11.30.2010

Here we go....

Yesterday my mission papers were officially turned in!

For those of you who haven't heard yet, I have decided to serve a mission for my church (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints)! It will be a 18 month commitment with letters and emails once a week as my only ways of communication with y'all!

This mission could not have come at a better point in my life. I have seen God's blessings pour over me as I have prepared my papers and know that this is what I am supposed to do. When something feels this right it would be a crime against myself not to follow it.

I will find out where I will be going within the next few weeks and when I will be leaving. It could be as early as the 2nd of January or anytime after that!

In preparing for this, and a mixture of other recent occurrences in my life, I have really come to be excited about life again. We literally have NO IDEA what tomorrow will bring, and I can choose to let that terrify me, or I can choose to let it free me.

I don't know who i'm going to marry (no matter how hard I continue to guess), I have no idea where I will be spending the next 2 years of my life. I don't know what I will want to do after those 2 years.... but who cares?

Life is a game, life is a trial, life is love, life is a means to an end, life is a blessing. It's time I started reminding myself of this... i'm not a victim to life. I'm a player :)

11.14.2010

Indifferently different

Our differences can be demanding. They can be our strengths, our weaknesses, our likes or dislikes, our passions or our life long goals; in the end however, we are all set apart by something. Like Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "We all boil at different degrees."

This was especially made aware to me today during a fireside devotional held at church. Observing my surroundings, I realized there were so many different kinds of people in the small chapel with me. As the opening hymn began, I especially took note of the small deaf community signing in the left- front corner. As we sang "all creatures of our God and King, lift up your voice and with us sing, Alleluia! Alleluia!" they were signing as triumphantly as I was singing. The more I watched them, the more joy I threw into my singing. In that instance, our vast differences seemed so small.

The speaker then talked about heroes. What makes a hero? He listed a lot of things such as:
1. You must not view yourself as a hero.
2. You must believe in something that's bigger than yourself with all your heart.
3. You're willing to put others in front of yourself.
4. You are prepared to do whatever it takes, no matter what.

However, what came to my mind was simpler than all of those wonderful things above. A hero is different. A hero stands firm in what sets them apart at the appropriate time to do so.

All in the course of an hour and a half I learned a very valuable lesson. Our differences don't hurt us. They bind us in a sense that can only make us exceptional, if we let it. We are all a piece of the puzzle; and allowing someone the spotlight, for a moment, simply means we are supporting them in their time to let their differences shine.

"To effectively communicate, we must realize that we are all different in the way we perceive the world and use this understanding as a guide to our communication with others." -Tony Robbins

11.08.2010

Concerts!

Over the past few months I've had the opportunity to attend a couple very amazing concerts. Even though I wasn't a die hard fan of either of these musicians, it was a unique and wonderful opportunity to see them live.

1. EMINEM/JAY-Z
Where: Yankee Stadium, Brooklyn NY
It was the first time i'd ever been to a rap concert. At first, I fell completely out of place, and then Eminem came out onstage. Here's a video of his entrance. He was like a boxer going into the ring for the biggest fight of his life. He was mesmerizing, passionate, and incredibly articulate while performing. Here are some crappy pictures I took with my cell phone Hahaha...

Kanye West joined Eminem wearing a red jumpsuit, a huge clock and something leopard print. He's talented but so very odd.
Naturally Beyonce appeared to sing a duet with her husband Jay-Z. She was absolutely stunning!
I gained a whole new appreciation and love for these artists during this concert, and developed a huge crush on Eminem. Trust me when I say, he was the best performer i've ever seen live.


2. Elton John and Leon Russell
Where: Beacon Theatre, NYC
My dear friend Martha works for Good Morning America. They were doing a segment with Elton John an Leon Russell who were promoting their newest cd together. Martha called me up and asked if I wanted to see Sir Elton John in concert. DUH! The only catch was that it was at 6am... not a problem in my book.

They were performing on Good Morning America so the 'gang' was all there to do interviews and enjoy the show.

Leon Russell is older than dirt, and takes about 5 minutes just to walk across the stage. He said about 5 words the whole concert, but when it came time to Rock n' Roll, he sure brought it to the table. I want to be as passionate about something when i'm that old.