Miracles and stake conference

The sun on this Sunday is leaking through our windows, so its impossible to feel anything but happiness. (I really think I need to move to Alaska to have the sun 24/7).

Friday, I was covering for someone at work, and required to do more technical things than I've ever done -- talk to insurance companies and caseworkers at different hospitals. Luckily, it being national donut day, the endless source of donuts at work definitely got me through. But, in the end, I couldn't get off work until quite a bit later than usual. I only made it 2 blocks from work when the person in front of me was T-boned, and causing me to swerve to avoid any collision myself. Because we were in the middle of the intersection, I turned into the only lane that didn't have a car in it -- granted, I was driving in the wrong direction and could easily come across oncoming traffic, but, thankfully no one came. I drove long enough the wrong way to get into a parking lot, parked, and bawled. I was so shaky I could hardly text. I'm a dramatic, and accident fearful person. I hate driving in general, but especially from Utah to Oregon for fear of getting into an accident. I know, I know, I should probably see a physiatrist or something, but car accidents are one of my main fears.

There were alot of miracles that occurred in this one situation that reminded me of God's love for each one of us, and that its extremely important to do the little things -- prayer, scripture study, paying tithing, attending the temple, attending church, giving service and doing missionary work.

Bronson was on the phone with me the entire time because we have a bluetooth speaker in our car -- which I am completely saying it was divine intervention that God saved me from that accident, but on all temporal levels, this was the best thing we could have invested in -- because I had both hands on the steering wheel. Another thing, it was a miracle no one was coming as oncoming traffic. Because we weren't in that accident, we won't have to pay for car repairs, or even a new car, because this is our only car. I wasn't injured or hurt, and won't have to take time off of work. And I got to go home to see Bronson. Guardian angels are real.

Luckily, Emily & Barrett invited us to go with them to Cafe Rio, so I was forced to forget about everything and just be grateful that everything was okay.

Saturday, we spent some time cleaning, vacuuming the car, and going to Seven Peaks -- which was just a wee-bit crowded! I don't believe or tolerate any racial segregation in anyway. However, I do wish there was child and adult segregation at pools -- that just might make it slightly more enjoyable.

That night was the adult session of Stake Conference. And I don't know if it was because we were in the third row or what, but it was by far my favorite session of stake conference I've attended.

Elder Mervyn B. Arnold came. He's one of my favorites because I met him when I was 13. I still remember to this day, I didn't stand up to shake his hand and I'm still embarrassed about it. I also remember meeting him as he attending my professors class that I TA for, so when I saw him exiting the doors, I quickly stopped him to say hello. #fangirlmoment He just is so friendly.

They taught us about family councils and making the Sabbath day a delight.

With the recent conference talk about family councils, I struggled to see how this related to our situation. But, the more I'm learning about family councils is that most of all, they can strengthen our families. Elder Ballard promised, "A family council, when conducted with love and with Christlike attributes, will counter the impact of modern technology that often distracts us from spending quality time with each other and also tends to bring evil right into our homes."

So just for my sake, I'm going to share a few things I learned:
1. Be realistic - if you don't expect much, you won't have to be disappointed. Sister Arnold said, when their kids were young, they would place the dessert for everyone to see, and do a 6 minute FHE activity -- but with instruction that they had to participate, obey and listen for those 6 minutes.

2. Start with a question - The purpose of the council is to resolve something, so it must begin with a question. Think: "What can we do to make media to bless our lives?" "How are we going to make the Sabbath a delight in our family?"

3. Look inward & self-evaluate - When we want change to occur, first look at ourselves. Ask "What Lack I yet?" We can't expect our spouse to make all sorts of changes if we aren't making them ourselves. 

4. Talk about the hard stuff - Nowadays we are sensitive so much to peoples feelings, but talk about the hard things that need to be discussed, there isn't a way around it. It works best if we do so with love and kindness. 

5. Listen - We have 2 ears, and only 1 mouth. Don't be quick to anger. Elder Scott said, "When there is a problem, use the smallest hammer possible." When in a council, everyone should be doing most of the talking -- not the one in charge. 

6. Keep it positive - When needing to council others in a instructive manner, keep it positive. Meaning give them 5 positive comments to 1 negative. When Sister Arnold was in the MTC before they left for their mission president assignment, she asked the MTC President's wife, "How did you deal with disobedient missionaries?" She responded, "I give them PIE. Praise, Instruction, and Encouragement". 

7. Persevere - We may have loved ones that choose not to hear the music of the gospel, but doesn't mean we stop loving them or helping them. Elder Arnold's brother was not active for 60+ years, until his mothers funeral, and the brother spoke at the funeral and said, "Mom, I know you have calluses on your knees praying for me to change, I promise your prayers won't be in vain." Sometimes it just takes longer for others to hear the music of the gospel. 

* rather than speakers they had a family demonstrate a council on the issue of "How to make the Sabbath-Day a Delight". First the parents counseled together, and then the children came in, and they asked them individually what they thought they could do to prepare for sacrament meeting, how they could be in sacrament meeting, and what they would do after church to keep the spirit and peace of the sabbath. Each child answered regarding one part of the question, and then the parent made them responsible for their suggestion.  

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