Monday, April 23, 2007

Sunday April 22, 2007

Sacrament Meeting
One of the speakers quoted from the hymn Praise to the Man, "Sacrafice brings forth the blessings of heaven." He then quoted from the prophet Joseph Smith "...a religion that does not require the sacrifice of all things never has power sufficient to produce the faith necessary unto life and salvation;"

Another brother spoke on the service that his wife and he gave in the bishop's
storehouse the last two years. He also spoke about fast offerings. He
talked about that we have been told to give the cost of two meals to the
poor. He said that is the minimum and we should give ten times that much
when we are able.

Sunday School
People were saying that Jesus was a good man, but he deceived the people. (John 7:12) I
have heard people comment the same thing about the Church. They say it teaches good principles and the people of the church are generally good people, but the Church deceives people.

"If any man will do his will he will know of the doctrine, whether it be of God or whether I speak of myself." (John 7:17) - If we want to know if something is true then live it and find out. If we want to know if God will keep his promise to poor out blessing when we pay tithing then we should do the test that Malachi gave us about trying it and see if the Lord will not do it. The same is true for any principle of the gospel.

Because he did not grow up in Bethlehem some of the people were saying that because he grew up in Galalee that he came out of Galalee and not Bethlahem, thus they thought he couldn't be a fulfillment of the prophecy.

Hand out from bishop and his two counselors, which reiterated his challenge for us all to pray morning and night. The letter quoted 2 Nephi 32:8-9. They testified that Heavenly Father does answer prayers. They then said, "Many blessings are withheld from us only because we do not ask Heavenly Father for them. May we always have the spirit of prayer foremost in our

We then went into the lesson. The instructor used as the basis for his lesson the talk from President Monson from the priesthood session of the last General Conference. 6.7 billion people in the world. Contrasting this with the number of Priesthood holders is very, very small. We have a lot of work to do.

What state of spirit are we in when we are called upon to use our priesthood? Are we arguing with our wife? Are we watching something we should not? We should prepared to serve at all times. Do we ask ourselves before we do or say something, "I am carrying the
priesthood of God with me, should I do this?"

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Sunday April 8, 2007

Sacrament Meeting
The Primary sang.

One of the high councilmen from the stake spoke about his experience in churches before he joined our church and the things that he has learned about the savior through it all. He learned of the personal nature of the atonement and the importance of baptism.

The ward choir sang.

A member of the bishopric spoke. He said that the atonement removes the effects of sin from the repentant person and allows them to reconcile themselves to God.

He said that the opening hymn - I Believe in Christ - was written by Elder Bruce R. McConkie. He read Elder McConkie's testimony in the final talk he gave before he died. Elder McConkie bore testimony of the atonement.

The Bishopric member also quoted from Elder Eyring's talk from the last General Conference where he said that man's days have been prolonged to allow them time to repent.

He talked about how often we pray for rain, but don't plow our fields to receive the rain. How often do we want the atonement, but don't do our part.

Sunday School
Jesus talking about not giving the gospel to the dogs to the Canaanite woman. She knew that he meant that the gospel was not to be taught to any but the Jews at that time and not the Canaanites yet. She commented that even the dogs got to have the scraps from the table. She also knew the term for dog that he used was as a beloved pet and not just a wild dog. At that point he began opening up the teaching of the gospel to others than the Jews.

Miracles are based on faith.

The gospel started being taught to Adam and flowed from him to the chosen people to Israel. It then went to the gentiles. It is now in the process of returning to Israel.

Peter was given all the keys of the priesthood. From Moses he received the keys to the gathering of Israel. From Elijah he received the key to sealing on Earth and in Heaven.

God said to Peter, James, and John to hear his Son. When he says hear he means listen and obey.

Chapter 7 - Spencer W. Kimball
Personal Testimony
We all weave threads of golden testimony throughout our lives. Each testimony comes together at a different time, in different ways, with different threads, but form a beautiful tapestry of testimony.

Sunday April 1, 2007 - Afternoon Session of General Conference

Elder L. Tom Perry - Apostle (Audio, Text)
The Message of the Restoration
The restoration of the gospel cleared up many misconceptions and points of contention among religious sects. One of them being the nature of God. When God and Jesus appeared to Joseph Smith this event revealed that God the Father and Jesus Christ were two separate beings and they each had "a body of flesh and bones that is glorified and perfected".

Elder Perry quoted from the Doctrine and Covenants about the bring forth of the Book of Mormon, "Proving to the world that the holy scriptures are true, and that God does inspire men and call them to his holy work in this age and generation, as well as in generations of old" (D&C 20:7–11).
Elder Henry B. Eyring - Apostle (Audio, Text)
This Day
Someday means not today. "Someday I will repent." "Someday I will forgive him." "Someday I will speak to my friend about the Church." "Someday I will start to pay tithing." "Someday I will return to the temple." "Someday. . . . "

He talked of the purpose of creation was for us to prove ourselves. When we lived with God before we were born we chose to come here. "Hard as we knew the test would be, we felt joy because we had confidence that we could pass it. Our confidence came from knowing that Jesus Christ would come into the world as our Savior. He would overcome death. He would make it possible for us to be cleansed of our sins by qualifying for the effects of His Atonement."

Elder Gary J. Coleman - Seventy (Audio, Text)
"Mom, Are We Christians?"
He starts off his talk with the story of a girl that is scoffed at in school by those claiming that Latter-day Saints are not Christians.

Elder Coleman did not get into this in his talk, but I get to thinking about this every so often. So many lash out at the Church and most time at the members of the Church because some leader in the their church has told them that we are not Christians. It is interesting how they pick and choose who they label. Within protestantism there are churches that believe that God, Jesus, and the Holy Ghost are the same person. There are other protestant churches that believe that they are individuals with a single purpose. One of these doctrines would have to be non biblical, yet I rarely hear protestants calling other protestants or protestant churches out as being a cult or nonChristian. On the other hand, I have heard it frequently from others that I am not a Christian. Not because my actions don't represent what a follower of Christ would do, but because I am a Latter-day Saint.

The definition of a Christian has become so blurred that I sometimes wonder if that is even a title that I should try to claim. Does Christian mean follower of Christ or does it just mean someone that only uses parts of the New and Old Testaments in their sermons?
Charles W. Dahlquist II - Young Men General President (Audio, Text)
Who's on the Lord's side?
He quoted the words of a young pioneer which is now part of one of our hymns:
Who's on the Lord's side? Who?
Now is the time to show.
We ask it fearlessly:
Who's on the Lord's side? Who?

("Who’s on the Lord's Side?" Hymns, no. 260)

He talked of David fighting Goliath and his response contrasted with the other young men of Israel. "Their response to the question "Who's on the Lord side?" was not "I am!" but rather "Who me?""

He also gave some good thoughts on resisting temptations and becoming stronger people.

Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf - Apostle (Audio, Text)
Point of Safe Return
Elder Uchtdorf often pulls from his experience as a pilot to relate that to the gospel. He did so again this time. He talked of how in piloting there is a point of safe return sometimes referred to as the point of no return. Before this point you have enough fuel to return safely to where you started. He said that Satan tries to convince us that we are pasted the point of safe return. He does this in our individual lives, our marriages, our families, and in our sorrows.

Elder Russell M. Nelson - Apostle (Audio, Text)
Repentance and Conversion
His talk seemed to build on the points Elder Uchtdorf made on there being hope. Elder Nelson went on to describe the steps of repentance and the urgency of doing so.
President Gordon B. Hinckley - Prophet (Audio, Text)
Closing Remarks
He summarized the conference and dismissed everyone. He cautioned everyone to be safe when leaving the conference. He counseled that we should use the May Ensign magazine, which will contain this weekends proceedings, in our family home evening to teach our families. He closed with telling wife's and husbands to be decent and supportive of each other and to their children.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Sunday April 1, 2007 - Morning Session of General Conference

President James E. Faust - 2nd Counselor to the Prophet ( Audio, Text)
The Healing Power of Forgiveness
He talked about killing of five girls in an Amish community recently. He talked about how quickly the Amish forgave the man that killed them. The healing that came from that was substantial.

He noted experts that had commented on the effect. He also talked of another tragedy that happen in UT in the 80s.

Elder Dallin H. Oaks - Apostle ( Audio, Text)
Some place have laws where it is easier to sever a relationship with a spouse than it is to sever a relationship with an employee.

The best way to avoid a divorce from an undesirable person is not to marry one.

Elder Neil L. Andersen - Seventy ( Audio, Text)
It's true isn't it? Then what else matters?
He related a story that he heard President Hinckley give in 1973. There was a naval officer from Asia that converted to the Church. Elder Hinckley asked about how he would be received by his people when he returned home since his people were not Christian. The man said that his family would be disappointed and many of his opportunities would be closed.

"President Hinckley asked, 'Are you willing to pay so great a price for the gospel?'"

"With his dark eyes moistened by tears, he answered with a question: 'It's true, isn't it?'"

"President Hinckley responded, 'Yes, it is true.'

"To which the officer replied, 'Then what else matters?'"

Vicki F. Matsumori - Second Counselor in the Primary General Presidency (Audio, Text)
A Lesson from the Book of Mormon
The army of Helaman was comprised of young men who had been taught by their mothers to obey God and to have faith in Him. Many were not raised to know God and have faith, so we may be more like the parents of the army of Helaman who started as nonbelievers and now have the responsibility to raise righteous children.

Some of the tools that we have to teach these children are scriptures, prayer, and covenants.

When we read our scriptures, pray, and keep our covenants our children will see that and also see the effects on us and also feel the spirit more because we will be doing things that invite the spirit in more frequently.

Elder Glenn L. Pace - Seventy (Audio, Text)
Do You Know?
"Some time ago I had a delightful conversation with an impressive 16-year-old young woman. I discovered she was the only member of the Church in her high school. I asked her, "What is the most difficult challenge you face being the only member?"

She was thoughtful and gave a very astute answer: "It is believing something is true when everyone else believes it is false, and believing something is wrong when everyone else believes it's all right.""

Elder M. Russle Ballard - Apostle ( Audio, Text)
The Miracle of the Holy Bible
"My brothers and sisters, the Holy Bible is a miracle! It is a miracle that the Bible's 4,000 years of sacred and secular history were recorded and preserved by the prophets, apostles, and inspired churchmen.

"It is a miracle that we have the Bible's powerful doctrine, principles, poetry, and stories. But most of all, it is a wonderful miracle that we have the account of the life, ministry, and words of Jesus, which was protected through the Dark Ages and through the conflicts of countless generations so that we may have it today.

"It is a miracle that the Bible literally contains within its pages the converting, healing Spirit of Christ, which has turned men's hearts for centuries, leading them to pray, to choose right paths, and to search to find their Savior."

President Gordon B. Hinckley - Prophet (Audio, Text)
He said that the wind is blowing and he feels like the last leaf on the tree, but he said that his health is quite good even though he is now 96.

The Nicaean Creed was a man made statement resulting from a compromise of not being able to come to an agreement on the nature of God. It was made between the various Christian leaders of the time.

President Hinckley testified of things that he knows that have been revealed from God and not through a consensus of men. God is our Father in Heaven. Jesus lives. Jesus is the Jehovah of the Old Testament and the Messiah of the New.

Marriage is not intended to be "Till death do you part", but it is intended to be for all eternity.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Saturday March 31, 2007 - Priesthood Session of General Conference

Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin - Apostle (Text)
Life's Lessons Learned
Early like experiences made him who he is. Without them he would've been a different person. They shaped his character.

Act with honor and never take your eye off the ball.
"Priesthood means service; bearing the priesthood, I will serve."

Elder Robert D. Hales - Apostle (Text)
To the Aaronic Priesthood: Preparing for the Decade of Decision
His chose not to prepare on the flight simulator and died in a fighter crash. The copilot had prepared and parachuted to safety. "For behold, this alife is the time for men to bprepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of cthis life is the day for men to perform their dlabors." (Alma 34: 32)

What type of friends do you want? Are you that type of friend? What type of spouse do you want? Are you that type of person?

Our 20s are the decade of decision.

Bishop Keith B. McMullin - 2nd Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric
Lay Up in Store
"if ye are prepared ye shall not fear." (D&C 38:30)

Bishop McMullin quoted Paul and then each of the first presidency:

"A cardinal principle of the gospel is to prepare for the day of scarcity. Work, industry, frugality are part of the royal order of life. Remember these words from Paul: "If any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel."13

"Seated before us are the three presiding high priests who constitute the First Presidency of the Church.

"From President James E. Faust, Second Counselor, we hear: "Every father and mother are the family's storekeepers. They should store whatever their own family would like to have in the case of an emergency . . . [and] God will sustain us through our trials."14

"From President Thomas S. Monson, First Counselor, we hear: "Many more people could ride out the storm-tossed waves in their economic lives if they had their year's supply of food . . . and were debt-free. Today we find that many have followed this counsel in reverse: they have at least a year's supply of debt and are food-free."15

"From President Gordon B. Hinckley, the Lord's prophet, we hear:

""The best place to have some food set aside is within our homes. . . .

""We can begin ever so modestly. We can begin with a one week's food supply and gradually build it to a month, and then to three months. . . . I fear that so many feel that a long-term food supply is so far beyond their reach that they make no effort at all.

""Begin in a small way, . . . and gradually build toward a reasonable objective."16"

President James E. Faust - 2nd Counselor to the prophet (Text)
Message to My Grandsons
"Priesthood is the authority delegated to man to minister in the name of God. It is a power that no one can assume on his own initiative. As Paul said, "No man taketh this honour unto himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron." (Hebrews 5:4.) It is an authority beyond all human power to create."

"All you young men who hold the priesthood have the duty to respect womanhood. As you date the lovely young women of the Church, you have a duty to protect their physical safety and virtue. "

President Thomas S. Monson - 1st Counselor to the prophet
The Priesthood—a Sacred Gift
"My brethren, the priesthood is a gift which brings with it not only special blessings but also solemn responsibilities. It is our responsibility to conduct our lives so that we are ever worthy of the priesthood we bear. We live in a time when we are surrounded by much that is intended to entice us into paths which may lead to our destruction. To avoid such paths requires determination and courage."

President Gordon B. Hinckley - Prophet
"I Am Clean"
I regret that I am so old at a time when life is increasingly exciting."

He recounted statistics of things that have happened since he was called as a general authority.

"In a world that wallows in filth, be clean—in language, in thought, in body, in dress.

"To each of you I say, be clean in your language. There is so much of filthy, sleazy talk these days"

Friday, April 06, 2007

Saturday March 31, 2007 - Afternoon Session of General Conference

Elder Boyd K. Pack - Apostle (Audio, Text)
He commented on music not becoming a performance, like one of the morning speakers did. He said, "...the organist, who understood that excellence does not call attention to itself...". He talked about several places in the scriptures where they talk about the Lord speaks in a still small voice and not the whirl wind and such. He cautioned against aspiring for the praises of men.

He talked of the revelations that had been revealed to the church in the tabernacle that was rededicated this weekend.

Elder Earl C. Tingey - Seventy (Audio, Text)
Prophets—Pioneer and Modern Day
He talked of Brigham Young and Gordon B. Hinckley.

Brigham Young had the Salt Lake tabernacle built. He started 3 temples and dedicated 1 shortly before he died.

"One writer said of Brigham Young: 'He led a ragged and impoverished band, stripped of virtually all their earthly goods, into an unknown territory. His critics and biographers note that the man was unique among the leaders of modern history, for he alone, without any political and financial backing, established from scratch in the desert an ordered and industrious society, having no other authority than the priesthood and the spiritual strength with which he delivered his teachings. By constant exhortations and instructions, he drew his people together and inspired them in carrying out the divine mandate to build up the kingdom of God on earth.'"

President Hinckley
"He has traveled the world, meeting kings, queens, and presidents. He has been interviewed by the world's media. He continues to bring the Church 'out of obscurity.' 9 More than 75 temples have been built in the last 12 years.

H. David Burton - Presiding Bishop (Audio, Text)
Spoke of his assignment to have the tabernacle restored. He talked of what that tabernacle has seen. He talked of the various changes that had been made to it.

Bonnie D. Parkin - Recently Released Relief Society General President (Audio, Text)
Gratitude: A Path to Happiness
Murmuring, complaining, and criticizing are ungrateful acts and do not bring happiness. They also make it difficult for the spirit to work with us.

Luke chapter 17 - Only one of the ten lepers that were healed returned to give thanks. Do we recognize things we should be grateful for in our lives and give thanks?

Elder Marlin K. Jensen - Seventy (Audio, Text)
Remember and Perish Not
We need to always remember the Lord, so that we do not fall into temptation.

"And finally, I cannot tell you all the things whereby ye may commit sin; for there are divers ways and means, even so many that I cannot number them.

"But this much I can tell you, that if ye do not watch yourselves, and your thoughts, and your words, and your deeds, and observe the commandments of God, and continue in the faith of what ye have heard concerning the coming of our Lord, even unto the end of your lives, ye must perish. And now, O man, remember, and perish not." (Mosiah 4:29–30)

We should remember the history of the church, our personal history, and our family history. We also have made covenants to always remember Christ that he may have his spirit to be with us.

President James E. Faust - 2nd Counselor to the Prophet (Audio, Text)
Salt Lake Tabernacle Rededication

His father brought him to the tabernacle as a young boy to attend priesthood meeting. He also talked about how they started preparation for a tabernacle in Nauvoo to shelter the people as they listen to the Prophet. Because of the exodus they were not able to construct one, but they had acquired a large tarp to begin it.

President Thomas S. Monson - 1st Counselor to the Prophet (Audio, Text)
Tabernacle Memories

He talked about his call to the 12 and the day that he was sustained in the tabernacle. He has given 102 addresses in the tabernacle.

President Gordon B. Hinckley - Prophet (Audio, Text)
A Tabernacle in the Wilderness
He spoke about the tabernacle and then offered a dedicatory prayer to rededicate the building after the renovation.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Saturday March 31, 2007 - Morning Session of General Conference

General Conference
News Story from Deseret News
Morning Session

F. Michael Watson (Audio, Text ) gave the statistical report. A hundred thousand or so short of 13 million. Just under 300,000 convert baptisms this year.

Elder Richard G. Scott - Apostle (Audio, Text)
The most powerful being in the universe encourages us to have audience with him on a daily basis. This is extended to everyone no matter of worldly status. The audience can be for as long as we want.

Prayers could be improved by:
1. Trying to ask for what he wants for us and not what we want for ourselves.
2. When we don't feel like praying or don't feel worthy of prayer is when we need to pray the most.
3. Don't wait until we encounter a totally over powering problem to go to God in prayer.
4. Do your part to study the problem and work on a solution yourself while waiting on the Lord.

Answers don't necessarily come while you are praying. They come as we exercise faith through our obedience.

Elder Jay E. Jensen - Seventy(Audio, Text)
Music in our meetings should not be a performance. Music becomes a performance when it draws attention to itself.

Music has great power. We can prepare ourselves to receive the messages of church meetings by coming early and listening to the prelude music.

Sing hymns as lullabies for our children.

Inappropriate music drives the Spirit from us.

Elder John B. Dickson - Seventy(Audio, Text)
Directed to the youth of the church.
Word of Wisdom
He said that we are less tempted by things we haven't partaken of. That is a different that what some say about trying something to find out you won't like it or the teaching that one should take time to "sow their wild oats" before they settle down.

Choose before you have to choose. Choose now that vulgar words and jokes will never fall from your lips. Choose now that you will never lie or cheat.

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland - Apostle(Audio, Text)
He talked of James counseling us that he that bridals his tongue control the entire body is a perfect man. A horse can be controlled with a bit in his mouth. A boat is controlled with a comparably small rudder. The savior said, "Not that which goeth into the mouth adefileth a man; but that which cometh out of the bmouth, this defileth a man." (Matt. 15: 11)

He condemned abuse (verbal, physical, emotional, sexual, or any kind) and also gossip and backbiting. He said to speak positively about everyone including ourselves. "The stroke of the whip maketh marks in the flesh, but the stroke of the tongue breaketh the bones."—Apocrypha., Ecclesiasticus 28:17 He noted that verbal abuse knows no gender.

One should never call their children names. We should also be careful when comparing children. When we say that one child is smart and one is pretty. All the children here is that one of not smart and one is not pretty.

He said that we should be cheerful. No misfortune is so bad that whining can't make it worse. There was undoubtedly someone in the golden age of society who complained that everything was too yellow.

Elder David A. Bednar - Apostle (Audio, Text)
He talked of how a pickle is created by a specific process. If you alter that process it does not become a pickle. You must prepare the cucumber by cleaning it properly and submerse it in salt brine for a certain time. If you just sprinkle it with salt or just occasionally dunk it in the brine you will not get a pickle.

We must be prepared and follow the process to become born again. Just occasionally reading our scripture, praying, going to church, giving service, performing any of the other parts of the gospel of Jesus Christ does not make us born again. We must be totally immersed in the gospel. Also, the process takes time. It does not happen immediately. One must keep immersed and keep at it.

President Thomas S. Monson - 1st Counselor to the Prophet (Audio, Text)
He shared some thoughts on the hope we have after death. Death is not like some imagine. It is much like going into another room.

He quoted from Acts 7 to talk about the resurrection. "55 But he, being full of the aHoly Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the bglory of cGod, and dJesus estanding on the fright hand of God," We see here the distinct beings, God the Father and His son Jesus Christ.