The Book of Jer3miah

The Book of Jer3miah.

“The Book of Jer3miah is an ongoing webseries (fictional) about an average kid who gets caught up in a dangerous conspiracy and has to follow his faith to try and survive.

It’s a mystery/thriller in the vein of 24 & LOST, but with short episodes (5-7minutes) and is produced entirely by a college class.”

My best friend is involved with the making so you should check it out! It’s produced at my school, Brigham Young University.  I posted the trailer below. Watch, then head to Jer3miah.com to get the all the webisodes! As of today they are on episode 9! They come out every Friday night!

Tell me what you think!

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“Sleep had fled from my eyes..” – Joseph Smith

(Written on Tuesday, March 24)

How experience changes our perspective.

I’m having a pretty good day today. My mood is up, my attitude is positive, and I have hope that the rest of the day will turn out well also. What happened yesterday, to give me such a change? The greatest change was of perspective I gained from yesterday’s quite insane experience. Yesterday I lived my life only going on 2 hours of broken sleep from the night before. That alone is interesting, but on top of that I have learned that the Lord gives us all our sleep and He gives us all our energy. I was going to bed, planning on waking up at 5:30 to finish a paper due Monday, and as I prayed I asked that I could learn about the Atonement that night.

Who knew what kind of response I’d get! I got in bed and laid there waiting for sleep to come. One and a half hours later I was still laying there! My alarm clock lies right next to my head, and it is a bright red, so I never miss it. So I had no problem rolling over and seeing the minutes pass by. Now, I don’t really remember looking at my clock and seeing the time in between 2 and 3:30 am, but for all of the rest I’m pretty sure I just laid there! In my moments of sleep I had a pretty crazy dream, though, where I was in the bookstore and some guy came in with a gun and ended up shooting me. I wrapped the dream around my head for the day when I got up around 5:30 and started on my paper. I even had my roommate give me a priesthood blessing, since the whole night shook me up a bit.

Amazingly, the whole day I was pretty good though! Yes, a little loopy at times, and I had a small headache by the end of the day. But really I wasn’t dead tired, and I wasn’t falling asleep in class or at work either. It amazed me how much I felt like any other day. Even at the end, when I was getting ready for bed at 10:30 pm, it felt kinda like any other day. I was amazed at how much control Heavenly Father has over the energy we have, and the sleep that He gives us.

I do not have narcolepsy, but as I laid there in bed, waiting to fall asleep, I realized that it is completely up to Heavenly Father to fall asleep. He is the one that gives us the power to do so. Parallel to that, as I went through my day I was amazed at how much energy I was being given, even gaining energy through the day, and I realized that He also gives us the energy to make it through the day.

How humbling it all is, and what a change in perspective this experience has given me! We are in debt to our God for the energy of the day, and the sleep of the night.

Alma 37:37- “Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings, and he will direct thee for good; yea, when thou liest down at night lie down unto the Lord, that he may watch over you in your sleep; and when thou risest in the morning let thy heart be full of thanks unto God; and if ye do these things, ye shall be lifted up at the last day.”

I have a question though… What does it all have to do with the atonement? If I was being taught something about the atonement, then what was it? What should I take away from this, other than how humbling it all is? Or maybe this was an evidence of Heavenly Father’s power over His child. I don’t know.

I just wanted to throw a picture up for fun..

I just wanted to throw a picture up for fun..

The Trick to Righteous Desires

Well, it’s been a good week! I have definitely felt more comfortable with my life, especially after going to the temple with my roommate Saturday morning. I have kinda readjusted my motivations and desires to get myself back on track to where I want to go and what I should be focusing on. Now I am really trying to do my best with just working hard in school and finishing out this semester. (Only a little over a month left before summer!)

This is a good time to blog about something that I have slowly been learning about over the past little while, and over the past few years. The blessing of having righteous desires. I believe that the Lord blesses us with our desires, when we choose to have righteous, realistic desires. I believe this is a blessing of grace, that is sometimes completely given to us out of love. I also think that these blessings of righteous desires are predicated on us being completely obedient for a diligent amount of time. This diligent obedience, coupled with faith in receiving blessings from the Lord, will bring the grace of the Lord to give us those desires.

A memory that often comes to mind when I think about this is from when I was a missionary in Japan. I had a companion, Elder Farnsworth, that I worked with for 5 1/2 months. He was a great missionary, and he knew how to be completely obedient to the Lord. He also loved sweet cars. And a lot of times he would talk about his favorite car, a candy-apple red Ferrari 350. Now I never thought much of it, and he always spoke of how much he would love to see one in our town of Sendai, Japan. Japan isn’t the best place to see sweet cars, at least not the northern Tohoku Japan region where we were. But! One day we were waiting at a light, and out of nowhere a candy-apple red Ferrari 350 drives right up next to us! It caught me off gaurd! We had never seen it before, and we never did after that.

So that first time gave me the idea of the Lord just blessing us with our desires, and after a few other events just like that I started believing it. I know that a Ferrari is kind of a silly example, but it is a great summary of what the Lord will really give us if we are obedient. Elder Farnsworth didn’t get the car, he didn’t get to see it for more than 10 seconds, but his desire of seeing one was fulfilled. I love this scripture that Alma says in Alma 29:4 “… for I know that [God] granteth unto men according to their desire, whether it be unto death or unto life; yea, I know that He allotteth unto men, yea, decreeth unto them decrees which are unalterable, according to their wills, whether they be unto salvation or unto destruction.”

If we righteously desire eternal salvation, then we will reach it. It sort of is the secret shortcut to living life. The more we choose to desire something good, like salvation, or obedience, or seeking for the Lord to be happy with us, then the more we will reach that desire. Have you ever desired something so much that every night you pray for it? I often measure my real intent by how quickly I forget to keep praying for it. If it is just a one night thing then it pretty quickly doesn’t seem that important to me. But, if there is something on my mind so strongly that I end up sticking to it for days then I know it is something really meaningful to me. I can’t expect the Lord doesn’t see that same level of intent too. If we ask once and turn it away, then how can we really expect any kind of answer or blessing to our desires and our prayers.

Surely when Joseph Smith prayed to know which church to join it wasn’t just one thought he randomly had one day. Often in the Joseph Smith-History Joseph says “at length” and explains it took a lot of soul searching and deep contemplation before he decided to take it up with the Lord. That answer was a strong desire of his to receive. We need to build that same desire up within ourselves too. We can’t be saved in ignorance, and we can’t be saved accidentally. We need to choose our righteous desires, and we need to be obedient to earn them, and faithful to bring them to us from the Lord. That’s how the Lord has set it up. So that we do everything we can, and then He will “open the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing that there shall not be room enough to receive it” (Malachi 3).

I’ll leave it there since I need to get to bed. Do you ever want to go to bed but not want to wake up? Probably a lot, eh? I can’t wait for this week to be over 🙂 Get through my tests and papers and I’ll be content. Maybe I should try and enjoy the journey instead of hold out my joy until the destination.

Anyway, much love to you all! I am grateful for a Gospel of Jesus Christ that leads us to understand all truth in the universe and understand where to find the peace within the chaos. Until next time.

My Sins

This has been a hard, trying week for me. School has been that drag-on, never ending yet always the same feel every day. It has been hard focusing because I feel like I’ll just be doing the exact same homework the next night, yet it won’t effectively change the grades I have or even the useful knowledge I have. On top of that work has been stressful: we had the Graduation Fair for all the graduates to buy their grad regalia and I was answering emails and phone calls. But, none of that is really challenging or very different from what I have always been doing. It was stressful because I felt pressured, I think self-imposed, to be better than I am at work. I made myself feel like I was more or less on a downward spiral and I am just trying to stay on top to keep my job, or at least be worthy of my job. 

Some people may feel like supporting me after reading that. They may want to say, “hey, it’ll all work out,” or “is this because of your girlfriend and you breaking up?” But it’s not that. I’m grateful for that support, but it is not necessary right now. What the real problem has become is my sins. Look, the problems I have had this past week, none of them are really trials, or afflictions I have to deal with. They are all superficial problems that I have generated, whether willingly or not. They are outside influences I have taken from myself, put in each of the aspects of my life, and flipped the switch so they might run rampant. 

When I first came home from my mission a year and eight months ago I made a promise with Pres. Miyashita, my mission president, that I would go to the temple every week and serve there for those who have already passed away, without a chance to accept Christ’s gospel. Well, I did that for a year and it blessed me immensely. This past school year I realized that my schedule wouldn’t make it possible to go every Saturday because of my homework load (thanks Poli Sci 200), so I decided, under some wonderful advice from Elder Holland, that I needed to balance my spiritual schedule with my temporal schedule. So I decided I would be able to go to the temple every other week. So I have kept to my commitment with the Lord, and again it has been immensely beneficial to me. Well this past Saturday I got sidetracked with temptations and I consciously chose to not go to the temple. This is a commandment of the Lord to go as often as is permitted, and I chose instead to dink around my apartment doing nothing. Maybe you ask, “Did that really have any effect on you? Could it really make that big of difference? Are you really labeling that one choice for the hard times you’ve had this past week?” I answer with a loud YES. It DID have that effect on me. I know my life, and week by week I have confidence in knowing what effects me and changes my day. I know the change was because I had dismissed the Lord from my life. And I hate that I dismissed Him. 

Another interesting side effect from sinning (at least this type?) is that I get nightmares. That alone is an interesting thought. But I get terrible images of death, destruction, murder, fear, doubt and hate. It is pretty much expected that if I don’t  do what is right then I have a terrible night. That’s where this whole post idea came from, because of the terrible dreams I had over the past couple nights. There is nothing refreshing about them. I would much rather be awake than not. Luckily I make it through the nights, and it really only helps me resolve to be obedient all the more.

I’m not doing this post for pity, or compassion, or empathy. I’m doing it to teach. To tell you what happens to me when I sin. This is in hopes that it will help you realize the effect sinning has in your life. I’ve felt guilt before, but it has been a while since it was this blatant. It is my guilt, I have found my recompense with the Lord, and I am set on what I will do to fix it all. Which is go to the temple.

Do you believe all of this? What do you think? Any experiences or insights you would be willing to share?