Thursday, June 23, 2016

Book Review // On The Edge - Stuart Edge


About the Book:

Author: Stuart Edge 

Released: 2016

Publisher: Cedar Fort, Inc.

Genre: Spiritual/Inspirational

Book and Author Sources:


Book Description:


Stuart Edge had a crappy run of things, including anxiety, moving to Mexico (and not speaking the language), and a job cleaning porta-potties. But instead of slowing him down, these struggles gave him the inspiration he needed to pursue his daydream - creating videos.

Now a YouTube sensation, Stuart shares his secrets to success and reveals his conversion from self-conscious to confident. For Stuart, being true to his beliefs has made all the difference. 

My Thoughts:

I suffer with anxiety myself, so I'm always a huge fan when someone is willing to be real and open about their battle with anxiety. Anxiety can be paralyzing in the moment, leaving you with no hope and a ripple of anguish in your heart. Stuart opens up about a few of his secrets to combat anxiety which I loved. 

I love that he gives so many great tips to follow your dreams and make the most out of life. His story is one that others can relate to no matter who you are, and his words inspire you to become your best self. 

A Few of My Favorite Quotes:

"I believe God gives us unique talents and abilities that make up our personality. Take time to really connect with what those are for you."

"Whatever your situation, find a purpose in it."

"Never judge someone based on appearance. You don't know what they've gone through just to be where they are at that moment."

"Sometimes inspiration strikes us where/when we least expect it. It's so funny to me that such a powerful and life-changing thought came to me while I was cleaning a toilet."

"Don't be afraid to take a step into the unknown. You may discover opportunities you used to only dream of."

About the Author:

Stuart Edge // Stuart Edgington, known as Stuart Edge, is a videographer, prankster, musician, and magician. He is best known for his videos on YouTube, where he has more than two million subscribers.
Edgington grew up in Logan, Utah, and served as a missionary to Mexico for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, of which he is a member. He attended Utah Valley University in Orem after he completed his mission. He worked at an elementary school and then cleaned porta-potties. One day after work, he decided he needed a change and spent his savings on purchasing a camera. He then started looking for jobs where he could make videos. Soon after, Orabrush hired him to make YouTube videos.
From that beginning, he knew he wanted to make his own videos and filmed a prank about kissing under mistletoe. He and two friends conducted a survey at Brigham Young University on Christmas traditions. After asking the person if he or she would participate in kissing under the mistletoe, a sprig would drop from the ceiling. The interviewer would sometimes be kissed. On one occasion Edgington’s friend Nate Turley was slapped. He uploaded the video late on December 12, 2012, and was pleased to see that the video had 66 views overnight. By the end of the day, he had over one million views.
Under the name of Stuart Edge, Edgington produces videos regularly working 40 to 60 hours a week, many of them going viral. His “Spider-Man Kissing Prank” has over 16 million views (as of October 2014), and his “Using Siri to Get a Date” has been viewed more than 7 million times. His work caught the attention of the Jimmy Fallon, now host of the “Tonight Show.” In 2013, Edgington appear on Fallon’s previous show, “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.”
He has made several “giving back” and “doing good” videos. In September 2014, rather than filming handing out food or money, he gathered a group of Utah artists (Alex Boye, Kenzie Nimmo, and John Allred) to earn money for someone in need. They found a man at a park in Salt Lake City and they took him to City Creek Center where they performed for donations to the man. Edge hopes these videos will inspire other people to reach out and use their talents to help people.
Edge, along with several other successful Latter-day Saint YouTubers, was invited to participate in the December 2014 video created in tandem with the effort to claim the Guinness Book of World Records’ title for largest live Nativity, which was achieved with over one thousand participants. Along with the live Nativity, The Piano GuysDavid ArchuletaPeter Hollens, and theMormon Tabernacle Choir performed “Angels from the Realms of Glory.” The final video premiered on The Piano Guys’ YouTube channel and attracted over seven million views.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

The Parable of Exercise (Coming Unto Christ)

Our bodies need exercise, they are temples given to us by a loving Heavenly Father and He has asked us to take care of them. Latter day prophets and apostles have strongly encouraged us to exercise in these latter days. Just as we have been asked to care for our bodies, we must also care for our spirits by coming unto Christ. 

For the past two months I have been working out consistently more than I have in a long while. I had gotten out of the habit unintentionally as life starts to take over and pretty soon I realized that I was constantly missing my exercise routines and good habits that I had developed because one day of not going to the gym turned into two days and so on and so forth. Needless to say it's been a really hard journey to get back to where I was before, but nothing that has been impossible. 

It's not that I don't like taking care of my mind, body, and spirit through strength training and cardio. In fact I love it and now that I've renewed my habit, my body craves it and my mind thrives upon it but just as change always is, it's been a hard and painful process. My muscles were out of practice when I first started and every bit of exercise I was putting my body through seemed to be uncomfortable and more painful than those I would observe around me, those who had been working towards their fitness goals longer and more consistently than I had leaving them to have muscle that was in practice and endurance that had been built as a firm foundation.

That's the thing when you go to the gym, you don't get to see where they started or what their struggles were to get to that point. All I can guarantee is that it took them some hard work and uncomfortable journeys to get to where they are today. 

It wasn't until two months of consistently working out and putting my body through great pain and discomfort that I finally started to feel like progress was being made, muscle was being built, and I the pain I had endured was worth it because it wasn't going to be that extremely uncomfortable as it had in the past because I had created a foundation of strength and muscle for my body.

I started to ponder on those two hard months, months where I was excited to see the results and I would push through the very hard and uncomfortable pain my body was not used to yet because I had so much faith it would get easier. I believe that's how our journey is as we strive to come unto Christ. When we aren't in the light and giving our whole hearts to Christ, it becomes a very hard and uncomfortable journey. The whole point of this mortal life is to become as Christ is, to be perfect as we take His name upon us. When we are living in sin, disobedience, selfishness, and pride we start to turn our hearts away from Christ and it becomes an uncomfortable life because Christ has to be our foundation because no matter who you are, you have the light of Christ within you.

When we forget how much our happiness and salvation depends upon the Savior, our journey is one that takes a lot more work and faith before we can experience that peace and happiness that comes from progression. The more we strive to take upon us the name of Christ, the easier and more comfortable it becomes to feel of His love, His Spirit, and His healing powers. Just as starting or restarting a new work out journey can be trying and uncomfortable, so can taking change through repentance and coming unto Christ; but the more we practice it and have faith in the process, the more rewarding it becomes.

If your faith has been tested or if you have lost your way and you are in need of repentance Christ stands with open arms ready to lift you up. You have no reason to fear, come unto Him. Expect it to be a challenge because change isn't easy. Changing your heart, your habits, your desires, and your ways of thinking is going to take a lot of focus and may cause some moments where you will feel extremely uncomfortable and may even want to give up, but the view you will see and the peace in your heart you will feel will be a lasting reward that will make every single moment worth it. Don't give up! Start, and start today! 

If you start to feel your heart hardening towards the light you have been in, maybe you need to make a small change. A weight lifter can't progress if he lifts the same size of weights every single time. Perhaps it's time you give a little bit more of your heart to Christ, up-ing your weight and celebrating your progress in becoming just a little bit more like Him. 

Christ loves you infinitely. If you don't know this life will never be as peaceful and satisfying until you do. Live as he would live, love as he would love, pray as he would pray, and serve as he would serve and then you will have the power to know for yourself is Christ lives and just what gifts and powers he has to offer you.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Christ's Love Passes My Understanding

(Art by: Robert Barrett)

The more I go through in this journey called life, the more compassion I have upon others. Pain is real, it can sometimes leave you shaken to your very core. Even when nothing in the world is wrong in front of you, and life appears to be blissfully perfect from the outside world, Christ knows the wounds and pains you hold within.

After many pleas of prayer asking for anxiety to removed from me, time after time again I feel even more indebted to my Savior. It's in the moments when He doesn't remove the pain, it's in the moments where I have to suffer some of the greatest pain I know that I realize just how much the Savior loves me. If He suffered and bled for me knowing beforehand just how many mistakes I would make and weaknesses would be found on my journey that bring me to my knees over and over again, the love He has for me is incomprehensible.

Those moments of panic and fear that make my heart tremble to it's very core are the greatest rocks I have to rely on my Savior and create that firm foundation that cannot fall. When the pain isn't removed, I realize just how much pain my Savior went through just for me; and yet I still can't fathom it all because I haven't passed through all the pain I will yet go through. What if the anxiety I face isn't about that fear coming true, but what if it is just the opposite, an opportunity to go through pain to better shape me for the happiness and journey that my heart so greatly desires? What if the pain is an answer to prayer? What if Heavenly Father may not be causing the greatest pain I know, but He is allowing me to go through it so I may have a greater compassion on others?

In this mortal life, I will never be able to fully comprehend just how much Christ loves me. The mistakes I have made and the imperfections I have break my heart, but that's not what changes me. What changes me is realizing I couldn't overcome any road block, any flaw, any iniquity, or any sorrow or emotion if it wasn't for the Savior. Satan blinds us constantly from all the work and love Christ is sprinkling along our path every moment, but if it wasn't for Christ, we would never move forward from one moment to the next. 

Because my Savior lives, I want to serve more hearts and love more people. I am completely indebted to Him. He has given me more than my eyes can recognize and more than my heart can feel at this time, but I know without a doubt He never stops giving. He goes before me to bring about good from the messes I have made. He allows me to experience peace, sometimes it isn't until weeks after all the pain, but that hope is forever along my path. It's the most painful paths that seem to be the most blinding to me. When hope doesn't seem to shine through among all the tears, I may for a moment or two forget that hope is even a thing; but I never stop fighting for it. In fact I believe I fight for it the most when it appears to be absent, and I believe that's how hope is developed; through the fighting and pleading. 

Christ never stops giving, to those who love Him, and to those who don't yet recognize just how much love they do have for Him. Christ never stops loving His brothers and sisters, and I never want to stop loving mine. I am so blessed by pain, it allows me to look deeper at a situation, without a desire to love or have compassion on others. I want to speak kinder, love deeper, and serve with my whole heart. Service is a part of me, it always has been. I am happier when I serve and it's the thing that Satan tries so very hard to stop me from doing. Ideas to serve others come to my mind quite a few times a day. I must confess that I am probably only acting on 5 - 10% of those service ideas because it's HARD. It's hard to get out of your own way, it's hard to put your thoughts and pain aside to focus on another instead. It's hard to do something you think may be so silly, but who I am to judge the impact it could have. Satan KNOWS the power that lives within us, oh does he ever. He knows exactly what will cause us to believe that serving others is hard. But the more love we draw down from the powers of Heaven, the more love and hope we will be able to feel in our own lives.

Christ's atonement is about giving and receiving. It's about receiving hope, charity, forgiveness, and change while offering up our hearts and our compassion. Christ offers me so much I have been overlooking, which gives me the deepest desire to GIVE and to become the absolute best version of me.