Saturday, February 22, 2014

the greatest storyline

You know that feeling you get as you close an amazing book for the last time after reading the words "the end", or the way you feel as the credits roll on your favorite TV show's last season finally? That way it seems like in the end everything is over and finished and you will never be able to live in that story again. To me this feels as if something inside of me has died. Like I've just lost all of my friends and they can only come back through reliving the stories you've already been through.

I know this sounds way dramatic for a book or pictures on a screen but I ask anybody who lived through the Harry Potter era that has read all 3407 pages and watched all 17 and a half hours of footage that can honestly say they didn't cry when the watched this...

Crying yet? You should be.

Now, while stories and books always come to an end, our lives don't. Just like Daniel Radclif says about the Harry Potter phenomenon that "the end of the story [doesn't] end tonight." it is the same in our lives.

Our lives extend much further than than a few pages and a few hours on a screen. Our lives extend into eternity. And they do that because we have the greatest writer and director anybody has ever known.

Our writer is our God, and our director is our Savior, Jesus Christ. God wrote our lives in a way that they would extend forever, and because of our Savior and his Atonement, our lives are possible.

Now, just like in any story worth reading or watching, there is conflict. If there wasn't it would be a boring story.

There would be no story with out Voldemort, no excitement with out the White Witch, and no anticipation without factions. There would be no enthusiasm without the switch, no empowerment with out the shark, and no story without cloning. There would be no exhilaration without the Capital, no interest without the maze, and no anticipation without crime.

There would be no life without trial.

The good part is that in our movie, our writer and director have their hands on our lives. They will make sure that everything turns out. Granted, things don't always turn out as we imagined them to, and they don't always turn out how we wanted them to, but they will always turn out how the writer wrote if we listen to the director.

In our lives we are to become great. God has written us into beautiful characters who have lessons to learn and trials to overcome, and amazing people to become, and he has given us a director to show us how to do it. He has given us the greatest gift to become the greatest us. He has given His Son.

We must listen to the director.

And the best part of life is it doesn't end when our figurative "credits" roll. They don't end because our lives extend beyond the grave. This is only the audition. The time when we are tested to see what kind of characters we will play.

Life is less about how much money you have and weather or not you own the iPod 3,000 or the newest athlete endorsed shoes and more about who you are and who you are becoming.

Who you are and who you are becoming is the greatest storyline that will ever exist.

Live it right.

feel my sunlight

p.s. My photography blog is no longer called WhitneySue Photography and is now called keep life bright photography and graphic design. We'll see if this stays.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Hope in hard. Hope in Him.

It's been two weeks since I last posted.

Two weeks since I totaled my car.

I have learned so much in the last two weeks and and can honestly say I am better for it.

Now, while I can't say it's all been good the last few weeks, I can say that it has all been worth it. I have had my fair share of fights with my pal Satan that I am not proud of, but on the other hand I have also had some incredible bonding moments with my Brother Jesus, The man I call my Savior.

Now, this blog is a sunny place. So here is some good that happened the last two weeks.

My tumbling team hosted the largest tumbling competition in Utah history last weekend. (A contributing factor to me not blogging.) I had not trained all week due to the car accident and on Friday I decided I was competing. Friday night was a long night of setting up equipment and I competed Saturday morning. After I competed I worked all day helping run the meet. I finished the competition presently surprised with a bronze medal. It was an overall good meet.

In the last two weeks I've also..

-cleaned my room (this is a weird and beautiful thing people.)
-filmed a movie in sign language.
-worn capris. (It was 50 degrees and sunny yesterday...we had a short taunting hale storm earlier today...and back to blue skies now!)
-taught Sunday school. all. by. myself.
-paid a big fat ticket of $120. There goes all the money I made for the tumbling competition.

So, live has been hard, but things are turning around for the better.

When you are pushed up between a rock and a hard place the best place to go is up. I've been trying to look up the last few days and let me tell you, it has made all the difference.

I'm not one that particularly likes hanging out under the clouds. (I mean, my blog is called feel my sunlight.) And with the sunshine peeking through the clouds the last few days It has proved as a reminder that attitude is all my choice. Sure, circumstances may sway my choice for a minute, but in reality, the choice is still mine. My choice is hope.

Hope in my Savior.
Hope that he will lift me.
Hope that he will get me out.
Hope that I will be okay.
Hope that everything else will be too.
Hope that I will be enough.
Hope that I will not fail.
Hope that I will not fear.
Hope that I will be better.
Hope that he will help.
Hope in sunlight.

Now, I'd like to shift the topic from me, to my friends who are having a hard time. Life isn't easy. Life isn't all sunshine and rainbows. Life brings dark clouds. Life brings multiple feet of snow, Life brings harsh winds. Life brings gloomy rain. Life brings hale storms that will beat you down until you don't think you can get up again, but I promise you, YOU CAN GET UP AGAIN. no matter your circumstances. 

I don't know your circumstances and I have no right to say I do, however, I do know someone who does. I know someone who knows exactly what you have been through and who knows exactly how to get you to the other side. Although you may feel like you are alone in your suffering, our Savior, YOUR savior, is there for you. I know this because he was there for me. He sees your potential and he sees what you are capable of. He sees greatness in you. He wants to pull you up and help you out. His arms are ever outreached towards you. All you have to do is grasp his hand and hold on tight.

This is a talk that got me through one of my lowest moments last week. It now rests in the archives of "strength for difficult times." I promise it is worth 16 minutes and 3 seconds.

"Whosoever shall put their trust in God shall be supported in their trials, and their troubles, and their afflictions." 

The Savior gives hope. Have hope in Him.

feel my sunlight

p.s. funny quote of the week: "teacher, I want my eyelids to look like your eyelids." 

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

for lack of a better title: I crashed my car

Today I am writing just to be thankful to write.

There are days were things like the color of your shoes, or how many boys talk to you, or the amount of time you spent doing on your hair matters. And then there are days where only the fact that you are still here matters.

Today is Tuesday. Temple Tuesday.

Temple Tuesday is the day were I wake up early (like EARLY) and go do baptisms at the temple. I often bring along a friend or two and we have a grand old time while the rest of you lay fast asleep in your warm beds. (And by "grand old time" I mean Mormon grand old time. It's the best kind.)

So today was Temple Tuesday.

I woke up at 4:20 am. By 4:35 am I was picking up one of my best friends named Lauren. By 4:45 am my car looked like this...

Right now it is 7:42 p.m. I am sitting at my computer with my only marks of the crash on the surface of my skin and Lauren is at her house with only sore muscles and a scraped knee.

While this isn't one of those stories where everyone walks away with out a scratch, it is one of those stories where everyone walks away.

Me, being the less than average height person that I am, took an airbag to the face where it should hit the chest, and now look like I got in a fight with a ninja and lost.

But I'm alive.

I'm alive.

I know there was divine help this morning on the icy freeway. I know that it wasn't a coincidence that there was nobody at all around us in any surrounding lanes of traffic when we spun out of control and hit the median.  As we were spinning and crashing there was this odd sense of awareness that I felt. I panicked, but for some reason Lauren didn't. For some reason she talked to me through the whole crash giving me play by play on what I should do. It was as if I had my tumbling coach on the side of the mat yelling things like "point your toes" "stretch" "faster" as I tumble down the mat to hit a perfect pass. I don't doubt that there was some divine power helping her do that.I know it wasn't a coincidence that when our car finally came to a stop it did so on the side of the road out of the line of traffic. I know that it wasn't a coincidence that the three men with construction vests in the truck were there as soon as our car came to a stop. I know that it wasn't a coincidence that we both walked away.

Now, for me it's easy to see the hand of the Lord in situations like this, but it is sometimes harder to see his hand in our everyday lives.

We live in a day where Satan does his very best to confuse people. We live in a day were confusion and chaos is a day to day thing. He wants us in distress. He wants us to fear. He wants us to forget our faith.

 In these tumultuous times many don't know where to go for peace. Its as if peace is hidden, when really, it is right in front of them. We live in a world where big calamities are seen as trials, but we often forget that there are more destructive. Jeffery R. Holland speaks of a type of destruction that is more destructive than tornadoes, earth quakes, and might I say, car crashes. This destruction is spiritual destruction.

I add my testimony to Elder Hollands that weather I am to die today or I am to die in a far future I want to be able to stand before God and say that I believe the Book of Mormon to be true. I believe in Christ. I believe in the words of Christ. I believe in his church. I believe that He will provide and I will treasure up his word.


Lauren and I with my car on the tow truck. My face was swollen so this was the best smile I could manage.

tow truck at 5am!
Car crash face!

Me right after the crash
My at 7:00 pm
Me at 7:00 pm again

me attempting to smile. #fatface

feel my sunlight

p.s. Quote of the day: 
"my biggest regret is that we didn't take a selfie."
"we need to sort out our priorities"

p.s.s. My second biggest regret is that I left my deodorant in the van. Have no fear! I got some more.

love life my friends.