Tag Archives: Religion and Spirituality

Did You Experience The Inspiration?


Did you take a moment to check out the wonderful General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints over the weekend?  If so, you heard something great and inspiring!

Included were songs by the famous Mormon Tabernacle Choir, talks by a living Prophet of God, Apostles of the Lord Jesus Christ, and other inspired leaders of the Church.

You would have felt, as did I, stirring messages of hope, happiness, and peace in spite of the turmoil that is present in the world today.  The gospel light of Christ shines through it all, and is there for us to grasp and follow.

Where there is the light of Christ, there can be no darkness!

If you missed it, or would like to experience more of it, you can go to lds.org and see and hear the inspiring messages whenever you want.

God did not leave us alone, nor without resources.  He has provided everything that is needed to be able to live a happy and fulfilling life now, and to return to live with Him in the eternities.

Try it and see for yourself.  🙂

Suddenly, Political Involvement Sounds Like Fun


With the election of President-elect Trump, politics are actually starting to sound fun to me.  That’s quite a stretch, because I always considered politics to be an incredibly slow and mundane process.  I was amazed that anything actually ever got done.

Then politics took a huge, 180 degree turn, and society started not only radically shifting Its language, policies, and measures, totally opposite from what I thought, felt, and believed, but It went so far as to criticize and negatively label things that were near and dear to my heart.  It decided that I and the majority of people in this country were wrong, and It took legal action against anyone and anything that disagreed with what It wanted!

People were forced to abide by a new set of standards, and differing beliefs and ideas became feared and ridiculed rather than discussed and celebrated.  I believe children would gain greater respect for others, and personal inner strength, if taught in school about the various and diverse religious beliefs in the world.  They would not fear others because they would understand them better.  This would only enrich their lives, and help them be better grounded and more prepared for life.  That is something to celebrate!

If love of country and respect for the flag were taught and exemplified in society people would have something to be proud of.  They would be willing to defend it, and in turn stand up for the poor and underserved.  We need this in our lives in order to be a whole person, as there is something missing inside us otherwise.

And what about race and gender?  Most religious beliefs teach that people are equal, that they have a relationship with God and with each other, and that when we live moral and ethical lives, not only will we be blessed but others will be blessed as well.  Suddenly equality becomes the norm and bigotry goes away.

We have so much more in common than not.  It is time to bring back that commonality and reap the many blessings that follow.

When have you seen evidence of this in your life?

Life in the Church Foyer


I got to church kind of late today for Sacrament Meeting, so went to the foyer, which is right outside the chapel.

Being the first Sunday of the month, today is Fast Sunday in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  For Fast Sunday we fast 2 meals (no food or dink) and give the money we save doing so to the Bishop (the leader of the local congregation).  This “offering” is used to help the poor in our Ward (congregation), or if not needed at that level it will be used to help the poor in a different area.  It is a wonderful part of the Lord’s plan!

Also on Fast Sunday we have a special Sacrament meeting.  Members are invited to go to the pulpit and bear (share) their testimonies.  When you are fasting there is often a special feeling you have, you feel closer to God, with a greater portion of His Holy Spirit in your heart.  Again, a wonderful part of Father’s plan.

As I listened to the testimonies that were being shared, I noticed those who were also in the foyer with me.  A young family, a couple sisters (ladies), a couple missionaries.  And after a time, members of the Ward who meet before us and were now leaving to go back home.  Lots of families, friends, children, and adults.

I realized I was watching life in that foyer.  We are a family-oriented church, so all are invited to Sacrament meeting.  Sometimes children get fussy and are taken out of the chapel to be calmed in the foyer.  Or people might arrive late and wait in the foyer for Sacrament meeting to end and to join in on the Sunday School, Priesthood, Relief Society, Young Men and Young Women, and Primary portions of the day.

I see that friends visit, teachers put last minute touches on their lessons, people make plans for the coming week, fathers play reverent finger games with toddlers, children sway with the music and learn to conduct, and babies learn to walk!

Ah, life is learned in the Church foyer!  🙂

I Love George Washington!


Yes, I love George Washington!  And today being the birthday of the United States of America it is a fitting time to write about my admiration for our country’s first President.

So many things make George Washington worthy of note.

He is the father of our country.  He spent 45 years in service to our country.  He was our first President.  He could have been made King, but he refused to even consider such a thing, saying that we had just fought for our freedom from tyranny and we would never be subject to sovereignty again.  Not only that, but he stepped down as the General of the Army when the war was won.  Never before in the history of the world had such a thing happened.  Usually the army would take over the country when they fought off the enemy.  He did not allow the army to march on Congress to demand their back-pay and the other benefits owed them for their service to their fledgling country.  It would be wrong to do so.

Though he lost many battles, George Washington was a great general.  He worked with what he was given, molded and transformed it into a continental army and was able to defeat the British.  He never gave up; staying with it for 8 long and grueling years.  They faced incredible and impossible-to-imagine hardships.  Through it all he remained firm and steadfast in defense of his country, inspiring others to band together and do their part in the making of a new nation not only for them but for untold millions to follow.  It pleases me to no end that the United States keeps him as their top general no matter how many other generals may follow.

He was an honorable man.  Always looking to improve himself he developed a personal creed that he followed all the days of his life.  He was a deeply religious man, attending and participating in various churches regularly, asking for clergy involvement throughout the activities of his life, and praying daily for wisdom and help from the deity he knew and loved, particularly during his most trying circumstances.  Some claim he was not religious as he joined no particular group.  I believe he did not find the complete truth he was looking for, but never gave up searching and doing the best he could with what was available.

Another proof of his devotion to God was his great care in using the sacred name of deity.  Thus, he most often, and in fact very often, referred to God as “Providence”.  What a beautiful show of love and utmost respect!

Many of the negative things you hear about George Washington today are absolutely false, “fairy tales” conjured up to discredit him.

I admit that he owned slaves.  Owning slaves was something society did back then.  Looking down on him simply for owning slaves is akin to historians 200 years from now looking down on you simply because society today has succumbed to fear of religion and looks down on those who profess belief in God, rather than remaining enlightened and embracing religious freedom!  And like their looking down on us for our society’s becoming divisive, various groups splintering off and setting themselves apart from the whole simply based on their race, color, gender, nationality, class, religion, age, marital status, physical ability, or political affiliation!

Yes, I love George Washington!  I love the freedoms we enjoy today because of him and so many others like him who paid the price for the blessings we enjoy today.

Don’t Deny Yourself God’s Blessings!


A Quadruple Combination of the (scriptures) of...

A Quadruple Combination of the (scriptures) of – contains the Bible, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants and Pearl of Great Price, all bound together. Ricardo630 07:45, 15 April 2006 (UTC) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

The other day I was on my way to work and got thinking about my life and what things I should change.

 

As I contemplated, and then prayed about it, I began to realize that because I am complacent about where I am in life right now, moving along with the flow of life, reacting to what comes my way but not planning in advance much, there may be some things I am missing out on.

 

I definitely have many wonderful blessings in my life.  I try to be a good person and do what is right.  I live a thankful life, rejoicing in God‘s blessings and seeking to share with others.  My deeply held spiritual and religious beliefs have brought me much joy in life, comfort and peace during trying times, and strength to keep trying even when I don’t always understand the reasons for why things happen the way they do.

 

When we keep a law, we reap the reward for keeping that law:

 

“There is a alaw, irrevocably decreed in bheaven before the foundations of this world, upon which all cblessings are predicated—And when we obtain any ablessing from God, it is bybobedience to that law upon which it is predicated.”  Doctrine and Covenants 130:20-21.

 

The wonderful thing about this rule is that if you want a certain blessing, you obey the law it is connected to and you will have that blessing!  The interesting thing about it is that if you don’t obey the law, you will not be able to have that blessing.  The scriptures are replete with God’s laws and the blessings that come from obeying them.  They include stories and examples of people who follow the rules and reap the blessings, and with people who trust in their own desires and reap the consequences of those actions.  And we get to choose which path we will follow.

 

Back to my musings.  It occurred to me that because of my complacency I could well be missing out on some additional blessings Father in Heaven has in store for me.  I perhaps need to prepare myself in order to move forward in my life, further along the path He has waiting for me as soon as I am ready for it.  That is a very intriguing, somewhat exciting, and even a bit unnerving thought.

 

Yet, knowing that Heavenly Father always wants what is best for us, it is something I want to think more and pray more about, and discern what I need to change, or to do, to be ready for that next step in my life.  I wouldn’t want to deny myself any of God’s blessings.  I know He has amazing things in store for all of us!  🙂

 

 

 

Bump In The Road


Road to Denali - Mountains - Alaska

Road to Denali – Mountains – Alaska (Photo credit: blmiers2)

 

Here I was, just a couple weeks or so ago, “bragging” (not really, but I guess you could call it that) about how comfortable our marriage is.  And then – I almost hate to admit it –

 

A bump in the road!

 

Beloved hubby was upset with me the other day.

 

It took me a bit by surprise.  I didn’t expect such a strong reaction.

 

He was genuinely displeased with me.  My reaction?

 

First the “natural man” (as it says in the scriptures) reaction flew into my mind.  Defense!  “Why should he be upset with me!  I didn’t do anything.  He has no right to feel that way.”

 

Then Heavenly Father lovingly interjects.  “Just a minute now.  He is hurt and you’re not going to help anything with that attitude.”

 

“But,” I argue, “He shouldn’t try to make me feel bad.  Besides, he should calm down and apologize for what he said.  Now I feel hurt and upset.”

 

In the conversation that ensued, between myself and God, I was reminded that I know how I should react, and, fight it though I did, I knew what I should do.  I also know that there are times that I should swallow my pride, set aside my own interests, humble myself, and go talk to the man I love (even if at the moment I’m not feeling that loving).  Because, if I do nothing, or return ill feelings for ill feelings, not only will we not move forward, but things will get worse.  And I don’t want that.

 

Therefore, I sought out Beloved hubby, and said, “Hi.”

 

“Hi,” he replied.

 

“I didn’t mean to make you feel that way,” I said.  “Well, I do,” he stated.  Again, my hackles came up.  Stop it!  “I am sorry,” I said slowly.  “It was not my intention to hurt you.”

 

And thus began a dialog that helped begin the healing process.  It did not heal everything right away.  But the process was started.

 

24 hours later, though I still felt a bit reserved, we were no longer feeling at odds with each other, and had calmed down considerably.  Comfort was beginning to return.  We talked some more.  I still had to hold my “natural man” tendencies back just a little, “No, I’m not going to allow myself to overreact, or to withdraw into myself and away from him,” I told myself, and Father in Heaven.  “That wouldn’t be right either.”

 

So, we’re pretty well back to the comfortable stage.  And this little bump in the road is pretty well behind us.  It was a bit rough for a while there.  But, it’s not what you go through but how you handle it that really counts.  I am so very thankful for the gospel and the Church in my life, to help me know how to deal with life’s problems and not let them simply run away with me.

 

 

 

 

 

19 Additional Hours


My missionary has now been released as a missionary.

But, you may say, he got home last night.  Why just released?

Well, sort of an answer to prayer.

His time is so short with us between finishing his mission and going off to college that we were disappointed.  We, or at least I, didn’t pray for more time, but we certainly thought it would be nice.

It didn’t work out for him to visit with the Stake President last night as planned.  No problem, we all realize that things come up, that others might have a more pressing need, etc.  Not a big problem.  It’ll happen today.

This morning was the groundbreaking for the Fort Collins temple.  So his release was pushed out a little further.  He hung around the house, going through his things, helping us with some chores, reaching out to family and friends, and running errands with his dad.

We had some nice chats, talked about his mission, talked over what needs to happen before he leaves for college, filled him in on what’s been happening around here the last 2 years.

It suddenly occurred to me that in a way this was like an answer to prayer.  By having his release postponed, we were able to spend more time with him, almost a full day, 19 additional hours.  Not a bad deal.  Heavenly Father gave us what we desired, even without our specifically asking for Him to.  What a loving and thoughtful Father!