A Little History:
Our story begins in Pocatello, Idaho, circa 1972, when the lovely Debby Christensen agreed to a first, though fateful date with admirer, David Croshaw. Long story-short, he bade her follow him, and they went arm-in-arm to the Logan, Utah temple for establishment of an eternal family unit, Generation 1, on May 23 1973.

From their first blissful summer in Salt Lake City, educational pursuits took them to Provo/Orem, Utah, birthplace of Leslie and Rebecca, and to San Francisco/Oakland California, birthplace of Colin and Matt. Then, for establishment of livelihood, expansion of the tribe with Abby and Dana, and for raising/unifying of Generation 2, it was back to the roots in Pocatello for a rewarding sojourn.

In time, driven by a raging, but commonly shared sense of adventure and independence, one-by-one, Generation 2 escaped the homeland to distant regions of the country and the world, each ultimately developing their own tribal expansions by pairing with worthy mates and initiating Generation 3.

Now sensing fulfillment of their purpose in Pocatello, Generation 1 has also left those roots and transplanted to Cascade Idaho, from which base, they anticipate more abundant contact with The Posterity, Generations 2 and 3, in the future. That contact however, awaits fulfillment of a call to LDS missionary service in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, wherein they hope to help the state of the world by sharing the love of Jesus Christ.

So now, including Generation 0 (Grandma and Grandpa Christensen) home base includes Yuma, Arizona, Pocatello, Idaho, Cascade, Idaho, Vancouver, BC, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Spokane, Washington, Boise, Idaho, Los Angeles, California, back to Boise, Idaho, and on and on (Generation 3+) to infinity.

Our Mission Statement:
This is the blog of our eternal family unit. Initiated years ago, it served well as a journal, but even more so, as an archive of our personal interaction. It was a gathering place, a confabulation instrument, a unifying force for four generations of widely dispersed and progressively prolific posterity, and their valued associates. Though it served these purposes well for many years, it eventually took a back seat to new-kids-on-the-block, Facebook, and Instagram, and was sadly forgotten.

We now move to resurrect this blog with an added functional purpose of archiving the missionary experiences of Generation 1, of their movements and activities as they participate with The Gathering of Israel in the land northward. In so doing, we hope that via their own comments and posts, this blog will again serve to gather and unify the posterity and their friends.

As in the past, that the young and vibrant may know the old and tired, that enduring bonds may be fostered and maintained, that experience and encouragement may be openly shared, that posterity may embrace truth, and that hearts may be knit together, we must resist detachment despite our geographic divergence. We shall do so here.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Family Blog Evening

It is my turn, so I thought I would tell you a little about our trip to Hawaii. very little... A very nice, lowkey trip. We didn't do a lot, but the things we did were good. We spent a good deal of time discussing spiritual things. We also had many, many whale sightings from our little deck, and the whale, i believe, is one of the most magnificent animals on the planet, after the homo sapien, of course. We will tell you more of those experiences when we are in person. However, the point of this post is the blessing of having good, righteous friends. It is so inspiring to be able to talk about the nuts and bolts of the gospel with good friends; to be able to have open, heart felt conversations with likeminded people is a gift. You are all familiar with the scripture in Alma 17, when after 14 years he is reunited with his friends, "...and what added to his joy, they were still his brethren in the Lord." We don't see the Knapps very often (sometimes not even once a year), but that doesn't change our friendship, or our ability to communicate freely.

My question to you --How has your life been enriched by righteous friends?



Crystal said...

Interestingly, I just wrote about my sadness in missing my friends in my blog last week. This current life situation gives me exactly zero time to socialize and it is very much weighing on me. I have, in my past, depended and needed my friends very much.

So. In college, I majored in biology and double minored- I have a degree in ministry and in feminism and particularly with the ministry degree, I developed some amazing friends. I was (am?) in a program that utilized some rich person's money to get people to sit and discuss different religions and points of views. I learned very much from those discussions and gained some great friends of many faiths- muslin, agnostic, athiest, methodist, catholic... It was great to have that sort of outlet as a young (uninformed and underexposed) person. I was also president of the baptist student union (no, I have never been baptist. Baptist "mom" ladies always scared me, they still do) BUT again, I gained amazing friends, went on four mission trips in my four years of college, had my first real vision, learned amazing music, and got my very best friend, Tiffany (she has never been baptist either- even worse- she is PENTACOSTAL!) I laugh at this because although we vary immensely in religious points of view, we absolutely connect on a very real, very pure level. That is the level of our love of Christ. It is amazing, I think, to see our friendship in action and how truly we mesh when our beliefs are so different. Absolutely, the essence of Truth is there and Tiffany almost has it right ;-)

She has been right beside me in every adult event of my life. She has laughed with me, cried with me, and her family considers me one of them. It has been one of the biggest blessings of my life and knowing that I can talk about my deepest religious convictions has made it that way. What a blessing.

In graduate school, I once wore a t-shirt with the BSU symbol on it, and it was through that t-shirt I met Emily. My other best friend. We spent many lunches crying and bewildered over the fact that we were the only two (that we were aware of) that believed in ANYTHING, much less, Christ. Again, it was an amazing thing to have a friend like that. We went to see Christian rock bands together (Jennifer Knapp and Third Day, and Mercy Me). We talked about our respective (non-believing) husbands and the trauma that brought along with a lot of sleepless nights. We talked about the left-behind series (which I know is incorrect, but soooo good! I have Matt reading it now) and our thoughts on the second coming.

Both of these friends accepted with grace, my conversion to the church. They are not friends of each other (though they have met) but you know why they were happy to have me in the church? They saw a visible change- in my countenance- when I took the lessons and even more-so, when I was baptised. Tiffany actually said to me- "wow, I didn't even realize you were gone, but I MISSED you over the last 8 years." The church, and my spirit had been down-trodden by many things (particularly my terrible marriage) but those two saw the best part of me resurface and rejuvenate when I became LDS. They are also the only 2 of my friends that I have given a Book of Mormon. Both accepted with thanks and while I do not expect anything of that now, I want them to always know that the person that they saw reinvented was reinvented because of the truths in that book and in the Gospel.

I consider my absolute best friend to be Diana. She and I met in the foyer of the singles' ward the first time I went to church. She was the first person I met outside missionaries. I have had with her, amazing conversation, borne testimony, and she was my escort when I received my temple endowments. I love that girl. So much, I will not even try to express it here. That being said, she has been my ONE close friend in the church.

Now, I work till I come home, make dinner, care for children, prepare for the next day, fall asleep and repeat. I do not even have time to email and my phone is totally broken (and I am often so beat) that I can not call. In fact, it is only because Valerie is home from school because of snow and playing with Asher (at my demands) that I am able to reply to this. I saw it last night and this is the first I have been able to sit and reply.

Anyway. I miss having friends, they are essential to life. In fact, they are ABSOLUTELY essential. That is why the scriptures speak often of fellowship. My friends... I miss them and have even asked 2 ladies at church to play with me this week. We will see how that turns out. I normally am not the best of friends with church ladies unless they are converts and I am not sure why, but I think our life experience is so absolutely different that I feel... inferior (?) to most who have always known love, stablility, never had to worry about things like love of a spouse, how to provide (alone) for a child, and having no parents, and do not understand about why I am working two jobs. In fact, I have been made to feel badly about this by church ladies so many times, I just almost gave up on having them BUT I am still trying. I also realize I can not just assume I am being judged. I found out (not overtly) that one of the ladies I go to church with is VERY envious that I get to leave the house without children every day. She was almost in hysterical tears. I am not kidding. That was a wake-up call for me.

My class reunion (Mary Baldwin) is in three weeks, and I can not tell you how excited I am to see my friends! I used to be so social- even with a baby- Valerie was born when I was a 20 year old sophomore, but now that seems like such a distant memory. How I did that and graduated with honors, is a mystery I am grateful to God for every day. I do not have 1/8 the responsiblity now and can barely keep up. I blame the lupus.

My point is yes, my life has been amazingly enriched by good, righteous people and I miss that so much that I have tears streaming my face. It is a tough subject for me.

My 15 minutes are up, Valerie is refusing to hold the baby (lucky for you, I could keep writing if I had the time).

Colin -N- Lori said...

I feel the same way Mom. One of my attendings in med school pointed out that when we are in situations like grad school, etc, we usually have 4-5 close friends and of those, usually stay in contact with 1-2 after that. I have found that to be true.
Our friends from med school, Ted and Kashia Harris, are our close friends who we have continued to stay in contact with. In school our kids were friends and we took trips together every year. When we are around them, it seems like we just saw them. It's nice to be able to completely speak your mind and know that they believe the same way. The only other friends we have like that are the Paynes.
The Gospel makes us closer. It think that also brings a sense of trust you don't get with other friends. Close friends like that are like family in that sense.

abbynormal said...

I've come to realize this year more than ever, how comfortable it is to be around LDS friends. Of course, I'm enjoying very much my time in school, and the opportunity I have to be "the Mormon kid" in the class. But I've never in my life spent so much time outside of the presence of other members of the church. It's helped me to see some things.

I have one LDS friend at school, Tyler, who has been in a few of my classes before, but I rarely see him this semester. I recently got to spend some time with him at school and I was shocked by how instantly comfortable I was around him. In fact, two of my other classmates started asking if I was interested in him, because they could see how easily we got along.

Now, my classmates all know me. I definitely don't try to hide who I am from them. But they don't understand me. Not really. Tyler helped me to see what a blessing it can be just to be around that kind of friend. It's like I'm allowed to be completely myself again. There is a powerful form of unity that we all share.

One of my favorite quotes is by David O. McKay, about how we all radiate something, whether good or bad, whether we are conscious of it or not. I understand better now, just how powerful that radiation can be, when it comes from a righteous friend.

Colin -N- Lori said...

When we lived in Blacksburg we became friends with Matt and Aly who are not members of our church. She has been my first very close non-member friend I have ever had. We had many opportunities to talk about the church and what we believe and I never felt awkward talking to her because I never felt judged. She grew up Catholic and still practices. We talk every now and then but I know there were times that who I was and what I said, or didn't say, ie: the Lord's name in vain, had an influence on her. At least when she was around us. It has been a great friendship that I have been very thankful for. I have some great friends that I know the Lord has sent into my life to help me.

David and Debby said...

I try to be open for friendship with everyone I meet. I owe that to others, and I would not want to miss out on some great possibilities. Most don't pan out that way, but some become life-long kindred spirits. Mom mentioned that we were with the Knapps last week. It's no secret to most of you that Carl has been one of my best friends for as long as you can remember. As such, he's been more of an uncle to all of you than just a friend of mine.

What you've all said about being comfortable around someone is part of my connection to Carl. I think our mothers' connection that goes back 70+ years (see the story in the talk I emailed you a couple of weeks ago) is somehow part of that. I kind of think that we were friends in the pre-earth life, and that making a connection here has been part of the Lord's plan for each of us. It certainly has had an impact for good on both of us.

Beyond all that, I think the main reason I have been motivated to maintain a friendship with Carl over these many years is because whenever I am around him I come away having learned something new and spiritually profound. It seems I always come away a little better for the time spent. I hope he feels the same.

Carl and I are really quite different, but as some of you know we can both become a little course when we are together. We grew up together that way and old habits are hard to break (actually we've toned it down a few notches since high school.) Regardless, that doesn't seem to get in the way of our having some very fulfilling discussions about life, and the gospel, and it's good, it's vital.

A real friend will help you become better. We should all be that kind of friend to all we meet.

Leslie said...

I could go on and on about how friends have affected my life. There are many who changed me in many good ways. Thanks for the post, mom. It's good to remember how blessed we all are to have good friends.