do as they will in the face of prophetic counsel. There will also be times, happily, when a minor defeat seems probable, but others will step forward, having been rallied to rightness by what we do. We will know the joy, on occasion, of having awakened a slumbering majority of the decent people of all races and creeds which was, till then, unconscious of itself. Jesus said that when the fig trees put forth their leaves, ‘summer is nigh’ (Matt. 24:32). Thus warned that summer is upon us, let us not then complain of the heat!”

-Elder Neal A. Maxwell

happy three (three??!!) years!

June 21, 2015

"My young friends, there is much happiness and joy to be found in this life. I can testify of that. 
I picture you with a companion whom you love and who loves you. I picture you at the marriage altar, entering into covenants that are sacred. I picture you in a home where love has its fulfillment. 
I picture you with little children about you and see your love growing with them. I cannot frame this picture. I would not if I could, for it has no bounds. Your happiness will have no ends." 
- Boyd K. Packer

Three years isn't a lot of time to put this quote to the test, but I still feel like chiming in and saying yes yes yes! That's it! That's exactly it! So Happy Anniversary Max, I can't imagine anything more refining or rewarding than what I've experienced over the last three years with you, and I wouldn't have had it any other way.

long time no see

June 2, 2015

May has definitely been the busiest month of the year. Work has become increasingly insane, church callings, studying for the MCAT, lots of rain that kept us indoors, yada yada yada... It's gone by fast. Three of the highlights include:

1. I started reading Erik Larson's The Devil in the White City and Esquire's review perfectly sums it up: "The heart of the story is so good, you find yourself asking how you could not know this already." That is honestly what I ask myself every time I turn the page: HOW DID I NOT KNOW ABOUT THIS BEFORE!? WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ALL MY LIFE?
2. The month of May was mostly rainy, which is why Memorial Day especially felt like the start of summer. We spent so much of the day outside in the sun, reflecting on family and our country and the things we easily take for granted. Memorial day in some ways feels like the prelude to the Fourth of July, with flags waving on street corners and front porches.

That afternoon Max and I spent some time with my dad who shared this with us, which was especially fitting:

"I sometimes wonder how we can best honor our forebears. Might we not best honor them by honoring one another? A watch tick in eternity, you know, and we will ourselves be ancestors. What would we desire most from our posterity? 

Personally, I feel that I should not care if my posterity failed to do special homage to me on occasions like this. But I am sure I should be unhappy if they failed on all occasions to be kind, considerate, helpful to one another. 

If Father and Mother were to reprimand me today, I am sure it would not be for thoughtlessness regarding them. It would rather be for thoughtlessness regarding my living brothers and sisters, my failure to draw nearer to them in these hard declining years, nearer to them in sympathy and helpfulness. 

Why not in the future make our reunions something that will draw us all a little closer together in understanding, sympathy and love."
-Parley Alma Christensen

Parley Alma Christensen is my great-grandfather. We visited his grave that afternoon together, and I hope I get to meet him someday. If he was anything like his son, and my grandpa, (and it sounds like he was) he is someone I hope I can be like too.


3. Max had a Birthday! Considering Max and I met when we were fifteen, birthdays always feel a little extra special. There is something so rewarding looking back and seeing how far you've come, and how far you get to go with each other. We celebrated the big day together up at Sundance, and I think I told Max at least half a dozen times that we have to spend more time up there before our move next summer. 

And that is that. May was a busy month, plenty of highs and lows included, but I can't complain. And now that I think about it, I've been to In & Out twice this week which is a telltale sign it's JUNE.
I can't complain about that either. 

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