Seeing Things As They Really Are- Why Life Is Secretly Awesome

Yesterday was a bit of a polarizing day.  I went to school and attended my classes.  I worked on a script.  I did homework.  But throughout the day I also consumed a lot of information, either through articles shared by friends on Facebook, stories on the radio (just as I was surfing through in my car) and other random stuff one comes across perusing the internet.

When I think back on it, I’ve realized I’ve stumbled across a lot of “information” without even seeking it out.  In most cases I’ve been pretty passive but it has still blasted me in one way or another.  Here are a few recent examples I can think of:

  • I’m going to ruin my toddler’s life because I let them watch Phineas and Ferb on my phone.  They will forever have behavioral disorders and be developmentally behind.
  • If I ever have to get a root canal I’m pretty much toast because root canal’s give you terminal illnesses.
  • Kraft Mac and Cheese will kill you.  Yikes.
  • Eventually the government will become so powerful and so corrupt it will imprison religious people.  I don’t think I’d look good in orange.
  • It’s best to pack up my bags and make an exit plan because the ACA will destroy America as we know it, force everyone onto a single payer system and enact death panels.
  • Republicans have rigged the system so that poor people can never get ahead.  The GOP is the sole reason people in poverty, (people like me) will live in poverty.  I guess I’ll be poor forever.
  • Telling your kid that they’re smart will cause them to do worse in school.  Don’t ever tell your kid they’re smart! Ever!!!

And probably much more.  Sensationalism at it’s finest.

Things As They Really Are

But you know what?  Strangely, despite all of this, I was able to go to school and learn among my colleagues about different cultures I knew nothing about.  It was pretty edifying.

I also sat on the fifth floor of a beautiful campus library and finished writing a script for kids about a little girl who becomes friends with a puffy green monster.

When I got home to my one bedroom apartment I was greeted by two smiley kids who, through little teeth and big eyes, shouted, “Dad-dy!”

I was hugged, tickled, played with, and chased.

I ate some delicious homemade burgers.

I talked with, planned, and spent quality time with my beautiful wife who means the world to me.

And at the close of the day I laid in bed and felt the spirit very strongly as I watched a wonderful talk from Elder Holland from the April 2013 general conference.  Above it all, I felt God’s love and care.

So in the end, is our future really as bleak as some would make it out to be?  Maybe.  Is our present as horrible as the headlines tell us?  Perhaps.  I don’t have all the answers.  But in this believers eyes, I seriously doubt it.  I suspect ulterior motives in regards to why media spins some stories and shelves others (but that’s another topic completely…) The point is I still have hope because there’s still reason to hope.

“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” -John 16:33

So please, don’t let anything get you down.  God is real.  We live in a fallen world, yes, but it’s not a fallen world without redemption.   He will not leave us comfortless.  His hand is outstretched over all kindreds, nations, tongues and peoples, willing to pour out blessings to those who seek.  If we let him, if  we invite Him in, He will bless us.  Not always with material or temporal possessions that we think we need, but with joy, peace, warmth and an eventual spot on the “right hand of God.”    I’ve felt those blessings and it’s made life pretty dang awesome.  When the world gets me down, I just simply remember this-

“Wherefore, whoso believeth in God might with surety hope for a better world, yea, even a place at the right hand of God, which hope cometh of faith, maketh an anchor to the souls of men, which would make them sure and steadfast, always abounding in good works, being led to glorify God.”  -Ether 12:4

God Bless,


P.S. So remember that talk by Elder Holland I was talking about?  Yeah, you should watch it too 🙂


3 thoughts on “Seeing Things As They Really Are- Why Life Is Secretly Awesome

    1. AJ Barlow Post author

      Thanks Doug. Sounds like a nice setup, I’ve been without TV since I’ve been married (just about 4 years) and I don’t miss it much. Of course we still watch random nonsense on netflix 😉


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