Tuesday, December 27, 2011

You'll Never Walk Alone

Do you remember that really annoying time when your surroundings changed suddenly and you felt all alone?  The time when you moved to a new town, or changed jobs, or went to a new school and you weren't sure if you fit in or not?  Whatever the case was, you were terrified and scared about what would happen to you and the ones that you loved.

Let me share with you a story from the Scriptures.  A story of one who thought he was lost and never had a chance to come back.  This is the story of the Prodigal Son.

"A certain man had two sons: And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me.  And he divided unto them his living.  And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living. 

"And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want.  And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him.  And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!  I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants.

 "And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.  And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son.  But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry." (Luke 15:11-24)

Sometimes we may not be able to go back to our former life and our former situations, but there will always be people who are on the lookout for you just as the father was for his son who went away.  Your influence in others' lives is very dramatic, and even if you don't feel like you make a difference, you do.  Remember that as you follow His guiding voice you will always be where God needs you.  You may not know why at the first, but He needs you to preform His work on earth.  He loves you, He wants you to be happy, and He knows how that can happen.  "And he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according the thier infirmities." (Alma 7:12)

Remember, "You'll Never Walk Alone."

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Whom Dost Thou Seek?

"Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Jud├Ža in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him. . . And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother,and fell down, and worshiped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh." (Matt. 2:1-2, 11)

The story of the wise men is one of my favorite Christmas stories!  The story isn't very detailed, or long, but it carries a powerful message with it.  We don't know who these men were, exactly where they came from, or how they knew about Christ, but they were willing to leave and to set out on a journey to find just a small child.

Even as a child the true worshipers of God understood who Jesus was and who he was going to become, the Savior and Redeemer of the world.  There is a song by Kenny Chesney that helps me understand just how it was when that baby boy came into the world some 2000 years ago.

Just a Kid
Kenny Chesney

Well the news spread through Jerusalem,
tonight a child is born
There are shepherds fallin' to their knees,
and Angels blowin' horns
But in their golden halls the Pharisees
Scoffed and drank their wine
They said it's only Hebrew prophesy

We don't care and besides
He's just a kid
That's all He is
One more pebble in the gravel,
One more rumor in the rabble.
How can He be king?
He's just a kid.

Well in no time it seemed
the world was knockin' on His door
Performing miracles and wonders
they had never see before
Soon the Pharisees stopped laughing
The silver sum was paid
And near the end He knelt down
in the garden and He prayed:

I'm just a kid
That's all I am
I'll need Your strength to see me through it
If it is Your will I'll do it
But how can I be king
I'm just a kid?

Now I think about the Baby
and the Man at Christmas time
Of mothers, sons and fathers
and children just like mine
About the power in unselfishness,
love and sacrifice
The Gift that we were given and the price.

And how the news spread through Jerusalem,
tonight a child is born
There are shepherds falling to their knees,
and angels blowin' horns
I wonder how on Earth the Pharisees
could scoff and drink their wine
And say "He's only Hebrew prophesy
We don't care and besides He's just a kid
That's all He is
One more pebble in the gravel
One more rumor in the rabble
And how can He be king? He's just a kid"

Oh how can He be king?
He's just a kid.

 Let us remember who our true King is this Christmas season!  Merry Christmas everyone!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


This is one of my most favorite times of year!!  The time when it is dignified to stuff yourself beyond belief with turkey, stuffing, potatoes, and pie.  I can't think of a better combination.  But amidst all of the cranberries, biscuits, and yams, it is a time to ponder on the things of our lives that our Father in Heaven has blessed us with.  It is a time to think of what matters most in our lives. "It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord, and to sing praises unto thy name, O most High" (Psalm 92:1)  So this year, enjoy the food, but most of all remember what THANKS we owe to the Lord for what he has GIVEN us.


Saturday, October 22, 2011

What is a "RESTORATION"?

 Restoration, a word used quite a bit among members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints that has the potential to confuse a lot of people.  Some hear the word and may think of old antique furniture, or an old colonial home, or if you're a gear head like me, you may think about a car.  All of these are good comparisons to the idea of The Restoration.  Since I have no idea how to restore furniture, and even less of an idea about colonial houses,  we'll roll with the idea of the car, how about a 1953 Diamond T?

In order for a Restoration to happen, you first have to have an original object.  This is an example of what my truck would have looked like back in the day of 1953.  We will compare this to the original church that Jesus Christ set up when he was on the Earth.  "He gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;"  (Ephesians 4:11)  He set up an organization that would help bring everyone in unity, an organization "built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets:"  (Ephesians 2:20)

But as we all know, over time things tend to get roughed up a lot.  Dents and dings form in the body, and if they are not taken care of then rust can come along and start to make a big mess of things.  Equipment breaks, and pieces go missing.  Sadly, the same happened to the Church of Jesus Christ.  "I looked and beheld the Lamb of God, that he was taken by the people; yea, the Son of the everlasting God was judged of the world; and I saw and bear record.  And I, Nephi, saw that he was lifted up upon the cross and slain for the sins of the world.  And after he was slain I saw the multitudes of the earth, that they were gathered together to fight against the apostles of the Lamb."  (1 Nephi 11:32-34)  The church was in disarray.  The apostles were killed off, and soon there was no priesthood authority on the earth to guide and lead the church by revelation.  Soon, when once there was one church, there were many churches teaching different doctrines.

The time and setting eventually came along and our loving Heavenly Father was able to reach out in love to his children.  In the early 1800's God the Father and his son Jesus Christ came to a boy named Joseph Smith in answer to his earnest prayer.  They called Joseph to be a prophet, and through him they would restore the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Soon you see that old clunker out in the driveway as more than a paperweight, but you see a potential for something amazing! 

Of course you can't just wake up one morning and know exactly how to restore a vehicle, let alone the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Three years after the visitation of God the Father and Jesus Christ, Joseph was visited by a heavenly being by the name of Moroni.  He was directed by Moroni to a hill where a record of the ancient inhabitants of the Americas was deposited.  Joseph received instruction from Moroni for four years before he could take the record and translate it into The Book of Mormon.  Other key events that made it possible for the Gospel of Jesus Christ to be restored were;  restoration of the priesthood (both Aaronic and Melchizedek), the coming forth of The Book of Mormon, and the final organization of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on April 6, 1830.

Piece by piece the restoration happens.  The final product is the same as the original, but now it is alive and working!  The Gospel works.  I know the the original church that Christ established when he was here in the flesh is back on the earth.  If you have any questions or for more information visit http://www.mormon.org/.


Tuesday, September 27, 2011

"For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things."

Opposition, usually is never a word that someone wants to hear.  Opposition can come in many forms, physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual.  Sometimes this opposition can be very painful, while other times it doesn't seem painful at all, in fact we are so used to it that we don't even notice it.

Some painful opposition might come because of someone elses choice, which could result in injury or death.  This is something that happened to my family, and for the whole story look on my post about Jeremy Kunz.  Or it may come because of something someone said that was very hurtful.  Just walk down a hall at your local High School to see this happen.  While other opposition can come because we made a mistake, and the road back seems hard and painful.  And that little voice in your head tells you that you can never make it and that you are a failure and you'll never amount to anything.  So why so much opposition?

"For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things.  If not so, . . . righteousness could not be brought to pass." (2 Nephi 2:11).  There has to be an opposite in all things.  It's like two sides of a stick, you try and pick one end up, and the other follows.  We are here in this life to grow and to become like our Heavenly Father and His son, Jesus Christ.  They know our potential, and have commanded to achieve that potential.  I loved this post by one of my friends, he compares this idea to growing jalapenos.  One more thought, is that opposition can be helpful!  Think of gravity.  Our bodies want to be in motion.  They want to go and go and go.  But, there is an opposing force to our bodies just going.  The gravitational force of the earth keeps us down on our feet and in out chairs and in our beds.  If we didn't have this oppostion, then our bodies would just float away!  That would be kind of scary if you ask me!!

Opposition is a true reality.  We cannot run from it, we cannot hide from it, but we are not alone in our battle.  Alma told the people of Gideon about Christ, and that "he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictons and temptations of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people. . . . and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities." (Alma 7:11-12)  Christ knows us, he knows everything we go through, and he knows what we need so we can obtain our potential.  Elder D. Todd Christofferson  explained this well in his April 2011 Conference address.  I know Christ lives and loves each one of us.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Newsies and the Gospel

Once again we take another walk down memory lane as we look at another one of my favorite movies, Newsies.  Yeah that's the one with Christian Bale when he was really young and they called him "Cowboy."  This movie is great!  Tons of singing and dancing for the more artsy folk, it has a nice love story for the romantic, a little bit of rebellion and fist fights for action guy, and for those who like to think while watching a movie, a story of a young man trying to find his place in life. 

Cowboy is an orphan who is tying to make his way in life as a paperboy.  There is a lot of opposition for this young man.  His main goal is to make it to Sante Fe.  If he can just make it out there then he will be set!!  But in the end he realizes something, everything that could make him truly happy in life is right around him!  The friends that he has made have become his family and that is what made him truly happy.

We are a lot like Cowboy.  We feel like there is a goal that if we reach then we have made it!  Whether that is that highend executive job, that 6 figure payment, that house on a private beach, or that magnificent ranch out in Idaho.  But there is an easier path to true happiness.  The Gospel of Jesus Christ is there for all to partake of.  He invites us all to come unto him to have rest (Matt. 11:28).  I know that he can bring true happiness into our lives! (Mosiah 2:41)

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Let Us Take a Vote

I have pondered and thought about what I could share next.  I have a few ideas but I want to know what you veiwers would like to read or learn about!!  So let me know and we'll see what happens!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

True Friend

This is a shout out to all the people that I'm not related to but I still love!  Yes this is about our dear friends!!  I have lots of pictures here of me with my friends, people that I would do about anything for.  So why are friends so important?  If I may, let me share a story!

  "And again he (Jesus Christ) entered into Capernaum after some days; and it was noised that he was in the house.
  "And straightway many were gathered together, insomuch that there was no room to receive them, no, not so much as about the door: and he preached the word unto them.
  "And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four.
  "And when they could not come nigh unto him for the press, they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay.
  "When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee."
(Mark 2:2-5)

Wow!!  How cool is that!  This guy was so sick that he couldn't get off his bed.  But his friends loved him and had faith that Christ could heal him that they carried him all the way to where Christ was.  But the place where Christ was at was so crowded that no one could get inside because of the huge mob.  But this didn't deter these faithful friends!  They climbed on top of the house, cut a hole in the roof, and lowered their dear friend next to Christ.  What love!  How many of us would do that for our friends?

Well, let's look at another story.  Let's look at Christ.  "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." (John 15:13)  Christ laid down his life for us, his "friends."  How many of us would do that for our friends?  How many of us would carry our friends to Christ?  We all know that he can heal us, and we know that he has all power, so let us all be a friend and help out our friends!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Love, true Love

You may remember one of my personal favorite movies, "The Princess Bride"?  I will be talking about three of the main characters, Prince Humperdinck, Princess Buttercup, and Westley.  First off lets think about a classic scene from the movie, the one where the clergyman can't pronounce his "R"s and thus talks really funny.  Remember that one?  Well if you don't, then that is OK.  All that really matters is that he talks about true love.  And in the movie Prince Humperdinck is not Princess Buttercup's true love.  Her true love is the farm boy Westley, who can hardly make a living for himself.  So why is he her true love?

In 1 Nephi 11:22 we are taught that the love of God "is the most desirable above all things."  Love is a very strong emotion.  What we truly love is what we will work for.  Think for a moment about last week.  What are the prominent memories that come to mind?  What were your desires for that week?  The things that we truly love are things that we will desire the most.  Christ has said that the greatest commandment is to "love the lord thy God with all they heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind." (Matt. 22:37)  And how do we show our God that we love him?  Again Christ said that "If ye love me, keep my commandments."  (John 14:15)

Alright, so back to the movie.  At the beginning of the movie we see Buttercup ordering Westley around, and all he would ever say is "As you wish."  Wow, that shows some love!  Are we always that submissive to the things that our Father in Heaven gives, or doesn't, give us?  Buttercup comes to realize exactly how much love Westley has for her, and she in turn falls in love with him.

So what is it that we truly love?  Are we showing our love to that person or that thing?  We all show our love in different ways, but Christ has said that "If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love."  (John 15:10)  I would challenge each of us to abide in the love of our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ by obeying them.  Then once we have that relationship established, show our love to the important things.  I know that you will see an increase of peace and joy in all of your lives if you follow this council.

BTW, this is my family,  I love them all dearly.  Some of them are no longer with us and there are some additions to the group, but I love them and miss being with them.  I also love my Heavenly Father, that is why I am spending 2 years away from my family to be his full time servant because he asked me to!!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Peace I Leave With You

We live in a world full of commotion!!  Where everything has to be done ten minutes ago and we seem to always be behind.  Everyday the news reports have some new disaster, tragedy, or war.  Some of which are in far off places that you may have never heard of before, but others seem to hit a little too close to home, or right on top of it.

Amidst all of this turmoil, how can we gain peace?  Where can we turn?  The Savior told his disciples that another name for the Holy Ghost is the Comforter.  "..the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name.." (John 14:26)  What a special gift!  Preach My Gospel (a manual that missionaries use)  says that "The gift of the Holy Ghost is one of our Heavenly Father's most precious gifts. . . He comforts us during times of trial or sorrow."  (Preach My Gospel p. 65)  And this gift is one that Heavenly Father is willing to give to all of his children!!  We may feel the influence of the Holy Ghost at one time or another, but we have to be baptized and then have hands laid on our heads by someone holding the priesthood authority of God to be able to receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost. (Acts 8:18)  Then we can qualify to have his companionship at all times!!

I absolutely love music!!  And so I would like to share with you one of my favorite Hymns!! 

Where can I turn for peace?
Where is my solace
When other sources cease to make me whole?
When, with a wounded heart, anger, or malice
I draw myself apart searching my soul?

Where, when my aching grows?
Where, when I languish?
Where, in my need to know?
Where can I run?
Where is the quiet hand to calm my anguish?
Who, who can understand?
He, only One.

He answers privately.
Reaches my reaching.
In my Gethsemane, Savior, and friend.

Where Can I Turn for Peace? Click to hear song.

I know that it is through our Savior Jesus Christ that we can return to our Father in Heaven.  He has a special gift for every one, so "Men and brethren, what shall we do?. . . Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost."(Acts 2:37-38)