Monday, November 6, 2017

Through a Glass Darkly



I Will Bring the Light of the Gospel into My Home
"When we see our own imperfections more clearly, we are less inclined to view others “through a glass, darkly.” We want to use the light of the gospel to see others as the Savior does—with compassion, hope, and charity. The day will come when we will have a complete understanding of others’ hearts and will be grateful to have mercy extended to us—just as we extend charitable thoughts and words to others during this life."


Corinthians 13: 11-13

11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.
13 And now abideth faithhopecharity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.
Corinthians 13:4-6
Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;
"President Thomas S. Monson counseled: “In a hundred small ways, all of you wear the mantle of charity. … Rather than being judgmental [or] critical of [one] another, may we have the pure love of Christ for our fellow travelers in this journey through life. May we recognize that each one is doing her [or his] best to deal with the challenges which come [her or his] way, and may we strive to do our best to help out.”12
(Art by Jeremy Lipking)


Sunday, October 29, 2017

Do We Trust Him?

Do We Trust Him? 
Hard Is Good




Members of the Godhead are no strangers to hard things. God the Father sacrificed His Only Begotten Son to the terrible suffering of the Atonement, including death by crucifixion. The scriptures say Jesus Christ learned “obedience by the things which he suffered” (Hebrews 5:8). He voluntarily suffered the agony of the Atonement. The Holy Ghost must be long-suffering to prompt, warn, and guide us, only to sometimes be ignored, misinterpreted, or forgotten.

In the world of nature, hard is part of the circle of life. It is hard for a baby chick to hatch out of that tough eggshell. But when someone tries to make it easier, the chick does not develop the strength necessary to live. In a similar way, the struggle of a butterfly to escape the cocoon strengthens it for the life it will live.
Through these examples, we see that 'hard' is the constant! We all have challenges. The variable is our reaction to the 'hard'.
Do we have sufficient faith to trust that He will visit us in our afflictions (see Mosiah 24:14), that He will contend with those that contend with us (see Isaiah 49:252 Nephi 6:17), and that He will consecrate our afflictions for our gain? (see 2 Nephi 2:2).
Brothers and sisters, we can have the faith to trust Him! He wants what is best for us (see Moses 1:39). He will answer our prayers (see D&C 112:10). He will keep His promises (see D&C 1:38). He has the power to keep those promises (see Alma 37:16). He knows everything! 
And most important, 
He knows what is best for us (see Isaiah 55:8–9).
My Child,

You may not know me, but I know everything about you.   Psalm 139:1 

I know when you sit down and when you rise up.   Psalm 139:2

I am familiar with all your ways.   Psalm 139:3

Even the very hairs on your head are numbered.   Matthew 10:29-31

For you were made in my image.   Genesis 1:27

In me you live and move and have your being.   Acts 17:28 

For you are my offspring.    Acts 17:28 

I knew you even before you were conceived.   Jeremiah 1:4-5 

I chose you when I planned creation.  Ephesians 1:11-12 

You were not a mistake, for all your days are written in my book.   Psalm 139:15-16

I determined the exact time of your birth and where you would live.   Acts 17:26 

You are fearfully and wonderfully made.   Psalm 139:14 

I knit you together in your mother's womb.   Psalm 139:13 

And brought you forth on the day you were born.   Psalm 71:6

I have been misrepresented by those who don't know me.   John 8:41-44

I am not distant and angry, but am the complete expression of love.  1 John 4:16 

And it is my desire to lavish my love on you.   1 John 3:1 

Simply because you are my child and I am your Father.   1 John 3:1

I offer you more than your earthly father ever could.   Matthew 7:11 

For I am the perfect father.   Matthew 5:48 

Every good gift that you receive comes from my hand.   James 1:17

For I am your provider and I meet all your needs.   Matthew 6:31-33 

My plan for your future has always been filled with hope.   Jeremiah 29:11 

Because I love you with an everlasting love.   Jeremiah 31:3 

My thoughts toward you are countless as the sand on the seashore.  Psalm 139:17-18

And I rejoice over you with singing.   Zephaniah 3:17 

I will never stop doing good to you.   Jeremiah 32:40 

For you are my treasured possession.  Exodus 19:5 

I desire to establish you with all my heart and all my soul.   Jeremiah 32:41 

And I want to show you great and marvelous things.   Jeremiah 33:3 

If you seek me with all your heart, you will find me.   Deuteronomy 4:29 

Delight in me and I will give you the desires of your heart.   Psalm 37:4 

For it is I who gave you those desires.   Philippians 2:13 

I am able to do more for you than you could possibly imagine.   Ephesians 3:20 

For I am your greatest encourager.   2 Thessalonians 2:16-17

I am also the Father who comforts you in all your troubles.   2 Corinthians 1:3-4 

When you are brokenhearted, I am close to you.   Psalm 34:18 

As a shepherd carries a lamb, I have carried you close to my heart.   Isaiah 40:11 

One day I will wipe away every tear from your eyes.   Revelation 21:3-4 

And I'll take away all the pain you have suffered on this earth.   Revelation 21:3-4 

I am your Father, and I love you even as I love my son, Jesus.    John 17:23 

For in Jesus, my love for you is revealed.    John 17:26

He is the exact representation of my being.   Hebrews 1:3 

He came to demonstrate that I am for you, not against you.    Romans 8:31 

And to tell you that I am not counting your sins.    2 Corinthians 5:18-19

Jesus died so that you and I could be reconciled.    2 Corinthians 5:18-19 

His death was the ultimate expression of my love for you.   1 John 4:10

I gave up everything I loved that I might gain your love.    Romans 8:31-32 

If you receive the gift of my son Jesus, you receive me.    1 John 2:23

And nothing will ever separate you from my love again.   Romans 8:38-39

Come home and I'll throw the biggest party heaven has ever seen.   Luke 15:7 

I have always been Father, and will always be Father.    Ephesians 3:14-15 

My question is…Will you be my child?     John 1:12-13 

I am waiting for you.    
Luke 15:11-32
Words sent to us by....
Our Loving, Heavenly Father

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Bearers of Heavenly Light


Bearers of Heavenly Light

Jesus Christ said, “I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in [the] darkness, but shall have the light of life.”3
What does this mean?
Simply this: He who humbly follows Jesus Christ will experience and share in His light. And that light will grow until it eventually dispels even the most profound darkness.
It means that there is a power, a strong influence, that emanates from the Savior. It proceeds “forth from the presence of God to fill the immensity of space.”4 Because this power enlightens, uplifts, and illuminates our lives, the scriptures often call it light, but it is also referred to as spirit and truth.
In the Doctrine and Covenants we read, “The word of the Lord is truth, and whatsoever is truth is light, and whatsoever is light is Spirit, even the Spirit of Jesus Christ.”5
This profound insight—that light is spirit, which is truth, and that this light shines upon every soul who comes into the world—is as important as it is hopeful. The Light of Christ enlightens and saturates the souls of all who hearken to the voice of the Spirit.6
The Light of Christ fills the universe.
It fills the earth.
And it can fill every heart.
“God is no respecter of persons.”7 His light is available to all—great or small, rich or poor, privileged or disadvantaged.
If you open your mind and heart to receive the Light of Christ and humbly follow the Savior, you will receive more light. Line upon line, here a little and there a little, you will gather more light and truth into your souls until darkness has been banished from your life.8
God will open your eyes.
God will give you a new heart.
God’s love, light, and truth will cause dormant things to spring to life, and you will be reborn into a newness of life in Christ Jesus.9
The Lord has promised, “If your eye be single to my glory, your whole bodies shall be filled with light, and there shall be no darkness in you; and that body which is filled with light comprehendeth all things.”10
This is the ultimate remedy for spiritual sickness. 
Darkness vanishes in the presence of light.



Sunday, October 15, 2017

That Your Joy Might Be Full



 Yea, verily I say unto you, if ye will come unto me ye shall have eternal life. Behold, mine arm of mercy is extended towards you, and whosoever will come, him will I receive; and blessed are those who come unto me.




A recent news headline reads, “Disasters rock the nation [and] world.”1From hurricanes and floods to heat waves and droughts, from wildfires and earthquakes to wars and devastating diseases, it seems “the whole earth [is] in commotion.”2
Millions of people have been displaced, and countless lives have been disrupted by these challenges. Contention in families and communities as well as inner struggles with fear, doubt, and unfulfilled expectations also leave us in turmoil. It can be difficult to feel the joy that Lehi taught is the purpose of life.3 We have all asked at times: “Where can I turn for peace? Where is my solace … ?”4 We wonder, how do I find joy despite the difficulties of mortal life?
The answer may seem too simple, but it has proven true from the days of Adam. Lasting joy is found in focusing on our Savior, Jesus Christ, and living the gospel as demonstrated and taught by Him. The more we learn about, have faith in, and emulate Jesus Christ, the more we come to understand that He is the source of all healing, peace, and eternal progress. He invites each of us to come unto Him,5 an invitation that President Henry B. Eyring has characterized as “the most important invitation anyone could accept."


What brings you joy? The sight of your loved ones at the end of a long day? The satisfaction of a job done well? The light in someone’s eyes when you share their burden? The words of a hymn that reaches deep into your heart? The handclasp of a close friend? Take a private moment to reflect on your blessings, and then find ways to share them. As you reach out to serve and lift your brothers and sisters within your neighborhood or throughout this world that is in so much commotion, you will feel greater peace and healing and even progress.
Come unto Him. I testify that as you center your life on Jesus Christ, you will find joy in your circumstances, whatever they may be. Indeed, “He, only One,”22 is the answer. Make time and take time to come to know Jesus Christ through studying diligently, developing greater faith in Him, and striving to become ever more like Him. As we do so, we too will be moved to say... “God be thanked for the matchless gift of His divine Son.”23 
In the blessed and sacred name of Jesus Christ, amen.




Thursday, October 12, 2017

Turn to the Lord

Turn to the Lord



Elder Richard G. Scott taught this eternal truth:
 “True enduring happiness with the accompanying strength, courage, and capacity to overcome the most challenging difficulties comes from a life centered in Jesus Christ. … There is no guarantee of overnight results, but there is absolute assurance that, in the Lord’s time, solutions will come, peace will prevail, and emptiness will be filled.”


Elder Dallin H. Oaks has taught: “Healing blessings come in many ways, each suited to our individual needs, as known to Him who loves us best. Sometimes a ‘healing’ cures our illness or lifts our burden. But sometimes we are ‘healed’ by being given strength or understanding or patience to bear the burdens placed upon us.”




Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Wilt Thou Cause That My Eyes Will Be Opened



Lord, Wilt Thou Cause That My Eyes May Be Opened



I witness that through the power of Jesus Christ, we become able to look spiritually beyond what we see literally. As we remember Him and have His Spirit with us, our eyes of understanding will be opened. Then the great reality of the divinity within every one of us will be more powerfully impressed upon our hearts. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.








Sunday, December 18, 2016

Gifts of Peace




Gifts of Peace

Some of us live in beautiful and peaceful surroundings, yet we are experiencing inner turmoil. Others feel peace and perfect serenity in the midst of great personal loss, tragedy, and continuing trials.
To all who have come into mortality, the Savior said, “In the world ye shall have tribulation.”  Yet He gave this wonderful promise to His disciples during His mortal ministry: “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you.”  It is a comfort to know that this promise of personal peace continues for all of His covenant disciples today.
John 16:33
 33 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 14:27
27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
It is a promise given even on the very night of His birth. When heavenly messengers heralded the birth of the Savior, they declared, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace.
Luke 2:14
 14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

Still, still, still,
One can hear the falling snow.
For all is hushed,
The world is sleeping,
Holy Star its vigil keeping.
Still, still, still,
One can hear the falling snow.

Sleep, sleep, sleep,
'Tis the eve of our Saviour's birth.
The night is peaceful all around you,
Close your eyes,
Let sleep surround you.
Sleep, sleep, sleep,
'Tis the eve of our Saviour's birth.

Dream, dream, dream,
Of the joyous day to come.
While guardian angels without number,
Watch you as you sweetly slumber.
Dream, dream, dream,
Of the joyous day to come.

(Traditional Austrian Christmas Lullaby)