Sunday, November 16, 2014

Young Women's Recognition Award

Kenzie earned her 
Young Women's Recognition Award.

To learn more about this award click HERE
They presented it to her at the Young Women's in Excellence Night.
But she was asked to speak..... 
I was so proud of her.  
She has had to do a lot of things to earn this and with her schedule it wasn't always easy.  
This is Kenzie gathering her thoughts as we drove to the church.

Personal Progress Talk

This year was busy for me and I have to admit that focusing on getting my personal progress finished wasn’t always at the top of my list.  But I had promised myself (as well as my mom) that I would get my YW Recognition before I turned 18.  
President Henry B. Eyring said:
“The patterns you establish as you work on Personal Progress ... will become personal daily habits and will strengthen your testimony and help you learn and improve throughout your life.”

I am grateful for the patterns that Personal Progress helped me establish.  I realized that finishing my requirements wasn’t going to be hard, because they had become part of my daily life.  They had become my habits.  

Many of you know that MUSIC is also one of my habits.  But it fit nicely with my Personal Progress.  I want to share a few personal experiences I had where my personal progress habits mixed with music helped “strengthen my testimony.

In October, Salt Lake holds an event called “Light the Night”.  This is an event for cancer survivors as well as family and friends to carry a lighted lantern around Sugar House Park in honor of loved ones who have fought cancer.

Last year when they walked, I could barely speak let alone sing for them.  My heart hurt to see so many people whose lives were effected by cancer.  That night I told my mom, I wanted to continue to be a part of this event.   

American Idol has given me many GREAT opportunities, to which I will forever be grateful. So when the Light the Night organizers called to ask if I would sing.  They said they figured I probably had “bigger opportunities” then their little cancer walk & since it wasn’t a PAID event that there was no obligation for me to say yes.  I think they were surprised when I quickly said “Absolutely”.  What they didn’t realize was that the small act of service I could provide was NOTHING compared to what I got from singing to them.  

This year there was three times the amount of lanterns.  My heart still hurt as I sang.  But many stopped walking so they could thank me for singing.  I was in awe at the kindness they showed to me.  They touched my heart.  As I reflect on this experience, I know the spirit was there.  

I am grateful that service is part of Personal Progress.  It gives me opportunities to feel closer to my Savior and improve myself and my testimony.

Righteous Habits Protect:
I also know that when we are making Personal Progress part of our daily lives, We are Blessed and we are protected from the things of the world.  

A few months ago, I felt the promptings of the Holy Ghost so strongly.  But doing what the Holy Ghost was telling me to do was going to be hard. 

Again Music is my passion.  I love to perform.  But I knew I needed to change the people I was working with.  (I even wrote a song about it that I put on my album.)  To the outside world, it looked like I had everything going for me.  I was performing all the time.  But something repeatedly told me a change was needed.  This change would mean I would not perform as much and may even have to deal with some backlash.  I spoke to my parents and they supported my decision.  

I don’t perform like I used to.  And it was a hard decision to make but each time I feel sad or start to doubt myself, I read something on social media or hear a story that reminds me, that I made the right decision and I was being protected from the things of the world that I wanted no part of.  I know I will still get to sing.  But I will forever be grateful that I have the Holy Ghost and can feel it’s promptings.

Sister Dalton said:
“Personal Progress is a pattern of small, righteous actions that, if done consistently over time, will strengthen your faith in Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ, and build your testimony and prepare you for your future roles.”

I am grateful for Personal Progress.  
I am thankful for leaders who helped me accomplish this goal.  
For advisors who supported me and took time to love me and encourage me to continue to do what I know is right.   
I look forward to my “future roles” and hope to continue to prepare myself and strengthen my testimony as I continue doing the “small, righteous actions” of Personal Progress.

I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen

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