Day 18 – Cultivating a Vibrant Community of Faith for Spiritual Growth and Maturation

A vibrant and healthy fellowship and community is place where we all are able to come and know we belong. Where there is kindness, empathy, charity, compassion, forgiveness, willingness to be honest, discreet, share with confidence, and keeping in confidence those things we share one with another. All of us are walking our own spiritual paths and experiencing our own spiritual journey - however, it is not meant for us to do so alone. We strive to be complete, unified, and in harmony because of the pure love of Christ.

What did Happen Before Genesis?

So, the question stands do we truly know what happened prior to Genesis? From my point of view, studies, discussions, research, and personal revelation - yes, we do know exactly what happened prior to the creation of our world, the purpose behind the fall, and the plan of Salvation and purpose of the infinite atonement.

Day 17 – Fellow Travelers and Authentic Fellowship

The call for us to go forward with faith and purpose is also a call for us to gather in small groups. This is the reason for Sunday school classes, weeknight youth activities, scripture study groups like those for single adults studying the Old Testament. Men gathering together in fellowship. Women gathering together in fellowship. Doing so, we experience the presence of Christ because when we are gathered in His name - he is there in the midst with us (Matthew 18:20).

Eden – The Paradise of God

As we seek after the Kingdom of Heaven - seek after the righteousness of God, we do so through love of our Heavenly Father and love toward others. The Savior expresses that these two teachings are the main commandments: Love God and love others (Mark 12:28-31). It is the call to allow our Heavenly Father to rule in our hearts, in our homes, in our workplaces, and in our communities.

Day 16 – Our Need to Belong and Fellowship

If my life is in chaos, I want to look into myself for the cause and the cure and use a fellowship of others where I am able to safely expose my shortcomings through vulnerability and courage. I seek out a fellowship with a group of others where it is a living and functioning unit where each one of us come and sharpen ourselves in order to find the cure for our sufferings. Not only the fellowship of a weekly group of others engaged in finding solutions to their own sufferings but a connection with another to continue to learn and grow in faith, spirituality, and journey. I seek to be sharpened just as I hopefully am able to sharpen another.

“Let Them Have Dominion”

Through our discipleship we come to know the nature and truth of who our Heavenly Father is and what he expects of us. To which, the Savior declared, be ye therefore perfect as your Father in Heaven is perfect (Matthew 5:48, Philippians 3:15-16; 3 Nephi 12:48). It means we are to be complete and full as it relates to Our Heavenly Father.

Day 15 – Engage in Meaningful Service and Ministry

Charity is the heart and soul of service and ministry. Without compassion and mercy, no other spiritual gifts have any purpose or meaning - not even our own faith in God. The Apostle concludes that there are three important things in our lives: Faith, Hope, and Charity. His conclusion is that Charity is the greatest of the three.

“And I, God, Blessed and Sanctified the Holy Sabbath”

The Sabbath is a time where we connect intimately with our Heavenly Father and fellowship with others. A time of opportunity to serve others. It is a time to reflect on the covenants we have made as disciples of Jesus Christ. Where we fall short, it is a time of seeking forgiveness, walking the path of repentance, and seeking wise counsel from those whom our Heavenly Father has chosen.

Day 14 – When God Seems Distant

The scriptures constantly teach us that we are to do two things. They also teach us two fundamental truths. First, we are to seek him continually. Despite what is going on, no matter the situation, the fears, the worries, the doubts, and the anxieties, we are to seek him. Second, we are to wait patiently. Listen attentively, tune in, and continue to walk in those truths and commandments we are to keep. And the first truth is that our answers come in the Lord's due time and not ours. The second fundamental truth is that this is where our faith in God rests.

The Divine and Covenantal Order of Marriage

Through Adam, we have the priestly authority and fatherhood of God. Through Eve, we have the divine attributes of Motherhood. Together, Adam and Eve became the representatives of Heavenly Parents. And this is evident in the unifying of man and woman in their specific gender roles as Husband and Wife.

Day 13 – Engage in Meaningful and Mindful Worship

Meaningful and mindful worship begins when we are authentic and accurate in our attitude toward Heavenly Father. He is pleased by our thoughtfulness toward Him. Reflecting on his nature, desiring to become more like Christ, sanctified and holy. We are called to be holy as he is holy, perfect as he is perfect, and through Christ, we are perfected unto God.

“And Man Became a Living Soul”

We are fashioned with eternal spiritual bodies. It is then that our Heavenly Father breathes into our mortal bodies the breath of life so that we become a living soul. Scripture also declares unto us the promise that those who come to faith in Jesus Christ - by the miracle and gift of the infinite atonement - will have a new heart and spirit (Ezekiel 36:26)

Day 12 – Developing our Relationship with Christ and the Father

The call for us to go forward in faith and purpose is a call for us to enter into a deep and intimate relationship with Christ. To come to know him and our Heavenly Father (John 17:3).

My Question – My Being

Again, the phrase appears in my mind, lingering like an unwanted specter. To be or not to be; that is the question. My soul groans and cries out - What is the answer? Only silence. The barren desert appears again. The warmth from the day lingers in the twilight hours. Long after the sun descended over the horizon. Only the moon glows against the velvet canopy of sky. Stars blinking in chorus for some cosmic audience. The desert wind becomes a cold talon. The desert's friend is loneliness.

Day 11 – Reconciled unto God through Christ

When we turn our thoughts and minds over to Exodus 14:13-15 - there is a reason God wanted to bring Israel out of bondage. To bring them out of a foreign land. To no longer experience the burden and labors of Pharoah. It runs much deeper than God preforming miracles as great signs and wonders unto Pharaoh. Goes even deeper into the blessed hope of bringing the Children of Israel into the land of promise. The simple truth is that the salvation of the Lord we shall see unfold is about reconciling us to Him.

“And It Was Good”

After all that our Heavenly Father, and Jesus Christ, have accomplished - they saw that it was good. This is something we are incapable of imagining. The sweet harmony, beauty, unity, and the way all things worked together in peace. Such beautiful perfection was very good. We also have a difficult time understanding the Holy Goodness of our Heavenly Father. The goodness in His creating each one of us after His own image and likeness. The goodness in His plan of happiness for each one of us through our Savior Jesus Christ. The goodness of revealing Himself through all

Day 10 – The Heart of Our Worship

The very heart of worship is our complete willingness to not only surrender our life and will over to God; but that we are willing and able to submit to seek His will and good pleasure for our lives. This is what is meant when the savior taught that if we lose our lives for His sake - we shall find it and there will a life of abundance

“Without Form and Void – Empty and Desolate”

Today, we may feel empty, without form and void - meaningless, unassuming, empty, and desolate. However, the power of creation reveals unto us the magnificent power our Heavenly Father has in taking something that is unorganized, unassuming, and creating something magnificent and beautiful. Through the plan of salvation, we are to become creators in building

Beware of Narcissistic Traits and Toxic Apologetics

The field of apologetics is not about manipulating, deceiving, or even victimizing people. It is to give a defense of one's faith for understanding, education, and learning. Only in this context are people able to engage in real authentic conversations that challenge and uphold the character and integrity of both individuals.

Day 9 – Bringing Glory Through Our Obedience

The enticing of the spirit of God or the spirit of the adversary is constant and consistent. Over time, we learn how to choose one over the other. If we choose the right, we are putting on the righteousness of Christ and patterning our lives after his.

“…Shall have Glory Added Upon Their Heads Forever and Ever”

This is the great plan of Salvation whereby our Heavenly Father brings to pass the immortality and eternal life of each one of us. Attached to this is our liberty and freedom of choice. Whether we choose to walk in humility, submission, and obedience to the laws and principal doctrines of God’s revealed truth - we shall inherit eternal life. Christ himself said that those who endure as He has endured shall be granted permission to sit on the throne with Him as he sits on the Throne with the Father

Day 8 – Faith Proceeds the Miracle

The faith Moses called the Hebrews to exercise was one that had to come prior to the miracle they were about to witness. Such faith called them forth to be ready and go forward despite the great opposition they were facing. Pharoah's army behind them and the sea before them caused the children of Israel to murmur and complain. And it was their only viable option to trust in God that they would cross over to the other side.

“I Will Show Thee the Workmanship of Mine Hands.”

King David marveled at the power and testimony of God’s creation in Psalm 19. Here, he proclaims that the heavens declare God’s glory and that the firmament sheweth his handiwork (See, Psalm 19:1). The Apostle Paul also shared his insights by stating how we are without excuse because of how creation clearly reveals the eternal power and Godhead by what is manifested and clearly seen (see Romans 1:20). The Prophet Alma also commented on how all things denote that there is a God (See, Alma 30:44). When our Heavenly Father revealed unto Moses the workmanship of His own hands - Moses marveled and wondered at such a glorious work. The great patriarch Abraham also saw the endless and glorious workmanship of God’s hands (See, Abraham 3:12).

Day 7 – Fellow Strangers and Sojourners

As we go forward with faith and purpose, we do so with the mindset that this life is a test. That there is a purpose for our mortal existence, and that we are called and assigned to endure those conflicts and challenges. To live for God through service and obedience, placing our hope and trust on Jesus Christ, and striving to be perfected so that we are able to say with conviction: I have fought the good fight, I have finished my course and now there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness.

“Here am I Send Me!”

From scripture and modern day revelation we learn that Jesus Christ was chosen and foreordained to be the mediator and redeemer of humanity. He is key to the plan of salvation.

The 5-Levels of our Spiritual Hierarchal of Needs

When we seek first God's Kingdom, we shall be blessed with those things we stand in need of temporally. As our faith increases, so does our ability to seek God and conform to his will and desire for our lives. In doing so, we will be blessed through our obedience to the teachings and commandments that he has given us.

Day 6 – Our Purpose is to Trust God

Our call to go forward with faith and purpose in the new year is meant for us to examine ourselves and determine whether or not we truly place full confidence in who Christ is, in the teachings of the pure doctrines of Christ, and trust in those personal revelations he has given us. Trust in Christ means we go forward with faith, despite any doubts we may have. Despite our perceived inadequacies. For if we go forward in faith, with purpose, we are blessed to accomplish those things we are called to accomplish. For if we go forward in faith, with purpose, we are able to do the things our Heavenly Father has commanded us to do.

“This is My Work and My Glory”

It is through our humility and submission to our Heavenly Father where he will bless and use us for his holy purposes