LDS Pad: The Journey Back to Heavenly Father

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Obedience

I have been thinking about this verse that I read in the Pearl of Great Price all week:

And after many days an angel of the Lord appeared unto Adam, saying: Why dost thou offer sacrifices unto the Lord? And Adam said unto him:

I know not, save the Lord commanded me. (Moses 5:6)

This verse sums it up pretty nicely by taking a concept that we ourselves complicate and simplifying it to its most basic core meaning.

Obedience.

I can’t believe how I never actively realized until this week how obedience is shown and taught throughout the: Old Testament, New Testament, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants and Pearl of Great Price.

The message is pretty clear now and I see the path I need to take as clear day.

I feel the spirit stronger than I ever have, since being baptized.



Our First Time to the Temple

Earlier this month, my wife and I had the opportunity to go to the temple and get our endowments and sealed together…on the same day!

It was quite and experience and I tried to prepare by taking the whole prior week off to not worry about work and to read the Book of Mormon and spend time with my family. After all, I was thinking, that I will be able to spend time and all eternity with my children, who are gifts from Heavenly Father, to raise, love and teach the gospel to.

It was like a first wedding for ourselves as well. When we were younger, we tied the knot in a drive through wedding chapel in Las Vegas!

We had people from our ward there, the Brother and Sister who were there as Ward Missionary Leaders to host us and have the Missionaries teach us the discussions. Our Bishop, who I admire greatly for his example he sets and his hard work and love he pours upon the people of his Ward. Our friends that we’ve made in the 21 months we’ve been going to Church. Our friends that I have from work, who are coincidentally members of the church as well and instrumental to our growth in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

The day was perfect for us. It was gloomy and rainy in Las Vegas, just how we’d hope our wedding day would have been. We met my friends, Joey and Sabrina, and Mike and Crystal. I felt guided the whole time I was in the temple, by the brethren who are there to make me feel welcomed and help me learn.

There was a lot to take in and we definitely need to go back many, many more times to figure things out. Because we were  doing our endowments and sealing the same day, we were whisked away to the Sealing room to be married forever just as soon as we made it to the Celestial room of the Temple.

It was a great feeling to be in the House of the Lord among friends, whom I consider family. I urge those who have not yet made it to the temple to go as soon as you can. There are blessings to be had by attending.



My Preparation for the Temple: Are you kind to your family?

At times I questioned myself if I can answer those temple recommend interview questions with no issues.  I remember the last time I went for a temporary temple recommend interview back in March for Baptisms for the Dead.  I caught myself being harsh when asked questions.  I attribute it to judging ourselves and we are our own worse judge.  My Bishop agreed.

I often find myself self-interviewing on one particular question:

Are you kind to your family members?

Am I?  What does that mean?  It means, do I treat them as Christ would during the good times and the bad times?  Do I display patience with my family at all times?  Am I a good Father and Husband?

For a while, I was in a cycle of confusion and this is how it went:

  1. Despair

    I feel like I am in a deep hole, looking upwards at the sky and that I can’t make it out.I feel that my family deserves better than I have given in the past.  I have only been at it for over 18 months and I thought I was changing.  I’m not sure sometimes.  At times I feel like I really have changed.I am not always patient or soft spoken in stressful situations.  I seem to let the worst come out of me only in front of my spouse and children.   In my early twenties, I picked up the bad habbit of swearing.  My language has cleaned up over the past 18 months but I have those moments of relapse.

    I expect so much from my family (from expecting the same strictness that I had to follow when I was younger) at times that it only leads me to anger and fits of yelling when things aren’t going well.

    I’ve been taught that true conversion happens over time.  Am I converted?  Am I converted enough?

    Could I stand tall with my fellow brethren who are temple recommend holders?

  2. Hope

    Every Sunday, I feel energized and I believe that I can climb my way out of this deep hole.I realize to myself that I cannot be perfect and Christ-like at all times.  That is why we have the atonement.I am thankful for the atonement and the fact that Jesus Christ took upon himself my sins, my sadness and my pain.  I am thankful for the ordinance of Sacrament where I can renew my baptismal covenants and be forgiven for my short comings.   During Sacrament, I feel true sorrow and pain.  I then feel forgiven and my burdens lifted away.

    I love the feeling of being clean and renewed for another week.

    I pray for long suffering, patience, being a good example for my children and to be a better Father and Husband.

    I love feeling I can start over with myself and my family.

  3. Confusion

    I feel like the moment that I slip, no matter how high I have made it I fall to the bottom of that deep hole and I have to start over.  Maybe I’ve raised my voice to my kids or handle a stressful situation very poorly.  When growing up, my parents were very strict and always yelled.  I see myself doing that sometimes.  I see my oldest son yelling at his brothers sometimes and I see myself in him and I become deeply saddened.With the atonement comes repentance.  I truly feel sorry for the mistakes and actions that make me feel like I am not kind enough to my family.  But true repentance means taking steps to not do it again and then, not do it!

    But when I falter I feel like I have failed at repentance.  I take my prior transgressions from the week before and add it on to this week as well.  That deep hole is getting even deeper.

    What if it has been months that I feel I’ve been doing a good job and then I mess up by losing my temper and swear up a storm and scream and yell?

    When do I become better?  How long do I go without slipping before I can answer “Yes” to the question “Are you kind to your family members?”   It can’t be one week.  A Month?  Two Months?

    How can I live higher laws if I cannot live these lower laws?

    Am I ever going to make it to the Temple?

    Go to back to Despair

I feel like I have finally broken out of this confusing cycle by realizing that during this journey of life every day we build ourselves up to be much more righteous and when we falter we have the atonement and repentance to lift ourselves up and try again.  As long as we are on the upward climb we are doing well.

If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a thousand times that by doing in faith the following: Daily prayer, scripture reading, and keeping our minds constantly on the Savior Jesus Christ and the Savior make a very, very large difference.



New Website About Jesus Christ Launched

med_001faithinchristhigresoluti_1.jpgThe other week in priesthood meeting, one of the members mentioned a new website that was launched by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, aimed at explaining the life and teachings of our Saviour, Jesus Christ.

The website can be seen by going to: http://jesuschrist.lds.org

An article from the Official LDS Newsroom says that it was almost a year in the making. I suspected that this website was planned to coincide with the March special editions of two of the Church’s official magazines, the Ensign and the Liahona, which also focus on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ.

One of my favorite parts of the new Jesus Christ website is the witnesses of the 16 presidents (prophets) of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Just another tool to show that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints DO believe in Jesus Christ.

Also, here is the Official Church Video about the new website as well:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ARO849yjrWQ]




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