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Dear 100 Hour Board,
In Star Wars books with Chewbacca is it the case that: (1) his dialogue is written in English and it's explained at the beginning that anything he says is in his growling language, (2) onomatopoeia such as "rrwwww, arrrghh" are written, followed by expository language clearly written for the reader's benefit in response "Okay, Chewie, we'll go to the Hoth system for DQ Blizzards, (3) he doesn't get any dialogue, just mentions of things he does, (4) something else.
This doesn't exactly answer your question but I just read an article explaining that the issue with writing dialogue for Chewie was one of the reasons why Disney retconned the expanded universe. Writers thought it was hard to write dialogue for him so they killed him off but then Disney had the opportunity to bring him back in the newest movies (because nostalgia is a powerful money-making device) and they didn't want to explain that he was absent because a moon was dropped on him. It definitely would have been weird to hear about that for the first time in the theaters since I definitely did not read any of the EU.
I've read tons of Star Wars books, but it's been awhile. If I remember correctly, Han is usually the only one who really understands Chewbacca, so any other viewpoint character either relies on his explanations or doesn't really understand. Leia eventually gets a rudimentary knowledge of the language, and at one point she meets a Wookie with a speech impediment that makes him easier to understand for humans. I distinctly remember those conversations being written out in English because Leia knew what was going on.
With hundreds of novels and nearly that many authors, I don't think it was terribly consistent. Probably everything you mentioned happens off and on. But from what I remember, probably the most common are simple statements such as "Chewbacca growled in his language."
Dear Petey Boy,
I can't speak for the books, but in the comics it is squarely situation #2, which I like because I feel like it mirrors the movies.
Wookiee dialogue without any context is disastrous; if you want evidence, just watch the opening 10-15 minutes of the Star Wars Holiday Special (but you should really just take my word for it on this one, because that special is an abomination and is one of the most painful things I have ever watched).
Dear 100 Hour Board,
I've recently been called into the YW presidency, assigned to the Mia Maids. I have felt impressed that one thing I should help the girls focus on is "being in a preparation to the hear the word."
So, two related questions. Take them together or apart, your choice.
1. What has helped you, esp as a teenager attending church or youth activities, feel in a preparation to hear the Word (ie, feel and listen to the Spirit or learn Gospel principles)?
2. What has hindered you in these settings from feeling that you are in a preparation to hear the Word?
Thank you in advance.
- The Mama Who Wants to Know Everything
I was inactive until I was thirteen and being in YW was really great for me. I had wonderful leaders and it made a big difference in my life. Being a teenager is hard - thanks for being so thoughtful about what you want to do with your girls. I'll focus on question 1: What helped me as a teenager feel "in a preparation to hear the word".
Teenagers won't listen to you if they don't think you really care. They want to be understood and to feel like you are interested in their thoughts and ideas. If they feel like you are judging them, they definitely won't want to hear anything you have to say (All of that is true of adults as well, in my experience). The best motive to be obedient to the commandments is a genuine love for Jesus ("If ye love me, keep my commandments"; John 14:15), and "We love him, because he first loved us" (1 John 4:19). Thus, helping the girls feel loved is important. Teenagers are quite vulnerable emotionally and many of the girls may not feel very loved at home or at school for many reasons, so simply helping them to feel loved is a tremendous service to them.
Dear 100 Hour Board,
Have you ever seen a ward auxiliary president release their counselors and secretary for no obvious cause (someone moved, extreme illness, someone received another calling, not doing their job). I ask, not for a friend, but because it happened to me. It was just really sudden and one of our replacements was a person we had recently discussed as a presidency to call to a position within our auxiliary.
After the fact, we all received a text that was vague and mentioned that they hoped we could all still support each-other going forward.
Normally, I'd be glad for the newfound freedom or I would just consider it the Lords will. But this situation seemed different for some reason. I've spoken to the others who were released and we all kind of felt the same thing. It just felt off. Have you seen this happen before?
-My Name Here
That sounds like a confusing situation to be in! An abrupt release can take some time to deal with.
My bishop replaced both his counselors a few months ago, for no reason we could tell. The past counselors were great and so are the new ones, so it's not really an issue.
Now, I understand that being in a YSA bishopric is a lot of work. You want some stability with having a bishop long-term, but maybe it makes sense to go through a few sets of counselors, just to not wear anyone out. I could see that happening in auxiliary presidencies as well.
Another possibility is your president was getting burnt out, or for some other personal reason thought a replacement set of counselors would give some new energy to the calling.
If you're really worried about it, you could ask the president if you did anything wrong. But it probably wasn't personal.
Maybe the change in calling came by inspiration. Maybe it was instigated by a need someone had. But just because someone needed some callings to change doesn't mean the resulting callings aren't called of God. These are the sorts of tricky situations that can try our faith, but we can also learn a lot from them about how God works.
Best of luck!
Dear 100 Hour Board,
Do any of you struggle with mourning the loss of a prophet and accepting a new prophet or first presidency. I was a kid when President Benson died (senior primary age). I had a hard time accepting President Hunter because I was sad about President Benson. Well 9 months later just as I was able to be okay with President Hunter he died. As a kid I felt totally guilty that I didn't really love President Hunter like I did Benson. I transitioned easily into President Hinckley and Monson, and even after President Monson's death I was not worried about it being President Nelson. President Monson health has been so bad I was mentally prepared for it. But then Elder Uchtdorf was not called again to the first presidency and I feel those same feelings coming up again many years later. I am really happy that President Eyring was called again, but will really miss the visibility and frequency of talks from Uchtdorf. So my question is how do you mourn the loss of one, while sustaining another?
-change is hard
Dear Yeah It Is,
I know what you mean. Sometimes we get so attached to certain apostles, be it for their charisma or their talks or because something they said helped us through a dark time or whatever else, that it's hard to see someone else take their place. And I'll definitely miss seeing Elder Uchtdorf as frequently, because his talks have always been my favorites at General Conference, and I can pinpoint several that have changed my life. But I think that at least for me, the most helpful thing is just trying to love the new people. Read their old talks, learn about their lives, listen to any Mormon Messages they're in, etc. I can say that I love Elder Uchtdorf because I've always payed attention to what he says and have seen blessings in my own life from trying to follow his advice, so if I want to love President Oaks that same way, I'd better do those same things. I know a lot of people have felt uncomfortable with how political some of President Oaks' talks have been, so if that applies to you, don't read those talks. Read all the other ones, because I'm betting that at some point in his time as an apostle he's said something that will be personally meaningful for you. Don't miss out on that.
I also think it can be helpful with changes in the First Presidency to think about the benefits of having a former First Presidency member back in the Quorum of the Twelve. On a personal level, I can be happy that Elder Uchtdorf will probably have at least a little more time to spend with his family, and I'm also excited to see what assignments he gets in the Quorum of the Twelve that he couldn't have had while serving in the First Presidency.
Dear change is hard,
I don't have the exact same feelings but I can relate. Many of the apostles scare me when they talk and Elder Uchtdorf is one of the ones that doesn't.
Sustaining someone doesn't mean feeling tremendous amounts of affection for them. You don't have to feel bad for being sad about the fact that Elder Uchtdorf will give less talks. Also, it's okay to sustain out of duty more than love.
Dear 100 Hour Board,
I will be graduating soon and then moving across the country for work literally the day of the ceremonies. Along with graduation comes nightmares. (Stay with me.) One of these nightmares involves having books checked out after graduating. In the dream, these policemen (who looked like cowboys out of some Western film) came and threw me in prison.
So, 100 Hour Board, calm my fears. What would happen if I did graduate with books checked out? Will the BYU Police really send Special Agent Cowboys to come capture me?
Thanks in advance,
-The Book Thief
I'm gonna level with you here: I really, really want to know if Special Agent Cowboys are a thing, and the only way I can see us finding out if they are a thing is if you go ahead and try to graduate with those books checked out. I mean, I'd try to do it myself, but I haven't had the dream and so I don't think it would work.
So...take one for the team, please?
P.S. If Special Agent Cowboys are a thing, they're likely under Library Security, not BYU police.
P.P.S. A friend who works at the library says that having overdue library materials could potentially lead to a hold on your account that prevents you from graduating. They didn't say anything about Special Agent Cowboys, but I bet they were just trying to maintain the secrecy of that highly covert task force.
Dear 100 Hour Board,
What's the difference between avante-garde and just plain bad?
The education of the viewer. I'm no art history buff - I've just had a couple of classes where we touched on it - but things like Schoenberg's music and Fountain are much more interesting when you understand the context. Avant-garde stuff is usually more about the message and/or process than the art and that usually requires some amount of background knowledge.
I just wanted to double-testify of the truth which Sheebs did preach above. If I hear a person say "all [insert art movement/music genre/literary style/whatever] is bad," what I take that to mean is "oh, I don't understand [insert art movement/music genre/literary style/whatever]." Take some time to learn about it, and you'll likely gain an appreciation for it. I'm not saying you'll love all of it—I'm not as much a fan of Fountain (though I do love The Treachery of Images). But I do think you stand to find some new works that you'll like.
Dear Yes, Virginia, There Is A Spy In Our Midst,
Huh. Well who'da thunk it? Granite Flats is apparently getting a sequel series.
It's hard to say if this new series will answer the poor reader's questions, though, because the series hasn't aired yet. From what I can gather, it looks like the pilot has been ordered, and maybe even produced, but if it has been made I don't think it's been aired yet. Unfortunately, that puts it in fairly shaky territory: not all pilots make it to air. Still, if it does come to fruition, I'd say it definitely seems like it might tie up whatever plot points were left hanging (especially because, as I gather, there's a character named Arthur whose father might have vanished in Moscow, and this new series has to do with spying and the K.G.B).
Fingers crossed that Web of Spies makes it to air, I guess!
Dear 100 Hour Board,
Which Jumanji is best:
Jumanji - book
Jumanji - movie 1995
Jumanji - movie 2017
It appears that none of the current writers have seen both movies. Rotten tomatoes gives the 2017 version a 76% and the 1995 version got a 50%. Jumanji the book recieved the Caldecott award for best picture book in 1982, and I really liked the book so I'd say that the book definitely wins this one.
Dear 100 Hour Board,
So with all of the alleged comments made by POTUS about desirable and undesirable countries for immigration, I have to ask....how many people from Norway actually emigrate out of Norway each year (or 5 year period, or decade, or whatever is available)? I'm curious, because the number that move to places like Canada each year is easily available and quite low, suggesting that there isn't much reason to leave a country whose prisons make most lower class American apartments look like oubliettes. Maybe Canada just isn't the place to move, though?
Dear Emigrants They Get The Job Done,
I searched and I wasn't able to find any statistics on the amount of people that left Norway. I was able to find some official statistics on net immigration however. In 2014 38,200 more people immigrated to Norway than emigrated out of it. I couldn't find any official numbers on how many people actually left but my best guess is probably around 10,000 or less, which would be about .2% of the population. If anyone has better stats please let us know, but it seems like Norway is a really nice country so they probably don't have a lot of people leave.
Dear 100 Hour Board,
Within the First Presidency, does the counselor order always match the apostolic seniority? i.e. the 1st Counselor is the higher seniority apostle and 2nd counselor is the lower seniority apostle (or non-apostle as the case could be). If it doesn't always match, when was the last time it didn't?
Noticer of Patterns
To answer this question, I carefully looked through a list of all the members of the Quorum of the Twelve and noted any calls to the First Presidency. Usually, the counselors were in order of seniority from that quorum, but there were a few exceptions.
After studying the history, it's apparent that the reorganization we had last week, although not unprecedented, was a little different than tradition. However, it's also become clear that "tradition" is broken all the time when it comes to the First Presidency. At times we've had Assistant Counselors, Other Counselors, and even a Third Counselor. There have been counselors who were never members of the Quorum of the Twelve. Not to mention all the First Presidency members that were excommunicated in the early church. Things these days aren't quite that chaotic.
I really appreciated that President Nelson did a worldwide broadcast to announce the new First Presidency to us, the members. For me it was an experience that reaffirmed my belief that Christ leads this Church and that our leaders are called of Him.
Also, here is a cool list of every First Presidency we've ever had.
Dear 100 Hour Board,
I recently set a goal to visit every food establishment in Provo at least once but I don't have a comprehensive list to work off of. Any chance you have one or know where I could acquire one without too much effort?
-Actually wants a phone book
Dear I found you one,
After two minutes of googling unsuccessfully, I realized you had already given me the answer in your 'nym—a phone book! So I looked up an online phone book for Provo, searched for "restaurant," and this was the result. (Originally I was planning on copying the list and including it in my answer, but when I saw that there were 201 restaurants in Provo I decided that might be a bit much.)
Overall you've got 215 food establishments in Provo to visit. Good luck and good eating!
-guppy of doom
Dear 100 Hour Board,
What's the most English surname you can come up with that is NOT, as far as you can tell, an actual surname?
Brownheather and Somerswaithe both sound fairly British and don't appear to be extant surnames.
~Anne, Certainly (who reads too many regency books)
Dear 100 Hour Board,
So, I have this guy friend. We became decently close last semester, and we spend enough time together (getting lunch, watching movies, hanging out during the day and at night), alone especially, that basically everyone I tell about him asks me why we aren't dating. I'm frustrated, because I don't have a good answer to give! I don't really know why. In the beginning of our friendship he was into another girl, but he isn't anymore, and I'm definitely single. I've gotten two types of advice here--either 1) I should make a move because he's probably into me, given how much time he wants to spend with me alone ("guys don't spend that much time with girls they aren't at least kind of interested in"), and he's most likely just hesitant to do anything because he's afraid of losing my friendship; or 2) I should NOT make a move and just focus on enjoying our friendship because it sounds like he only wants to be friends, plain and simple ("if a guy likes you, he'll ask you out").
You know, I honestly probably would go for it and ask him out but for one thing: he doesn't really initiate physical contact much. Or really at all. We have hugged before, but each time I was the one who initiated it. He never actively tries to sit close to me (like, when we watch movies), either. I know that I can give off don't-touch-me vibes because I'm protective of my personal space, but I've tried to seem more open around him? I dunno. We have so much fun together, and we can talk for hours, and he seems to actively want me around--and this is why I end up feeling confused.
Is this cut-and-dry "if he liked you, you'd know" type stuff and I should just forget about him maybe being romantically interested in me, or is it possible that he's just worried about ruining our friendship and doesn't want to risk doing anything that could potentially weird me out? Am I crazy for wondering if he's purposefully not touching me because he doesn't want me to think he's into me? Am I reading way too much into everything?? (I'm sure that last one is true, but I've been in my head too much to know what else could be true as well.) Thanks in advance for reading all this nonsense!
Honestly, both counsels are bad because they both assume that all guys are the same. Some guys might never spend extended periods of time with girls they weren't interested in dating. Others might never pass up an opportunity to ask a girl out if they're interested in them. Still others might sometimes hang out with girls that they aren't interested in dating, but don't always know if they should ask the girls out that they are interested in. You really can't know which of those guys your friend is, so making your decision based on what you think he's thinking won't work very well.
The real question is whether you are interested in dating him. Yeah, you're both single, and you're really good friends, but that doesn't necessarily mean you should be dating. In the past, I feel like I've tricked myself into thinking I'm interested in dating someone just by constantly questioning whether they're interested in me. It's normal, but that doesn't mean you should make decisions based on those feelings. Set aside a few minutes for introspection and really ask yourself if you actually want to date him, or if your friends just incepted the idea into your head.
If you are interested in dating him, my advice would be to talk to him about it. Yes, talking can be awkward, but not as awkward as, say, going in for a kiss and being rejected. Maybe talking is what your friends meant when they told you to make a move, but I wanted to be extra sure, because you never know. If it were me, I'd probably skip any beating around the bush and just ask something like "Hey, what do you think about the idea of us dating?", but that's because I'm not good at that stuff. If you can come up with a better way to bring up the topic, you should definitely do that.
If you decide you actually aren't interested in dating him, and you were just tormented by the possibility (it happens, and it's normal), then I recommend Option 2, not because you think he doesn't want to date you, but because you don't want to date him. Even if he does want to date you, it seems like he's pretty good and not letting it show, so just leave things the way they are if you're fine with them.
P.S. No, you're not crazy for wondering that. If I was in his situation and I wasn't at least 105.7% sure that you were interested in me, it'd take a lot of courage to initiate physical contact, especially if you seem protective of your personal space. Even your hugs could easily be interpreted as nothing more than friendly.
What did I do in the same situation? Agonized over it for a few months, talked to everyone about it but him, listened to every opinion but my own, and tried to kill the whole idea with grit and fire. But, for your sake I decided to perform an experiment. Like you I had some confusion about dating potential with my best friend. In the spirit of honest research I approached him about it until I got answers. My results are discussed in the sections below. My worry is for you, like me, to have the "what if" thing constantly nagging at the back of your head and you interpreting everything he says and does through that lens. Its the worst. Guessing is the worst. Neither option is a big enough deal to be worth avoiding decisive action. If you think the thought will never go away on its own, it's time you addressed the question openly. None of the conversations described below were really dramatic at all. We were both pretty open and comfortable, excepting a bit of initial awkwardness.
"What If" Relationships: Disambiguation of the male/female friendship
Ambiguous male/female friendships are frustrating, confusing, and exhausting. They are characterized by constant questioning, interpreting, and imagining. Though they hold their own potential, they are often dragged out distractions from other important life goals and potential dating relationships. Communication may be the most accessible and beneficial approach to romantically ambiguous friendships. This experiment explored the communication model as an option for resolving those volatile friendships described above. The participants communicated feelings about each other and the friendship and made decisions collectively. The communication did not result in a dating relationship. However, the active participant reported feelings of relief, accomplishment, control, and greater confidence and self-awareness. Results indicate that communication between mature adults is an effective and positive method for disambiguation in their relationship.
The purpose of this experiment is to provide insight to the action of any person or persons in an ambiguous friendship or a friendship with romantic potential. Though the parameters of this experiment are specific to this study and not universal, the results may assist in the planning, implementation, and motivation that are necessary to clarifying these relationships.
A long-term male/female friendship was selected and determined to be >90% platonic for most of the duration of the friendship. An environment of interested family, friends, bishoprics, etc. was established to place graduating strain on the certainty of the friendship over time. Once the friendship was known to be volatile (measured to be <60% platonic at any point for either individual at multiple sampling times) the romantic feelings were vocalized by one participant to the other for disambiguation. The participant measuring the variables and vocalizing romantic feelings will furthermore be referred to as "the active participant." The remaining partner will be referred to as "the control."
The active participant took longer than expected to develop, understand, and recognize romantic feelings. This extended the duration of the experiment but did not effect the outcome by any significant figure. Once romantic feelings were admitted by the active participant a series of communication sessions were performed. The final session is of particular note as the active participant gave up trying to understand the situation logically and managed to express actual feelings for the control without regard or fear for the outcome. Average awkwardness across all sessions was measured to be about 27% in time duration, but only about 15% in depth. Satisfaction and understanding increased exponentially with each session.
Over multiple communication sessions it was established that the friendship was, in fact, questionable and had been questioned by both parties. The active participant made a logical argument for "trying things out" while the control maintained that, although significantly tempted, it was "not a good idea." Between communication sessions the control continued to hint at the potential of a dating relationship. The active participant therefore continued to question the friendship status and become more confident that she had feelings for the control independent of logical decision making, past or future. A final session included a complete disclosure of romantic feelings from the active participant and a final decision with conditions. The control, now being aware of the magnitude of the active participant's feelings, maintained that he had no interest in dating but also promised to stop being awkward and making off-hand comments about dating interest.
The resulting emotional state of the active participant is in active flux since the advent of the final session. Some negative feelings have been reported by the active participant such as disappointment, worry for the future, worry for the well-being of the control, and listlessness. The active participant has reported significant lost time watching Boy Meets World, listening to sad Blind Pilot songs, and crying into dry vending machine sandwiches. However, a surprising amount of positive feelings were also reported considering the outcome of the experiment. The active participant reports feelings of immense satisfaction, self-actualization, pride, increased self-awareness etc. She has also shown improved communication skills, empathy, and vulnerability.
It is proposed that communicating for the disambiguation of male/female friendships has significant positive effects on all parties. The active party, regardless of result, has participated in an act of honesty, courage, and vulnerability and gains the personal confidence and growth that accompanies such acts. The control party receives the benefit of an accurate understanding of the relationship. This provides the means for the control to act appropriately without hurting, "leading on", or confusing the active party. It also provides the control the opportunity to assess and express any romantic feelings or lack thereof so plans for the relationship can be made real-time.
Any individuals considering "active participation" in their own ambiguous male/female friendship should first establish whether they have romantic feelings for their friend. Determining these feelings need not be done before communication is initiated, as they can be explored in collaboration with the opposite party. Care should be taken to ensure that any acknowledged feelings are organic, appropriate, and persistent. If the active party feels it is necessary to fully disclose their romantic feelings they should approach the conversation with respect and ask questions to understand the opposite party. It is important to remember that the purpose of these conversations is to bring the relationship into a state of stability, sustainability, and balance. Both parties are seeking to resolve questions and settle into a firm reality. Active participants can unquestionably look forward to being agents in their own lives and the positive feelings associated with this status.
Depending on your personality, you may also consider the following as "go for it and have the awkward conversation" motivation:
You're either a) going to end up married to this guy, and in 10 years it will be totally irrelevant that you had an awkward conversation about wanting to date him because you're married or b) you're going to end up married to someone else or still single but very likely not still close friends with this guy and in 10 years it will be totally irrelevant that you had an awkward conversation about wanting to date him because you're married to someone else or because you don't even hang out anymore, or c) you're still really good friends with this guy and in 10 years it will be totally irrelevant that you had an awkward conversation about wanting to date him because you're good friends and you both got over that like 9.5 years ago, or d) you wish you could be friends but in 10 years it's just still really really awkward for both of you so even though you're still trying to hang out it's just awkward every time and nobody else has come into your life who can be your friend in similar ways to him in that whole time period so your whole life is awkward.
Option D: theoretically possible, but probably unlikely.
One of A-C: more likely.
Go for it. Like Babu says above, it doesn't have to be dramatic (but it could end up being very helpful.)
This doesn't really answer your question about the situation, I just wanted to chime in and say that asking him on a date won't necessarily ruin your friendship. I have gone on dates with girls and it didn't really change our friendship in either way. We just went on dates, saw that we didn't want to date each other, but kept being friends. I've also asked some of my friends out and have and been turned down and that didn't really change our friendship. There's a possibility that you asking him out could ruin your friendship, but I think it's more probable that you'll still be good friends. And of course he could always end up dating you.
I also want to throw out there that if you like him enough that you act weird around him, that might strain your friendship. If you ask him out, whether or not he says no at least everything will be out there. If you tell him how you feel you won't have all the pent up anxiety about and that's a good thing. Save yourself the anxiety and tell him how you feel (in a normal non-creepy way of course). Hope this helps!
In the spirit of pessimism, I want to throw out an alternative to Tipperary’s point, because the one time I tried dating one of my good friends, it didn’t go well. I thought he was an amazing person, so I was interested in seeing if our relationship could go beyond friendship. We went on a handful of dates, and spent a lot of time together before I could fully evaluate my feelings, at which time I realized I wasn't interested in dating him.
That led to one unfortunate conversation, because he was one of my best friends and I didn't want to hurt him or jeopardize our friendship. And unfortunately, it did have a negative effect on our friendship. Because I was the one who hurt him, I didn't want to force my company on him by continuing our friendship as if nothing had happened between us. In order to avoid hurting him any further, I allowed him to initiate friendly contact, which meant several weeks without spending much time together. That first conversation happened in March, and we slowly rebuilt our friendship, though I could tell he still had feelings for me.
Then in September, my car situation imploded and it because necessary to shop for a new vehicle. This friend ended up being the only one available to drive up to Salt Lake with me to look at (and ultimately purchase) a vehicle. In gratitude for his help, I offered to buy him dinner, meaning it as a thank you gift. Maybe I gave off the wrong signals, but while driving home he again brought up his interest in me, and I was forced to let him down a second time. That rejection had more serious consequences, and I didn't see him for months, until the week before I graduated and moved away. It sucked to lose one of my best friends and be helpless to fix the situation, but if he needed space from me, I felt I had to respect that. In the case of rejection, the person who does the rejecting has the ultimate responsibility to maintain the friendship, which can easily cause strain.
I tell this story not only to answer your question, but also to bring up the unhappy ending. Just a few weeks ago, this friend passed away. And I really regret the way our friendship suffered, and how intermittent our contact had become, despite living far away from each other. So regardless of how your situation turns out, my advice is to tell the people in your life that you care about them. If you want to maintain your friendship, then make sure it happens; do everything in your power to be a good and loyal friend. Even if dating doesn't work out, you can still be great friends and be wonderful, positive influences in the other's life. Learn from my mistakes.
Dear 100 Hour Board,
Someone I talked to recently mentioned doing something every day to work towards getting married if that's your goal. Seems reasonable enough. What are different things I can do to work towards that goal? I've got going to FHE, church, and institute and following the commandments (scriptures, prayer, temple, Sabbath day observance, etc.) on the list, but what else?
hoping for love in 2018
Study marriage. Look up talks from General Conference, BYU devotionals, old editions of the Ensign or what have you that deal with Eternal Marriage. Focus on what about your daily scripture study could potentially have to do with marriage. And realize that regardless of finding love this year or not, you are amazing, and there isn't necessarily anything wrong with you for not getting into a relationship (perhaps you don't need this addendum to my answer, but I've found this to be a common sentiment among singles in Provo, and I wanted to take this small opportunity to speak out against it).
Dear Seeker of Love,
One of the best pieces of advice that I have ever heard about getting married is from John Bytheway. In his talk "What I Wish I Had Known When I Was Single", Brother Bytheway counsels to "focus on what you can control.” Set goals to simply be the best version of yourself that you can. The list that you have is a great starting point. Adding in different goals to help you be better in social situations, and grow mentally and emotionally will also help you, both in your quest for marriage, and in life overall.
Brother Bytheway also points out an important aspect of marriage that we often forget about. He says, "Marriage is the only commandment that you can not fulfill by yourself." We can plan and hope for marriage as much as we want, but it requires someone else to also use their agency to decide to get married. Living your life as well as you can, without allowing a desire for marriage to consume you, is one of the best things that you can do.
This is a really interesting question. I really liked the other writers' responses—especially Luciana's. In addition to all the fabulous advice and perspective offered by the other writers I would like to suggest three things that you can do right now to prepare for marriage. The first two deal with the practical matters of being married and the last deals a little more with the relationship side.
1. Learn to use a budget. Financial issues are one of the leading causes of relationship issues and divorce. Learning to use a budget will be very useful in marriage. Even better than learning to use and living by a budget would be to review your budget with a family member or close friend every month. If can learn how to discuss finances with others now, you will be better prepared to discuss finances with your future spouse.
2. Learn household skills. One thing that will help you save money in marriage is to learn basic household skills. Cooking, sewing, basic home repairs, basic auto repairs, cutting hair, and gardening are just a few examples of skills that will be extremely useful both now and in married life. Quite often, married life eventually includes home ownership and the best time to prepare is before it actually happens.
3. Talk to someone new every single day. The purpose of talking to someone new everyday is not to increase the odds of meeting your future spouse. The point of talking to someone new every day is to get you to look outside yourself and communicate with others. Last semester as part of a class project I made a goal to talk to someone new everyday. The point of this goal was to practice networking skills, but later on I realized the true value of talking to someone new everyday. Talking to someone new every will can help you listen better, consider the perspectives of others, be open to new experiences, empathize, communicate your own feelings better, be a little kinder, be more comfortable in social situations, feel more cheerful, and think outside of yourself. Babalugats mentions keeping your heart open by using it. Simply starting up a conversation with a stranger isn't anywhere near the same level as serving people and loving them, but it's a step in that direction. The best way to learn how to love someone is to love people; and getting to know people is the first step.
Plus, think of all the people that you'll meet! Last semester talking to someone new everyday led to me to make new friends, go on dates, network, find internship leads, and find study partners for my classes. Three of my good friends/study partners right now are people I met last semester. Do you know how valuable friends/study partners are? They're worth their weight in gold. Marriage aside, talking to people will help you be the best you. And who knows, you might even meet your future spouse.
Thanks for asking this question, I enjoyed answering it and reading the other writers' responses. I hope this helped give you some ideas. Good luck in preparing yourself for marriage!
My effort to prepare for and facilitate marriage is pretty synonymous with my goals for personhood in general. My highest goal right now is to be really honest and eager about loving people. I had a Stake Relief Society President speak about this topic and it has really impacted me. She is an older single woman so she has had a lot of time to find purpose in the waiting/preparing while still being happy as a single person. She talked about how important it is to keep our hearts open to love even when we get hurt. She said the best way to do that is to practice using our heart on everyone in our path. We have to actively love our friends, roommates, family members, and potential significants. Practice using your heart by loving as deeply and openly as you can. Compliment people. Share your food. If someone is important to you tell them why. If you're attracted to someone let them know. I catch myself always trying to be 2 kewl 4 skool and I become cold in an effort to impress people. Give that up FOREVER. It's trash. Because I know that cynicism, self-absorption, and underrappreciating is a problem for me I started a daily exercise that has made me much more loving and positive. When I have a minute to wait or think, I try to pick a person I know and just actively love them for a minute in my brain. I think of who they are and enjoy that they exist. I should do it more often, and with a better variety of individuals, but it has been really helpful to prepare me for when I see that person again.
I feel like a giant ham writing this. But, seeing as how the point is to stop being ashamed of my love for other people, I shan't go back now. Love people really a lot all the time. Then you will be a great friend, family member, and eventual spouse. It will bring you closer to marriage because you will meet more people and be more communicative and genuine in your friendships. Marriages come from relationships and relationships come from friendships and everyone is happier when they are loving.
The intent behind your question is good and wholesome and wonderful, but I find the reasoning behind it vaguely questionable, so I wanted to provide a perspective slightly different than my fellow writers.
The desire to get married is a natural one, and especially in Mormon culture, a difficult one to avoid. Marriage is a truly wonderful thing, and wanting to commit to someone and build a life together is one of the most beautiful parts of life.
But somehow it rubs me the wrong way to think about changing yourself for the purpose of attracting a spouse.
Obviously all the actions on your list are good things to do, and will hopefully be beneficial to you in many ways regardless of whether you get married. But I really don't like the idea of reading the scriptures or attending church in order to make yourself a more marketable spouse. I'm sure you aren't actively thinking of it that way, but it sounds like an unhealthy approach to dating and marriage and an unhealthy approach to the gospel. I would imagine you're considering this goal in the context of becoming the best person you can be, in order to make you a better spouse in the future. And of course being a good, righteous spouse is a good goal, and by attending church and living the commandments to the best of your ability, hopefully you'll end up with a spouse who shares that commitment to the gospel.
But I still think that trying to improve yourself in order to gain the approval of other people isn't a goal worth pursuing. Spiritual goals should be pursued in a different manner, and self-improvement should be based on your personal happiness, not on the potential approval of a stranger.
I'm not trying to imply that you shouldn't strive to improve yourself, or try to develop habits or qualities that will benefit your life. I do think it's important to examine your reasons for doing so, however. If you want to get married, I'm assuming you want someone to love you for both who you are and who you aspire to be. If you're not naturally outgoing, you don't have to force yourself out of your comfort zone just because there are attractive people around. If you really dislike rock climbing, then you don't have to do it every weekend just because a person you're interested in is a fan. There are healthy ways to seek self-improvement, and there are ways that will lead to frustration and a lack of self-confidence.
A potential spouse who is worth your time and energy will love you for you, and they'll be there to support you as you seek to be the best you can be. You don't have to be perfect in order to find a spouse, nor should you feel the need to significantly change yourself in the pursuit of love. You're amazing the way you are, and the right man/woman will see that.
I pray for this specifically every single day. I figure that's the most important thing I can do. Sure, I also try to not neglect doing my part, but finding a happy, eternal marriage will be a miracle, and I keep letting God know that I need His help. He knows, and it will work out in time.
Dear 100 Hour Board,
How do you get yourself to pray for help when you know you don't deserve it? I do believe prayer works, but I also believe you need to be living righteously for God to give you help when you ask. If I'm not doing everything I know that I should be (e.g. I'm terrible at daily scripture study), how can I pray in faith for help in things I need or want to do in life? Or do I need to get things straightened out first (and pray for help doing that before other things)?
I don't know about you, but I'm not very good at doing everything my parents want me to. Every time we talk, it seems like there's always something (hopefully small) that we disagree about, or something they point out I should be doing, but I'm not. But as much as we may disagree, I know my parents would be even more heartbroken if I didn't talk to them or ask for their help. In fact, it seems when I'm having the hardest time that they want to help me the most. Their reaction is never, "Oh, look at how horrible you're doing, you better improve your life before you come and talk to us again!" It's always an offer of help, and those offers come more and more when they realize just how much I need their help.
Out of all the titles of adoration and worship that are given to deity, our God has asked us to call Him "Father." The moments we are our lowest are the exact moments He wants to help us—He's just waiting for us to ask Him. If we had to wait until we were perfect to receive God's help, goodness knows I would never ask God for anything. We will never be perfect in this life; we are not supposed to be perfect in this life. C.S. Lewis said, "The Christian does not think God will love us because we are good, but that God will make us good because He loves us."
Sometimes it's hard to remember this, especially when you feel unworthy to even talk to God, let alone ask for His help. I think those are the most important times to remember that God is our Father, who intends for us to fall over and make mistakes in this life. Just as you wouldn't deny your friend help because they can't fly, God won't deny us help because we aren't perfect. We just have to be willing to ask for that help.
-guppy of doom
There are indeed some things we have to maintain a certain level of worthiness in order to participate in. Examples of such things that come to mind are partaking of the sacrament and being able to enter the temple. There are other things which we are allowed to participate in regardless of our level of worthiness. One such of these things is prayer.
It doesn't matter how faithful we have been or how sinful we may be; God always wants us to pray. I do believe that our prayers will have greater power, and that we will be in a better state to receive God's blessings the more we live righteously. However, that in no way means that when we pray in times of unrighteousness that our prayers have no power for good, or even worse, actually are bad.
Perhaps if you want a specific blessing or certain heavenly aid, more than prayer will be required of you. But I've found that praying often strengthens my resolve to do the more that is required.
God loves you, and is always willing to listen.
I think feeling unworthy to pray is more common than you think. There are a lot of reasons why sometimes we feel like we can't pray; and I think that just comes with being imperfect, mortal, human beings. Although we may not always feel like it, God loves us and always wants to hear our prayers. He is always ready to bless us beyond what we could possibly deserve. Not only does prayer work, but it works for you. It's true that living righteously is important, but prayer is something that you can do right now to help you feel closer to God and better face your daily struggles.
I was looking through the index of the scriptures the other day and I came across the section for purify. I read through the scriptures listed and it surprised me that quite a few of the scriptures talked specifically about prayer. In Helaman 3:35 we read: "Nevertheless they did fast and pray oft, and did wax stronger and stronger in their humility, and firmer and firmer in the faith of Christ, unto the filling their souls with joy and consolation, yea, even to the purifying and the sanctification of their hearts, which sanctification cometh because of their yielding their hearts unto God."
When they prayed it purified and sanctified their hearts. In one of my classes I'm learning about how different materials are processed, and when metals are purified it changes their very molecular structure and makes them stronger. I think prayer does the same thing to our hearts. When we yield our hearts to God he takes them and changes them; which makes us more humble, repentant, and resistant to temptation. This is so important that God actually commands us to pray. Doctrine and Covenants 10:5 talks about the commandment to pray and the promised blessings for doing so. "8. And now, my beloved brethren, I perceive that ye ponder still in your hearts; and it grieveth me that I must speak concerning this thing. For if ye would hearken unto the Spirit which teacheth a man to pray, ye would know that ye must pray; for the evil spirit teacheth not a man to pray, but teacheth him that he must not pray. 9 But behold, I say unto you that ye must pray always, and not faint; that ye must not perform any thing unto the Lord save in the first place ye shall pray unto the Father in the name of Christ, that he will consecrate thy performance unto thee, that thy performance may be for the welfare of thy soul."
The two main things that jump out to me are: 1. God always teaches us to pray, and 2. If we pray before doing something, he will consecrate our performance for the welfare of our souls. The first point is pretty straightforward, but it's interesting to note that God doesn't make us feel like we shouldn't pray; only Satan does that. The second point is really interesting to me. I once had a music professor at BYU who asked the class "Do you pray before you practice?" When he saw that some of us didn't pray before practicing he had us read 2nd Nephi 32: 8-9. After we read he told us "Not only will your performance improve if you pray to thank God and to seek divine help before practicing, but God will also consecrate your practice time for the welfare of your soul." "What a strange concept!" I thought. To me it seemed odd that practicing an instrument could benefit your soul, but I really need all the help I could get so I began to pray before I practiced. And do you know what? I improved a lot and I felt like my practicing improved my relationship with God. If God will bless us for practicing an instrument, how much more will he bless us if we ask for his help to repent?
Lastly, I'd like to share my favorite quote about prayer. Someone once asked Brigham Young what he should do if he didn't feel like praying. Brigham Young responded, "Get down on your knees and pray until you feel like praying." I have seen this work for myself and for many others. It may seem like you're lost, and prayers won't be answered, but I testify that God listens, and that as you begin to pray your desire to pray will grow. Good luck in your endeavors to improve. I don't know you personally, but from reading your answer it seems like your heart is in the right place and you are headed in the right direction. God cares more about our direction than our speed. We're here for you and believe in you, and God believes in you and loves you perfectly. Hope this helps.
First of all, never forget that God is your Father. He knows better than anyone that we are not perfect. But He also loves us more than we could ever comprehend. He is waiting to bless us and help us. Believe me that whatever imperfections you are trying to conquer will be easier to defeat if you are praying and building that line of communication with your Heavenly Father.
One of my all time favorite talks is a devotional given by Elder Holland entitled "For Times of Trouble" (you should definitely read it. It's fantastic). In it, Elder Holland shares the story of Eli H. Pierce. He was a man who was not really living the Gospel as well as he should have. However, upon receiving a mission call, Brother Pierce immediately left his home to serve the Lord. Miracles followed. Elder Holland then says, "Now if God in His heavens will do that for a repentant old cigar-smoking, inactive, swearing pool player, don’t you think He’ll do it for you? He will if your resolve is as deep and permanent as Eli Pierce’s. In this Church we ask for faith, not infallibility."
I promise you that if you have faith that God is listening (and He is), He will come to your aid.
I have had some similar feelings lately, where I want desperately to ask for God’s help, but haven’t necessarily felt worthy of his assistance. In my prayer, I find it helpful to acknowledge my weaknesses, because it helps me feel closer to God and his will. This approach not only allows me to reflect on the areas in which I need to grow, but it helps me find motivation to work on those areas.
Overall, the perspective that I find most helpful is asking God not to change my circumstances, but to change me. I may not feel worthy to ask for all my sorrows and trials to be removed, but I can ask for strength and guidance in the face of hard times. I can ask him to help me find ways and circumstances in which I can better align myself with his will. I can ask him to be with me, to give me peace and comfort, even if he can’t solve all of my problems. And even if I don’t feel worthy enough to receive any miracles, it’s comforting to know that God will still help me, even in small and simple ways. Even if I’m maybe not worthy of Godly assistance, this reminds me that I am always worthy of the support of friends who love me unconditionally.
First thought, from this article:
Prayer is not a negotiation process. It is an alignment process. We don’t move God to our point of view. Prayer is less about changing our circumstances and more about changing us. It is about seeking His will and asking for His help to do what we need to do. When we align our will with Heavenly Father’s will, answers and spiritual power will flow more freely.
If prayer is about bringing us to God, it makes way more sense to understand that He doesn't want us to wait to do it.
It sounds like you've got an understanding of areas where you lack, and you know that some of them might need improvement before you're able to progress in other ways you'd like to move forward. If you know that, that's something you can acknowledge to God as you pray. He already knows what you want. He's your Father. He's not waiting until you're perfect to give you anything that can make you happy. He's not going to wait until you've repented of every sin that is 5 bad out of 10 before He will help you with a problem that is 3 bad out of 10.
Crucial to believing this is understanding that we don't earn blessings from God. We don't wait until we 'deserve' them to ask for them because as King Benjamin reminds us, we can never not be indebted to the God who first of all gave us our lives. I think one of the relevant principles at hand here is powerfully explained by Stephen Robinson in this devotional. He tells his daughter to save her money so she can buy a bicycle. Consider that to be you, still working on repenting of your sins and improving yourself. However, his daughter just doesn't have the earning capacity to get enough money to earn the bike by herself. One penny at a time she'll pretty much never get there without him stepping in and paying a way bigger portion than she ever can. Robinson explains:
We all want something desperately—it isn’t a bicycle. We want the celestial kingdom. We want to be with our Father in Heaven. And no matter how hard we try, we come up short. At some point we realize, “I can’t do this!” That was the point my wife had reached. It is at that point that the sweetness of the gospel covenant comes to our taste as the Savior proposes, “I’ll tell you what. All right, you’re not perfect. How much do you have? What can you do? Where are you now? Give me all you’ve got, and I’ll pay the rest. Give me a hug and a kiss; enter into a personal relationship with me, and I will do what remains undone.”
There is good news and bad news here. The bad news is that he still requires our best effort. We must try, we must work—we must do all that we can. But the good news is that having done all we can, it is enough—for now. Together we’ll make progress in the eternities, and eventually we will become perfect—but in the meantime, we are perfect only in a partnership, in a covenant relationship with him. Only by tapping his perfection can we hope to qualify.
Now I want to address what might be your next hangup if you're like me or many other Mormons who have a tendency towards toxic perfectionism. "But Anne," you say to me, "If I really gave it my best effort, I WOULD GET IT RIGHT! Maybe not everything, but a whole lot more than I do right now!"
Yeah, I get that. I feel that way too. I don't have all of the answer to this yet, but it has to do with what Elder Holland spoke on recently: Be Ye Therefore Perfect - Eventually. God knows that we aren't going to get everything right during our lives, so if you think that trying your best would make you get everything right right now, there's something you're probably not quite getting mentally right. So what is a "best effort" (a phrase I don't really love)? Maybe a more helpful goal for us than a "best effort" that seems unattainable just like perfection is something else Holland expresses: "strive for steady improvement." That's way more concrete to me. It's not about getting super twitchy and self destructive, it's about making progress and promising God that you're going to keep trying to make progress.
So, to loop back to prayer: God wants us to have access to blessings because He's our Father and he created us to have joy. Joy's not just the end reward of attaining perfection, it's the continual blessing He wants us to have that we're enabled to get in lots of different ways through various things we ask for, seek for, and receive while we are still in the process of becoming perfect.
If you're ignoring your need to improve on your habit of yelling at people but asking God to bless you with a new Ferrari because you want it, then you probably have some introspection needed. But I don't think God's going to punish us if we ask for help with things that will relieve our suffering or bring us joy while we acknowledge that we're also seeking his help to do what we can to improve.