Sunday, April 16, 2017

We Have to Seek the Lord to Find Him





Sometimes, the circumstances and trials in our life leave us feeling quite isolated and alone.  We believe that God lives and have a testimony that there is a Gospel Plan and yet, we stumble.  We feel lost when things don't quite measure up to what we think of as our ideal life.



Why?  What is it that we are supposed to learn from failure, disease, new situations and the surprises that is our path?!!

Just listened to a talk from a young woman on BYU television in a devotional address that she made regarding just this topic!  Though her disappointments were not mine, it is sure that we have all had disappointments.

I loved the quotes that she used.  Be sure to look for them in the transcript link above.

In searching for that transcript, I discovered the website : BYU Speeches.  Thankfully, I now have a source for many other inspirational talks.  An Easter gift that I can really use, right now.  Remember, Christ perfectly knows our burdens; look for His comfort, His understanding His empathy!

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Renewal and Thoughts of Easter

“We shall rise from mortal death to have life everlasting, because of the atoning sacrifice and resurrection of the Savior.”

My dad with his mother, my Grandma Hall.

Easter Bonnets:  In first grade, the teacher set out crepe paper, cardboard, crayons, and scissors.  With her help and the help of a teacher's aide, we made our hats and adorned them with bows and thought them beautiful.  I'm not sure what the boys did; maybe they got to make Easter baskets?  I love the idea of an Easter Parade, a show of hope and celebration.  (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Easter_bonnet)



Hot Cross Buns:  I left home at the age of 17.  During those first years away, responsible for setting up my own household, I begin to experiment with recipes and cooking.  I read magazines and became inspired and educated by the presentation of food on Easter.  I had never heard of hot-cross buns.  I knew about Ham, Potato Salad; I had grown up with that fare.  I determined to add making the yeast buns to Easter Dinner preparations.  (http://people.com/food/best-easter-hot-cross-buns-recipe/)


Easter Chicks:  I'm not sure that I understood the spiritual significance or connected the significance of little new-born chicks at Easter.  They had been dyed different colors and were furry and warm and chirping a lot.  I don't remember what we did with them after Easter.  We didn't live on a farm, really, though Mother did raise chickens for a while.  We had a garden, too, in the Spring.  I remember a summer of picking beans.  The rows had been criss-crossed, so that we could pick in the shady tunnels, from the inside.


As a young child, I may not have realized the significance of all the trappings of Easter, but as I grew older, I began to associate the gift of new clothes (pastel colors) with the idea of the Resurrection.  And as the years passed, I realized that my Mother, who had lost a child before I was born, who had lost her mother in a car accident...that Easter, though a time of hoping to be reunited with loved ones, down the road, was also a time of sadness and loss, for her.  One Easter morning, she was on her way to Church and just down the dirt road from our house, she saw my sister's dog, runned over and stretched out in the middle of the road, dead.  Her heart was softened, the tears hot and bitter.  She never did make it to church; the grief and loss had completely overtaken her.

  “It is our firm belief that [the Atonement] is a reality,” he testified, “and nothing is more important in the entire divine plan of salvation than the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ. We believe that salvation comes because of the atonement. In its absence the whole plan of creation would come to naught. … Without this atoning sacrifice, temporal death would be the end, and there would be no resurrection and no purpose in our spiritual lives. There would be no hope of eternal life.”2 (President Howard Hunter)





Sunday, March 05, 2017

Saturday is a Special Day

There is a children's song that we used to sing in Primary; it goes like this:

Saturday is a special day, It's the day we get ready for Sunday.  (Primary Children's Songbook)


 So, Sunday is the sacred day.  But spiritually and physically it is more than okay to start preparing on Saturday for the "Holy Day" of "peace and rest".  

Put your house in order, at least to the extent that you know you have something ready to wear for church and you know where your shoes are.  I even dumped my purse out on the carpet last night and only put back in, the things I would need in my purse to attend church.  Maybe that seems a little weird, but it's a woman thing to do.  As I left this morning (Sunday), I also threw in a Rice Crispy Treat and a cheese stick in case my blood sugar started dropping.


"Peace and rest":  Rest from your normal routine, from loud television shows, from conflicts and stress.  Rest from the "everyday", worldly cares.  It actually is a relief to not have to go shopping!

In Sacrament meeting today, someone was bearing their testimony and in her words, I could feel the effort she was making to drop her burdens at the feet of the Savior.  She had had a busy, crazy, stressful week; she had ended that week in tears and I could feel her searching for peace as she spoke.  

It is the Savior who can pull us through those hard times, through adversity and troubled waters, through grief and pain.  We (I) so need a day to be reminded of this, to be reminded to look up to the Heavens for strength, inspiration, and rest. 

Here is what I jotted down on my church bulletin as I listened to the soul's plea as the sister worked through her grief and came out on the other side.

I wrote, "Things to do on Sunday":  
  • FamilySearch indexing 
  • Write a missionary
  • Scan family pics to put on FamilySearch
  • Read the scriptures or talks from conference
  • play uplifting and joyful music 
  • Write in my journal (I don't have a journal, but I have a booklet that could become a journal.
  • Pray for our soldiers and sailors (my granddaughter is in the Coast Guard.
  • Pray for those who weren't able to make it to church this Sunday
  • Send someone in the ward a birthday card or an inspirational happy card or whatever kind you feel like they need.
  • Make a plan to do your visiting teaching.
  • Touch bases with family.  If they are far away, call or Skype.  If they are closer, eat a meal together.  Reach out to family members or those who live alone.
This was fast Sunday and since I'm a diabetic, I don't fast the 24 hour way.  Someone suggested that I fast in other ways.  For example, I thought about not watching any television that would detract from the spirit.  Not go out to a store or dine out.  (I don't usually do this anyway on Sunday, but sometimes I do, so I guess I am still needing to work on that goal as well as others).

After writing these thoughts down, I will go back and put in a few pictures so as to make it more vibrant and shareable.  Hope you have a Happy and Fulfilling Sunday. 
Remember, if you need to take a nap or have some private time, add that type of goal on your Sunday To Do List, too!







 

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Dated but Timeless "How to LIve a Successful LIfe"

President Tanner is deceased, but he had a great sense of humor; spiritually, he was a giant whose words can touch hearts in every dispensation.

https://youtu.be/7xIvFgRhI10


Thursday, January 26, 2017

Scriptures: Search, Read, Ponder, Pray...and SHARE!

How do I feel right now, tonight?  


A moment of panic when I found out that not only does my daughter has Type A influenza, but her baby girl also has it.



 

An evening of feeling very tired, exhaustion of a spiritual or physical dimension? 




A desire to feel better tomorrow, a hope for strength (mental and physical), the belief and growth of belief that my Father in Heaven will not fail me.  


I looked for scriptures in the Topical Guide using the phrase "living water".  Here is the first one that caught my eye.

John 7:37:  In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. 
Christ is the living water!  The source that never goes dry.  I was thirsting this evening for relief, for peace, and for strength, also.  By turning to the scriptures, I asked and received the reassurance that God is in His Heaven, that "all is well".  God loved my children first,  and perfectly.  He does not expect me to be in all places and be all things to all people.  

 STUDY QUESTIONS
1.  What do the scriptures have to say about fear, depression, and other negative feelings that are part of our current experience ?
2.  Did Christ experience thirst, exhaustion, rejection, disappointment, and concern?  When and Where?  
3.  Is disease a physical malady or a mental and spiritual unwellness?  Or both?
4.  What part does hope play in our healing?  Is it enough to believe in Christ's power to save?  Where does faith come in? and Why do we want to develop faith?  

Other living water scriptures:
  • 1 Nephi 11:25
  • Revelations 21:6
  • D & C 63:23 

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

A New Way to Look at the Book of Mormon

I think I want to begin a new project as pertains to my Book of Mormon study:  Read it as if it were the first time that I ever put my eyes on it.  (In some parts of the Book of Mormon this may be true, though I believe that I have at some time or another, read it through at least once--but do we read/inhale every word, normally----or do we "scan" through some passages, quickly, already)?

Is it even important to read every single word, or rather to just pick and choose themes?  So what I am desiring, is this:  I want to see the words, the intent, the spirit of the book, as if I were a non-member and see how it affects me.  I am sure, or fairly sure this is impossible, as I have been steeped in the gospel for nearly my whole life.

Maybe what I want to do is just get a fresh look.  "Dig About the Roots" and TRY to imagine the import the message of the Book of Mormon for me and for mankind and womankind, in general.  I need oxygen and I need to refresh or even re-set my relationship with the Book of Mormon.  My spiritual relationship with the gospel of Christ needs fertilizing, sunlight, the "Light of Christ", and in general, a fresh perspective.

We say in the Genealogical Society board meetings, sometimes, that we need "fresh blood" in the membership.  We talk of how we can attract those people that will come into the leadership and "stir things up" a bit--bring new ideas, new ways of looking at things.

I do not plan to discard the knowledge and relationship that I've already acquired with the Book of Mormon--I just plan to give those roots, a bit of oxygen and search them for ways to refresh my testimony...search in ways that will lift me to new understanding.

The best way of course to accomplish this is to apply the discoveries of disciple-ship to my daily walk.  Bring the principles forth and liken them to my situation.  Example:

And we will nourish again the trees of the vineyard, and we will trim up the branches thereof; and we will pluck from the trees those branches which are ripened, that must perish, and cast them into the fire.
"Trim up the branches" = pruning.  Right?  So I can eliminate from my life those things which are less useful in obtaining spirituality, yes?  Cast into the fire those practices in my life that impede my spiritual progress.  Sometimes I practice this principle by self-correcting my course.  For example, I am partially successful in not reading a novel when it begins to go into way too much detail about the love life of a couple.  I just toss it in the trash bin if the language is too salty, the scenes too hot and steamy...etc.  What about my own language?  Is it appropriate and meaningful in good ways?  Or do I occasionally sink to promulgating confidential information?  Am I a gossip?

So application of the principles of righteousness in the Book of Mormon have to be customized to our particular personality and challenges.  That is why we have to read the scriptures over and over and over; we change, we forget, we need new experiences to understand the import of the revelations that await us in the teachings of the Book of Mormon, the Bible, and other sacred writ.

So my plan is both to approach the Book of Mormon from "where I am coming from", but also from the "where is God coming from" and how the Book is a "shaker and mover" in the lives of investigators.

Links:


I hope that one of these links will help you and me to accomplish our study and build our testimony of the Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Christ.  





Saturday, July 30, 2016

I'm feeling discouraged about the political scene right now.  From the media I get the impression that it is a foregone conclusion that Hillary R. Clinton is considered to have the best chance to be elected President.  She and her husband and associates have put in years of work and effort and chicanery to cultivate the place that they are in today.

They represent the "one-world" viewpoint.  However, I don't just hold them responsible...(Former) Governor Jeb Bush and others in the Republican Party let their party down this time because they didn't attend the Convention and they haven't supported the people's candidate, Donald Trump.  I they will be sorry.  We only have 99 days left in this campaign.  Where are there voices for "less government", now?!!  Senator McCain can be forgiven; he isn't a spring chicken after all.  However, there are so many who failed the RNC in their attempt to produce support for...(Not for Donald Trump, but for the party in which we had put our hopes, for the platform that represents

an option

to the left wing, liberal, socialized viewpoint of Hillary and her Crew (pirate crewe, that is)!