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, July 15, 2012

The Gratitude Challenge

I heard a powerful and articulate talk today about gratitude by our Stake Primary President.  I wish I could give it back to all of you verbatim.  It was timely for me to hear her message, but then, when is it NOT a good time to be reminded to be grateful?

She talked about reasons to be grateful - it makes you happier AND healthier, it allows you to see more of your blessings that you may have overlooked, and the Lord is displeased by a spirit of ingratitude ("Really, children of Israel, you're complaining about the manna?  I can make it stop.").

She talked about feeling gratitude for small, mundane, everyday things.

She pointed out that gratitude is completely under our control, and often it's just a matter of reframing your situation to see the good.

Remember the joy you felt the first time you rode a bike without training wheels?  Do you still feel that kind of joy every time you ride now?

When was the last time you felt gratitude for the songbird that wakes you up at 5am, because you have the ability to hear it?  Or for feeling the sunlight on your face, because you can go outside and you have the amazing gift of a sense of touch?

Or, when it rains, instead of grumbling that you're stuck inside all day or that you'll get stuck in traffic, thinking how great it is that you don't have to water your plants?

She issued a challenge to us: The Gratitude Challenge.  It's simple: write down 100 things you're grateful for.  But before you start feeling overwhelmed, break it down this way:

- List 10 people you're grateful for.
- List 10 people who have died you're grateful for.
- List 10 physical abilities you're grateful for.
- List 10 material possessions you're grateful for.
- List 10 things about nature you're grateful for.
- List 10 things just about today you're grateful for.
- List 10 places on earth you're grateful for.
- List 10 modern-day inventions you're grateful for.
- List 10 foods you're grateful for.
- List 10 things about the Gospel you're grateful for.

Then, if you're feeling motivated, you can come up with your own lists beyond that - 10 things about your home, your spouse, your parents, things Jesus did...imagine how much happier you'd be if you listed out 10 things and made the conscious decision to be grateful every day.

Pres. Monson has said,
It would be easy to become discouraged and cynical about the future-or even fearful of what might come-if we allowed ourselves to dwell only on that which is wrong in the world and in our lives. Today, however, I’d like us to turn our thoughts and our attitudes away from the troubles around us and to focus instead on our blessings as members of the Church. The Apostle Paul declared, “God hath not given us the spirit of fear [or complaint]; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.”
Happy Sunday.