Sunday, March 22, 2009

Ogden Utah Weber Heights Stake Conference 3-21-09

Doctrine and Covenants 82:10
10 I, the Lord, am abound when ye do what I say; but when ye do not what I say, ye have no bpromise.

"The Lord’s storehouse is both spiritual and temporal. Through faith and obedience to the commandments, we build a spiritual reservoir of strength to meet life’s challenges. Similarly, we should follow wise principles of provident living and self-reliance to build temporal resources to meet our needs and serve others.

Provident living means not coveting the things of this world. It means using the resources of the earth wisely and not being wasteful, even in times of plenty. Provident living means avoiding excessive debt and being content with having that which is sufficient for our needs.

For example, one element of provident living is to obtain education or vocational training to prepare us for a profession that will sustain us and our families. Then we must give a full day’s effort for a full day’s pay. Such a work ethic, coupled with the qualities of integrity, character, and trustworthiness, qualify each of us as a “laborer . . . worthy of his hire” (D&C 31:5).

Another element of provident living is the ability to live joyfully within our means, avoiding excessive debt and not coveting the temporal things of this world. There seems to be a sense of entitlement in today’s culture—a feeling that we should acquire right now everything that our parents have acquired over many years. Debt can enslave us. When we become burdened with excessive debt, we have given away our precious, priceless agency and placed ourselves in self-imposed servitude, spending all of our time, energy, and means to the repayment of our debts. A mounting feeling of hopelessness from this situation builds stress which depresses us mentally, affecting our self worth, our relationship with our companion, and ultimately our feelings toward the Lord." ("Seek and attain the spiritual high ground in life", Elder Robert D. Hales, CES Broadcast to Married and Single Young Adults, March 1, 2009)

Paying the Lord first shows our gratitude.

"The work of thousands of Latter-day Saints who give of their time and resources to help others, both as individuals and as contributors in the Church, is a literal manifestation of the Prophet Joseph Smith’s counsel: 'A man filled with the love of God, is not content with blessing his family alone, but ranges through the whole world, anxious to bless the whole human race.'" (Neil K. Newell, "Anxious to Bless the Whole Human Race", Ensign, April 1999)

“If the people known as Latter-day Saints had listened to the advice given from this stand by my predecessor, under the inspiration of the Lord, calling and urging upon the Latter-day Saints not to run in debt, this great depression would have hurt the Latter-day Saints very, very little. … To my mind, the main reason for the depression in the United States as a whole, is the bondage of debt and the spirit of speculation among the people.” ("Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Heber J. Grant", Chapter 13)

Budgets are a plan on how to spend our money. It helps us distinguish between wants and needs.

Teach your family sound financial principles and a good work ethic.

“Wherefore, do not spend money for that which is of no worth, nor your labor for that which cannot satisfy” (2 Ne. 9:51)

Many more people could ride out the storm-tossed waves in their economic lives if they had their year's supply of food and clothing 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." (President Thomas S. Monson, "That Noble Gift—
Love at Home,” Church News,
May 12, 2001, 7.)

Not all blessings come back in monetary form.

Amos 8
11 ¶ Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a afamine of bread, nor a bthirst for water, but of hearing the cwords of the Lord:
12 And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall arun to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and shall not find it.

True discipleship means that we must press against our weaknesses and inadequacies.

Ether 12: 27

27 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their aweakness. I bgive unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my cgrace is sufficient for all men that dhumble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make eweak things become strong unto them.

Real power comes from the grace of Christ. The Bible Dictionary states the following of grace:
"A word that occurs frequently in the New Testament, especially in the writings of Paul. The main idea of the word is divine means of help or strength, given through the bounteous mercy and love of Jesus Christ.

It is through the grace of the Lord Jesus, made possible by his atoning sacrifice, that mankind will be raised in immortality, every person receiving his body from the grave in a condition of everlasting life. It is likewise through the grace of the Lord that individuals, through faith in the atonement of Jesus Christ and repentance of their sins, receive strength and assistance to do good works that they otherwise would not be able to maintain if left to their own means. This grace is an enabling power that allows men and women to lay hold on eternal life and exaltation after they have expended their own best efforts.
Divine grace is needed by every soul in consequence of the fall of Adam and also because of man’s weaknesses and shortcomings. However, grace cannot suffice without total effort on the part of the recipient. Hence the explanation, “It is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do” (2 Ne. 25: 23). It is truly the grace of Jesus Christ that makes salvation possible. This principle is expressed in Jesus’ parable of the vine and the branches (John 15: 1-11). See also John 1: 12-17; Eph. 2: 8-9; Philip. 4: 13; D&C 93: 11-14."

One of the speakers referenced "The infinite atonement" by Tad Callister

Enoch and Moses both found they needed the grace of God to give them strength to overcome their weakness.

  1. 10 ¶ And Moses said unto the Lord, O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither heretofore, nor since thou hast spoken unto thy servant: but I am slow of aspeech, and of a bslow tongue.
  2. 31 And when Enoch had heard these words, he abowed himself to the earth, before the Lord, and spake before the Lord, saying: bWhy is it that I have found favor in thy sight, and am but a lad, and all the people chate me; for I am dslow of speech; wherefore am I thy servant?
As one studies the dealings with Enoch and Moses one can contrast how the Lord dealt with each of them.

Grace is an enabling power.

Alma 26: 12
12 Yea, I know that I am anothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will bnot boast of myself, but I will cboast of my God, for in his dstrength I can do all ethings; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever.

2 Timothy 1:7-9
7 For God hath not given us the spirit of afear; but of bpower, and of clove, and of a sound mind.
8 Be not thou therefore aashamed of the btestimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God;
9 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy acalling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and bgrace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,

We overcome sin through his grace. His power. His strength.

We should not only be prepared temporally, but also spiritually to withstand temptation, worldly ideas, and the opposition of society to the things of God.

Constant prayer not just once or twice a day.

  1. 33 Therefore let the church take heed and pray always, lest they fall into atemptation;
  2. 12 aPray always, lest you enter into btemptation and lose your creward.
  3. 39 Pray always that you enter not into atemptation, that you may abide the day of his coming, whether in life or in death. Even so. Amen.
  4. 49 What I say unto one I say unto all; apray always lest that wicked one have power in you, and remove you out of your place.
    50 My servant Newel K. Whitney also, a bishop of my church, hath need to be achastened, and set in border his family, and see that they are more cdiligent and concerned at home, and pray always, or they shall be removed out of their dplace.
  5. 15 Verily, verily, I say unto you, ye must watch and apray always, lest ye be tempted by the devil, and ye be led away captive by him.
  6. 5 aPray always, that you may come off bconqueror; yea, that you may conquer Satan, and that you may cescape the hands of the servants of Satan that do uphold his work.

"The Apostle Paul taught that the Lord’s teachings and teachers were given that we may all attain 'the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ' (Eph. 4:13). This process requires far more than acquiring knowledge. It is not even enough for us to be convinced of the gospel; we must act and think so that we are converted by it. In contrast to the institutions of the world, which teach us to know something, the gospel of Jesus Christ challenges us to become something."
"From such teachings we conclude that the Final Judgment is not just an evaluation of a sum total of good and evil acts—what we have done. It is an acknowledgment of the final effect of our acts and thoughts—what we have become. It is not enough for anyone just to go through the motions. The commandments, ordinances, and covenants of the gospel are not a list of deposits required to be made in some heavenly account. The gospel of Jesus Christ is a plan that shows us how to become what our Heavenly Father desires us to become." (Elder Dallin H. Oaks, "The Challenge to Become", General Conference, October 2000)

Matt. 7: 24-27

24 ¶ Therefore whosoever aheareth these sayings of mine, and bdoeth them, cI will liken him unto a dwise man, which ebuilt his house upon fa rock:
25 And the arain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and bbeat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a crock.
26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a afoolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that ahouse; and it bfell: and great was the fall of it.

Do we have a foundation so that when we are beat up on that we don't start to crumble or washed away?

A plant grows through imperceptible changes and so does testimony and conversion.

When one has light around them frequently when more light is given to them it can be almost imperceptible.

When things go wrong is not because God has forsaken you, but because it is just part of the earthly experience.

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