Friday, July 29, 2016

It's Part Of Our Divine Nature To Desire Beauty

I've been thinking a lot about beauty and appearance lately. I guess you could say I've gone through some phases in life regarding thoughts and beliefs on beauty and whether or not it's okay to desire to be beautiful. At one point I thought it was wrong to desire beauty because we need to focus more on our spiritual development. I felt guilty for my desires to be beautiful and the time I spent getting ready and looking nice because I had a false belief that all that really matters is what's found within. What I didn't realize then that I do now is our spiritual and physical beings are completely inseparable. The Spirit can't shine out of a careless body. 

Beauty is much more than having flawless features, it's about taking power over our physical appearance through self-discipline. It's about eating healthy, taking care of our skin, enhancing our features, caring for our hair, exercising, and keeping a clean home that sends a message out into the world that we know we have power over our lives and the gifts (aka our body) Heavenly Father has blessed us with does matter. Desiring beauty shows that you care; care about yourself, about Heavenly Father's creations, about life, and about aspiring to become great. Looking our best at all times allows us to make greater connections and influences more people because showing you care develops trust, and you touch and influence lives when people feel as if they can trust you. 

President McKay is reported to have said, when asked by the Brethren if Mormon women should wear make-up, "well, even an old barn looks better when it's painted!"

By our divine nature as children of a loving Heavenly Father, we were made to strive to be beautiful, strong, confident, and poised daughters of God. Heavenly Father is perfect and our goal is to strive to be like Him, I can only imagine how beautiful and well poised our Heavenly Mother is. I can only imagine the self-discipline she has and the time she took to work on her beauty and grace.

Every single daughter of God holds within her a gift, a gift that is an Eternal burning and longing to be feminine, to be lovely, to be honored and cherished. It is part of our divine nature to rise to the election of Goddess. Every daughter of God would be more productive, motivated, and more enthusiastic towards life if they felt peace with their physical appearance and with their surroundings. 

It will take self-discipline, but we are here to learn how to take power over our physical bodies. It takes dedication and self-discipline to wash your face before going to bed, to brush your teeth, to put on make-up, to take the time to style your hair, to eat healthy and say no to treats when it matters, to getting enough sleep every night, and to work out. If you've already developed these habits, then you know it's something you don't even have to think about or make a decision about, you just do it because it's now ingrained in you. 

If you haven't already made it a habit for each of the following above, then start today! Self control and discipline comes with practice, and with increased practice comes mastery. Every time you do this, you will gain a little bit more self-respect (self-esteem) and it will motivate you to do it again and again creating a habit. Start now! Self-esteem shines when you feel good on both the inside and out. 

It starts with Christ, and Christ wants to help you feel beautiful, master self-discipline and follow the commandment found in D&C 88:119-120, 124:

"Organize yourselves; prepare every needful thing; and establish a house, even a house of prayer, a house of fasting, a house of faith, a house of learning, a house of glory, a house of order, a house of God;

That your incomings may be in the name of the Lord; that your outgoings may be in the name of the Lord;that all your salutations may be in the name of the Lord, with uplifted hands unto the Most high...

Cease to be idle; cease to be unclean; cease to find fault one with another; cease to sleep longer than is needful; retire to thy bed early, that ye may not be weary; arise early, taht your bodies and your minds may be invigorated."

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

SUNSHINE - It Lives Within Us ALL

Sunshine; that was the name I was given in my trek family ten years ago and the nickname a dear young women's leader gave me the first time she met me. I absolutely loved it! My ma and pa told me I was always looking on the bright side, I was always smiling, and I was always happy and it was contagious. Having this nickname inspired me to be even more happy. The first day of trek, we arrived on a beautiful sunny day. We started to walk on the long journey we had ahead of us when the rains started to pour down upon us. Every one was complaining and miserable and quite honestly I was SO HAPPY! I felt so close to Christ, I felt so much help and comfort from the peace only he could offer. I would sing songs in my heart as we walked along the muddy dirt path as it started to get dark and I just couldn't stop smiling. No storm was going to take away my sunshine.

Lately I've been thinking back to that girl. Happiness was second nature to me because I had practiced optimism over and over and over again. Somehow I have gotten out of that habit. I've realized that I got so used to the storms in my life that I forgot that's it's okay to be happy. I forgot that I deserve happiness and it's God that wants me to be happy. I've been so fearful that He's going to take away my happiness that I allowed that fear to bring even more storms into my life. 

I got in the habit of finding something to worry about in every moment, I got in the moment of looking for the bad and seeking out the storms that I didn't even notice the sun when it was shining. I've realized the more time I spend feel sad or worried, the more selfish my heart becomes. And what makes this even worse is as a man thinketh, so is he (Provebs 23:7). If we think we are sad or are miserable, of course we become that way. We are here in this mortal world to learn how to take power over our thoughts and actions and the thoughts that we dwell upon become our reality. 

Also, if we are sending sunshine out into the world whether it be in our own friendships and relationships or even in our daily interactions with the mailman and grocer at the store, it comes back to us. If we are sending gloom and misery out into the world, that also comes back. It's this constant viscous cycle which is why we can easily start to believe that the sun will never shine. But I've found we each have a sunshine muscle within us. A muscle that can be built stronger and stronger through constant focus and dedication. If you believe there is sunshine in your heart, you will definitely find it there! 

USE your sunshine muscle, if it's hard to use it for yourself at the start, use it for others. Find someone you want to build, help, or inspire and be happy for them. Practice building that muscle through positive thinking, smiling, serving, laughing, complimenting, and thanking. What you send into the world will come back to you. And what you think about you bring about! 

Don't get discouraged by the habits you used to have that have fallen out of place. If you were that once, you most definitely can be that again. Especially when you have Christ on your team, he makes all weak things become strong. and you most definitely can be made perfect by coming unto Him. 

If you want hope and joy in your life - SCATTER SUNSHINE! Cheer, bless, and brighten everyone you come in contact with. (Alma 56:17)