Category Archives: Feeling Close to God

Longing For Inspiration?


Are you longing for something uplifting and inspirational?  Wouldn’t you love to experience real inspiration to help you in your life?  Come right KBYU or lds.org and peak in on the General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  The Mormon Tabernacle Choir, insightful messages by great men and women who live good lives and have the spirit of God with them.

General Conference is live today and tomorrow from 10:00am to 12:00pm MST and 2:00pm to 4:00pm MST (April 1 and 2, 2017).  Or find it later at lds.org.  There is also a special meeting for the men tonight at 6:00pm to 7:30pm, and there was a special meeting for women last Saturday, March 25, that will be rebroadcast on KBYU at 8:00am to 9:30am tomorrow morning and is always available at lds.org.

Come, try it and see.  See how you feel.  Learn what God has in store for you.  🙂

My Church Gives Me Hope


I left Church today feeling incredibly happy and hopeful!  It was Ward Conference, so our Stake leaders were there with good messages of inspiration, encouragement, and hope.  It was absolutely wonderful!

In Sacrament meeting, Bishop Cox, the leader of our congregation, spoke about the influence of the Holy Ghost (or the Spirit of God) in our lives.  He talked about how meaningful personal, and family, prayers help us feel closer to Heavenly Father and we are able to feel the influence of the Holy Spirit better.

In The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints we learn that prayer is communicating with God.  Bishop Cox explained that prayer is not like ordering groceries over the phone and then hanging up.  It is also not a wish list.  We are seeking to know what His will is for us.  He loves us and knows what is best for us, what will help us grow, and how we can help Him further His work among His children.

Seeking to find out, and then striving to follow, Heavenly Father’s will is something we consistently try to do.  Setting aside our will takes practice and time.  Our natural inclination is to seek to do and fulfill our own desires and purposes.  But allowing our Beloved Father in Heaven to guide our lives is trusting in His infinite power and goodness.  And His plans for our lives are more glorious than we could ever fathom!

Then our President Horsley, our Stake President, pointed out that there is power in surrendering our will to God’s will, and in seeking God’s will.  We discipline ourselves, learning to give everything to Heavenly Father.  We can become close to Him.  He is not just a friend.  He has created worlds without number!  He is God.

And he talked about 2 kinds of faith.  One functions in the life of every soul and is the faith born of experience – i.e. Spring will come, tomorrow is a new day, things will work out OK.  The other is a rare faith – it causes things to happen that otherwise would not be.  Seek to be directed, seek the Spirit of God, find comfort, find the Lord’s spirit.

Do not turn away the “still, small voice” of God.  Learn to recognize it.  It will take the hate, envy, strife, etc. from your heart.

Remain unyielding in following God, worthy of His choicest blessings, and prepared so you can receive all that God has to offer you, not only now – but in the eternities to come.

Talk about hope!  🙂

A Place to Set Aside Your Cares


Sitting in Church today, basking in the warm, energetic feelings of our opening song, “I’ll Go Where You Want Me To Go”, it occurred to me that I was feeling much better than I have most of this week.

It has been an incredibly busy week, but even more so, an extremely emotionally challenging week.  Not much of that was personal, but my mind and heart were bombarded by the sufferings, worries, and challenges of those around me.  I had fallen into a state of discouragement and found myself wondering how to feel better – what could I do to raise my spirits?

And now, here was the answer.  By simply doing what I have done ‘most every Sunday since the day I was born – attending church at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints – my wounds were being cleansed and bound up without my even paying much attention to the process.  I was being made whole again just because I was keeping the Lord’s commandments, living my life as I should, and participating in the great blessings that He has provided for us.

Ahhh, now I feel so much better, and ready to face the world and its concerns again.

I love the Church!  🙂

This is Why I Go To Church


Today at church the leaders of our Ward Council spoke.  It was a wonderful and inspiring meeting (as they usually are).

The thought that stayed with me the most is that God is always there to help us with the answers.  He knows when we are struggling with something.  We may have put a lot of time, effort, thought, even money or counseling into it, but it persists in being an issue.

If we keep trying, and include Heavenly Father, He will guide us to the answer, or might guide the answer to us.

The speaker gave an example of a leader in the church who was sent to speak at a Stake Conference.  When he arrived, the Stake President asked him if he had a few minutes to talk with a brother in the Stake who was really struggling to overcome his smoking addiction, but had not been successful no matter what, or how hard, he had tried.

So the leader spoke with this brother.  The leader was able to witness to this brother that God knows and loves him, that God is aware of the struggles the brother has, and that God will help him and be with him through this process as he continues to try.  He was able to give this man hope.

Father in Heaven knows us.  He loves us and wants us to succeed in returning to Him and in bringing our families and loved ones with us as well.  He loves you individually – no matter who you are, where you are, what you have done, or who your family is.  Ask for His help and you will find a way.  🙂

Cleaning The Church


I went over to help clean the church this morning.  It was by assignment, and at first it felt like a duty.

I was asked to go through the chapel and look for programs and other items that might have been left behind in the Hymnal holders.  Another sister volunteered to vacuum the padding on the benches and underneath them.

As we walked into the Chapel, I remembered going to the church to help clean as a child.  Back then the Church hired custodians to do the cleaning, and my parents cleaned first our local ward building and then the brand new Stake Center when it was built.

They kept those buildings immaculate!  They had that strong German work ethic and pride in their “craft”.  Each weekend they would have one of us children go along to help dust off the benches (non-cushioned, of course), and then dust the folding metal chairs in all the classrooms.

They had a schedule of all the cleaning jobs that needed to be done and when.  And so everything was cleaned regularly.  It felt great to have a clean building, and to know it was because of my parents that it fairly gleamed.

Back to the present.  I didn’t mind doing such mundane work, in fact I enjoy simple, detailed tasks that don’t require a lot of concentration.

Soon one of my favorite hymns was running through my mind, “There is Sunshine in My Soul Today”.  And then I was thinking about what I was really doing.

I was working to care for Jesus Christ’s building.  I was serving my God.  I love Heavenly Father.  And it felt wonderful to be at Church and sprucing up the building, finding the little things that may often get overlooked, and taking loving care of them.

I even found a child’s tithing envelope that had been prepared, set down, and forgotten in his hurry to leave after the meeting.  As I picked it up, I could feel a few coins clinking in the envelope.  We put it in the Clerk’s office to be passed on to the Bishop first thing tomorrow morning.

My soul was singing as I moved on to the kitchen and started washing a couple pans that were left on the stove but felt a little greasy, then moved on to cleaning off all the counters, stoves, and sinks.

The building is ready for tomorrow’s Sabbath day.  I feel renewed and refreshed for having served the Lord in my own, small way, and building relationships with the others who also came this day to serve in this way.

Not such a little thing after all!  🙂

An Extra Special Christmas Season


For an extra special Christmas season this year, consider joining along in the “Light the world. In 25 ways. Over 25 days” initiative by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ primary organization.  They have put together suggestions of things that children can do daily to celebrate and share the Spirit of Christmas in December.  Check it out at Mormon.org/downloads.

And of course, teens and adults can participate as well!

“‘We are reminding children that Jesus Christ is the light of the world,’ said Sister Joy D. Jones, Primary General President. By participating in the “Light the World” initiative, children can do the things that help them not only come to know, but also emulate, the Savior.

“’We love the children,’ she said. ‘We have faith in them to be lights. We see their potential and it is grand.’…

“Serving others is ‘not a burden, but a way of life,’ explained Sister Jones, noting that she hopes this campaign will help families realize ‘we don’t do anything without Him.’

“‘When children share their light, they give a beautiful Christmas gift, said Sister Bingham, First Counselor in the Primary General Presidency. ‘You can give a Christmas gift of service—the most powerful gift you can give.’

“Sister Cordon said children can be involved in the campaign in simple ways without spending money. As they do, their hearts will change and they will have different expectations of Christmas; instead of wondering what they will get this year they will say, ‘What are we going to do for someone else today?’

“’We need to bring the Savior into our hearts and into our families,’ she said….’We are all trying to walk the same path that He walked,’ added Sister Cordon.  ‘We are trying to see others the way He sees them,’ said Sister Jones….finding ways to light the world will not be hard.  ‘There are so many sad people in the world.’

“‘These things come natural to children, who are so full of love and compassion,’ said Sister Bingham.”

How about it, are you game?  🙂

Happy Thanksgiving Eve!


It’s the evening before Thanksgiving.  We just finished watching Hallmark’s Operation Christmas, a warm and inspirational movie about helping our military families.

Watching it made me realize a lot more of what military families go through with their loved ones not only away from home but also in very dangerous situations.  It reminded me again of how very thankful I am to them and to all military personnel for the price they pay for the freedoms our country enjoys.

I am thankful to live in a country that has such great freedoms, and for the people and families who have given so much for us to have those freedoms.

At work they asked us to put together a PowerPoint slide of what we are thankful for.  I knew most people would mention the obvious things like their families and loved ones, etc.  So I decided to mention a few other things I am thankful for:

  • My knowledge of, and relationship with, Jesus Christ
  • My job
  • Modern medicine
  • Our country
  • Animals…not bugs…animals
  • Libraries

Additionally, at the beginning of the month I put several items in my workspace showing things I am thankful for:

  • My family
  • Blessings of the harvest
  • Family sitting down together for Thanksgiving dinner
  • Animals
  • My co-workers
  • Flowers
  • Our beautiful world
  • God and Jesus Christ
  • Prayer
  • Knowing that people we at first find fault with can become our dearest friends
  • Realizing that our choice of words and the language we use tells a lot about us

We bought some battery-operated candles and set them up in our room.  They add such a nice ambiance to the room.  I am surprised, perhaps it’s because we are close to the Christmas season, and we just watched that nice movie.

I have so much to give thanks to our Father in Heaven for!

What are you thankful for?