Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Our Religion, Freedom, and Our Family

Save it, share it, print it, post it. Protect our religious freedom.
The QR Code in the picture leads to this link:
https://lds.org/religious-freedom…
Find out what you can do to defend religious freedom.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Value beyond Measure - By Joy D. Jones

Reading Value beyond Measure - By Joy D. Jones in Voice Dream http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2017/10/value-beyond-measure?lang=eng

Value beyond Measure - By Joy D. Jones Highlights

22.3%:
President Thomas S. Monson said it perfectly when he quoted these words: “The worth of a soul is its capacity to become as God.”


33%:
the Spirit will confirm to each of us individually our divine worth.

51.3%:
Satan is the father of all lies, especially when it comes to misrepresentations about our own divine nature and purpose.

53.9%:
“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” We can stop comparing our worst to someone else’s best. “Comparison is the thief of joy.”

https://motivationtoinspiration.blogspot.com/2017/10/comparison-thief-of-joy.html

60.8%:
He that receiveth of God, let him account it of God; and let him rejoice that he is accounted of God worthy to receive.” When we feel the Spirit, as this verse explains, we recognize that what we feel comes from our Heavenly Father. We acknowledge Him and praise Him for blessing us. We then rejoice that we are counted worthy to receive.


83.7%:
Elder Paul E. Koelliker taught, “As we remove the distractions that pull us toward the world and exercise our agency to seek Him, we open our hearts to a celestial force which draws us toward Him.”

88.4%:
He saves us from ourselves.


88.8%:
Let me reemphasize: if the pull of the world is stronger than the faith and trust we have in the Savior, then the pull of the world will prevail every time. If we choose to focus on our negative thoughts and doubt our worth instead of clinging to the Savior, it becomes more difficult to feel the impressions of the Holy Ghost.


93.1%:
While it is often easier to be spiritually passive than it is to put forth the spiritual effort to remember and embrace our divine identity, we cannot afford that indulgence in these latter days.

97.9%:
As the Savior lifts us to higher ground, we can see more clearly not only who we are but also that we are closer to Him than we ever imagined.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Abiding in God and Repairing the Breach - By Neill F. Marriott

Reading Abiding in God and Repairing the Breach - By Neill F. Marriott in Voice Dream http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2017/10/abiding-in-god-and-repairing-the-breach?lang=eng

Abiding in God and Repairing the Breach - By Neill F. Marriott Highlights

11%:
“We are duty-bound to learn all that God has revealed about himself.”


22.6%:
Some things matter; some things don’t.

A few things last, but most things won’t.


24.2%:
A matter of lasting value to the Father is that we learn of Him, humble ourselves, and grow in obedience to Him through earthly experiences. He wants us to change our selfishness into service, our fears into faith. These lasting matters can test us to our core.

37.6%:
We want to be encircled in the arms of our Heavenly Father’s love and guidance, and so we put His will first and with a broken heart plead that Christ will pour streams of cleansing water into our pitcher. At first it may come drop by drop, but as we seek, ask, and obey, it will come abundantly. This living water will begin to fill us, and brimming with His love, we can tip the pitcher of our soul and share its contents with others who thirst for healing, hope, and belonging. As our inner pitcher becomes clean, our earthly relationships begin to heal.


44.2%:
Sacrifice of our personal agendas is required to make room for the eternal plans of God.

background image by : Pixfineart https://flic.kr/p/CjgwCf

46.5%:
Drawing near unto the Father can mean learning of His truth through the scriptures, following prophetic counsel, and striving to do His will more completely.


60.4%:
We are divinely designed to give love and be loved, and the deepest love comes when we are one with God. The Book of Mormon invites us to “be reconciled unto [God] through the atonement of Christ.”


82.2%:
Isaiah writes, “The Lord bindeth up the breach of his people, and healeth the stroke of their wound.”


85.9%:
The Savior’s Atonement is a conduit for the constant flow of charity from our Father in Heaven. We must choose to abide in this love in order to have charity for all.


87.9%:
When we give our heart to the Father and the Son, we change our world—even if circumstances around us do not change.

93.6%:
Our Father’s infinite love reaches out to us, to bring us back into His glory and joy. He gave His Only Begotten Son, Jesus Christ, to repair the breach that gapes wide between us and Him. Reunion with Father in Heaven is the essence of lasting love and eternal purpose. We must make the connection with Him now to learn what really matters, to love as He loves, and to grow to be like Him.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Try try try like Nephi


My sister, Debbie, shared a family home evening lesson she gave to her family. the hero was Nephi, and how he didn't know how he was going to get the brass plates when he started on his journey, but he knew that God had commanded it and so he was determined.

1 Nephi 3:7
And it came to pass that I, Nephi, said unto my father: I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them. https://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/1-ne/3?lang=eng

He had faith that God would provide a way for him to accomplish this great feat. Even with the great faith that he had, the Lord tried him and Nephi had many set backs. As a matter of fact, he didn't just ran into a few set backs... oh no, Nephi and his brothers had to flee for their lives on many occations, and yet he still persisted and put his faith and trust in God.

How many times do we have set backs with things that we are working? We need to like Nephi put our faith and trust in God.

My sister went on to tell her young kids that even when things get hard or if you feel you can't do something, we need to try, try, try like Nephi. What great wisdom here in this counsel. She shared how several times she will overhear her kids trying something and having a hard time with it, say to themselves or another sibling, we need to try, try, try like Nephi.

So, let us all do the same and try, try, try like Nephi in actions and in faith.

Craig

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Heed Them Not - Overcome by Faith


I found this amazing picture on Pinterest and fell in love with it. It is such a visual. The great and spacious building is not some distant building but rather the steps and the balconies are right there taunting us to leave the tree of life with its most white and sweet fruit. If we are not always on the top of our game with our faith, we might just try to  set the fruit down real quick with full intent of coming back to the fruit. Sadly, that path back is not as simple or easy as it may seem at the time, and the danger of not returning at all is great. We MUST NOT HEED THEM. We need to use our faith in our Savior, Jesus Christ, to stay the course and always obey the promptings of the Spirit. Every day we need to get the spirit early through prayer and scripture study and then KEEP IT ALL DAY. We can't afford to lower our guard or even "look" at the spacious building. Remember Lot's wife who looked back either physically or in her heart and she turned to salt. We must keep our eyes and hearts set and focused on Christ and His teachings.

Craig

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Turn On Your Light - Sharon Eubank


Reading Turn On Your Light - By Sharon Eubank in Voice Dream http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2017/10/turn-on-your-light?lang=eng

Background image by: Rolf Schweizer https://flic.kr/p/Yx13U9

Turn On Your Light - By Sharon Eubank Highlights

10.3%:
Much of the major growth that is coming to the Church in the last days will come because many of the good women of the world … will be drawn to the Church in large numbers. This will happen to the degree that the women of the Church reflect righteousness and articulateness in their lives and to the degree that the women of the Church are seen as distinct and different—in happy ways—from the women of the world.


13.7%:
Among the real heroines in the world who will come into the Church are women who are more concerned with being righteous than with being selfish.

15.8%:
 It will be … female exemplars of the Church [who] will be a significant force in both the numerical and the spiritual growth of the Church in the last days.”


24.5%:
Well, how do we play our part? What should we do? President Kimball refers to five things:


25.3%:
The first is to be righteous. Being righteous doesn’t mean being perfect or never making mistakes. It means developing an inner connection with God, repenting of our sins and mistakes, and freely helping others.


27.1%:
Women who have repented change the course of history.

34.6%:
The second is to be articulate. Being articulate means to clearly express how you feel about something and why.

46.5%:
As the Apostle Peter said, “Be not afraid … ; but sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you.”


48.2%:
The third is to be different

59.5%:
Innovation and creation are spiritual gifts. When we keep our covenants, it may make us different from others in our culture and society, but it gives us access to inspiration so we can think of different solutions, different approaches, different applications.



61.7%:
We aren’t always going to fit in with the world, but being different in positive ways can be a lifeline to others who are struggling.


69.8%:
we need to practice living the gospel before the emergency so that, unafraid, we will be strong enough to help when others are being swept away by the current.


74.2%:
Gordon B. Hinckley placed where I see it every day. He said: “You don’t … build out of pessimism or cynicism. You look with optimism, work with faith, and things happen.”

88.4%:
Doctrine and Covenants 49:26–28

90%:
“Behold, I say unto you, go forth as I have commanded you; repent of all your sins; ask and ye shall receive; knock and it shall be opened unto you.

“Behold, I will go before you and be your rearward; and I will be in your midst, and you shall not be confounded.

“Behold, I am Jesus Christ, and I come quickly.”


96.9%:
Will your happiness in spite of your trials draw others who are good and noble and who need your friendship? Will you turn on your light?

99.1%:
Thomas S. Monson: “My dear sisters, this is your day, this is your time.”


Sunday, October 8, 2017

Doubt and faith do not exit together


“Where doubt and uncertainty are there faith is not, nor can it be. For doubt and faith do not exist in the same person at the same time; that persons whose minds are under doubts and fears cannot have unshaken confidence; and where unshaken confidence is not the faith is weak.” Joseph Smith, Lectures on Faith

I simply love this quote. It is so important to remember this as we go through trials and challenges in this crazy world we live it.  So often, we get decieved into thinking that our doubt and uncertainty are just what we are feeling at the moment and does not affect or alter our faith and sadly that is what Satan would have us think, for in this state we are in his power. We need to quickly realize that doubt and fear cannot coexist, and when we doubt we are willingly putting our faith aside. We need to use our faith in Christ to stand up boldly for truth, even if we are standing up against ourselves and our own doubt and uncertainty.

Background image by: Hilton Chen https://flic.kr/p/Z8cnSZ

Craig

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Word of Wisdom = Glorious Blessings


“May we care for our bodies and our minds by observing the principles set forth in the Word of Wisdom, a divinely provided plan. With all my heart and soul, I testify of the glorious blessings which await us as we do.” Principles and Promises - By President Thomas S. Monson https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2016/10/principles-and-promises?lang=eng

First and foremost, let's remember that this is being quoted by the prophet, even the mouthpiece of the Lord on earth, and we should hear it as, "thus sayeth the Lord." Our bodies are the reason we came down to the earth in the first place and the denial of a body is the great punishment of Satan and those that rebelled against God in the great council in heaven. We should be taking really good care of our bodies so that we can learn to use them as we should, in bringing about much righteousness.

Craig

Friday, October 6, 2017

A Testimony


A testimony was never designed as an easy thing to gain and/or keep. Nothing worth having was cheaply obtained. Let us be diligent in keeping the commandments, saying our prayers and studying our scriptures, that our testimony will be kept vital and alive.

"It is essential for you to have your own testimony in these difficult times, for the testimonies of others will carry you only so far. However, once obtained, a testimony needs to be kept vital and alive through continued obedience to the commandments of God and through daily prayer and scripture study." Thomas S. Monson

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Absence of divine light


Bearers of Heavenly Light Dieter F. Uchtdorf
Whatever causes our spiritual ailments, they all have one thing in common: the absence of divine light. https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2017/10/bearers-of-heavenly-light?lang=eng

Divine light is the light of Christ in all of its various forms. Cast your eyes upon any moment where you fell into temptation, depression, or doubt and you will find that light was rejected, set aside, or covered in order for the enemy of our souls to cast a shadow of darkness upon you, thus allowing the temptation, depression, or doubt to grow.

Recognizing this truth in our lives will help us to protect against it in the future. We need to embrace and love the light. When we love something we do not want to be separated from it. Well do you remember the scripture that says:

3 Nephi 13:24
No man can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will hold to the one and despise the other.

We either serve, love, and hold to the light of Christ or we will find ourselves on the side of and filled with darkness, we simply can't have them both.

Background image by: Rolf Schweizer https://flic.kr/p/YCh3G7

Craig

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Be kind, loving, and charitable


"let us examine our lives and determine to follow the Savior’s example by being kind, loving, and charitable. And as we do so, we will be in a better position to call down the powers of heaven for ourselves, for our families, and for our fellow travelers in this sometimes difficult journey back to our heavenly home."

Thomas S. Monson
http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2017/04/kindness-charity-and-love?lang=eng

Monday, October 2, 2017

Look up



I took this picture outside the Legacy Theater yesterday. I love this sculpture and was thinking about a quote that would go with it and these two words came to mind. I hope you enjoy it. 

Friday, September 29, 2017

No room for average disciples


We all need to raise the bar and level up our discipleship. we need to spread the word of Christ through our thoughts, words, and deeds.

Background image by: Anto Camacho https://flic.kr/p/XKbaZ4

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

First Law of Heaven


I simply love this quote. Below is the lesson that I got the quote from. This entire lesson is filled full of pure goodness. Enjoy!!


Chapter 17: Obedience, a Law of Heaven
Doctrines of the Gospel Student Manual, (2000), 46–48
Introduction
Cecil B. DeMille, director of the epic biblical film The Ten Commandments, told the student body at Brigham Young University:
“We are too inclined to think of law as something merely restrictive—something hemming us in. We sometimes think of law as the opposite of liberty. But that is a false conception. That is not the way that God’s inspired prophets and lawgivers looked upon the law. Law has a twofold purpose. It is meant to govern. It is also meant to educate. ...
“... And so it is with all the Commandments.
“We must look beneath the literal, the surface meaning of the words. We must take the trouble to understand them; for how can we obey commands that we do not understand? But the Commandments too have an educative function—which you can see in the life of anyone who keeps them. They produce good character. The Ten Commandments are not rules to obey as a personal favor to God. They are the fundamental principles without which mankind cannot live together. They make of those who keep them faithfully, strong, wholesome, confident, dedicated men and women. This is so because the Commandments come from the same Divine Hand that fashioned our human nature.
“God does not contradict Himself. He did not create man and then, as an afterthought, impose upon him a set of arbitrary, irritating, restrictive rules. He made man free—and then gave him the Commandments to keep him free” (“Commencement Address,” in Commencement Exercises, Brigham Young University Speeches of the Year [31 May 1957], 4–5).
Doctrinal Outline
A.
Obedience is the first law of heaven.
1. 1.
It was decreed in heaven that all blessings are predicated upon obedience (see D&C 130:20–21;
Deuteronomy 11:8, 26–27).
2. 2.
We came to earth to prove our willingness to obey (see Abraham 3:24–25; D&C 98:14).
3. 3.
          
 Obedience must be voluntary (see Abraham 3:25–26; Helaman 14:30–31).
4. 4.
Commandments are given to us because God loves us and wants us to become like Him (see Deuteronomy 6:24–25; D&C 25:15; 3 Nephi 12:48).
5. 5.
Our obedience to God’s commandments is an expression of our love for Him (see John 14:15,
21, 23; 1 John 5:3; D&C 42:29).
6. 6.
It is important to obey God even when we may not fully understand the commandment (see Moses 5:5–6; 1 Nephi 3:7).
7. 7.
The Lord chastens the Saints because He loves them (see Hebrews 12:6; D&C 95:1; Helaman
15:3; Revelation 3:19).
8. 8.
We should obey God rather than man (see Acts 5:29).
B.
The Lord promises great blessings to those who obey His commandments.
1. 1.
The Lord promises both temporal and spiritual blessings to those who obey His commandments (see Mosiah 2:41; Leviticus 26:3–12; Deuteronomy 4:40; D&C 58:2; 64:34; 130:21).
2. 2.
Obedience in this life will give us an advantage in the world to come (see D&C 130:19).
3. 3.
The Lord will provide a way for us to obey all His commandments (see 1 Nephi 3:7; 17:3).
4. 4.
Obedience to divine law makes us free (see John 8:31–32).
C.
Disobedience is a serious offense in the eyes of the Lord.
                             
 1. 1.
We offend God by disobeying His commandments (see D&C 59:21; Ephesians 5:6).
2. 2.
Disobedience to the commandments will bring serious temporal and spiritual consequences (see
Leviticus 26:14–32; Jeremiah 11:3; D&C 1:14; 56:3; 2 Nephi 9:27).
D.
Jesus Christ set the pattern for obedience.
See 2 Nephi 31:7–10; Luke 22:42; John 8:28–29; 3 Nephi 27:21.
E.
Through the Atonement and by obedience to God’s commandments, we can receive eternal life.
1. 1.
We are expected to obey God to the end of our lives (see Mosiah 5:8; 2 Nephi 31:16; D&C 14:7).
2. 2.
Eternal life comes to us through the Atonement and by our obedience to the laws and ordinances
of the gospel (see Articles of Faith 1:3; D&C 138:4; 1 Nephi 22:31; D&C 14:7; Matthew 7:21).
3. 3.
Those who obey the Lord faithfully will be privileged to see Him (see D&C 93:1; 88:68).
Supporting Statements
A.
Obedience is the first law of heaven.
“Obedience is the first law of heaven, the cornerstone upon which all righteousness and progression rest. It consists in compliance with divine law, in conformity to the mind and will of Deity, in complete subjection to God and his commands” (Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 539).
“Obedience must be voluntary; it must not be forced; there must be no coercion. Men must not be constrained against their will to obey the will of God; they must obey it because they know it to be right, because they desire to do it, and because it is their pleasure to do it. God delights in
                           
 the willing heart” (Joseph F. Smith, Gospel Doctrine, 65).
“If we love [the Lord], we will keep his commandments.
“Should there be any who offend or fail to keep the commandments of the Lord, then it is evidence that they do not love him. We must obey them. We show by our works that we love the Lord our God with all our hearts, with all our might, mind, and strength; and in the name of Jesus Christ we serve him and love our neighbor as ourself. This is the word of the Lord as it has been revealed in these modern times for the guidance of Israel” (Joseph Fielding Smith, “Keep the Commandments,” Improvement Era, Aug. 1970, 2).
“In the political field where so much pressure is exerted on men to compromise ideals and principles for expediency, party workers early learned to admire Marion G. Romney’s intense loyalty to his own conscience as well as to the advice of his Church leaders whose pronouncements on vital issues affecting the welfare of the nation he accepted as divinely inspired even though it frequently brought him into sharp conflict with leaders of his own political party. On one such occasion when church leaders in a tersely-worded editorial had denounced the trends of the political administration then in power, he confided in me something which it might be well if all loyal Church members in public life could emulate: ‘When I read that editorial,’ he told me, ‘I knew what I should do—but that wasn’t enough. I knew that I must feel right about following the counsel of the Church leaders and know that they were right. That took a whole night on my knees to accomplish.’ I submit in that statement the difference between ‘intelligent’ and ‘blind’ obedience. Marion G. Romney, while never disloyal to authority over him, could never be rightfully accused of being ‘blindly obedient.’” (Harold B. Lee, “Marion G. Romney,” Improvement Era, Oct. 1962, 742).
B.
The Lord promises great blessings to those who obey His commandments.
“Obedience to God can be the very highest expression of independence. Just think of giving to him the one thing, the one gift, that he would never take. Think of giving him that one thing that he would never wrest from you. ...
“Obedience—that which God will never take by force—he will accept when freely given. And he will then return to you freedom that you can hardly dream of—the freedom to feel and to know, the freedom to do, and the freedom to be, at least a thousandfold more than we offer him. Strangely enough, the key to freedom is obedience. ...
“... When I was president of the New England Mission, the Tabernacle Choir was to sing at the world’s fair in Montreal. The choir had one day unscheduled and suggested a concert in New England. One of the industrial leaders there asked for the privilege of sponsoring the concert.
    
 “Brother Condie and Brother Stewart came to Boston to discuss this matter. We met at the Boston airport and then drove to Attleboro, Massachusetts. Along the way Mr. Yeager asked about the concert. He said, ‘I would like to have a reception for the choir members. I could have it either at my home or at my club.’ He wanted to invite his friends who were, of course, the prominent people of New England—indeed, of the nation. He talked of this, and then he asked about serving alcoholic beverages.
“In answering, Brother Stewart said, ‘Well, Mr. Yeager, since it is your home and you are the host, I suppose you could do just as you want to do.’ ‘That isn’t what I had in mind,’ this wonderful man said. ‘I don’t want to do what I want to do. I want to do what you want me to do.’
“Somewhere in that spirit is the key to freedom. We should put ourselves in a position before our Father in heaven and say, individually, ‘I do not want to do what I want to do. I want to do what thou wouldst have me do.’ Suddenly, like any father, the Lord could say, ‘Well, there is one more of my children almost free from the need of constant supervision.’” (Boyd K. Packer, Obedience, Brigham Young University Speeches of the Year [7 Dec. 1971], 3–4).
“Half obedience will be rejected as readily as full violation, and maybe quicker, for half rejection and half acceptance is but a sham, an admission of lack of character, a lack of love for Him. It is actually an effort to live on both sides of the line” (Mark E. Petersen, in Conference Report, Apr. 1982, 21; or
Ensign, May 1982, 16 ). •
“There is not a man of us but what is willing to acknowledge at once that God demands strict obedience to his requirements. But in rendering that strict obedience, are we made slaves? No, it is the only way on the face of the earth for you and me to become free, and we shall become slaves of our own passions, and of the wicked one, and servants to the Devil, if we take any other course” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, 225).
C.
Disobedience is a serious offense in the eyes of the Lord.
“There is no power given to man, nor means lawful, to be used to compel men to obey the will of God, against their wish, except persuasion and good advice, but there is a penalty attached to disobedience, which all must suffer who will not obey the obvious truths or laws of heaven” (Joseph F. Smith, Gospel Doctrine, 105–6).
D.
Jesus Christ set the pattern for obedience.
     •

 “Christ, himself, set the perfect example of obedience for all his brethren. As the great Exemplar he was baptized to witness ‘unto the Father that he would be obedient unto him in keeping his commandments.’ (2 Ne. 31:7.) In all things his obedience was perfect. As Paul wrote: ‘Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.’ (Heb. 5:8–9.)” (McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 540).
E.
Through the Atonement and by obedience to God’s commandments, we can receive eternal life.
“To get salvation we must not only do some things, but everything which God has commanded. Men may preach and practice everything except those things which God commands us to do, and will be damned at last. We may tithe mint and rue, and all manner of herbs, and still not obey the commandments of God. The object with me is to obey and teach others to obey God in just what He tells us to do. It mattereth not whether the principle is popular or unpopular, I will always maintain a true principle, even if I stand alone in it” (Joseph Smith, Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 332).
“If we keep the commandments of the Lord, we shall enjoy the presence of both the Father and the Son, and we shall receive the Father’s kingdom and shall be heirs of God—joint heirs with our elder Brother. O how wonderful, how great the blessings of the Lord to the Latter-day Saints and to all who are willing to go through the waters of baptism and abide by the law and keep the commandments of the Lord!” (Smith, “Keep the Commandments,” 3).

Monday, September 25, 2017

Obedience - test of this life


When a prophet of God speaks, we should listen. Thomas S Monson said, the great test of this life is obedience. https://www.lds.org/new-era/2013/08/the-great-test-of-this-life-is-obedience?lang=eng

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Hands never dirtier


The washing of the hands was a legal way to transfer responsibility from himself to the people. Although legally Pilate was innocent, spiritually he was still filthy. He put worldly things above the things of God. We too need to be careful and not put worldly things above the things of God. We must put God first always.

3 Nephi 13:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you. https://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/3-ne/13?lang=eng

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Once enlightened...


I have a good friend who is struggling with her testimony and living the Gospel of Christ. I woke up this morning for my scripture study but just felt so overwhelmed with this weight of helping my friend. I knelt in prayer for her and her husband, desiring to know how I could help them reignite their flame of testimony. I rose from the floor and started my scripture study. Not very long later I came across this scripture that burned inside of me.

And thus we can plainly discern, that after a people have been once enlightened by the Spirit of God, and have had great knowledge of things pertaining to righteousness, and then have fallen away into sin and transgression, they become more hardened, and thus their state becomes worse than though they had never known these things. Alma 24:20

I knew that God had a message for them in this scripture but I wasn't sure what it was. I jumped in the shower and pondered it the whole time.

Let me share the context of this scripture first.

Alma 24:20-30

20 And it came to pass that their brethren, the Lamanites, made preparations for war, and came up to the land of Nephi for the purpose of destroying the king, and to place another in his stead, and also of destroying the people of Anti-Nephi-Lehi out of the land.
21 Now when the people saw that they were coming against them they went out to meet them, and prostrated themselves before them to the earth, and began to call on the name of the Lord; and thus they were in this attitude when the Lamanites began to fall upon them, and began to slay them with the sword.
22 And thus without meeting any resistance, they did slay a thousand and five of them; and we know that they are blessed, for they have gone to dwell with their God.
23 Now when the Lamanites saw that their brethren would not flee from the sword, neither would they turn aside to the right hand or to the left, but that they would lie down and perish, and praised God even in the very act of perishing under the sword--
24 Now when the Lamanites saw this they did forbear from slaying them; and there were many whose hearts had swollen in them for those of their brethren who had fallen under the sword, for they repented of the things which they had done.
25 And it came to pass that they threw down their weapons of war, and they would not take them again, for they were stung for the murders which they had committed; and they came down even as their brethren, relying upon the mercies of those whose arms were lifted to slay them.
26 And it came to pass that the people of God were joined that day by more than the number who had been slain; and those who had been slain were righteous people, therefore we have no reason to doubt but what they were saved.
27 And there was not a wicked man slain among them; but there were more than a thousand brought to the knowledge of the truth; thus we see that the Lord worketh in many ways to the salvation of his people.
28 Now the greatest number of those of the Lamanites who slew so many of their brethren were Amalekites and Amulonites, the greatest number of whom were after the order of the Nehors.
29 Now, among those who joined the people of the Lord, there were none who were Amalekites or Amulonites, or who were of the order of Nehor, but they were actual descendants of Laman and Lemuel.
30 And thus we can plainly discern, that after a people have been once enlightened by the Spirit of God, and have had great knowledge of things pertaining to righteousness, and then have fallen away into sin and transgression, they become more hardened, and thus their state becomes worse than though they had never known these things.

The message that the Lord wants my friends to know, is that this state of hardness does not come overnight, but if not resisted it will spread fast. Satan knows that you guys are slipping, and as a matter of fact, he was the one that put the doubts in your hearts to begin with and has been helping you feel more and more angry, bitter, and resentful. The path from where you are is a tough path back, because your minds have been darkened by the cunning of the evil one. It is time to step out of the shadows and into the light. Your Savior is standing with arms open and outstretched, waiting to embrace you and give you happiness and joy that you can't even comprehend now.

I plead with you to decide today to step into the Light and come back home, allowing the atonement to cleanse you and bring about a might change in your hearts.

Craig

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Signs follow those that believe


Doctrine and Covenants 63:9
But, behold, faith cometh not by signs, but signs follow those that believe. https://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testament/dc/63?lang=eng

This is really important to remember in our lives. If we want miracles in our lives we must exercise faith sufficient to the miracle prior to the miracle being performed and seen in our lives.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

See that ye do them

In Stake Conference, Kevin Pierceson of the Seventy, repeated, "if you believe all these things see that ye do them" in both sessions on Saturday and Sunday. It really sunk into my heart. If we know them, why wouldn't we do them? So simple, and yet we find ways to rationalize away our actions and disobedience. Let us be more dligent and more faithful!!!

Mosiah 4:9-10
9 Believe in God; believe that he is, and that he created all things, both in heaven and in earth; believe that he has all wisdom, and all power, both in heaven and in earth; believe that man doth not comprehend all the things which the Lord can comprehend.
10 And again, believe that ye must repent of your sins and forsake them, and humble yourselves before God; and ask in sincerity of heart that he would forgive you; and now, if you believe all these things see that ye do them. https://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/mosiah/4?lang=eng

Craig

Monday, September 11, 2017

Increase our capability to rise

Let us be obedient to the spirit which would make us steady and unwavering. As we do this the Lord will lift us and increase our capability and capacity to become more and eventually become like our Savior, even Jesus Christ.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Key to spiritual growth is obedience to the voice of the Holy Spirit

I just finished again the book, Following the Light of Christ into His Presence, by John Pontius, where this quote is found. This is such a powerful quote. And one that stood out to me everytime I read the book.

Background image by: K S https://flic.kr/p/HhEnmx

The key to spiritual growth is obedience to the voice of the Holy Spirit. This message needs to be blazoned in the sky in letters a thousand feet tall. We consistently underestimate how great a role obedience plays in our spiritual progression. Spiritually, nothing is possible without it, and everything – absolutely everything – is possible with it.

So now the question is, what will we do now? Will we pray to hear and act upon the promptings of the Holy Ghost in a greater capacity, or just continue on as we were before? After we have begun to be obedient, will we open our mouths and bare testimony of the power of obedience to all we come in contact with and help them on their personal journey back to Christ and the Father? We all have our agency to act or to be acted upon.

2 Nephi 2:14
And now, my sons, I speak unto you these things for your profit and learning; for there is a God, and he hath created all things, both the heavens and the earth, and all things that in them are, both things to act and things to be acted upon. https://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/2-ne/2?lang=eng

In Stake Conference today Elder Kevin W. Pierceson of the Seventy spoke and talked about this same topic. He mentioned that we should be agents verses objects that are simply acted upon.

We all have our agency and we must use that agency to choose to obey because all blessings are given based on obedience to that law.

Doctrine and Covenants 130:18-21
18 Whatever principle of intelligence we attain unto in this life, it will rise with us in the resurrection.
19 And if a person gains more knowledge and intelligence in this life through his diligence and obedience than another, he will have so much the advantage in the world to come.
20 There is a law, irrevocably decreed in heaven before the foundations of this world, upon which all blessings are predicated--
21 And when we obtain any blessing from God, it is by obedience to that law upon which it is predicated. https://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testament/dc/130?lang=eng

I don't know about you, but there are many blessings I want from God and I have committed to learn to hear and to obey the voice of the Lord so that I can qualify for these and other blessings He wants to bestow upon me. I pray that you will join me in this great and marvelous journey of obedience.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Yield to the Holy Spirit

Background image by: Carsten Frenzel www.carstenfrenzl.de

Mosiah 3:19
For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, https://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/mosiah/3?lang=eng

The enticings of the Holy Spirit are the words of truth and guidance from the Lord that come into our minds. It can be hard to discern our own voices from those of the spirit working through the light of Christ or those of the darker side. Luckily, we have the words of Mormon preserved in Moroni 7 for the answer to this dilemma.

Moroni 7:15-17
15 For behold, my brethren, it is given unto you to judge, that ye may know good from evil; and the way to judge is as plain, that ye may know with a perfect knowledge, as the daylight is from the dark night.
16 For behold, the Spirit of Christ is given to every man, that he may know good from evil; wherefore, I show unto you the way to judge; for every thing which inviteth to do good, and to persuade to believe in Christ, is sent forth by the power and gift of Christ; wherefore ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of God
17 But whatsoever thing persuadeth men to do evil, and believe not in Christ, and deny him, and serve not God, then ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of the devil; for after this manner doth the devil work, for he persuadeth no man to do good, no, not one; neither do his angels; neither do they who subject themselves unto him. https://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/moro/7?lang=eng

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Yet learned He obedience

This scripture brings so many different feelings. On one hand the suffering he went through is unimaginable and yet on the other hand it gives me great hope that I too can learn obedience by the things that I suffer. In this small way I can become like Him and ultimately be worthy to serve Him on any errand that He might send me on. When we submit ourselves to learn and obey His will, we begin to qualify to be His sons and His daughters. I can not think of anything I want more than this. Let us all learn obedience by the things that we suffer.

Hebrews 5:5-9
5 So also Christ glorified not himself to be made an high priest; but he that said unto him, Thou art my Son, to day have I begotten thee.
6 As he saith also in another place, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.
7 Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared;
8 Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered;
9 And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him; https://www.lds.org/scriptures/nt/heb/5?lang=eng

Craig

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Obedience is the way we build a foundation of truth

I have been desiring to spread the message of obedience to God and His commandments, and this talk is a really good one in helping spread this message.

Background image by: Jim Harmer https://www.facebook.com/harmer/posts/10101016559694954

Reading A Life Founded in Light and Truth - Henry B. Eyring - BYU Speeches in Voice Dream https://speeches.byu.edu/talks/henry-b-eyring_life-founded-light-truth/

A Life Founded in Light and Truth - Ensign July 2001 - ensign Highlights

0.9%:
All of us know that we must build our lives on a solid foundation of truth to be safe. And we are under covenant to be witnesses of truth to others as long as we live. It won’t protect them just to have our witness of truth unless they build their lives on it.

2.6%:
It won’t surprise you that the answer is simple enough for a child to understand but that applying it is easy only to a person who has the heart of a child.


3.3%:
Jesus Christ answered the question of how to build on a foundation of truth with a story. You not only can remember it, but you can visualize it, especially if you’ve ever lived on a floodplain or in tornado country.

“Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:

“And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.

“And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:

“And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it” (Matt. 7:24–27).


7%:
Obedience to commandments is the way we build a foundation of truth.

24.8%:
First comes obedience and then come the confirming assurances, the revelation of truth, and the blessing of light.


25.7%:
We must choose with our agency to obey in faith that the promised blessing will come, that the promise is true because it comes from God.

28.9%:
And now, I, Moroni, would speak somewhat concerning these things; I would show unto the world that faith is things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not, for ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith” (Ether 12:4–6).

Background image by: K S https://flic.kr/p/VB4Mik

43.4%:
The choice to do good is the only way to build a life on the foundation of truth and light.

51.4%:
If we can see them as faithful warriors from the premortal existence, we may also see their claims of independence as a sign of their potential, a sign that they are testing the power of agency which will bring them happiness. That is hard, because we know the risk should they choose sin.

53.3%:
There is an influence of evil in the world, but there is also in the world and across all creation the powerful light of Christ.


56.2%:
But behold, that which is of God inviteth and enticeth to do good continually; wherefore, every thing which inviteth and enticeth to do good, and to love God, and to serve him, is inspired of God.

“Wherefore, take heed, my beloved brethren, that ye do not judge that which is evil to be of God, or that which is good and of God to be of the devil” (Moro. 7:12–14).


83.2%:
In your Church meetings, write down impressions or thoughts that you feel came from God. And, remembering what we have said about building a foundation, think carefully about whether the truth you received requires action. It is by obedience to commandments that we qualify for further revelation of truth and light.

Background image by: David Ruddock https://flic.kr/p/Y7qS9w

85.8%:
God not only loves the obedient, He enlightens them.

91.4%:
The Comforter will lead us to truth and light and will help us obey our Father in Heaven and His Beloved Son. We will come to love Them and those around us as we serve Them, and thus we will keep the great commandments.


94.7%:
A foundation built on truth and illuminated by the light of God will free us from the fear that we might be overcome.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Hurricane Harvey Relief Efforts


Letter from the First Presidency. The long and short of it is for the time being donating to the church's humanitarian fund is what is needed right now verses volunteering. 
_____________________________
From: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints <communications@email.ldschurch.org>
Sent: Friday, September 1, 2017 4:43 PM
Subject: Hurricane Harvey Relief Efforts
To: <cconover2@gmail.com>



From the First Presidency: Dear Brothers and Sisters: Many are expressing interest in helping the thousands of people in the stricken communities in Texas and Louisiana.
Hurricane Harvey Relief Efforts
If you are having trouble viewing this email, pleaseclick here
Dear Brothers and Sisters:
The still-unfolding disaster caused by the torrential rains of Hurricane Harvey has caught the attention of people throughout the United States. Our hearts go out to the thousands who have borne the brunt of this storm, and we are deeply grateful for the acts of unselfish service and the heroic efforts of first responders that have been reported. All who find themselves amid these grave difficulties are in our prayers.
Many are expressing interest in helping the thousands of people in the stricken communities in Texas and Louisiana. We are grateful for all who wish to assist in this effort. If you want to help, please consider the following:
  1. Donate toward the relief effort. Anyone wishing to provide support for the Church's effort to aid those in need is encouraged todonate to the Church's Humanitarian Fund here.
  2. Volunteer. Within the next few days or weeks, volunteers to assist in the massive cleanup effort will be needed, but with rescue efforts still underway, that time has not yet arrived. If you wish to participate, please do not call local Church leaders in Texas and Louisiana or travel to the affected areas right now. To learn about upcoming volunteer opportunities and receive information about needed assistance and its timing, we invite you to visithttps://justserve.org/Houston.
We encourage your continued prayers in behalf of all who are affected by this natural disaster.
The First Presidency
This email has been provided to you by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints because you agreed to receive email communications from the Church tocconover2@gmail.com.
© 2017 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.
Intellectual property of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
LDS Church Office: 5‌0 E. North Tem‌ple St. Salt L‌ake City, Ut‌ah 841‌50
Privacy Policy (Updated 3/1‌8/20‌14)   Rights and Use Information (Updated 9/0‌1/201‌6)
                                                           




Thursday, August 31, 2017

Houston TX Temple Flooding

I have been thinking about this great devastation and my heart goes out to all who have been affected by the hurricane and the flooding. I will continue to pray for angels both seen and unseen to be there lifting their hands in assistance and their heartts in prayer to God.

Check here for updates. This is also the source of the picture. http://www.mormonnewsroom.org/article/latter-day-saints-prepare-hurricane-harvey

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Decide to make room for Jesus

"Each of us is an innkeeper who decides if there is room for Jesus!"

"Consecration is the only surrender which is also a victory. It brings release from the raucous, overpopulated cell block of selfishness and emancipation from the dark prison of pride. Yet instead of striving for greater consecration, it is so easy to go on performing casually in halfhearted compliance as if hoping to “ride to paradise on a golf cart.” (Henry Fairlie, The Seven Deadly Sins, Indiana: University of Notre Dame Press, 1979, p. 125.)

https://www.lds.org/general-conference/1992/10/settle-this-in-your-hearts?lang=eng

I decided to add all my highlights of this talk because it was so good. Enjoy!!

“Settle This in Your Hearts” - Neal A. Maxwell Highlights

9.8%:
They may even pass through our holy temples, but, alas, they do not let the holy temples pass through them.

17.6%:
Small equivocations in parents can produce large deviations in their children!

22.7%:
Casual members are usually very busy with the cares and the things of the world—much as honorable Amulek once was. Called many times, he would not hear. He really knew concerning the truths of the gospel, but Amulek would not acknowledge that he knew. (Alma 10:4–6.)


24.8%:
One common characteristic of the honorable but slack is their disdain for the seemingly unexciting duties of discipleship, such as daily prayer, regular reading of the scriptures, attendance at sacrament meeting, paying a full tithe, and participating in the holy temples.

36.4%:
Brigham Young counseled candidly: “Some do not understand duties which do not coincide with their natural feelings and affections. … There are duties which are above affection.” (Journal of Discourses, 7:65.)


41%:
Some would never sell Jesus for thirty pieces, but they would not give Him their all either!


45.7%:
Still others find it easier to bend their knees than their minds. Exciting exploration is preferred to plodding implementation; speculation seems more fun than consecration, and so is trying to soften the hard doctrines instead of submitting to them. Worse still, by not obeying, these few members lack real knowing. (See John 7:17.)

51.2%:
Only greater consecration will cure ambivalence and casualness in any of us!

55.8%:
We “cannot bear all things now,” but the Lord “will lead [us] along,” as we “give place” in our thoughts and schedules and “give away” our sins, which are the only ways we can begin to make room to receive all that God can give us. (D&C 78:18; D&C 50:4; Alma 32:27, 28; Alma 22:18.)


58%:
Each of us is an innkeeper who decides if there is room for Jesus!


58.5%:
Consecration is the only surrender which is also a victory.

63.5%:
It is not a question of losing our identity but of finding our true identity!

66.7%:
When our minds really catch hold of the significance of Jesus’ atonement, the world’s hold on us loosens. (See Alma 36:18.)


67.6%:
Increased consecration is not so much a demand for more hours of Church work as it is for more awareness of Whose work this really is!

77.6%:
Becoming more like Jesus in thought and behavior is not grinding and repressing, but emancipating and discovering!

84.9%:
Wherefore, settle this in your hearts, that ye will do the things which I shall teach, and command you.” (JST, Luke 14:28.)

Background image by: Einir https://flic.kr/p/YbBEAu
93.1%:
if we shrink from deeper consecration, then we are not worthy of Him who, for our sake, refused to “shrink” in the midst of His deepening agony during the Atonement! (D&C 19:18.)


97.8%:
Brothers and sisters, whatever we embrace instead of Jesus and His work will keep us from qualifying to enter His kingdom and therefore from being embraced by Him. (See Morm. 6:17.)

Craig

Monday, August 28, 2017

Line all the way back to Adam

My daughter, Ashlyn, was playing around on the Family Search app and she was able to go all the way back to Adam. This is pretty cool. You can see Enoch, whose city was caught up to heaven, and Methuselah and Noah. This is really cool, thanks Ashlyn