Friday, November 27, 2009


I'm so stoked. But, as I pointed out to Natalie, I just started yet another long distance relationship: it should get here between the 3rd and the 8th of December.

Maybe the Lord is trying to teach me about delayed gratification...? ;)

EDIT: This is my 100th blog post! HUZZAH! If I remember right, I posted a dumb joke to commemorate my 50th blog post. Bwahahaha....

-What do you call a black airplane driver?
-I dunno, what?

-A pilot! What are you, racist?

Bah-dah CHING! Thank you, thank you...

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Giving Thanks

Kevin asked me yesterday, in a brief round of texting-truth-or-dare, what my biggest dream is.

"I don't know," I said. "I'm already getting most of them."

He laughed.

I insisted. "No, seriously! I'm going to Europe next summer. I'm graduating. This really great guy thinks it's awesome that he can make me smile without really trying."

Although my first thought was to worry that I'm running out of ambitions, but given the season, I'll take a more optimistic view. When did my life get so awesome that I started running out of things to hope for? And furthermore, how on earth did I miss that??

I've had a wonderful week or two, full of moments when I have realized just how good Heavenly Father is to me. The gospel of Jesus Christ is true. Joseph Smith was a prophet. The scriptures are the word of God. And Heavenly Father loves me.

I have always wanted to travel. Always. I just never thought I'd be cool enough to do it. That's all changing this summer. That's right, friends: my application to go on the British Literary Pilgrimage has been officially ACCEPTED. There's a lot of work ahead of me, like getting my passport, figuring out the academic part of my trip, and getting my student loans finalized. But STILL. I'M GOING.

God is good. The end.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Integrity and Humility in Résumés

In the name of “marketing ourselves” on our résumés, we are often tempted to present our strengths as greater than they are. We oversimplify the situation and ask “to market?” or “not to market?”, seeking an obvious answer that provides justification for inflating our abilities. But this internal sic et non disregards an essential quandary: will our guiding principle be integrity, or merely persuasiveness?

 When we overlook this question, it is not inevitably because we are morally corrupt people. In reality, we tend to ignore it because we are afraid—afraid that others will notice that our weaknesses exist, afraid that those weaknesses will be perceived as so great that our skills will be discounted. In short, we fear that who we really are is not enough to persuade an employer to hire us. The temptation to disguise and deceive proves most appealing when we do not trust others to witness our shortcomings with a merciful eye. We forget that others, like us, are weak, and assume that they exemplify every strength that we wish we had, except for one: the capacity to forgive.

However, C. S. Lewis suggests in The Screwtape Letters that we ought to give ourselves the same approbation we would give to others for comparable greatness. When we do so, we both recognize our own worth and also see how indispensably others have contributed to it. The opportunities that demonstrate we are valuable people are not of our creation; they are given to us by others. Our power only extends to our ability to collect the courage we need in order to receive the opportunities they offer. When we do so without resisting the forgiveness of others, or concealing our weaknesses, we discover that we are “magnified”. Our weaknesses do not fade into the background, but rather our potential employers can at last see us “up close”, swarming with strengths so potent that few (even ourselves) have ever observed anything like it. In light of these unforeseen abilities, there is essentially nothing to forgive.

Yes, a detailed, honest view of who we are is frightening to put forward. Unlike fiction, there is no safe place in writing résumés. There are no pseudonyms offering concealment, no images to symbolize lingering emotional aches. All we have is who we are, but on closer inspection, we finally find that this is enough. When we truly understand that we have the capacity to exceed expectations and not just meet them, we have the freedom to be honest regarding our shortcomings. In order to have the courage to be humble, we must first display our inherent power to achieve.

Plane pictures :)

This is the plane I rode on with my bishop's wife, Teri. (That's her in the picture, picking up one end of the plane. It was TINY!)

This is me on the plane. (Notice the big smile.)

And this is the view from the plane. (Now you see the reason for the big smile!)