Wednesday, October 13, 2010


Recently a friend posed the question, “What defines a lovely character?” In my pondering I started googling and found the following on

The world needs men and women. . .

who cannot be bought;

whose word is their bond;

who put character above wealth;

who possess opinions and a strong will;

who are larger than their vocations;

who do not hesitate to take risks;

who will not lose their individuality in a crowd;

who will be as honest in small affairs as in greater;

who will make no compromise with wrong;

whose ambitions are not confined to their own selfish desires;

who will not say they do it "because everybody else does it;"

who are true to their friends through good and bad,
in adversity as well as in prosperity;

who do not believe that shrewdness, cunning,
and hardheadedness are the best qualities
for winning success;

who are not ashamed or afraid to stand for the truth
when it is unpopular;

who can say "no" with emphasis, although all the rest
of the world says "yes."

Sounds like a good measuring stick of character to me, the Mama B.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Standing Firm

I love this picture.

Lighthouse in the Storm - La Jument II

A lighthouse standing strong against the storm. Can you see the tiny white speck in the front of the lighthouse, near the bottom? If you could zoom in you would see a man standing at the door. It's hard to believe a man could be standing there, the strength of the ocean ready to overpower it all. But he does stand, firm against great odds.

Occasionally we see examples in our own lives of people who are standing against forces just as powerful and seemingly overwhelming as the storming ocean in the picture. One such man has made a stand against a very loud force in our world today.

Elder Boyd K. Packer, in the October 2010 General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latterday Saints gave a speech entitled Cleansing the Inner Vessel. There has been a huge uproar regarding these remarks by a very loud minority. They have taken offense because there is no room in his remarks for their actions to be justified. President Packer has taken a stand. He is like that man standing alone on the lighthouse with the stormy seas swirling around him.

His comments were not rude, unkind or hateful. He spoke the truth and there are those who take the truth hard. He cannot simply say things that make everyone feel good. If anything, his remarks and the response of "the world" strengthen my testimony that he truly is an apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ. He can stand strong because he does not stand alone. He has the strength of the Lord supporting him - like the lighthouse in the picture.

He is my hero. I hope I would have the courage to get up in front of the world and tell it like it is, not mincing words and then be able to take the heat like he is, if needed. I'm grateful for examples like Elder Packer to show me how its done.

The Mama B

Saturday, October 9, 2010


I have been thinking a lot about lines.

Not about lines of people at the grocery store

or lines found painted in the streets.

The lines I have been thinking about are more metaphoric in nature. They are not obvious. You can't see them, but they're still there and through our choices we decide if we allow them to affect us or not.

Some lines are negative. There may be lines we use as barriers to our growth or future opportunities, viewing them as limits we may be afraid to cross.

Other lines can be very positive, such as goals to reach towards

or standards we will not cross.

It is about the lines-of-standards-that-are-so-important-to-us-that-we-will-not-cross-them that I have been pondering on lately.

There are many who would say I am wrong - that any line so solid as to be deemed un-crossable is not good. They view laying down such firm lines as divisive and uncaring. They may believe that to take such a hard stand is Un-Christlike and uncharitable. Many (wrongly) believe it's best to take a moderate stand, to sit on the line rather than making the decision to stand on either side of it. To do so, especially on some important issues, is to mock Him who has drawn the lines and who gave us all the right to choose in the first place.

To take a stand on one or the other side of the line takes courage.

Once you decide to get off the fence of moderation, you will undoubtedly offend many who find themselves on the opposite side of wherever you end up. But it doesn't mean that taking that stand was wrong. There are some issues so important they require us to choose where we stand.

It is also important to understand why we made our choice. Choosing to take a stand just because everyone else has, does not provide us with the needed strength to hold our ground in the face of opposition. We must find the convictions that grow strong roots.

No matter what side of the line we choose, it is imperative that we always respect man's god-given right to choose. We can try and persuade, but we must never force others to cross over to our side of the line. We must never bully or persecute anyone in anyway for choosing differently than we do.

And, while every human being deserves to be treated fairly and with respect, it is essential to understand that respecting another's choice does not translate into acceptance of that choice.

I challenge all of us to determine where we stand and then do so with courage and respect.

With Love,
The Mama B