- Jami Pond
- I am studying Psychology and Sociology at Utah Valley University, and working at a treatment center for troubled teens. I love life, being with people from all cultures, speaking Spanish, and traveling all over the world. I will never stop laughing, dancing, singing, enjoying, appreciating, and just being.
Saturday, June 12, 2010
The stairway to HEAVEN
Right when I got to Hawaii I was in love with the look, the smell, the sun and the whole place. I just love the people in Hawaii! The first few days we were there, we did so much and got to really see the island. We hiked a waterfall, rode bikes by the beach, went snorkeling, and ate at all the local good restaurants. We got to go to a local singles ward and see the temple. The sacrament meeting was really neat because two girls spoke where one was just arriving at her mission and introducing herself to the ward and then another girl who was in the ward and giving her farewell talk. I was just inspired and so happy to hear from sister missionaries. I just loved soaking up the culture and the sights and beauty of the island. It was almost like heaven. The water was so blue and it was so sunny and green everyday. It was fun to meet people who went to BYU Hawaii and see everything they do and how their life is. The last day we were in Hawaii we decided last minute to hike the famous “stairway to heaven”. I had seen so many pictures from people who had done it and heard of it, but I was nervous for me to actually try and do it. It is a very narrow set of 3000 stairs that goes 3000 feet in the air. You have to wake up at 3:30 in the morning so you can leave by 4 in the morning so you can get there before the security guards do. I am not very in shape and I am not a morning person so this already did not sound too pleasant for me for my last day to relax in Hawaii. I heard it was cool so I figured it was something that I could accomplish and in the end be happy I did. It was pitch black. There was about 20 of us and all we had were little lights. As I started to climb just the first few steps that were exactly going straight up in the air, I almost wanted to turn back. It was so humid and the air was getting thick with water, I could barely breath I was getting so hot. I was at the front of everyone, so I felt I needed to work hard and keep a steady pace so everyone else would stay together. With every step I climbed, my legs hurts more and my arms felt like they were pulling my whole body weight with each step. I didn’t get to eat much before the hike so I was running on barely any food or water and had a slight headache. As I felt all of these problems come upon me and my emotions wanting to take over, I just kept looking up and thinking about what it was like at the top and how it would be worth it to get up there. The idea that it was just called the stairway to heaven really motivated me and wanted me to get there no matter what it took. With each new step I felt a little more pain and with each feeling of pain came doubt. As I slowly pulled myself up these steep stairs I tried to focus on not myself and my body but something else. Christ came to my mind as I kept looking up and seeing the sunrise behind the beautiful green mountains. I thought of the atonement and what pain he had to go through to suffer for all of our sins. I wondered how he even began to bear such excruciating and horrible pain and how small mine felt at the time compared to him. I thought of his generous and loving smile and pondered on how selfless it was for him to take on such a horrific and painful act on himself. I thought to myself if he can do that for me, then I am capable to accomplish anything in my life. If Christ my loving brother did not trust and already know me and understand my limits, I would have not been on that mountain. I then realized that I had a very healthy physical body on this earth and I am so blessed to be able to use it and have it function, unlike so many other of god’s children. This experience I was having was more like an amazing opportunity and privilege and I should enjoy it and make it last. As the pain continued and my legs shook, I pulled on the bars even harder and quickened my pace. I looked to the promising and glowing heavens, smiling and glorifying its most exquisite beauty. I began to say positive and encouraging things to everyone as we all continued up the last set of steps and even sang. I could not believe how high we were in the air and how much of the beautiful island of ocean we could see. Once we got to the top I took in a few deep breaths and was overwhelmed by a very peaceful and quiet spirit. I felt so free and accomplished and happy. I felt on top of the world because it literally was all underneath me. I looked down at the stairs and wondered how I possibly made it up all 3000 of them. Although this is some small physical experience, to me I knew it could only be done with me exercising my faith in my savior and believing in him and myself getting through it. Sitting at the top of the edge of that mountain and looking around me, breathing in fresh and pure cold air, I knew that my savior lived and loved me. He will always be with me and if I just trust in him, I am capable of the impossible. I am able to do anything really. It was light out when we walked down and as we just and landed on that hard soil at the bottom I was beaming with joy. I truly know that in my life, if I am always telling myself that I will get through and do something, it WILL happen because I am the creator of my own life existence and my destiny and my story is in my hands, ready to create and be written.