My friends...don't buy into the garbage that Satan spreads around. It's nothing but psychological warfare and he is a master at that. BUT! You are stronger than him. Don't ever forget that.
Do you know what a "mote" is?
A tiny piece of a substance. A tiny piece! Have you ever thought about what that means? The Savior is instructing us that before we can even talk about removing the teeniest tiniest speck of a substance out of someone else's eye, we have to first remove the gigantic, hefty beam from our own eye.
I don't know about you, but I have about a zillion giant beams sticking out of my eyes.
Not casting unrighteous judgments upon people is hard, I don't care who you are. Because we are all imperfect beings, we all have those moments in which we are judging someone unrighteously. I add the word "unrighteously" because there are those times in which we have to judge people and situations in order to keep ourselves or our families safe.
"Now these are the words which Jesus taught his disciples that they should say unto the people.
But for the most part, the judgments that we make either in our minds, our words, or our actions, are judgments that we should not be making. We should instead be looking for ways in which we can serve the person we are casting judgment upon. Nothing brings you closer to someone than serving them.
I have put together a lyric video for today's song because the words are very powerful and will cause you to do some real soul searching. It's a good kind of soul searching and you won't regret doing it. I hope that as you listen to this song and read the words, you will do so with an open heart, asking the Lord, "What can I do better? How can I stop myself from judging others unrighteously and find ways to serve more instead?"
Who Am I? Performed by Nik Day
Well, no matter. Since I am a couple of weeks behind on my update, I think I will just do the format that I did in my last post, which I actually really liked a lot. Bullet points are great to read quickly and get the point across.
From my Religion Class:
Regarding the Ministry of Christ in the Americas:
*Did you know that Jesus Christ came to the American continents after he died on the cross? He did! Isn't that amazing?
In the Introduction of the Book of Mormon it says this...
"The crowning event recorded in the Book of Mormon is the personal ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ among the Nephites soon after his resurrection. It puts forth the doctrines of the gospel, outlines the plan of salvation, and tells men what they must do to gain peace in this life and eternal salvation in the life to come." [i]
Jesus Christ visited the people living in America after he was resurrected. I know that this happened. How do I know that? Because I have had a special witness from the Holy Spirit telling me that it did. How did I find out about it in the first place? I read about it in the Book of Mormon. 3rd Nephi to be exact (Chapters 10-27) You should check it out. It's ah-mazing.
Regarding Obedience to God's Prophets & the Commandments:
*I know that God speaks through His prophets and I know that we have a living prophet today. Just as God spoke to prophets such as Moses and Abraham, so he speaks to Thomas S. Monson today. Isn't that a wonderful gift from our Heavenly Father? That tells me that He loves me enough to not let me flounder down here on earth without help from above.
"What I the Lord have spoken, I have spoken, and I excuse not myself; and though the heaven and the earth pass away, my word shall not pass away, but shall all be fulfilled, whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is the same." -D&C 1:38
I testify that Christ directs His church by giving instruction to the prophet. Sometimes the things that we hear from the prophets may be hard to hear or confusing. That is when we have the wonderful opportunity to take that something, whatever it may be, to the Lord in humble prayer. We have the agency to do that. We don't have to just follow blindly. Sometimes the Lord won't give us the reason behind the problem, but what He can give us is peace; peace in knowing that the He will never allow His prophet to lead us astray.
"We would do well to investigate what the Lord has revealed to His prophets." -Kevin R. Duncan
Investigate. What a perfect word to describe what we should do with the counsel we receive from our prophet and other leaders. May I add another word to that though?
The Lord wants you to be at peace. He can help you feel peace about His teachings and the teachings of His prophets. But we have to go about finding the answers in the way that He has instructed us to do and that includes talking to the Lord through prayer.
From my General Studies class:
*We are the ones who are responsible for our own spiritual & temporal well-being.
And here is one of my favorite quotes from this lesson:
"The development of our spiritual nature should concern us most. Spirituality is the highest acquisition of the soul, the divine in man...It is the consciousness of victory over self and of communion with the infinite. It is spirituality alone which really gives one the best in life." -David O. McKay
Want to learn more about self-reliance for yourself? Check out this website.
*Working increases your sense of self-worth.
And my favorite quote from this lesson:
I love the temple.
It is a place of peace, solace, and love. It is where I can feel my Heavenly Father's love more clearly than any other place on earth. I feel my Savior there. I feel connected to loved ones who have passed on from this life.
The temple is the closest place to heaven on earth.
I have made it a goal to go to the temple at least once a week and for the most part, I have been able to keep that goal for quite a while now. I testify to you that going to the temple often makes a very real and powerful difference in your day to day living. I know that we hear that all the time from our leaders, but my friends, IT IS TRUE! I have tried it! I have felt it!
I have felt more calm when problems with my children arise.
I have felt more able to conquer fear and anxiety about the future.
I have felt a greater desire to serve others.
I have been able to accomplish the things that I feel God would like me to do every day.
I have felt more love in my life.
Now here is my challenge for you...
**If you haven't been to the temple for a while...get there! Plan a time and get there! You can do this. I promise.
I guarantee if you make time for the temple in your life, you will always be able to accomplish the important things in your life.
**If you are currently without a temple recommend, work towards getting one. It is hard work. Satan will be there to challenge your valiant efforts, without fail. BUT, you are stronger than him. You are a child of God with power beyond measure.
Through the Atonement of our Savior, Jesus Christ, YOU have the power to overcome all of the things that are keeping you from the temple.
-Loss of faith
You can do it. The Savior will give you strength.
Go to the temple with an open heart and mind. Go with the intent to just feel God's love for you. It may take more than one visit to receive answers to your questions, in fact, it probably will take more than one visit. But answers will come. Peace will come.
I Feel Heaven Here- Catherine Papworth
Click here to read the article on LDSLiving.com
I sincerely hope that you hopped over to the LDS Living site to read the rest of Brother McLean's story. There are so many vital lessons that we can learn from his experience. I know that is one of the reasons we are here on this earth together--to learn from one another. We all have trials and hard times and we all have the opportunity to learn things from listening to someone else share life-altering experiences.
“It was like somebody decided to bolt heaven shut,” McLean explains. “I started to wonder, What if I’ve gotten it all wrong? What if I got the church thing wrong? What if I got Heavenly Father wrong? I kept thinking this would end—that there would be some peace that would come or some answers that would start trickling down. But they didn’t. I couldn’t believe I was saying it out loud, but I was thinking about an exit strategy. It was so painful.”
Have you ever been in this position? Have you ever had a question (or multiple questions) and felt like you have prayed and prayed and no answer was received? I've been there myself and I agree with Brother McLean--it's a painful experience.
I also love how Brother McLean shared that he read a book about Mother Teresa which talked about a 49-year faith crisis that she went through. Forty-nine years? Mother Teresa? What is that all about? How could someone as pure and holy as Mother Teresa have a 49-year faith crisis? What this tells me is that none of us are immune from questions, doubt, and loss of faith. It can happen to anyone at any time, no matter how strong your faith is.
“I decided to recommit,” he says. “I’d wait on the Lord and look for answers that satisfied both my heart and mind. I’d attend church and not escape to the parking lot when I’d hear things that broke my heart or just made me feel like I was not where I truly belonged. I’d show up and shut up and listen and wait.”
Sometimes answers come quickly. Often times they take weeks or months and sometimes they even take years. There is also the very real possibility that the answer you seek may never come in this life. The timing of our answers is not up to us. The timing of our answers is in the very capable hands of our loving Heavenly Father. He knows the timing that is best for each of us and we have to learn how to trust in that timing.
But it was the perspective of John the Baptist that especially impacted McLean. “John the Baptist had a faith crisis that goes beyond anything I’ve experienced,” he says. “While he’s locked in prison, about to be executed, he tells some of his disciples to find Jesus and ask Him, ‘Are you the one who was to come? Or should we look for another?’ He’s wondering if, after all he had done, he had gotten it all wrong.”
The perfect answer that was designed just for him.
That is how a God who loves His children answers His children--with answers that are perfectly designed for each and every child. I know this to be true.
My friends, I know that we can receive answers to even the most challenging of questions. I also know that if the time is not right for us to receive an answer to a specific question then we can be blessed with peace in knowing that all will be well in the end.
Today's Songs for the Sabbath post is taking on a little bit different format. I had previously started writing a post on "Heavenly Homesickness" which reminded me of the song "A Reason for the World" by Mercy River. So I am combining the two today for this post. I hope it touches your spirit and helps you have a wonderful Sabbath Day. xoxo-Desirae
Have you ever had one of those "blah" days where you just could not put your finger on what was wrong?
Or maybe you are feeling a little sad or depressed but don't really know why?
(Raising both hands in the air and waving wildly) Me too! I think it is safe to say that everyone has had at least one day like this,
but more than likely it has been a lot more than just one day of his/her life.
Why do you think we have days like this?
A few months ago, while attending a girls' camp, I had a thought strike me with such force that I just could not stop thinking about it.
I shared it with the girls who were in attendance at the camp and I have been wanting to write a post about it ever since then,
but just could not carve out the time to do it.
Well, I am carving the time away now because I feel like it needs to be shared.
The thought that came to me with such impact was this:
What if on those "blah" days or those sad and depressed days,
you are experiencing a level of homesickness?
Such as, your spirit is homesick and longing to be back
in the presence of your Heavenly parents?
and it still does to this day. Of course our spirits are going to experience homesickness!
We came to this world after living in another realm, a place with beauty beyond description.
We lived there as spirit children with our families, friends, and our Heavenly Father and Heavenly Mother.
We spent time with our Heavenly Parents.
We were taught by Them.
Loved by Them.
Strengthened by Them.
"Our eternal home is our ultimate destination. A proper yearning for home can prevent our getting lost in detours or paths that lead us away...
The most attractive home that we will ever share will be that abode with our families with appropriate relationship to our Heavenly Father and his Son, Jesus Christ." -Marvin J. Ashton
I hope that you will enjoy the video that I put together and that you will take some time on this beautiful Sabbath day to ponder our heavenly home where our Father and Mother are waiting for us with open arms and where we will be able to fall at the feet of our Savior, Jesus Christ and feel of His absolute and infinite love for us.
Reason for the World- Mercy River
I am loving my second chance at life.
Every day is an opportunity to do good and to be a little better than the day before.
I love being a mommy.
It's my favorite thing in this world and my most important job.
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