Things Learned Whilst Adventuring in the Holy Land Spring/Summer 2010.  In no particular order.  Continually updated.

1.       I know absolutely little about the scriptures.  But I do know something, and to know anything is a great treasure (OT).

2.       I don’t believe in a God that “lies in wait” for a chance to be punitive.  He won’t “get us” by small technicalities.  We’re not instantly on His ‘bad list’ the moment we make a mistake when our lives have been spent wearing ourselves out in His service.  He cares about our long-term character than our short-term failings.  His mercy is more deep than we can fully understand.  Why not try to be more like Him in that way?

3.       Don’t be too quick to assume understanding.  You can always find something more to take from an idea or scripture, especially if you try to understand it from someone else’s perspective (JC).

4.       It is better to have friends, than to have things.  Even things like GPS-enabled digital cameras while in Egypt (Egypt).

5.       Forgive, even when the other side is ‘undeserving’.  There are few things I hate worse than genuine injustice, but in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, each side’s unwillingness to forgive and forget the willful maliciousness of the other has created a far greater tragedy than the sum of those injustices.

6.       Self respect is doing something and genuinly not caring what others think.  In fact, almost everyone I know who does this also tend to have my respect, even—and sometimes especially—when what they’re doing is rather silly (BW/D)

7.       Whenever you say ‘yes’ to something, you are saying ‘no’ to many other things.  Choose what is most important to you

8.       The BYU-Jerusalem program helped me attach principles to places.

9.       A testimony is gained—or strengthened—in the bearing of it (Caeseria Philipi)

10.    Your soul is worth… the price Christ is willing to pay for it (JK, Gethsemane).

11.    The Jews didn’t completely reject Jesus, whole crowded populations accepted Him as the Messiah.  It was the aristocracy of the Jews that rejected Him (C).

12.    To wax cold means not moving, hard hearted, no light (of Christ) to make you soft and malleable (Dominus Flevit).

13.    Capitalize on timeliness.

14.    Be humble enough to sometimes just take someone else’s advice (MA/E).

15.    Witholding information is one of the quickest ways to be excluded from a group (R).

16.    Anything can be a once in a lifetime opportunity (JY).

17.    The act of your choosing it makes it the “place you need to be” (JY).

18.    Knowledge is not remembrance.

19.    The wise learn from the mistakes of others, but sometimes you lose more wisdom by spending too much time trying to collect it.  Sometimes you have to go forward the best you are and learn by making mistakes (SJ).

20.    Hold to the good (SJ).

21.    Trust in God, and have confidence in whom you have trusted (Elah).

22.    Impetuous words, spoken with confidence, often has a much greater effect than calculated words spoken unconcernedly (JB, LW, NO).

23.    The way I regard my imperfect leaders, is a great indicator of my spiritual maturity (L).

24.    Being liked doesn’t have so much to do with what you do, as it does with what you do for others (JB).

25.    Lying makes you feel like trash and is never worth it (JB).

26.    It is worth it to toil through the night to make someone else’s day (Nain).

27.    The best gifts are often bought the most easily: by simple thoughtfulness.

28.    For me, the single most attractive characteristic in a spiritually mature, intelligent woman is thoughtfulness.

29.    Don’t be overly concerned about the logicality of everything in life.  Everything in life isn’t meant to be calculated.  Don’t distrust feelings.  Believe in the magic (LW).

30.    Places matter, but they don’t matter.  They matter because they are an excuse to reflect on events or principles to an extent that we otherwise probably wouldn’t, but places really don’t matter because anyone can have the spiritual experiences anywhere they are… if they focus on those events and principles (Jerusalem).

31.    Don’t waste too much energy presenting yourself as something you are not.  That energy is much better spent being the best you can be.
 
32.
   Reading is the difference, in man and in nations, between ascendancy and stagnation (Yad)

33.    Labeling others as having nothing but malicious intent is the first step to Nazism (Yad).

34.    Making fun of something you don’t understand, or only understand from your point of view, is the height of intolerance (Yad).

35.    Education is no guarantee of wisdom (Yad).

36.    Don’t ignore genuine tragedies, but don’t let them consume your whole world (Yad).

37.    God makes exceptions, even to the most important rules (Ruth).

38.    Everyone naturally tends to view the world to the exclusion of others’ points of view (B.U.)

39.    Stand up for what you believe, but beware the soapbox.  Ask yourself: am I driving a wedge? Wanting to be known that I believe this way? Trying to build myself up by putting others down?

40.    Living in paralyzing shame of one’s past—even if genuinely dispiteful—can be much worse than whatever happened in that past (Yad).

41.    Status quo is just another way of saying “I’m too stubborn to work things out” (C.H.S.)

42.    I gained a renewed appreciation for centralized spiritual authority and guidance.
44.   [IANBUBEIPT]  45.   [IWAMTBPA] 46.   [GKMH]

2 Responses

  1. 7. Whenever you say ‘yes’ to something, you are saying ‘no’ to many other things. Choose what is most important to you.I laughed when I read this because I think about that all the time; I sometimes struggle with making decisions because it feels like losing other opportunities. But I suppose it’d be worse to choose nothing at all. And that’s good advice–choose what’s important to you and (if I may expound), once you’ve made the decision, move forward and try not to dwell on what you didn’t do. Which, come to think of it, is pretty much the theme of Meet the Robinsons. Maybe that’s why I’ve always been so drawn to that movie.

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