Sunday, January 31, 2016

Lovingly bold

I was talking with my husband about how bold Captain Moroni was. There are specific times throughout the war chapters in Alma where he doesn't hold back or beat around the bush at all. When he is chastising Pahoran about not sending sufficient resources or men in their time of need he says in Alma 60:7 "Can you think to sit upon your thrones in a state of thoughtless stupor, while your enemies are spreading the work of death around you?" That is so bold. Some people could get pretty offended and would even consider Captain Moroni's actions as rude, however, his boldness comes from his intense love that he has for the Lord, for his liberty and for his family. My mission president always honored Captain Moroni and he would try to emulate him. Something that he would always say to us was that being lovingly bold was the most undeveloped Christ-like attribute that people strive to have. He would refer to the scripture that says "use boldness, but not overbearance" and always show forth an increase of love. Captain Moroni was described in Alma 48:17 "If all men had been, and were, and ever would be, like unto Moroni, behold, the very powers of hell would have been shaken forever; yea, the devil would never have power over the hearts of the children of men." I think our Heavenly Father wants us to be bold but with love as our only intention in our boldness. Heavenly Father doesn't ever want us to be rude to others but we can follow the example of Moroni of to what intensity we should defend our rights, our liberties, our religions and our families. I am so grateful that that excerpt is in there and I hope that I can be like Captain Moroni in being lovingly bold. 

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Luke 7:38

I was reading today in Luke 7 about the woman who was washing Jesus' feet, in verse 38 it says "And stood at His feet behind Him weeping, and began to wash His feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and annointed them with the ointment." The pharisee that Jesus was having dinner with thought "This man, if he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth him: for she is a sinner." The rest of the scriptures are as followed: And Jesus answering said unto him, Simon, I have somewhat to say unto thee. And he saith, Master, say on.
 41 There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty.
 42 And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell me therefore, which of them will love him most?
 43 Simon answered and said, I suppose that he, to whom he forgave most. And he said unto him, Thou hast rightly judged.
 44 And he turned to the woman, and said unto Simon, Seest thou this woman? I entered into thine house, thou gavest me no water for my feet: but she hath washed my feet with tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head.
 45 Thou gavest me no kiss: but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss my feet.
 46 My head with oil thou didst not anoint: but this woman hath anointed my feet with ointment.
 47 Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little.
 48 And he said unto her, Thy sins are forgiven.
 49 And they that sat at meat with him began to say within themselves, Who is this that forgiveth sins also?
 50 And he said to the woman, Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace.
There were so many thoughts that came to me as I read these scriptures. First of all I thought of the debt that I have had forgiven me and how that relates to my daily worship of God. I need to repent because the worship that I should be rendering to the Lord should be greater than what it is now. I have been given so much in my life and I want to get to that point where I am constantly worshiping the Lord with every breath that I take. My daily scripture study should be treated as my daily sustenance and should also be treated with more worship. 
How am I prepare to worship the Lord on the Sabbath? Do I read the lessons beforehand so that I can answer more adequately? Are all of my desires on the altar of sacrifice? Everything that I do should be with remembrance of the Lord.  
I want to be like this woman who understand the debt that she wants to be paid and taken care of and after I am forgiven, I want to worship the Lord with all of my heart, might, mind and strength. I also want to share what I have experienced and learned for myself. 
President Hunter says that "a great indicator of our own personal conversion is our desire to share the Gospel."  
I am so grateful for the scriptures and how they enable us to feel the Spirit who inspires us to change and turn to God. I am so grateful for the Atonement and for the great changes that I have seen in my own life and in the life of others. I am grateful that there is a time between our pre-earth life and our post-earth life to prepare to meet God. I am so grateful for this probationary state. I am grateful that healing comes as we become converted to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I am grateful for the Prophets who are inspired men, called by God to be his mouthpiece. I am grateful for personal revelation and I know that we are entitled to receive for ourselves as we follow the path of Jesus Christ, more fully after we are baptized. I am grateful for my mission and for the undeniable experiences I had about God's love for us and His infinite Atonement. I love you all and I leave this with you in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Putting it all together: Matthew 4

Something that I had learned on my mission that had changed the way that I viewed the commandments of God was the story of when Christ started his ministry soon after His 40 day fast and was then tempted by the devil. In Matthew chapter 4 it talks about how Christ fasted for forty days and was then greatly tempted by the devil but He was able to overcome all temptations. I received revelation on my mission that Christ was able to overcome these temptations because He had fasted for 40 days. I believe and have come to know for myself that obedience enables us to receive power on high to resist temptation and to withstand the fiery darts of the adversary. When we are obedient to God's commandments, we show God that we know where we stand with Him and that we are weak without Him. There are several prophets throughout the Bible and the Book of Mormon that testify that Christ is their light and their strength, that without Him they are nothing. That is a personal goal that I have: to fully rely on the grace and the Atonement of Jesus Christ.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Putting it All Together: Alma 30-35

I was reading in Alma chapter 34 this week and I found something new that I haven't noticed before. I was reading the account of Amulek and his exhortation to pray in various places, but most importantly, to always have a prayer in your heart. And then I came across verse 28 where it says that if we turn away the poor and the needy and if we don't impart our substance to those who stand in need then our prayers will profit us nothing. The Holy Spirit impressed upon me the importance of kindness and charity, which is the essence of pure religion. Our obedience and our prayers will not matter if we do not have charity for those around us. If we can focus on that then we can understand the true order of prayer which is to pray for the welfare of those around us and how our natures are meant to turn outwards instead of inwards. Our prayers are meant to help us turn towards our Father in heaven which in turn help us to turn outwards to develop the Christ-like attribute of charity. I'm realizing more and more the importance of charity.