Saturday, December 31, 2011

Sunrise, Sunset

 I'm pretty sure this year has been the best year of my life. I've met a few hundred new people, been to seven other countries, made memories that will last a lifetime, accomplished a good handful of lifelong dreams, and had countless of those moments when I was so happy I thought I would burst. (Actually, that's a very vague summary.) On the other hand I've also had many discouraging moments when I didn't know what I should do or how I could ever accomplish something that I wanted or had to do.  But it's the good and the hard coupled together that has made for the best year of my life. I don't know anything that could top this year besides maybe serving a mission or getting 2012 and 2013, I can't wait for you!!!

Fiddler on the Roof is one of my all-time favorite movies. In it there's a song about how time is made up of sunrises and sunsets. Here are some of the sunrises and sunsets that have made up my past 365 days. They have been some of the most signifcant moments of the year.

January 26th:  Camel ride along the Nile at sunset.

 January 30th: Sunrise from the top of Mount Sinai. #1 most powerful sunrise experience of my life. Actually, one of the most spiritually powerful moments of my life, period.

 February 17th: Sunset from the balcony of the Hurva Synagogue.

 March 14th: Sunset on the Sea of Galilee.

 May 6th: My first view of Africa was this sunrise from the window of the Kenya Nairobi airport. The exhileration of finally being in Africa put my jet lag to shame.

 May 27th: Sunrise on the Serengeti during a game drive at 5 a.m. on a safari.

July 7th: Sunset on the Indian Ocean in Tanga, Tanzania.

September 3rd: Sunrise from the top of Mt. Timpanogous in Utah after hiking since 1 a.m.

I don't think I'll ever have a year of such diverse and exotic sunrises and sunsets again in my life. However, I'm completely ok with that because it matters more what we do with the time between those sunrises and sunsets than where we are. Sunrises and sunsets are repetitious and days can seem humdrum and routine. However, small daily decisions are what destiny is made of just like centuries are composed of ordinary sunrises and sunsets.

"In reality, there aren't many things in a day that are totally without signficance. Even the mundane and repetitious can be tiny but significant building blocks that in time establish the discipline and character and order needed to realize our plans and dreams."
~D. Todd Christofferson

Here's to the 732 sunrises and sunsets you'll encounter in 2012 (leap year!) and making the most of them! May all the sunsets in your life be turned into sunrises because of the hope we have.

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