Saturday, January 8, 2011

Day 7: Picture of someone/something that has had the biggest impact on you

I have been lucky enough to have several people in my life who are/were amazing influences on my life. It's simply too hard to just pick one.

Bro. Tim Carver is one of the best teachers I have ever had the opportunity to learn from. I got to know him by attending one of his classes at the Ogden Institute. He opened my eyes to the scriptures in a way that has forever changed me. He taught me how to dive deep and find meaning behind the words on each page. He helped me to feel and recognize how the spirit speaks to me personally. He taught me how to study the scriptures in a way that I could find the answers to my prayers. Over the years as I have sat through many hours of lessons he has taught I have always walked away with something new, and my testimony strengthened. Beyond the classroom he has been an incredible friend. He has always been a listening ear when I have needed someone to confide in. He has been a wonderful sounding board as I have discussed my struggles and life situations with him, and he has taught me many personal lessons about how the gospel relates to me and my life. When I sit back and look at my life I can see that Bro. Carver has definitely had a hand in helping me to be the person I am.

The Shaffers... there is no way I could write an entry about people who have impacted my life without mentioning this awesome family. Thayne Shaffer was called to be my bishop a little over three years ago. It amazes me how much has changed in those three years. The five people in this picture went from being complete strangers to some of my best friends. I truly consider them my second family. I spent many hours with Bishop Shaffer working through problems and life struggles. He taught me so many lessons about finding my own truth, getting validation from the right source, hard work and perseverance. I also spent quite a bit of time in their home. I learned a lot about what it's like to have a worthy priesthood holder in the home. I learned many lessons from Linda on how to raise children in love and with the gospel. I spent a lot of time watching her and learning what makes a good wife, mother, and friend. Linda has been a great example to me on doing what is right no matter what. I have watched her attend church, support, and care for her family all while struggling with illness. There have been many days where I'm sure she wanted to just call in sick and spend the day resting, but instead she got up and went about her duties as a wife, mother, and daughter of God. I look up to her more than she will ever know. I learned that every family has their struggles no matter how perfect they may seem on the outside, but that those problems can be resolved through love and faith. One thing these girls taught me is how to have fun. I loved the days I would go to their house and just sit and play games, jump on the tramp, or play "Mother, May I?" in the living room. They taught me that you are never too old to be silly, laugh, and enjoy life. Above all else these three girls have taught me about the Savior. Through their actions I have learned about unconditional love. I have felt of their love for me on many occasions over the years and love them deeply in return. I could go on for days telling of the ways this family has impacted my life. I thank my Heavenly Father every day for blessing me with the opportunity to get to know and learn from these wonderful individuals.