Encouragement To Husbands and Fathers


This morning I read something quite moving and beautiful, addressed to husbands and fathers, indeed to righteous men everywhere!

As I read I felt I should share it, as I know there are millions of husbands, fathers, and single men young and old, who desire to know what they can do to love and help their families, live good lives, find joy, be prepared for that which is to come, and rejoice in doing so.

This is what I read:

“And now my beloved brethren, I have said these things unto you that I might awaken you to a sense of your duty to God, that ye may walk blameless before him, that ye may walk after the holy order of God, after which ye have been received.

“And now I would that ye should be humble, and be submissive and gentle; easy to be entreated; full of patience and long-suffering; being temperate in all things; being diligent in keeping the commandments of God at all times; asking for whatsoever things ye stand in need, both spiritual and temporal; always returning thanks unto God for whatsoever things ye do receive.

“And see that ye have faith, hope, and charity, and then ye will always abound in good works.

“And may the Lord bless you, and keep your garments spotless, that ye may at last be brought to sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and the holy prophets who have been ever since the world began, having your garments spotless even as their garments are spotless, in the kingdom of heaven to go no more out.

“And now my beloved brethren, I have spoken these words unto you according to the Spirit which testifieth in me; and my soul doth exceedingly rejoice, because of the exceeding diligence and heed which ye have given unto my word.

“And now, may the peace of God rest upon you, and upon your houses and lands, and upon your flocks and herds, and all that you possess, your women and your children, according to your faith and good works, from this time forth and forever. And thus I have spoken. Amen.”  Alma 7:22-27.

As I read these words in the Book of Mormon, I pictured the ancient prophet, Alma, meeting with the brethren of the Church of Christ in a special Priesthood meeting.  He loved these men and desired to share with them the words of Christ so they would know how to lead good and wholesome lives, enabled to lead their loved ones and friends back to that God who created them.

Similarly, we have modern-day Priesthood meetings, local, regional, and world-wide, to do the very same thing by the prophet today, Thomas S. Monson, in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  God still desires that all His children return to Him, and He has provided His organization and teachings to assist all to come unto Him.

What a beautiful plan!

Husbands, fathers, all men:  here is real encouragement for you in your God-given role as providers, protectors, defenders of the faith, guardians of truth and righteousness, seekers of those lost in the mists of darkness and false teachings of our day.  You have greater resources at your disposal than ever before.  Use them wisely and lead Heavenly Father’s children back to Him and enjoy eternal joy and happiness with them forever and ever.  Amen.

Kaspersky Saved Us


I usually do not do product endorsements.  I usually have other things on my mind.

But recently Kaspersky saved us, so I want to thank them.

Beloved hubby cleans our computer every time we have finished with it, either at the end of the day or even sometimes after doing some intense internet work.

I am so grateful that he does, because we ended up with a problem.

Kaspersky caught it when we did the cleaning.  Kaspersky identified what it was and told us how to get rid of it.

We followed the instructions.  I was concerned because we have had computers catch viruses and whatnot before and be totally ruined.

But with Kaspersky’s help we were able to be rid of this issue, lose no data, and our computer is doing very well indeed!

We’ve tried other internet security programs, but when we investigated to see which one we wanted last year, we thought Kaspersky was the best and went with it.

They have proven their worth to us!  :)

Filling My Life With Good Things


I am reminded once again how important it is to fill my life with good things.

We are so blessed in this day and age.  There is an incredible amount of choices out there.  While we may often be bombarded, one way or another, by the negative and even downright bad things, I realize that there are an infinite number of positive and downright good and even righteous things!

And the really great news is, that you don’t have to have a lot of money to enjoy the good things in life!!  :)

Let’s start with a biggie, media.  Media includes books, magazines, newspapers, photos, radio, TV, movies, CD players, internet, even emails as well as mail – bills, ads, announcements, letters, etc., etc., etc.!

It’s easy to fall for the nearest one, or the easiest one, the most provocative one, or the loudest one, or the latest fad.

But it doesn’t take much to go one step farther and seek out the better one, in any category.  There are good things in every one of the categories listed above in Media.  And one of the best sources, available for absolutely free, is the library.

This is a great starting place because it costs nothing, and has a huge selection in every type of media and subject imaginable.

Now here’s the secret.

As you watch, listen, or look at Media, begin an experiment.  Stop to notice how you are feeling.

Is it dragging you down, or lifting your spirits?

Are you feeling out-of-sorts, or do you find yourself smiling and feeling positive?

Is it embarrassing, or is it fulfilling?

Do you want to hide or lash out, or do you want to do something nice for someone?

What thoughts are you filled with?  Dark, hurtful, mean, or sad thoughts, or light, healing, happy thoughts that start turning your mind toward others and toward a loving Father in Heaven?

It is truly amazing how much influence our surrounds have on us and on what we think about and then spend our time on.

Improve your life, your thoughts, and your actions by dwelling on the good, wholesome, positive, meaningful, happy, Christ-like things that are all around you everywhere you choose to look.

Fill your life with the good things in life, and notice the difference it makes.  :)

Remember


Our Christmas tree is still up.  Why?  Because we are still noticing it!

Our thoughts on the matter have always been that we put it up early to help bring the spirit of Christmas into our home, and we leave it up until we notice that we aren’t noticing it anymore.  (obviously it is not a real tree)

I love having it up.  It is so beautiful.  Its effect softens me as I look at it.

The other morning I had a moment while I was waiting for something or other, and I lite the Christmas tree lights and just stood, gazing at it.

Seeing the colorful lights, the silver/white and gold garlands, the shiny and varied ornaments caused wonderful stirrings within my soul.

Then I started noticing the individual ornaments.

Remember the kids when they were young?  There’s one with the whole Primary class, teacher included.  What a nice idea.

There’s one I sent to my father while I was on my mission in the country where he was born.  What a sweet remembrance it brought, I’m glad I inherited it.

There are a couple given to our family by my parents.  Every one of us received one of the cute little animals doing different things plastic “toy” ornaments.

Here are some shiny ones we got our first Christmas.  We were afraid the tree would be pretty bare, but then my boss had brought some decorations to work he didn’t want anymore and we had enough to make the tree come alive.

There’s one that my mother-in-law made and gave us so many years ago.  And on and on and on!

Such nice memories! What a beautiful way to remember the good things that have happened.

This is why our Christmas tree is still up.  :)

Callingless


Callingless.  Are you wondering what that means?

In The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints everyone serves.

We have a lay clergy, so the bishop and even the stake president have regular jobs and handle all their many church responsibilities as “volunteers” on the side.  They don’t get paid for their church service and they serve for a few years and then someone else is “called” to that particular position.

It works that way with all but the uppermost callings in the entire Church.

I have had many different callings in the Church.  You know that most recently I served in the Primary as the pianist.  I loved this calling!  I loved being with the children, watching them learn and grow, feeling the Spirit of God through their heartfelt singing and the sharing of choice experiences they have already had in their tender, young lives.

Now I’ve been “released” from that calling, and am waiting to see what my next calling will be…

I have not been without a calling (I call it ‘callingless’) very often.  It’s actually kind of an odd feeling, having grown up in the Church and not only being involved but also seeing my family and friends very involved in many different positions.

As I patiently (all right, sometimes not so patiently) wait to see what Heavenly Father has in store for me next, I can clearly see the value of every member participating.  It is when we participate with something that we feel more a part of it.  It gives us purpose in life, kind of like working does.

And, because often the calling feels above our reach and/or outside our comfort zone, our callings help us to humble ourselves and turn to Heavenly Father to ask for His guidance.  Some very choice blessings, talents, and friendships have come about in my own life because of that very inspired process.  Weak things have been made strong, my relationship with God has increased, and I have seen marvelous things happen as I diligently strove to faithfully fulfill my callings and do them as my Father in Heaven would want me to.

So, I am looking forward to getting a new calling soon, though I think it may stretch and challenge me, so in the meantime I am praying for the Lord’s blessings and strength to be able to learn quickly and be inspired to fulfill it as He would do if He were here.

How thankful I am for callings in the Church!  :)

Sundays


Today is Sunday.  I like Sundays.

Sunday is special.

All the other days of the week are crowded with work, activity, and worries.  I go to work, run errands, try to keep up the house, meet the demands of daily living and deal with countless things that crop up throughout the week.

Whew!

But Sunday is different.

(Oh wow!  I just popped over to lds.org to copy and paste a scripture to put in here, and they say there’s a special, worldwide devotional for young adults streaming at 6pm MST!  Trust me, you do not HAVE to be a young adult to enjoy this broadcast.  Anyone will find it a perfect way to top off the day.  You’ll find encouragement, inspiration, and love in abundance, and you’ll be glad you went there!  And of course the really great thing is, you can go to the website and watch it anytime thereafter as well.)

Now, here’s the scripture:

“Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.

“Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:

“But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:

“For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it.” Exodus 20:8-11.

God showed us the way.  He did His work 6 days and then blessed and hallowed the seventh and He rested.

So on Sundays I do not do the things I do all the other days of the week.

“But remember that on this, the Lord’s day, thou shalt offer thine oblations and thy sacraments unto the Most High, confessing thy sins unto thy brethren, and before the Lord.

“And on this day thou shalt do none other thing, only let thy food be prepared with singleness of heart that thy fasting may be perfect, or, in other words, that thy joy may be full.

“Verily, this is fasting and prayer, or in other words, rejoicing and prayer.” Doctrine and Covenants 59:12-14.

On Sundays I go to church with my family to learn more about the life of Jesus Christ and how I can better follow His example, to feel the Spirit of God, and to partake of the sacrament and renew the covenants I made when I was baptized.  It is a day perfect to add fasting to my prayers when I need a special blessing or help in my life, and to fast once a month and give the money saved to the Church to help the poor.

In return I receive many blessings.  I find that on Monday I am ready for another week of work, activities, errands, keeping up with the house, and worries.  I have more energy and I feel refreshed, like my cup has been filled.  I forgive myself for little errors and feel Heavenly Father with me more.  My heart is softened and I can see the needs of others more readily, and respond more willingly.

In short, my life has been richly blessed by my observance of the Sabbath Day!  :)

What Makes It True?


This morning I read something interesting that reminded me of our world today:

“And it came to pass that he did teach these things so much that many did believe on his words…” Alma 1:5.

Doesn’t that sound exactly like what happens today?  It also reminded me of a quote I heard long ago and have found to be very true:

“Vice is a monster of so frightful mien
As to be hated needs but to be seen;
Yet seen too oft, familiar with her face,
We first endure, then pity, then embrace.” – Alexander Pope.

Things that were abhorrent to even think of in our youth have been taught, displayed, and indoctrinated so much by society that many people have mistaken them for truth and either go along with, or even embrace them.

They wear many disguises, and are flaunted by politicians and media alike.  People start wondering if there might not be a spark of truth to them and find themselves being led down dangerous pathways that can only lead to unhappiness, emptiness, dissatisfaction, and social destruction.

Does that mean that we are at the mercy of flawed, misled, or corrupt individuals, and ideas?

No.  You have the power to find out for yourself what is true and what is not true.

Every individual has a special spark inside, known by many names: your gut, conscience, intuition, etc.  What is it?

“For behold, the Spirit of Christ is given to every man, that he may know good from evil” Moroni 7:16.

As you think about that, notice how it feels inside you.  Things that are true will feel right, comfortable, peaceful.

“Yea, behold, I will tell you in your mind and in your heart, by the Holy Ghost, which shall come upon you and which shall dwell in your heart.” Doctrine and Covenants 8:2.

Your loving Father in Heaven, who created you and this world for you to live on, thought to give you that special spark, the Spirit or Light of Christ, to help guide you throughout life.  He knew there would be many false beliefs, ideas, teachings, and people trying to lead you astray.  This is the one, sure way to know the truth of all things, the truth of anything.

You can develop this great gift from God.  The more you use it the more sensitive you will become to it and soon you will find that you are developing your relationship with your Heavenly Father and turning to Him automatically when something is unsure, when you need help, and when you long for peace.

I have known Him my whole life, and been greatly blessed by seeking the truth and trying to live it.  When I am uncertain, I know that I can turn to my Father in Heaven and ask for His help and guidance.  I know that He has often been there to comfort me and to remind me the right way to live to be happy, bless others, and return to Him.

May you have joy in the journey of seeking, and finding, what is true!  :)