Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Family Home Evening Lessons on The Family: A Proclamation

Week 1 Family is the Basic and Most Important Unit of Society

Week 2 We Are Created In the Image of Our Heavenly Father

Week 3 We Came To Earth To Get A Physical Body

I loved studying the Proclamation so much this term. I really wanted to share the things I was learning with my family. I began by inviting my kids and grandkids over for Family Night. My daughter and son in law share a birthday, so it was a great time to get everyone together. We had a family dinner and then started the lesson which was a simple one, That our family is stronger together than apart. We had a great time, having a lesson and playing a game before having cake and ice cream. I have been working on a lesson for each paragraph of the Proclamation. Because my husband and I are out of town often, we have not been able to keep as consistent a schedule as I would have hoped. But we are on the right track! My lessons did not make it as far as each paragraph. It takes longer than I would have thought to create a family home evening. I was able to find a good format from some lessons I found online. I found object lessons that fit my lessons at other sites. Quotes abound by topic at If someone wants to learn about a gospel topic, they do not have to go farther than their own laptop!

Bro Thurman, Thanks for teaching this class.Without folks like you willing to take the time to take on these classes, there would not be this opportunity for us to take these classes. I know that it may not feel like teaching to you, that some students need you more than others, but you really have provided a great opportunity to us.
Karen Roberts

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Mosiah 27:1-7

Mosiah 27:1-7
And now it came to pass that the persecutions which were inflicted on the church by the unbelievers became so great that the church began to murmur, and complain to their leaders concerning the matter; and they did complain to Alma. And Alma laid the case before their king, Mosiah. And Mosiah consulted with his priests.
 And it came to pass that king Mosiah sent proclamation throughout the land round about that there should not any unbeliever persecute any of those who belonged to the church of God.
And there was strict command throughout all the churches that there should be no persecutions among them, that there should be an equality among all men;
 That they should let no pride nor haughtiness disturb their peacethat every man should esteem his neighbor as himself, laboring with their own hands for their support.
 Yea, and all their priests and teachers should labor with their own hands for their support, in all cases save it were in sickness, or in much want; and doing these things, they did abound in the grace of God.
 And there began to be much peace again in the land; and the people began to be very numerous, and began to scatter abroad upon the face of the earth, yea, on the north and on the south, on the east and on the west, building large cities and villages in all quarters of the land.
 And the Lord did visit them and prosper them, and they became large and wealthy people. 
It is so clear reading these scripture verses that there is a lesson here for our day. We only have to look as far as an internet news banner or newscast to know that it is a time of great worry for all people of religion. The news of terror attacks here in America and abroad have everyone on edge and alert. Many are calling for very strict guidelines on who may enter American borders, who may stay, who must go. While there is no doubt some very real concern for the safety of all involved in this type of religious persecution, from these scriptures in Mosiah, we know that what we face is not new. What can we learn from these scriptures?
First we read that the persecutions concerned the people and they took it to their religious leader, Alma. He brought the concerns to the king, Mosiah and he consulted with his religious leaders. They all cooperated and came up with a peaceful solution.
Our religious leaders have counseled us in this manner:
"With people around the world, we mourn today as we consider the horrific tragedies that have occurred in Paris. We pray for those affected, for their families and loved ones, for the leaders of nations and most especially for the people of France as they struggle to recover from the violence and loss they are feeling so deeply. We have directed that flags on Temple Square be flown at half staff, and that the French Flag be flown here as an expression of our love and support for them. In these hours of uncertainty and despair, we ask members of the Church everywhere to join with us in our prayer that the peace of the Savior Jesus Christ will provide comfort, healing, understanding and hope." (First Presidency response)
(this is a link to the article and quotes World Political and Religious leader responses.)
While it is clear that we will not be able to make a law requiring that all incivility and beligerence towards others beliefs stop, (there are already laws of this type in existence), we can follow this scripture and not be a part of the hysteria that is occurring and stirring up a hatred among folks of differing religious and political beliefs. America was created as a refuge for all peoples of every ethnicity, religious and racial background. we cannot allow a  radicalized and extreme faction to change that in any way. Once that door is open to be predjudicial to any religious group, who is next? Who will stand for us?
The LDS Church's response to the refugee crisis is clear and can be read in its entirety here:
Let us all resolve to keep calm heads and to decide in our hearts to follow the wise teachings of these verses in Mosiah. Let no pride or haughtiness disturb our peace. Let us esteem our neighbor as we esteem ourselves. And let there be peace upon this land.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Serving God and Man

Mosiah3:19 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 enticing of the Holy Spiritand putteth off the natural man and becometh saint 
through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as child,
submissivemeek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all 
things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as child doth 
submit to his father.
This verse in Mosiah has much to teach is. Earlier in the Book of Mormon, we read of Enos and his struggle, despite his close association with Nephi and Jacob, with repenting of his sins and obtaining his testimony of the atonement of the Savior. Each of us must "wrestle before the Lord (not with Him) to come to know the truthfulness of the teachings of the prophets, the restored gospel and to obtain our own testimony.
The natural man is an enemy to God In our natural state, we are prone to sin. King Benjamin taught that we must yield to the enticings of the Holy Ghost to put off the natural man. We know that to have the Holy Ghost as our companion, we must live worthily and we must quiet our surroundings to hear "the still small voice'. Once we have "wrestled before God", once we have repented of our sins, we can allow the Atonement of the Savior to wash away our sins.
Through the Atonement of Jesus Christ we receive a remission of the penalty of our sins. Christ has suffered and paid the price so we do not have to as long as we have repented our sins. 
Dallin H. Oaks taught: “We understand that the Atonement of Jesus Christ gives us the opportunity to overcome the spiritual death that results from sin and, through making and keeping sacred covenants, to have the blessings of eternal life.” In referring to Mosiah 3:19, Elder Neal A. Maxwell discussed how we might accomplish this task: “Personal righteousness, worship, prayer, and scripture study are so crucial in order to ‘[put] off the natural man’. The Savior taught us, we must “Except ye be converted, and become as little children,ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
“Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven” Matthew 18:3-4 In this way we can
becometh as child,submissivemeek, humble, patient, full 
of love, willing to submit to all things. Sister Jean Stevens taught us that, "They are full of faith and receptive to feelings of the Spirit. They exemplify humility,obedience, and love. They are often the first to love and the first to forgive. They have believing hearts." Children are without guile and are easily led. Their example to us is powerful when it comes to how we should follow the example of the Savior, obey the commandments and choose to do right. Later in Mosiah, King Benjamin teaches us, “that we have no more disposition to do evil, but to do good continually” . And isn't that what we all ultimately desire? To have a mighty change wrought in our hearts? It is my prayer that we will all heed this wise counsel, that we will put off the natural man (our desire for sin), quiet our minds and yield to the subtle promptings of the Holy Ghost to reveal truth and guide and direct us. That we will live worthy of the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost. That we will allow the atonement of Jesus Christ to, after all that we can do, wash away our sins and redeem us to be able to return to the presence of our Heavenly Father. That we might become as a little child and align, even forsake our own will to our Heavenly Father's. This is my prayer for all of us.