Personal Online Journal

Thursday, March 29, 2018

"For Those Who Feel Overwhelmed at Church"

"BYU professor, and author of the new book "The Atoning One," shares this touching story of a woman who admitted to being overwhelmed by Church and how he responded as her ecclesiastical leader." From a FB Post of LDS Living.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

"God is using more than one people for the accomplishment of His great and marvelous work"

God, the Father of us all, uses the men of the earth, especially good men, to accomplish his purposes. It has been true in the past, it is true today, it will be true in the future. 
“Perhaps the Lord needs such men on the outside of His Church to help it along,” said the late Elder Orson F. Whitney of the Quorum of the Twelve. “They are among its auxiliaries, and can do more good for the cause where the Lord has placed them, than anywhere else. … Hence, some are drawn into the fold and receive a testimony of the truth; while others remain unconverted … the beauties and glories of the gospel being veiled temporarily from their view, for a wise purpose. The Lord will open their eyes in His own due time. God is using more than one people for the accomplishment of His great and marvelous work. The Latter-day Saints cannot do it all. It is too vast, too arduous for any one people. … We have no quarrel with the Gentiles. They are our partners in a certain sense.” (Conference Report, April 1928, p. 59.)
("Civic Standards for the Faithful Saints", Ezra Taft Benson, General Conference Apr 1974)

Monday, March 05, 2018

What does it mean to be a rough stone rolling?

Joseph Smith Jr once called himself a rough stone rolling.
I am like a huge, rough stone rolling down from a high mountain; and the only polishing I get is when some corner gets rubbed off by coming in contact with something else, striking with accelerated force against religious bigotry, priestcraft, lawyer-craft, doctor-craft, lying editors, suborned judges and jurors, and the authority of perjured executives, backed by mobs, blasphemers, licentious and corrupt men and women—all hell knocking off a corner here and a corner there. Thus I will become a smooth and polished shaft in the quiver of the Almighty, who will give me dominion over all and every one of them, when their refuge of lies shall fail, and their hiding place shall be destroyed, while these smooth-polished stones with which I come in contact become marred. (Discourse to Saints, May 1843; DHC 5:401, Quoted in "Joseph the Prophet:", J. Lewis Taylor, Ensign Jun 1973)
What does it mean to follow in a similar path? In elder's quorum today we counselled together on "How can we better prioritize all of our different responsibilities?" ("First-Sunday Council Meetings", Come Follow Me for Melchizedek Priesthood and Relief Society October 2017) The facilitator and I talked afterward. He used the term "guerrilla tactics" for the ideas we came up with.

As I consider what tactics I use, my first ideas are that I must continue in the systems that work for me: daily prayer and scripture study, weekly sacrament meeting attendance with other Sunday meetings, regular temple attendance. In addition, I can see the obstacles or my weaknesses as Joseph saw his opposition. Press forward with faith. Allow the rough edges in my life to be chipped off by my persistence.

I am also reminded of a quote from a BYU devotional, we can become paralyzed by perfection. ("That's How the Light Gets In") A better way is to iterate our attempts at solutions. Over time, we get better.