Sunday, September 12, 2010

Developing self

In all our getting and doing, have we taken inventory of how we are doing with our greatest responsibility? Our greatest responsibility in this life is to develop ourselves, academically, physically, socially, and spiritually. We can't help others until we have something to give. We can't be without becoming. This life is our university for eternity. Are we organizing, planning, working, and evaluating our progress in our greatest job here in mortality? And this doesn't end at 18, graduation, mission over with, getting married, after having children, or retirement. Keep learning and developing yourself as long as you live!


Please be humble enough to repent regularly. We all need it often to repent of our pride, things we say, or do, of weaknesses we want to justify or pretend we don't have. We need repentance as long as we live. Thank goodness, despite the terrible price paid, for the soap to clean our souls as they collect spots from the world we live in.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

To my opinionated family

I am concerned, given the volatile political time we are in right now, with how we push our opinions and where. I see all these discussions on facebook, blogs, and emails, and even just conversations (gossip?). It is soooo easy to spout on the computer a thought, a current opinion, or present belief, that we would never do to some one's face. Sometimes too we MIGHT spout right to the person, because we believe we are right and truth justifies our saying it right out.

The scriptures say to, "Agree with thine enemy while thou are in the way with him...." I don't think that means give up our beliefs. It may mean partly to find some area of agreement. Try to be agreeable whenever we can. We don't have to share every opinion. We don't have to right every wrong with our tongue.

Sometimes it is better to hold our tongues. Let others have their freedom. The Lord lets us have that freedom! When we speak out prematurely or forcefully (and there are times to be forceful, but they are rare), we can damage relationships long term or even permanently. Those relationships are usually more important than the words we think MUST be spoken right then. And sometimes we are not completely right. Sometimes we don't know where the others have been that form their opinions. We may even change our opinion a little later on. Maybe they are wrong, but need time or other ways to realize that. Other times we merely make ourselves a lightning rod, when we don't need to be.

I speak from experience here, having been guilty at one time or another, of most of what I've just explained. The Lord made us so we can't read each other's thoughts, even our spouse's, for a reason. There have been many times when I was sure I was right and justified in saying something, but a little pause or discretion kept me from embarrassing myself or hurting someone else.

Please be careful in your opinions, especially online. Consider carefully how, what you very much want to say, will come across or be taken. Let some time pass before responding. Let some things go. Don't be lily-livered, but be thoughtful in how much and how we say opinions. Be very careful to discern between fact and opinion. (It is NOT a fact that BYU is the best school. It is an OPINION, which I believe!)

Sunday, July 18, 2010

An unveiling, a vision of life

This is an unveiling, an opening of understanding, a vision of life. Please read.

What is the whole purpose of life? It is to metamorphose into becoming like Christ. Moroni explains this when he says, “…that when he shall appear we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is; that we may have this hope; that we may be purified even as he is pure. Amen.” (Moroni 7:48)

Oh, well then, all is lost and what’s the point? I can never be that. Yes, broad is the way and narrow is the gate that leadeth to life eternal and few there be that find it. (It is hard to see all when we are not ready.) The key word here is “metamorphose.” It doesn’t happen all at once. Indeed only a handful of souls utterly fail this life. Almost all do metamorphose to some degree and gain some kingdom of glory.

When we exercise just a little faith or trust in God, for that is what faith is, enough to obey or even desire to obey, with a trust that we don’t quickly give up on, he blesses us with hope, or a confidence that that we can improve. Usually this happens in baby steps and with some back-sliding that lessens as we go along.

This increases our faith, which if followed and obeyed, increases our hope. As these increase, God lets us taste the fruit of the tree of life, which is love towards others. This is the beginning of making our eye single to His glory. And what is His glory? To bring to pass the eternal life and exaltation of man! That is his whole joy and desire.

When we begin to be aware of and care for the betterment of others, we are feeling charity or tasting of the fruit of the tree of life. Exercising this love, the love of Christ, gives us joy and furthers the metamorphosis, for it increases or strengthens faith and hope.

It is a long process, but as we continue to change into being like him, our faith and hope are increased, or our power to do good. We are then blessed with more charity. I would encourage you now to read Moroni 7 as he further expands this topic, and the eyes of your understanding or enlightenment will be broadened.

We can, even in our weakness and with the limitations of mortality, through Christ’s atonement, become like him. That we may have this hope; that we may be purified through his atonement, even as he is pure, is my hope, my faith, and my desire. Amen.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Words, words, words

The scriptures say we will be judged by every idle word that proceeds out of our mouth. Why? Because words, like pictures, can stay in the hearer's mind for a long time. They can become a beachhead for the adversary to tempt us. They have consequences. Sometimes what we think are just words, just kidding, are not so benign to the hearer.

When I was a kid, my little brother, who had bright red hair, seemed to have a tendency to get into mischief. We wanted to call him Dennis the Menace. My mother got after us for doing so, because said she, "It can plant in his mind the feeling that he should live up to that role." She didn't want that. We stopped, and I believe it avoided problems that could have come from it.

With facebook (written word) and just joking around, I fear that we don't see the potential for harm that our "idle" words can and may be doing. When we make light of sexual things, even gross sin, it encourages sin and erodes walls we have built up to protect against it.

I plead with my children to be care-ful and thought-ful of what you say and write, particularly when you are "just joking around." What you say can lay mines and traps, temptations, you would never place in your siblings' or others' way intentionally.

Friday, April 30, 2010


I've decided to let God judge me, rather than condemning myself flat out and then giving up! He's a MUCH more competent judge of character than I am!

Friday, March 5, 2010

What we like

From my youth I've tried to get myself to like what was good for me. I tried to eat at least some of what was good for me, whether I wanted it or not to begin with. I listened to that which was considered better music (classical or uplifting), rather than just what was easy (rock, stuff with a beat). I even tried to read or watch stuff I felt would be good for me, rather than just what I liked at the moment.

As time has gone by, I find now that I actually DO like what is good for me! The things I like to eat are the things that are good for me. The music I prefer usually is that which is uplifting and of the highest form. That's not to say I don't eat other things too or occasionally listen to lesser quality music. The point is, that by taking positive action, I actually desire what is best.

It has been said that one who makes himself smile a lot, will end up having a happier face even when not thinking about it and when older. The more we consciously seek for what is best, the more we desire it, and the less we like lesser stuff.

Thursday, March 4, 2010


Elder Kent Watson's Fall 2009 conference talk really impressed me. He said, "Tempered glass, like tempered steel, undergoes a well-controlled heating process which increases strength. Thus, when tempered glass is under stress, it will not easily break into jagged shards that can injure.
"Likewise, a temperate soul--one who is humble and full of love-- is also a person of increased spiritual strength. With increased spiritual strength, we are able to develop self-mastery and to live with moderation. We learn to control, or temper, our anger, vanity, and pride."

I suppose we have to undergo a heating before we can become "tempered!" That may not be fun, just necessary. If we have gold in us, that heat will be applied. Treat that heat and pressure as a compliment and as confidence in you. It wouldn't come if you weren't golden! Then get humble. Pick up the pieces and carry on, carry on, carry on!

Some other quotes from this talk:

"Security for our families comes from learning self-control, avoiding the excesses of this world, and being temperate in all things."

"Govern your house in meekness, and be steadfast."

"Speaking of the Savior going through the atonement, bleeding from every pore, "With unsurpassed self-restraint, or temperance, His thoughts were not of Himself but of you and of me." And he did it in humility too.

I'm not a great model of this, but I'm working on it. I'm getting better. I hope you each will keep working on it too.