Sunday, February 18, 2018

Trust in the Lord

I finished Thomas S. Monson’s book, “To The Rescue,” and loved this quote. “Trust in the Lord. Let’s allow our faith to exceed our doubt.” It is so well put and perfectly clear. We need to increase our faith and put all of our trust in the Lord and His promises to us. 

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

The Eternal Everyday - By Elder Quentin L. Cook

Reading The Eternal Everyday - By Elder Quentin L. Cook in Voice Dream

The Eternal Everyday - By Elder Quentin L. Cook Highlights

We are all equal before God. His doctrine is clear. In the Book of Mormon, we read, “All are alike unto God,” including “black and white, bond and free, male and female.” Accordingly, all are invited to come to the Lord.

True humility, which is essential to achieve the Lord’s purpose for us, is seldom evident.

It is important to understand the magnitude of Christ’s humility, righteousness, character, and intelligence, as exemplified in the scriptures. It is foolish to underestimate the necessity of continuously striving for these Christlike qualities and attributes on a day-by-day basis, particularly humility.

Amulek, who was a missionary companion of Alma in the Book of Mormon, said, “This life is the time for men to prepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors.” 

The Savior’s example of humility and sacrifice for all mankind is the most profound event in history. 

Humility Is Essential in Helping the Lord Establish His Church

Sometimes humility is accepting callings when we do not feel adequate. Sometimes humility is serving faithfully when we feel capable of a more high-profile assignment. Humble leaders have verbally and by example established that it is not where we serve but how we faithfully serve. Sometimes humility is overcoming hurt feelings when we feel that leaders or others have mistreated us.

It is now the 112th section of the Doctrine and Covenants. It gives incredible direction from heaven with respect to humility and missionary work. Verse 10 reads, “Be thou humble; and the Lord thy God shall lead thee by the hand, and give thee answer to thy prayers.”

Subsequent parts of the revelation guide the missionary effort in our day. They read, in part, “Whosoever ye shall send in my name … shall have power to open the door of my kingdom unto any nation … inasmuch as they shall humble themselves before me, and abide in my word, and hearken to the voice of my Spirit.”

We do not allow personal issues to distract or divert us from accomplishing His purposes. 

Everyday Humility Is Essential in Helping Prepare Individuals to Meet God

In today’s world, there is an increased emphasis on pride, self-aggrandizement, and so-called “authenticity,” which sometimes leads to a lack of true humility.

The scriptures advocate a different approach. They suggest that we should be true disciples of Jesus Christ. This entails establishing a powerful feeling of accountability to God and a humble approach to life. King Benjamin taught that the natural man is an enemy to God and advocated that we need to yield ourselves “to the enticings of the Holy Spirit.” He explained, among other things, that this requires becoming “submissive, meek, humble, patient, [and] full of love.”

Some misuse authenticity as a celebration of the natural man and qualities that are the opposite of humility, kindness, mercy, forgiveness, and civility. We can celebrate our individual uniqueness as children of God without using authenticity as an excuse for un-Christlike behavior.

I have found a genuine goodness among people of all faiths who are humble and feel accountable to God. Many of them subscribe to the Old Testament prophet Micah, who declared, “What doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?”

On the other hand, as indicated in the Lord’s Prayer, when we do not forgive others’ trespasses, we bring ourselves under condemnation. Because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, through repentance our sins are forgiven. When we do not forgive those who trespass against us, we are in effect rejecting the Savior’s Atonement. Holding a grudge and refusing to forgive and refusing to humbly approach our relationships in a Christlike manner truly brings us under condemnation. Holding a grudge is poisonous to our souls.

The Lord further declared, “I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.”

Humility also includes being grateful for our numerous blessings and divine assistance.

A favorite poem puts it this way:

The test of greatness is the way

One meets the eternal Everyday.

Background image by: Anto Camacho

Heaven - Visiting Hours

I do wish that heaven had visiting hours. If it did, who would you go visit, possibly a child that left you too early, or a loved one, or would you get in line to visit our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and our Father in Heaven? I think that it is imperative for us to realize that we do not have to wait. Our children and loved ones are serving us continuously, we may not see them but they are there and helping us more than we can imagine. Joseph Smith has spoken on several occasions about how we should seek to have our calling and elections made sure, and he further taught that that means that the Savior will appear unto us and even the Father will make His abode with us from time to time. 

John 14:23
If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.

Here is Joseph Smith on this subject:
"After a person has faith in Christ, repents of his sins, and is baptized for the remission of his sins and receives the Holy Ghost (by the laying on of hands), which is the first Comforter, then let him continue to humble himself before God, hungering and thirsting after righteousness, and living by every word of God, and the Lord will soon say unto him, Son, thou shalt be exalted. When the Lord has thoroughly proved him, and finds that the man is determined to serve Him at all hazards, then the man will find his calling and his election made sure, then it will be his privilege to receive the other Comforter, which the Lord hath promised the Saints, as is recorded in the testimony of St. John, in the 14th chapter, from the 12th to the 27th verses….
Now what is this other Comforter? It is no more nor less than the Lord Jesus Christ Himself; …when any man obtains this last Comforter, he will have the personage of Jesus Christ to attend him, or appear unto him from time to time, and even He will manifest the Father unto him, and they will take up their abode with him, and the visions of the heavens will be opened unto him, and the Lord will teach him face to face, and he may have a perfect knowledge of the mysteries of the Kingdom of God; and this is the state and place the ancient Saints arrived at when they had such glorious visions-Isaiah, Ezekiel, John upon the Isle of Patmos, St. Paul in the three heavens, and all the Saints who held communion with the general assembly and Church of the First Born." [TPJS, pp. 150-51].

I know that this is what I desire more than anything else. Let us join together and be more obedient to the word of God to our hearts, and keep the commandments of God continually and we will be well on our way to this glorious moment when the Father and the Son will take up their abode with us. The thought is almost too great for me. Let’s start today!!!


Sunday, February 11, 2018

Rise to Your Potential

President Gordon B. Hinckley: “I feel to invite women everywhere to rise to the great potential within you. I do not ask that you reach beyond your capacity. I hope you will not nag yourselves with thoughts of failure. … I hope you will simply do what you can do in the best way you know. If you do so, you will witness miracles come to pass” (Teachings of Gordon B. Hinckley [1997], 696).

This obviously applies to both men and women. My wife and I stayed at a resort in Tucson, AZ on Thursday and Friday and on Friday we ordered some nachos from the pool side bar. They were quite expensive, nearly $18, and we joked with each other, saying what if we could eat whatever we wanted because it was all included with our stay. The funny thing is that they didn't charge us, although we told them that they made a mistake. 

It reminded us the following video by Dieter F. Uchtdorf:


Saturday, February 10, 2018

Tithing - With the Lord's Help

Tithing is such an important part of our eternal salvation. My sister, Julie, shared with me how much she likes this quote, and I told her I would make a picture quote out of it. This is such a powerful reminder that we need to be honest in our tithes and trust in the Lord to open the windows of heaven on us and our families. 

Friday, February 9, 2018

Life is an adventure

Today we are celebrating our 20th year anniversary and I thought this quote by Gordon B. Hinckley was quite fitting, "Love is meant to be an adventure." The last 20 years have been an amazing adventure. We have sent our first still born girl to heaven and brought 9 children here to earth, and have build powerful memories along the way. We will continue to for built wonderful memories for many years to come. Above all things though, we have built our testimony of the living Christ and have endevored to teach our children of Him. My greatest desire is to one day watch as each of our children embrace the Savior one by one and then all together walk into our eternal inheritance in the presence of the Father. Do what ever it takes to make sure that your love adventure brings you too into the arms of the living Christ, is my prayer, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Background image by: Alexis A. Bermúdez

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Spiritual Eclipse - By Elder Gary E. Stevenson

Spiritual Eclipse - By Elder Gary E. Stevenson Highlights

Of course, President Monson, mindful of those desiring to wish him happy birthday, described an ideal birthday gift: “Find someone who is having a hard time or is ill or lonely and do something for them. That’s all I would ask.” We love and sustain you, President Monson.

Solar Eclipse

The other rare and heavenly event occurring on the same day and captivating millions worldwide was a total solar eclipse. This was the first time such an eclipse had marched across the entire United States in 99 years.

A total solar eclipse occurs when the moon moves between the earth and the sun, almost completely blocking any light from the sun’s surface. 

Although the sun is 400 times larger than the moon, it is also 400 times farther away from the earth. From earth’s perspective, this geometry makes the sun and moon appear to be the same size. When the two are aligned just right, the moon seems to obscure the entire sun. Friends and family of mine who were in the zone of total eclipse described how light was replaced by darkness, the stars appeared, and birds quit singing. The air became chilly, as temperatures in an eclipse can decrease by more than 20 degrees Fahrenheit (11 degrees Celsius).

The Analogy

In the same manner that the very small moon can block the magnificent sun, extinguishing its light and warmth, a spiritual eclipse can occur when we allow minor and troublesome obstructions—those we face in our daily lives—to get so close that they block out the magnitude, brightness, and warmth of the light of Jesus Christ and His gospel.

Elder Neal A. Maxwell took this analogy even further when he stated: “Even something as small as a man’s thumb, when held very near the eye, can blind him to the very large sun. Yet the sun is still there. Blindness is brought upon the man by himself. When we draw other things too close, placing them first, we obscure our vision of heaven.”

So how do we put on gospel glasses? Here are some examples: Our gospel glasses inform us that the Lord desires that we partake of the sacrament each week and that He desires that we study the scriptures and have daily prayer. They also inform us that Satan will tempt us not to. We know that his agenda seeks to take away our agency through distractions and worldly temptations. Even in Job’s day, perhaps there were some experiencing a spiritual eclipse, described as: “They meet with darkness in the daytime, and grope in the noonday as in the night.”

I am suggesting that we look at challenges through the lens of the gospel. Elder Dallin H. Oaks observed that “perspective is the ability to see all relevant information in a meaningful relationship.” A gospel perspective expands our sight to an eternal view.

When you put on gospel glasses, you find enhanced perspective, focus, and vision in the way you think about your priorities, your problems, your temptations, and even your mistakes. You will see brighter light that you could not see without them.

Ironically, it is not only the negative that can cause spiritual eclipse in our lives.

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf has taught that “any virtue when taken to an extreme can become a vice. … There comes a point where milestones can become millstones and ambitions, albatrosses around our necks.”

Social Media

All of the virtues and appropriate use of these technologies notwithstanding, there are risks associated with them that, when drawn too close, can put us in a spiritual eclipse and potentially block the brightness and warmth of the gospel.

Comparing our own seemingly average existence with others’ well-edited, perfectly crafted lives as represented on social media may leave us with feelings of discouragement, envy, and even failure.

As Sister Bonnie L. Oscarson reminded us this morning, success in life doesn’t come down to how many likes we get or how many social media friends or followers we have. It does, however, have something to do with meaningfully connecting with others and adding light to their lives.


Humility and meekness fit hand in glove. May we remember that “none is acceptable before God, save the meek and lowly in heart.”

Background image by: Carsten Frenzel

In short, don’t let life’s distractions eclipse heaven’s light.

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Pray Always

I love this quote. It is so important that we pray always. Let us take the time to start out our day, give us strength all throughout the day, and finally end our day with gratitude through prayer unto our Father in Heaven. 

Thursday, February 1, 2018

25 Powerful Quotes Created by the Youth

25 Powerful Quotes Created by the Youth

If you have not visited the "Youth Insights" blog, you need to check it out. This blog consists of hundreds of quotes created by the youth, whose ages range from 7-13. I am so impressed with their artistic abilities and love that they are taking time to let their minds focus on good, positive and faith building quotes on a regular basis. You will love them!!! Be sure to head over and check them out. 

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Bring Your Faith

Yesterday, I received a text requesting the family to do a special fast today. Around 1:00 pm, I was struggling and texted my wife this text:

"I am not going to lie, fasting is harder when it is for someone else like this. I need to turn on the faith! 😂"

That thought rang in my mind, turn on your faith. I decided to make a quote out of it. Shortly after, I thought the following as well, Bring your faith, not your pity party.

I was determined to bring my faith. Then, my wife texted me a few things that she was fasting for, and that immediately gave my fast a needed power. Needless to say, hunger lost its appeal. When we choose faith, we will be given greater power than that of our own. We can always do more with God than without.

So, put on a smile, bring your faith, trust in God and watch the blessings flow. 😀