’Tis the Set of the Sail

Dang, this is good.

And from 1916.

But to every mind there openeth,
A way, and way, and away,
A high soul climbs the highway,
And the low soul gropes the low,
And in between on the misty flats,
The rest drift to and fro.

But to every man there openeth,
A high way and a low,
And every mind decideth,
The way his soul shall go.

One ship sails East,
And another West,
By the self-same winds that blow,
’Tis the set of the sails
And not the gales,
That tells the way we go.

Like the winds of the sea
Are the waves of time,
As we journey along through life,
’Tis the set of the soul,
That determines the goal,
And not the calm or the strife.

Ella Wheeler Wilcox (1850-1919; found here)
’Tis the Set of the Sail
By |2022-07-21T14:37:23-06:00April 19th, 2022|Faith, General Life|0 Comments

Ideas for LDS Sacrament Meeting Talks

A friend posted: “I need some good topics for Sunday speakers. Hit me up with topics you have liked or would like to hear about.” Without any hesitation I banged out this list of ideas for LDS sacrament meeting talks.

A few of the immediate reactions:

Reaction to my ideas for LDS sacrament meeting talks

“If I ever write a book, you’re picking the title.”

“Holy cow! Where did all these come from? Seriously the titles alone speak a sermon.”

“Nat holy cow. If you just came up with those that is mind blowing.”

Spice up your Sunday meetings with these starting points off the beaten path.

If you write a sacrament talk or ask someone to speak from one of these titles, send me a copy or comment.

34 Ideas for LDS Sacrament Meeting Talks

When People Don’t Apologize: Forgiving and finding reconciliation with God

Would borrow from Forgiveness + Tribulation, a talk I gave fall 2019.

Honoring Fallen Parents: The Fifth Commandment and Romans 3:23

The Fifth Commandment enjoins: “Honor thy father and thy mother.”

Romans 3:23 says: “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.”

How can we, how do we, honor parents … when they have ALL fallen short—at best—and done real harm, at worst?

Mediating Identities: Being an independent agent AND part of a family, part of a ward, part of a Church at the same time

… for there is a God, and he hath created all things … both things to act and things to be acted upon … Wherefore, the Lord God gave unto man that he should act for himself.

2 Nephi 2:14-16

[M]en should be anxiously engaged in a good cause, and do many things of their own free will … For the power is in them, wherein they are agents unto themselves.

D&C 58:26-27


And let every man esteem his brother as himself … And again I say unto you, let every man esteem his brother as himself. For what man among you having twelve sons, and is no respecter of them, and they serve him obediently, and he saith unto the one: Be thou clothed in robes and sit thou here; and to the other: Be thou clothed in rags and sit thou there—and looketh upon his sons and saith I am just? Behold, this I have given unto you as a parable, and it is even as I am. I say unto you, be one; and if ye are not one ye are not mine.

D&C 38:24-27

And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one.

John 17:22-23

Forgiving Ourselves: Letting go of shame, expectation, guilt and perfectionism

The Appeal of Hakuna Matata, and Gospel Prompts for Finding + Making Meaning in Shouldering Responsibility

“Time Isn’t Found, It Is Made” — and other pedestrian truisms the gospel turns upside down

I believe “time isn’t found, it is made” is a Henry B Eyring line. Need to verify.

We’re All Wart: How The Sword and the Stone helped me rediscover what it means to be a child of God

There’s so much to unpack from these opening 8 lines.

Heavenly Mother & The Tree of Life: Symbols of Divine Femininity

7 Years of Plenty and 7 Years of Famine: What I am really learning to lay up in store for my family

The Good Samaritan: Seeing myself in every character

I Am Alma Too: Conversations with my present-day children of varying degrees of faith

(I don’t have kids. To someone who does, go for it.)

From Obedience to Integrity: The personal transformation to leader from follower

Skeletons in Our Closet: What to do when family history uncovers unsavory characters

The Prodigal’s Sibling: Learning to love as my father did

Cardinal Truth: Spiritual directions intimated by North, East, South and West

Seeing Thru a Glass Darkly: The beams that got in the way of knowing my parents, siblings and spouse

The Kingdom of God is Within Me … so why do I place so much stock in others’ accusations?

The Tarnished Rule: Consequences of misapplying The Golden Rule, and how I finally buffed out the error

Why Hope When You Can Ask … and Act?

Being Nice and Cowardice: Which, really, am I being?

Being Even As He Is: A Chapter on Courage

Every Day is a New World: Living with Creative Force in Every Moment

Clinging to Dregs: The unseen upside to keeping ourselves dirty and why we make that horrible tradeoff

Embracing Possibility: The absolute terror of becoming the best possible versions of ourselves

Letting Others Grow: The petty ways I’ve kept my friends & family small

No One is Coming: Stand Up and Lead Your Own **** Life

Taking Responsibility: Voluntarily shouldering the burdens of mortality and climbing upward to The City on a Hill

Empty Handed at the Pearly Gates: Coming to grips with my own vapidness from a life of ease

Oh, So You Think YOU Could Be a Prophet?

Admitting Laman and Lemuel are there to Mirror Me

Lehi and Alma: Grace for parents who “failed”

Ether 12:27: Weaknesses and Epic Fails which only now, a decade later, I can appreciate and be grateful for

Leaning on The Atonement to Overcome Humiliation

The Sound of Silence: Answering my own prayers

There you go. What ideas for LDS sacrament meeting talks do you have now?

By |2021-12-22T17:15:01-07:00April 27th, 2021|Faith|5 Comments

Why I Moved to Utah: Hiking Brighton with REI Outdoor School

As we say … #UtahIsRad … that’s why I moved to Utah. I took these photos during a hike-and-photo class by REI Outdoor School at Brighton, the ski resort at the top of Big Cottonwood Canyon in Salt Lake City, Utah.

One of the reasons why I moved to Utah is the mountain are RIGHT HERE.

I run plenty on the road, which I can do anywhere.

But from my new place, I’m 15 minutes (maybe 20) from Parley’s, Millcreek, Big Cottonwood and Little Cottonwood canyons.

Each canyon has dozens of trails. Acres of territory. Streams a plenty. And peaks, peaks, peaks to summit.

Why I Moved to Utah: Video Recap

Ski lifts, messing with perspective, running water, flowers, a mountain lake and friendly chipmunks.

If video doesn’t load below, click here.

 Class Highlights

Perspective. Rule of thirds. Composing around a primary object. Lines. Contrast. Color. Get low, shoot hi. Vertical panos. Tell a story. Lighting. Focus.

These are a few of the things I remember.

I shot all these photos and the video with my iPhone 5s using the native camera app and stock lens.

Had a great time with the small crew of six or so in this class. Many thanks to REI. I was with them on Black Friday to #OptOutside and I’m with them now on #UnitedOutside.

A few weeks after class, I went to our hiking route. This time I continued past Lake Mary to see her other two sisters, Lake Martha and Lake Catherine. And then all the way up to Sunset Peak.

I shared three separate images from the peak, but here’s the money shot just for you blog readers (click to view full size):

Why I Moved to Utah - Sunset Peak

Ok ok. So BACK to the original Brighton trip …

REI Outdoor School: Photo Class and Hike

My collection …

Why I Moved to Utah

Why I Moved to Utah - Flowers on Evergreen

Why I Moved to Utah - Ski Lift


Why I Moved to Utah - A Tall Pano

Why I Moved to Utah - Up the Trail

Why I Moved to Utah - Rising Ski Lift

Why I Moved to Utah - Two Chairs

Why I Moved to Utah - Yellow Flowers

Why I Moved to Utah - The Path Up

Why I Moved to Utah - Lines

Why I Moved to Utah - Grass Textures

If video doesn’t load below, click here.

Why I Moved to Utah - Chairs Sky Sun

Why I Moved to Utah - Look Up

Why I Moved to Utah - On We Go

Why I Moved to Utah - Rocks

Why I Moved to Utah - Tags

Why I Moved to Utah - Everyone

Why I Moved to Utah - Treescape

Why I Moved to Utah - An Old Tree Stands

Why I Moved to Utah - Destinations

Why I Moved to Utah - Trees

Why I Moved to Utah - More Yellow Flowers

Why I Moved to Utah - Rock Face

Why I Moved to Utah - Lake Mary T

Why I Moved to Utah - Lake Mary

I don’t play Pokemon. But the way this rock split looks like a poke ball.

Why I Moved to Utah - Looks a little like a poke ball

Why I Moved to Utah - tree tops and tips

Why I Moved to Utah - Flower on Rocks on Trees

By |2021-01-15T15:37:23-07:00August 18th, 2016|General Life|0 Comments