LDS Pad: The Journey Back to Heavenly Father

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The 180th Annual General Conference: Bruce A. Carlson Talk

Saturday Session 2, Talk 4, Bruce A. Carlson, Of the Seventy

  • Ground Affect – plane stalled and crashed – No serious injuries.
  • Harold B. Lee – “The safety of the church lies in the members keeping the commandments.  As they keep the commandments, blessings will come.”
  • When we choose to disobey a commandment:
  1. We have convinced it ourselves it does not apply to us.
    • Partial or selective compliance with God’s laws will fail to bring the blessings of obedience.
  2. It is not important.
    • Obedience to the Lord’s commands, in spite of how trivial or unimportant we believe them to be will surely bring his promised blessings.
  3. It is too difficult to obey
    • At times we may rationalize that the Lord will understand our disobedience because our special circumstances make adherence to his laws difficult, embarrassing or even painful.  However, faithful obedience, regardless of the apparent size of the task will bring the lords guidance, assistance and peace.
  • “WHEN THE LORD COMMANDS, DO IT.”


The 180th Annual General Conference: Keith B. McMullin Talk

Saturday Session 1, Talk 4 – Keith B. McMullin, 2nd Counselor of the Presiding Bishopric
  • God’s forgiveness is conditional that we forgive others.
  • Forgiving a Nazi Guard. Silent prayer  “Help me, I can lift my hand.  I can do that much, you can supply the feeling.”
  • Pattern our lives after the Savior, to reach eternal life and leave the world better than it was.
  • “Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.”


The 180th Annual General Conference: Thomas S. Monson Talk

Saturday Session 1, Talk 1 – Thomas S. Monson, President of the Church, Prophet

  • 180 years since the church was organized.
  • Told the story of how his Grandfather brought his future wife’s family to the gospel.


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.



Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good People?

During the last few months, I often hear the question being asked:

Why do bad things happen to good people?

In two parts, here is what I understand about why this happens:

Opposition

Opposition is a part of this life.

In the Book of Mormon there is a passage that reads:

For it must needs be, that there is an aopposition in all things. If not so, my first-born in the wilderness, righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad. Wherefore, all things must needs be a compound in one; wherefore, if it should be one body it must needs remain as dead, having no life neither death, nor corruption nor incorruption, happiness nor misery, neither sense nor insensibility.
12 Wherefore, it must needs have been created for a thing of naught; wherefore there would have been no apurpose in the end of its creation. Wherefore, this thing must needs destroy the wisdom of God and his eternal purposes, and also the power, and the mercy, and the bjustice of God.
13 And if ye shall say there is ano law, ye shall also say there is no sin. If ye shall say there is no sin, ye shall also say there is no righteousness. And if there be no righteousness there be no happiness. And if there be no righteousness nor happiness there be no punishment nor misery. And if these things are not bthere is no God. And if there is no God we are not, neither the earth; for there could have been no creation of things, neither to act nor to be acted upon; wherefore, all things must have vanished away.

For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things. If not so, my first-born in the wilderness, righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad. Wherefore, all things must needs be a compound in one; wherefore, if it should be one body it must needs remain as dead, having no life neither death, nor corruption nor incorruption, happiness nor misery, neither sense nor insensibility.

Wherefore, it must needs have been created for a thing of naught; wherefore there would have been no apurpose in the end of its creation. Wherefore, this thing must needs destroy the wisdom of God and his eternal purposes, and also the power, and the mercy, and the justice of God.

And if ye shall say there is no law, ye shall also say there is no sin. If ye shall say there is no sin, ye shall also say there is no righteousness. And if there be no righteousness there be no happiness. And if there be no righteousness nor happiness there be no punishment nor misery. And if these things are not there is no God. And if there is no God we are not, neither the earth; for there could have been no creation of things, neither to act nor to be acted upon; wherefore, all things must have vanished away. (2nd Nephi 2:11-13)

Here, we learn that for good to exist, evil must.  For light to exist, darkness must.  Opposition gives us our opportunity to exercise or agency and make choices here in this life.

The Plan of Happiness and Salvation

The plan of salvation and happiness can be used to answer this question.   In our eternal lives, our life on earth are but a few moments.  In the plan of salvation, we have come down t0 this earth gain experience.  As part of gaining experience, we all use our agency that we have to navigate through life.  Through or agency, good and bad choices are made.  We are affected by the consequences of good and bad choices, whether it be made by you and by others.

The key thing to remember is that we are all children of God.  He loves all of us.  We have chosen to come down and experience the good and bad of life.  Jesus Chris had suffered all things.  When we turn to Jesus Christ, we grow closer to him and make us stronger.  Jesus Christ personally knows and understands what we go through in difficult times because he had experienced them as well.

President James E. Faust said:

Into every life there come the painful, despairing days of adversity and buffeting. There seems to be a full measure of anguish, sorrow, and often heartbreak for everyone, including those who earnestly seek to do right and be faithful…For some, the refiner’s fire causes a loss of belief and faith in God, but those with eternal perspective understand that such refining is part of the perfection process.

Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father does not like to see us suffer, however they find joy and are pleased when we learn to turn to them in difficult times.  We gain peace and comfort when we seek help from our Heavenly Father through Jesus Christ.  We grow closer and stronger to them and become better and more experienced, having weathered through the tough times.



What are the Blessings of the Temple?

The blessings of attending the temple are set forth in Section 109 of the Doctrine and Covenants. Those who attend the temple worthily and participate in the ordinances there have the following blessings promised to them:

1)      They will feel the power of the Lord (verse 13)

2)      They will be taught words of wisdom out of the best books (verse 14)

3)      They will learn by study and also by faith (verse 14)

4)      They will grow up unto the Lord (verse 15)

5)      They will receive a fullness of the Holy Ghost (verse 15)

6)      They will be prepared to receive every needful thing (verse 15)

7)      Blessings will be poured out upon them (verse 21)

8)      The glory of the Lord shall be round about them (verse 22)

9)      Angels shall have charge over them (verse 22)

10)   No weapon formed against them shall prosper (verse 25)

11)   He who digs a pit for them shall fall in the same pit himself (verse 25)

12)   No combination of wickedness shall overcome them (verse 26)



Anointing and Blessing with Consecrated Oil

In the Epistle of James, we read: “Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord” (James 5:14). In The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, we use pure olive oil to anoint and bless the sick. This function is performed by males who hold the Melchizedek Priesthood.

The oil that is used in the anointing must have been consecrated at some point prior to the time of the blessing. To consecrate means “to declare sacred.”  The LDS Church website (www.lds.org) gives the following instructions for consecrating oil:

One or more Melchizedek Priesthood holders may consecrate pure olive oil and set it apart for the purpose of anointing the sick. No other oil may be used.

To consecrate oil, a priesthood bearer:

  1. Holds an open container of olive oil.
  2. Addresses our Heavenly Father.
  3. States that the ordinance is performed by the authority of the Melchizedek Priesthood.
  4. Consecrates the oil for the blessing and anointing of the sick.
  5. Closes in the name of Jesus Christ.

After oil is consecrated, it can be used at any point in the future for the anointing and blessing of the sick.  Administering to the sick is also performed by Melchizedek Priesthood holders. Usually two bearers of the Melchizedek priesthood perform the ordinance. One will anoint the head of the sick person with the consecrated oil. The other will then seal the anointing and give a blessing. Again, the LDS Church website contains instructions on how this is done.

Anointing:

  1. Puts a small amount of oil on the person’s head.
  2. Places his hands on the person’s head and calls the person by name.
  3. States that the ordinance is performed by the authority of the Melchizedek Priesthood.
  4. States that he is anointing with consecrated oil.
  5. Closes in the name of Jesus Christ.

Sealing the Anointing:

  1. Calls the sick person by name.
  2. States that the ordinance is performed by the authority of the Melchizedek Priesthood.
  3. Seals the anointing.
  4. Pronounces a priesthood blessing as the Spirit directs.
  5. Closes in the name of Jesus Christ.

Source: http://www.lds.org/library/display/0,4945,13-1-1-7,00.html



Father’s Day Move

There is a woman in our ward whose husband died a few months ago, leaving behind his wife and two young daughters. The family had additional changes in circumstances after the death of the father that necessitated a move to another state. Unfortunately, the only day on which they could move was a Sunday and not just any Sunday, but Father’s Day.

I will always remember the first counselor in our bishopric standing up in priesthood meeting and saying that there was nothing better we could be doing on Father’s Day than helping a family who has just lost their father. These inspired words touched the hearts of the men in our ward. The evening of Father’s Day found 21 of us at the home of this dear family who were still grieving for their father. There were so many of us that we formed an assembly line and routed boxes and furniture out of the house and into the truck, filling the moving truck in less than a half hour.

Isaiah 1:17 -> “Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.”

I pray that the Lord will bless and comfort this family.



Why was Elijah translated?

Elijah was the last prophet to hold the sealing power of the Melchizedek Priesthood, the power to bind in heaven ordinances performed on earth, before the time of Jesus Christ.  Elijah came to the Mount of Transfiguration to confer the sealing power upon Peter, James, and John.  In order to do so, he needed his physical body, since spirits cannot lay hands on mortal beings (See Doctrine and Covenants 129:8).

It’s interesting to note that Elijah also came to earth to confer this same sealing power to Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery on April 3, 1836 (See Doctrine and Covenants 110:13-16). At this time, however, he came as a resurrected being, since he was with Christ in his resurrection (See Doctrine and Covenants 133:55).



Remembering and Recommitting

April has been a month of recommitting and remembering.

Let’s all face it.  When we’re following the straight and narrow path, you are the most happy.

This is done by following the commandments, daily prayers throughout the day, following family home evening, putting effort into your callings, giving thanks and remembering Christ.

Heavenly Father knows our hearts and our needs and he listens to our prayers.   When we are weathered from the world and feel that we are not 100% and yearn to be, he will bless us and give us a way.

Jesus answered and said unto them, Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done. And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.  (Matthew 21:21-22)

Throughout the Book of Mormon we consistantly see the word “Remember.”   Searching on scriptures.lds.org for “Remember” shows us at least 88 results.

Recommitting is remembering.

Remember the baptismal covenant.

Remember the plan of salvation/happiness.

Remember to pray.

Remember the scriptures.

Remember Heavenly Father and his love.

Remember Jesus Christ and the atonement.

Remember and be blessed with peace and happiness.




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