About Me

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Joy In Serving

The title of this video from Mormon Messages is called, Our Hands His Hands, Our Heart His Heart. From A talk called "You are my hands"  in the May 2010 Ensign by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Please enjoy this amazing video. Oft times we like to do things by ourselves, and refuse help from others when we really need it. We don't want to be thought of as a "charity" case. Sometimes it is the pride in us that doesn't allow us to receive help from others. Several times we refuse help from the Lord. Believing that we are good enough to do things without His help. Sometimes there are those reaching out for help and we think that others will be there to help them. We should be seeking opportunities to serve others, but we should also have humility to ask for help when it is needed. 

"...As we emulate His perfect example, our hands can become His hands; our eyes, His eyes; our heart, His heart.... As we extend our hands and hearts toward others in Christlike love, something wonderful happens to us. Our own spirits become healed, more refined, and stronger. We become happier, more peaceful, and more receptive to the whisperings of the Holy Spirit." - President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Monday, June 27, 2011

The things we Desire

This is the first time in a while where I went a whole weekend without posting a blog. The truth is I have had a fun weekend. I got to be friends and cook hawaiian hay stacks (yum!) Attend the YSA Summit, where there were around 1000 YSA peeps attending workshops, eating food, mingling, dancing, enjoying entertainment. Also got to attend the amazing fireworks show at Taylorsville Dayzz. Scones were also a part of my weekend. So there is my excuse, I apologize to all of my faithful blog readers and stalkers for not writing a post sooner, my bad!

I went back to this past General Conference and while searching through the talks, I came across Elder Oaks' talk on desire. This is the same talk where he kind of rips into the single men of the church for not actively seeking marriage.As I ponder on the things that I desire now, things I have desired in the past, thing I desire in the near future and distance future, I couldn't help but think mostly of monetary things. I guess it's natural.Sometimes our desires seem unattainable, or too far fetched to be be realized. I love reading my patriarchal blessing, at the Summit this past weekend the keynote speaker Brother Eyre challenged us to memorize our patriarchal blessing. In doing so we will recognize our potential, and come to realize our greatest desires coming to pass.

Elder Oaks said, "Desires dictate our priorities, priorities shape our choices, and choices determine our actions. The desires we act on determine our changing, our achieving, and our becoming." This statement is so powerful. The potential that we have to change, achieve, and become, is limitless (by the way, a great movie.)

So we ask ourselves, "what are the things that I desire?" Before we can answer this we need to cover our basic needs, food, shelter, and rest. When these are satisfied, we can focus on our desires.Our righteous desires can be realized, if they are worked on by faith. Although it is not wrong to desire things with monetary value, it is understanding that the things that we buy on earth cannot last, and will not give us everlasting happiness. Our greatest desire should be to live a life worthily and happily to return to our Heavenly Father's presence.

Elder Oaks ends with,"Let us remember that desires dictate our priorities, priorities shape our choices, and choices determine our actions. In addition, it is our actions and our desires that cause us to become something, whether a true friend, a gifted teacher, or one who has qualified for eternal life."

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The meaning of Charity

This video to the right is such a great example, of charity, please enjoy. In today society when we hear of this word charity, we think of giving to the needy, donations, monetary value. We hear people say the line, "I donated to charity." When I hear it I either say to myself, "well, good for you" or "oh thanks for making me look and feel bad." Let us ponder on this word charity a bit more. Why should charity only be thought of giving money away to someone less fortunate? The scriptures talk about charity being the "pure love of Christ." (Moroni 7:45-49) to have charity means to give more than money, but to give more of one's self. As our Savior gave all that he had even His life for us. The greatest example of charity was and is Him. When we give something to others, do we it do it grudgingly,  or carelessly? How about when we receive a gift?  Do we complain, or take it? The right answers obviously should be when we give something to others we should do it with the desire to give, expecting nothing in return, and with great care. And when we receive a gift we accept it with gratitude and thanksgiving. To have charity means to give without expecting praise, more importantly to give out of love. I know that when we have charity in our hearts, we are happier and those around us will be as well, especially the ones we serve. Hyrum Smith said it best, "Charity is the ability to separate the man from the thing he does."

Monday, June 20, 2011

The answers as to why we do certain things

It is very rare that a day goes by without me asking "why did I do that?" Or "why did he or she do that?" Well if you don't ask that question often then I applaud you. I believe these are healthy questions to ask of ourselves often. Now sometimes the answer may not be what we expected or wanted. Sometimes, people do certain things just out of stupidity, some out wanting a reward, some for revenge, some just because they are weird, some out fear, some out of faith, they greatest reason is out of love. For whatever reason we just do things sometimes without thinking. That's what gets me in trouble often. You the reader by this time may wonder, okay, what is the point of all this. The reason why we do things, should have thought behind them. I found an amazing quote by an apostle named Ed J Pinegar.
"Obedience is the price
Faith is the power
Love is the motive
The Spirit is the key
CHRIST is the reason."

In everything we decide to do, and I am not talking about choosing what to wear, or what to eat, but the major decisions, we can know that the reason behind it is what Elder Pinegar was talking about.  These steps are not just suggestions, but a guide to how we should live our lives.
I am not saying that I am some guy that just goes around using this quote all the time to make my decisions. But it is a nice creed to live by.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

The True Measure of a Man

As I grow older, and somewhat wiser, I often find myself asking this great question. "What is to become of me?" Our Savior answers this same question in 3rd Nephi, he tells us that the manner of men we ought to be, is even as He is. We know this is not going to be an easy task, to become perfect as He is. He is the epitome of charity, how will we ever measure up? I know the scripture mentions men, and it really means men and women, but today I will focus on my species. Throughout time the man has always been the provider, the protector, and the one that presides for a family. The man has always been the dominant species, stronger physically, and mentally (this one I can't fully back up.) In recent times, at least in American culture, the measure of a man has somewhat lost it's value. Media shows men, that are not loyal or faithful, that our role models are actors that can't keep one wife, that even those men in high offices in our government often slip and fall and lie about everything, they show sports role models using drugs to enhance their performances, they show protesters of our military that believe they are fighting for a wrong cause. Rarely do we ever get to hear or read about heroes of our nation, history books seem more closed than ever. We are also seeing a battle for morality more than ever, natural principles and values that are held to a high standard anymore. The most difficult part is that it seems as if we are forgetting the most important person of all, GOD. Although the media may paint a picture and slander what a real measure of a man is. Or we with God's help can be molded, and realize our real potential and become the men that He intended us to be. Loving fathers, husbands, and sons. Hard workers, contributors to society, service givers, and representatives of our Savior. I by no means consider myself a perfect man, or even place anyone in this world with that word perfect. But I believe we have given the tools to become better men, and to become examples of great men for our children and others. I want to end with an amazing quote that was given to me on my mission.

“The place to take the true measure of a man is not in the darkest place or in the amen corner, nor the cornfield, but by his own fireside. There he lays aside his mask and you may learn whether he is an imp or an angel, cur or king, hero or humbug. I care not what the world says of him: whether it crowns him boss or pelts him with bad eggs. I care not a copper what his reputation or religion may be: if his babies dread his homecoming and his better half swallows her heart every time she has to ask him for a five-dollar bill, he is a fraud of the first water, even though he prays night and morning until he is black in the face. … But if his children rush to the front door to meet him and love’s sunshine illuminates the face of his wife every time she hears his footfall, you can take it for granted that he is pure, for his home is a heaven. … I can forgive much in that fellow mortal who would rather make men swear than women weep; who would rather have the hate of the whole world than the contempt of his wife; who would rather call anger to the eyes of a king than fear to the face of a child.” (W. C. Brann, “A Man’s Real Measure, in Elbert Hubbard’s Scrapbook, N.Y.: Wm. H. Wise and Co., 1923, p. 16.)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Moments That Matter Most!

This video is so amazing!

I wanted to write down each individual quote in this film just in case you missed it.

"moments are the molecules that make up eternity."- Elder Neal A. Maxwell

"it is not so much the major events, as the small day to day decisions, that map the course of our living." President Gordon B. Hinckley

"We would do well to slow down a little, focus on the significant, lift up our eyes, and truly see
the things that matter most." -President Dieter E. Uchtdorf

"Strength comes not from frantic activity but from being settled on a firm foundation of truth and light. It comes from placing our attention and efforts on the basics of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. It comes from paying attention to the divine things that matter most." -President Dieter E. Uchtdorf

"...diligently doing the things that matter most will lead us to the Savior of the world" -President Dieter E. Uchtdorf

So this video was taken from a talk by President Uchtdorf  in the October 2010 general conference and it is titled "Of things That Matter Most."

This last week there were 3 speakers in church and the topic was on relationships. Each talk was given based off of a general authority's talk. The first talk happened to be on this particular talk. This video was just recently posted on youtube as well.

Do we ask ourselves these vital questions, what are the things that matter most? What are the moments that matter most? And am I doing the things that matter most? I believe that as we contemplate these questions, our minds become more opened to the more important things rather than the miniscule things in life.I want to throw in my quote that I have already posted before, because I find it so fitting. "Sometimes I wish time would go faster, but there are times you wish that time would just stand still and the moments you are having whether it be with a special someone or not, would last forever. I guess that is why we have eternity after this life to experience those kinds of moments!" - Me

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The true meaning of Faith... continued...

Last night I ended with a quote from Jesus, "be not faithless, but believing." I love blogging at work, knowing that during the down times, I can continue my thoughts and write it down is a pretty great feeling, also the getting paid while doing so is nice. So continuing my thoughts on faith. Faith has the power to produce miracles. In the Book of Mormon we are asked, "have miracles ceased?" No, they have not. It is by the power of faith that miracles are wrought. I mentioned that my name meant having faith, I forgot to mention that my mother's doctor called me and my sister "miracle babies". We are what her patriarchal blessing talked about. Speaking of patriarchal blessings, they are also a source where our faith is put to test. It is the best future reading available for us, and that if we are faithful, we will receive all the blessings intended for us in that blessing. I have recently looked more to that blessing more than ever.
Another quote by Jesus I love reading, is "thy faith hath made thee whole." To be whole, means to be complete, made perfect, basically happiness all over! This faith allows us to overcome adversity, and obstacles, this faith releases us from Satan's grasp, this faith is the power to heal, to move mountains, and conquer our fears. With faith we have the courage to do anything, the will to move forward, and the strength to overcome trials. Faith in Christ and the Atonement allows us to be truly free, to be made whole.
I believe having faith in ourselves, and understanding that God is in control, increases our dependability and capabilities. We become humble and we are able to give and receive blessings. I have been listening to Joseph: King of Dreams soundtrack, and there is one song that many people recognize, it is called "You know better than I." I know that our Heavenly Father knows better than we do what lies in store for us. Sometimes we push faith aside and decide that what we know already is sufficient. This is not how progression and growth works. the best example of how faith works is found in the Book of Alma in the Book of Mormon, an experiment, to liken faith to a seed. How a seed has potential to become something great. We need to give it time, we need to nurture it, and as we are patient, we start to see growth, and then it begins to bring forth fruit, and it becomes desirable and it is good. Faith is what helps me get through the day. Believing that I have the potential to become better. Recognizing that I can't do it alone, I know that I need help, but I have faith that God is listening to my prayers and that He will answer them in due time, if I am faithful and work at it.
I would like to end with a poem about faith in our Heavenly Father by me.
My Faith in Thee
Although I can't see you, I envision your smile,
Although I can't hear your voice, I listen in my mind,
Although I cannot touch you, I feel your promptings in my heart.
I don't think distance matters, because somehow I know you are so near,
I know that I am nearer to you when I pray on bended knee
I know that my heart is blessed when it is touched by you
I know my ears rejoice when they listen to your words.
I know my eyes are opened to you understandings for me.
My faith is strengthened daily because of you.

Monday, June 13, 2011

The true meaning of Faith

So my Vietnamese name is Huu Tin, meaning heaving faith. The reason for my name is because there is a little more than 6 years between my older sister and I, and my mom was told after having my sister that she would not have anymore children. My parents joined the church and my mom received her patriarchal blessing and in it, it said that she would have children. I was born, and they gave me this Vietnamese name, because they had me by faith, then a little over a year later my other sister was born. This name Huu Tin, in reverse means saint. So there's my name background. Luckily my parents didn't give me the English name Faith, which is a girl's name, while my name in Vietnamese is a boy's name.

Faith as we know is a belief in something that we can't see, but is true. Sometimes we are asked what faith are we? Because faith tends to be synonymous with religion.We have faith in God, although we can't see Him. There are several things that cannot be seen by the naked eye, for instance the atoms in the air we breath, the electricity that powers everything, the wind when it cools and blows, and yet we know they exist.
This is more than a word, and it is not passive at all, it is very active.

Joseph Smith Jr. wrote this about faith.
1. "... as faith is the moving cause of all action in temporal concerns, so it is in spiritual."
2. "... faith is not only the principle of action, but of power also."
3. "Faith then, is the first great governing principle in which has power, dominion, and authority over all things."

So in everything there is faith. To me the true meaning of faith is knowing in your mind and in your heart that although you can't see or feel it, the thing that you are most believing in is there. And if that alone motivates you to be better, to be happier, then keep having faith in it.

To be continued..."be not faithless, but believing."

Saturday, June 11, 2011

The Power of Prayer

I remember when my sisters and I were younger we were not only taught to pray in English, but in Vietnamese as well. We would find ourselves repeating the same things both in English and Vietnamese, but our parents seemed to be okay with that. As we grew older and started to understand more about the Gospel, we still would repeat a lot of the same things, and take lines from others' prayers, not that it is not wrong. Then came seminary, the sweet time we got to learn about the Gospel while going to school. These were the times where prayers really started to mean something to me. Senior year was the first time I ever read the Book of Mormon all the way through, the first time I knelt to pray to know if it was true. I put that moment in my life as one of the greatest teaching moments in my life regarding prayer and revelation. 17 years old, and that was the first time I can honestly say I have felt something really stirring inside of my mind, heart, and soul. This was very good timing since I was planning to leave on a mission pretty soon after that experience. 19 years old and I get called to serve to place where I didn't really want to, somewhere humid, somewhere hot, and tons of Asian people. Singapore English speaking was the call. Now I love Asian people, proud of my heritage and culture, but we are very loud and proud people and honestly not the most humble, I know! I am one of them. I remember the first time teaching an investigator to pray and we all knelt down, and we each took a turn praying. After the investigator prayed, he immediately said "we're just praying to a wall, and no one is listening, but us, you guys pray to nothing!" as a new missionary, that fired me up, and even wanted to give up on him, but my companion had faith and prayed. Well long story short, that investigator got baptized 2 weeks later, served a mission to Hong Kong, and now lives in Nevada. I saw this countless on my mission. After the mission, I tried to keep up with that faith. As I got back into the "real" world, I found myself praying less, and just worrying more. And noticed how my prayers were not nearly as sincere as the prayers I said on the mission. What changed? My attitude. Understanding that I needed this more than ever. To converse with our Father in Heaven, was more than some thing expected or just out of need for something, it was a desire to let Him know, even though He already did my thoughts, my wants and desires, my feelings. In doing so my mind and my heart we're opened again and ready to receive. As I get older and gain more responsibility, each important choice comes with prayerful consideration, and allowing the Lord's time to work and to have the patience and understanding when the answer comes. Without this privileged communication, I know that I could be alright and still live a good life, but because of it I am comforted to know that I will live a better life with it! One of the best definitions I have come across regarding this was by James E. Talmage, "The dumb may pray, and that too with the eloquence that prevails in Heaven. Prayer is made up of heart throbs and the righteous yearnings of the soul, of supplication based on the realization of need, of contrition, and pure desire." (Jesus the Christ pg. 238) I know that as we allow prayer to be a special and real part of our lives, that we will blessed in ways we've never imagined. We've heard stories about prayer, we've heard testimonies, read about them, and even blogged about them. My "prayer" is that we all strive to have it more in our lives, realize the faith in each prayer, and be patient with the answers we receive.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The power of these words... "I am sorry" and "please forgive me"

When these words are spoken in a non sarcastic, non cynical, non judgmental way, they can fix most anything. When they are used in a kind, gentle, loving way, anger dies down. We live in a society with a lot of pride. Pride for the things we own, the things we've accomplished, things we do. We sometimes take this pride and belittle others with it, sometimes without even intending to do so. Several times we learn through the "grape vine," that we unintentionally hurt someone. We also live in a society that holds grudges and will not let them go until the person that has offended them apologizes or suffers just as great as you had. Pain is something we can't live without, it's the truth, but we also learn that we cannot experience joy without it. Physical pain eventually heals with time and medicine, spiritual pain can be healed through repentance, mental pain healed with some psychological work, emotional pain is one that it really hard to recover from. When I think about all of this, I try to think of the joys that come from experiencing these pains. With physical pain we learn that when that body part is functioning healthy and properly we are happy. With spiritual pain, after we repent, the burden of sin is gone and we are happy again as well. Mental pain when someone understands you and wants to help you think properly can be comforting. Emotional pain the kind comes with the heart as well is affected mostly by others. Where it's difficult for others to understand, even if they have experienced similar pains, but this is a personal pain that is difficult to overcome. As with spiritual pain, you kind of feel a separation from everything, not just God. And sometimes even the best of distractions are not good enough, but they do help. Only one understands and that's our Savior Jesus Christ. He's experienced what we've been through, all of these pains, and the ones to come as well. He suffered so we wouldn't not have to. And no matter how much we say "I am sorry, please forgive me" to Him, he will still take us by the hand and say, "go and sin no more." When we are offended or hurt by someone, even a loved one, we must ask ourselves, and I know it's difficult, but we should ask, "is it worth being angry or upset over?" and the answer most likely, naturally still be yes, but in thinking it over, we realize it wasn't. The best answer I have searched for in regarding being hurt is by Elder Joe J. Christensen. He says, "Be quick to say I'm sorry, as hard as it is to form the words, be swift to say I apologize, and please forgive me, even though you are not the one totally at fault. True love is developed by those who are willing to readily admit personal mistakes and offenses." I know that as we follow this great advice, our homes will have the spirit more abundantly, love will grow, and happiness will be in store for us. I am sorry to those whom I have offended both on purpose and unintentionally, I could be mean and say they totally deserved it, but I won't. And I forgive those that have done any wrong to me either on purpose or not as well. Please forgive me for any wrong I've done towards you. These words teach us patience and love for God and our fellow men and women. I got a fortune cookie today from Panda Express, which is not real Chinese food by the way, but still yummy. The fortune said "give time and thought to all that you do." Not the greatest fortune, like the ones that say you will be a rockstar someday, but still profound. In our words, actions, and deeds, we must always give thought and time, and another t word, tact in all we do! I am grateful for the examples in my life where they are slow to anger, and quick to say I am sorry.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Isn't it about time?

What a crazy question to be asked all of the time. We've seen and heard this line from LDS Church commercials before. We also hear it from friends and family, and other annoying people when we finally did something that was either asked of us to do, or was planned by us to do. Time, everything in our lives revolves around time, work time, meal time, sleep time, recreation time, time, time, time. We seem to sometimes forget time as well, or not have enough time. Sometimes, we have what seems like too much time. But back to the original thought of this blog, isn't it about time? Time for what exactly? This is a great rhetorical question. In the church commercials it was about family. "Family, isn't it about time?" And we also learn that Love is spelled t-i-m-e. By now you've figured out that every line in this blog has the word time in it. Sometimes I wonder to myself if I am using my time right now wisely. I love movies, the occasional video game, and just spending lots of time being with my friends. I know I should be spending more time with my family, scripture study, and productive things. So time is a balancing act, we have to sacrifice some of it to satisfy some of our desires, some of our needs, and most of all others' needs. What about the times that just take your breath away, and I don't mean exercise time. The times where you don't worry about time. I want to end this time thought with a quote I wrote a few years ago. "Somtimes I wish time would go faster, but there are times you wish that time would just stand still and the moment you are having whether it be with a special someone... or not, would last forever. I guess that is why we have eternity after this life to experience those kinds of moments!"

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Karma is not a B****!

This word karma, for those of you who don't know what it is, let me give you the definition. Karma [kahr-muh]the cosmic principle according to which each person is rewarded or punished in one incarnation according to that person's deeds in the previous incarnation. Growing up I always hear people saying when something good or bad happened to them it was karma, because of something good or bad they did earlier or in the past. I somewhat believe in this principle. But more often times than none I see people blaming everything on this principle, when something goes bad in their life. Let's do an example..."If I didn't eat that twinkie last week at my cubicle when I knew I shouldn't have, I would still have my job right now, dang karma!" When the rest of the world knew that it wasn't the twinkie that caused him to lose his job, or was it? My point is we can't blame our misfortunes on karma. I do believe though the other side of the principle, the because I did something good, then something good is going to happen. Why not do good always then right?
But there are those that seek for rewards of monetary value when they help and they think to themselves, "well I helped out, don't I get something?" I guess feeling good and happy just doesn't quite cut it for some folks. I know at least for me that when I help others with no thought of reward or something in return, I receive blessings. Being optimistic and having a happy attitude as much as possible I believe blesses us with good karma. I also know that being the opposite of these things can't bring out much good either, how can we expect that? I believe in part we make our own karma. I'd like to finish with a thought from President Monson. "Along your pathway of life you will observe that you are not the only traveler. There are others who need your help. There are feet to steady, hands to grasp, minds to encourage, hearts to inspire, and souls to save." -Thomas S. Monson

Thursday, June 2, 2011


I love vacations, especially when you know you're getting paid for it. Visiting my sister's family in San Jose, was just what I needed to relax and get away for while. I did miss my friends, and my ward, but they were going to be there when I got home. My younger sister and I are very close, we are just a little over a year apart in age. She is so wise, so kind and charitable, she is understanding and knows how to handle so many situations. Growing up we had our battles, we would fight I would push her down, we would argue about everything, we would compete and she would eventually catch up and beat me. She married a wonderful man, who I can truly call my brother, he is very selfless, and thinks of his family first all the time. Being with their family only made me want to have a family like theirs someday that much more. I am grateful for their example and for allowing me to spend time with their adorable 7 month old son, who is such a good, happy baby. Leaving for home was hard, because I miss them a ton. But finally sleeping in my own bed, was so amazing! Seeing my best friends again and them missing me was pretty awesome too. I am seriously blessed to have such amazing examples in my life.