Wednesday, July 15, 2009

"Each Life that Touches Ours for Good"




This was the view out my front window yesterday afternoon. I thought it was so sweet!! They really are the best of friends.
Yesterday, I had one of my friends from the ward come over and make cards with me. We had such a great time and I actually finished about 8 cards. It was not only great to have a friend over, it was so great to have her over. She has such a pure heart and is a great example of endurance, love, and faith in the Lord. She has a brain tumor that is basically uncurable. She is on and off of chemo all of the time, she has a seizure almost every single day, and she struggles with memory loss. But, although she deals with all of these things, she is so happy and has such a positive attitude. She talks about everyone as if they were the most amazing person in the world. I love people like that!!!
I am so thankful that the Lord places certain people in our lifes at certain times to teach us specific things. I could go on and on listing the things that I have learned over the last twenty eight years from the friends and people in my life at certain times. Each person, each of you who read this, have left an impression upon my heart and have taught me something that nobody else could have taught me in quite the same way. That is one of the great advantages of living in so many different places....more people to learn from. Really in the end, I think we are not only a compilation of the experiences and choices we make, but also lifes that have touched ours, the people we have learned from and loved.
And just to prove my point, PLEASE leave a comment about someone recently who has touched your life and then beneath your comment I would like to tell you something that you have taught me (unless I don't know you, of course :) ).

16 comments:

Carrie said...

I want to leave a comment about one of the sweetest people I know. Her name is Melissa and she is like a lighthouse to those who need help when their light is dim. Her words make me feel inspired to be a better person. She finds the good in everyone and every situation. She is patient and kind. Melissa is compassionate and loving. Even when I have acted in ways I have later regretted she has been understanding and helped me feel better about it. She is a Saint and I miss seeing her smiling face every Sunday and the days I was lucky enough to see her in between!

Melissa said...

Carrie Harmon!!! That was NOT the point of this!!! But, it doesn't surprise me because that is just who you are. You are a friend to everyone. You lift those who don't even know they need lifting. I remember Kim and I talking once about how perfect you were as a compassionate service leader because that calling is just who you are. I learned so much from you as I served as your counselor in primary. I learned how to be a president. I learned how to love those whom I served with. I love you and miss you!

Mandy said...

I think each person who reads this could list a ton of ways in which you have inspired and touched us, but I will try to think of someone else, for the sake of the exercise :).....I recently sat down and visited with a friend who just last summer was faced with moving across the country with her three young sons to live with her parents because of a husband who didn't keep covenants and then twisted and pulled at her for almost a year as she tried to make things work from her end. I saw such brave strength in her, and at the same time I saw the vulnerability and self-doubt that has come because of her pain and experiences. She now works full-time when I'm sure she thought she'd be a stay-at-home mom, she is alone when she just wants to share her day and thoughts with someone she is close to, and she - even with family support- is a single parent when I'm sure that is the last thing she expected to ever be. What touched me was her quiet and patient manner with her children, her faith, and her endurance. What an example! I was reminded to focus more on my own faith and to be grateful for a loving, providing, righteous husband. (the same husband who played with her 3 boys and my two girls and every other kid that happened to be around for the whole 3 hours I visited with my friend)

deana said...

I would like to say that Mandy has been a special friend in my life who has taught me alot about faith and preserverance. She has a wonderful testimony of our Savior and I appreciate her friendship.I am glad that we are sisters in the gospel.

Melissa, I learned from you how to find the positive in everyone. I never heard you say a mean thing about anyone. You always have something nice to say about those around you.Thank you for your example.

Melissa said...

Mandy, you have taught me how to love. How to love when others couldn't, how to love when it seemed impossible. I'll never forget that "Life of Christ" performance we did. As I walked into the "garden room" and saw you sitting there playing the part of Mary. I remember thinking how perfectly you fit into that role. Thank you for loving me and teaching me how to be a true friend.

Melissa said...

Deana,
It was while I was visiting teaching you that I began to love visiting teaching and when I gained a testimony of its importance. It is hard to even explain. I also learned how to love being a mother. You are such a wonderful mother to your four little girls. All you have to do is look at them and you will see how amazing you are.

Melissa said...

Thanks for playing my game Carrie, Mandy, and Deana!! This is so fun!

Melissa said...

I know that you are not wanting all of us to write about you, but I hope you realize how much you have impacted each of us by who you are & the faith and endurance you have through life. I always remember looking up to you from when I first met you. Not only because you are beautiful on the outside, but you were always so sweet to everyone and included everyone. I love reading your blog now because it is real! You are never fake, & life is never something made up and out of the fairy tale. It is real, and I love seeing the faith that you have to make each day better & enjoyable for yourself and all those around you. It helps strengthen my own faith.

Now, of course I will write about someone that has influenced my life. I think that the person who has influenced my life the most (other than my parents) is your sweet mother-in-law Sister Mann. I have learned SO MUCH from her, and continue to learn from her. This is what I have learned from her...
*As a leader, you love everyone! You find out what they enjoy, you talk to them, you teach them by your example, you spend time with them, you laugh with them, you joke & play with them... all in good clean fun, you share your testimony with them, you don't judge them, but love them unconditionally, you hug them... but not just a little pat around the shoulder, a huge hug as though they are the most important person in the world, you listen to them,you serve them, and you pray for them.
*As a mother... your children & husband, are always your first priority. You support them, you love them, you teach them, you embarrasse them by dancing at stake dances (I still remember Amber rolling her eyes in embarrasment as Sis. Mann tried to dance) :) ha ha, and even when things don't turn out in life the way you planned, or others let you down, you look for the positive & continue to teach the gospel to your family & that families can be together forever, even when there are changes in family dynamics. I have learned from her how important it is to be your children's & husbands best friend & personal cheerleader, and to always be there for them.
As a Daughter of God... to me this is the most important thing that Sis. Mann has taught me. Wherever I am, whoever I am with, and whatever age I may be, she taught me that I am and always will be a Daughter of God! That He loves me & wants me to come back home to him. That he will ALWAYS be there for me and will always listen to me & guide me. I think there are many, that are not taught this simple principle, but what a difference in life it makes knowing who I am, and where I came from. She has taught me how important it is to have a testimony of the gospel & a close relationship with the Savior, so that when I see him again, I can say, "I KNOW HIM!" I am so grateful for the lifetime influence she has had in my life.

(Thanks for the exercise :) Your awesome!)

Living In A Tree House!!!! said...

U know just reading all the comments really makes me feel like that there is hope in all things.. I know you don't know me that well but I read what you write on your blog and you are an inspiration to me.... Cause even through our trials I know that my heavenly father loves me and hears me when I cry....thank you so much for your sweet spirit...

Melissa said...

Melissa,

I totally agree with you how influential and wonderful my mother-in-law is!!! It is a challenge for me to live up to her name as I am called "Sister Mann". While we were in YWs I was always so amazed with how happy and obedient you always were...in any and every circumstance. But I think I have learned the most from you in the last year as you have shown me that distance and time does not end true friendship and sisterhood. You have reached out to me in so many ways and have taught me how to be a long distance friend and a source of strength and comfort to others. I'll never forget your acts of kindness during such a hard time of my life.

Rachael (I'm not sure how to spell your name, sorry),

I don't think there is ever a time when I have not seen a smile on your face. You have taught me through your example how to radiate happiness for life.

Living In A Tree House!!!! said...

aww thank you soo much that is really sweet of you to say.... That is okay how you want to spell my name is okay with me..... It's spelled Rachel but how you spelled it is okay....

erin sheely said...

You are quite a girl Melissa. Quite a girl.

I have an amazing friend who lives in Florida but who I first met almost eight years ago when I was newlywed and living far away from my family. She is the mother of her two adopted nephews and a beautiful adopted 2 1/2 year old. The only child she was able to bear herself died after only a few hours because he was born with no kidneys...this was 6 1/2 years ago. But anyway. She is the kind of person that I talk to on the phone once a month but I just feel the love from her coming over the phone. She is truly another sister to me. She faces up to and admits the really hard things in her life and then soldiers through them with her husband by her side. She has a close relationship with Heavenly Father and respects me and what I believe though we are not of the same faith. She is one of my heroes.

You are too!

Melissa said...

Erin,

One of the MANY things I have learned from you is to never stop learning and seeking further education, even after you become a mother. I have been so inspired by your determination to continue on and get your masters in library science and also to write a book about the amazing experiences you had in Jerusalem. You continue to follow your dreams and encourage your children to do the same. I LOVE that about you!!!

Tricia said...

Melissa,
A couple of things that I love about you are: your unfailing ability to see the hand of God in all things, your love and compassion for all people, and your ablility to see past the unique frailities in people to see the gifts that they have (and help them see these gifts that they may be fostered). You amaze me and I love you much!

I have a friend who is willing to see past the weaknesses and character defects in ALL those around her and is an advocate for those whose lives are bare for others to see. She stops rumors and gossip, tends to the sick with her visits and calls, prays for those she barely knows (but whose circumstances are bleak), and shows extraordinary strength in tending her children and ward family even during 16 month deployments. She inspires me to improve myself and never judges. She helps me to see things in myself that I cannot so that I can better improve me and my circumstances through awareness. She is a sounding board when I cannot make sense of things and helps me to see other perspectives when I feel my "vision" is clouded. She is a great friend.

Melissa said...

Tricia,

There are two things that came to mind...so I am going to tell you both of them. First of all, you are genuine and real. There are so many people out there who are so hard to really know because they are fake or they put on a show, that is not you. You are 100% real and honest about who you are and what you think. I LOVE and admire that so much. Also, you are calm in situations where it is really hard to be. I will never forget when I was a cub scout leader and Noah got hit with a golf club in his ear. You immediately came over, gave instructions, and kept everyone calm. I was so amazed!!! I know it is your job to be a nurse, but it is a gift that you have because I have also seen you in other situations, like being in charge of Walk with Christ, were you were so calm and in control. Both of these attributes make you not only a wonderful mom but also a great friend. Thank you!!

Mandy said...

I just got caught up on this post, Melissa, and thank you for what you said about me. And, Deana, too. People like the two of you keep me going when I'm down on myself.

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