I am no fan of New Years resolutions.

But yesterday the Sunday School teacher asked us to make a bucket list of five things we’d like to accomplish with the rest of our lives. It tied in to a lesson on Zion, I forget how (bottom line for the Zion lesson: that the work of salvation is entirely or exclusively an individual thing is a chief heresy that the restoration overturned).

I was interested to see what popped up when I started jotting:

1. Kids married in the temple.
2. Kids have lots of kids.
3. Endure to the end (undivorced, unexcommunicated)
4. Serve historical mission with [the Lovely One]
5. Kids non-pozzed.
6. Have a team of Randall Lineback oxen.
7. Convert someone.
8. Write stories.

I am one of those people who get phrases stuck in their head. For the last few days I keep thinking “I went down the hill and then, I passed beyond the world of men,” which keeps reminding me of that dream about the Sane.

The other two phrases bouncing around are (1) “O Lord make my enemies ridiculous,” which is neither here nor there.

And (2) “he died with his music still in him.” It came while I was splitting wood. I saw it written on a gravestone and it occurred to me that it could still be true of even a very great writer. It also occurred to me that generations later coming on the gravestone could read it as a very positive message of someone who kept their integrity and their joy. Any how, that was the phrase that went through my head again which I lazily converted to “Write stories.” The parables, the comic poetry, the goofy posts, the stories, the political theory, it all bubbles around inside and demands to be let out. The mass acclaim of my quintillion readers is of course nice. But I’d keep writing even if I only had an obscure blog with about five guys who occasionally read it, mostly because they occasionally posted there also. Because I have to. Every week I get further behind on spitting everything out. In reality, my best case scenario is the recent comment from Bruce C., which touched me pretty deeply:

When I do these ‘different takes’ on doctrine or theology, the idea is that sometimes, some people need to see the important ideas from a new angle. ‘Some people’ including myself – in that there are matters that I find I do not *really* understand that everybody else apparently finds straightforward. Repentance has been one of them.

When I make some kind of a mini-breakthrough or obtain a clarification, my hope is that this might help somebody else (some individual – not some mass or group of people).

Surprisingly often, this is the case – and that person lets me know that it has ‘hit home’. This is what blogging is all about, for me.

The majority of people, for whom any specific remark is unhelpful, should (and generally do) ignore it!

I am not sure if I achieve that best case scenario often or at all. But I keep writing away, because I am a horse that has a rider, and when the spurs dig in, I must needs gallop.

My wife showed me her list. It was more ethereal and less concrete than mine. “Be compassionate,” stuff like that. But one of her items was “see Jesus’ face.” That stabbed me with longing. Frm time to time I am hit with a longing to see His face in this life. It is like C.S. Lewis’ idea of “Joy.” Wonderful and painful at the same time. But it has never seemed the sort of thing that would be appropriate to make into a goal.

Well. Reading back over this post, I see that it went in a much more melancholy direction than the chatty, lighthearted post I had in mind when I started out.

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