Are we willing to pay the cost of coming unto Christ and following him? Willing to pay the cost of walking in the process of repentance in order to be reconciled? Ready and committed in putting to death our former self? How does the rich young ruler represent you? What are some of the great possessions that you have whereby it may interfere with you committing to immerse yourself in following Christ?
As President Russell M. Nelson provided his opening remarks to the October 2021 General Conference - we learn that the focus of our attention is to understand three things: Pure Teaching, Pure Doctrine of Christ, and Pure Revelation. Reflecting on this message, how have you come to understand these three principle truths? What are you struggling with when it comes to your faith in Christ? Faith in the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ? and where do you feel lacking when it comes to revelation and the ministering of the Holy Spirit? Knowing that personal revelation comes through our daily commitment to scripture study, prayerfully reflecting and meditating on teachings from Church Leaders and those within our own community, and through personal fellowship and service toward others: how does this help build up your faith and testimony? Please share your comments, thoughts, and feel free to ask any questions in the comment section below. Share this with others through your social media platforms as well.
Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are not victims of a false religion or gospel. Neither are we an enemy to evangelical and protestant Christians. Much like many members of any faith based community, we are striving to live according to the teachings and principle truths of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Striving to bring a message of hope to individuals struggling, facing uncertainty, questioning, and experiencing a crisis of faith.
The scriptures are filled with gripping stories and challenging exhortations. People read and study from them because they are central to their lives and faith. Scriptures provide answers to the big issues in life - Who God is, Christ's infinite atonement and the plan of salvation, Life, death, love, sin, moral guidance, resilient and bold faith, overcoming and enduring persecution and times of despondence.
Each one of us ought to devote our time and energy in studying the standard works every day. This is accomplished by establishing a study schedule that best serves our personal needs. And is something we are motivated and committed to following consistently. Developing an understanding and love for the scriptures will greatly help in the challenges and responsibilities we have in our lives. Helps us be of service toward others. Improve our ability to relate and communicate with others.
Knowing this can also help us as we share the gospel with our friends and family. Elder Ronald A. Rasband of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said: “We are at war with Satan for the souls of men. The battle lines were drawn in our pre-earth life. Satan and a third of our Father in Heaven’s children turned away from His promises of exaltation. Since that time, the adversary’s minions have been fighting the faithful who choose the Father’s plan.”
All these teachings helps us understand the central truth of the Gospel - Jesus is the Christ by whom we are saved. Salvation comes when we place our initial faith and trust in Him. It comes when we humble ourselves and enter into the waters of baptism for the remission of our sins. This is accomplished when we come to the awareness of our natural state and disposition. Through repentance, we receive the first principle ordinances of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
The world offers us all the desires and appetites that leave our bellies full and our flesh satisfied. Unfortunately, it is only temporary and we continue to remain hungry and thirsty for more of those things of the world. When we are tempted, it may come in guise of satisfying some desire. We develop an appetite for it. Eventually, it leads us to experience death of our sense of self through Jesus Christ.
Genuine faith stems from genuine humility. Our humility and faith is shaped from those trials we face in our lives. We are richly blessed beyond measure. The challenge is to keep ourselves humble regardless of how blessed we are. I also want to add that humility is the means in which we shore up treasures in heaven and not here on earth (see Matthew 6:19-20). It is not one of many Christian Virtues. It is the root of all Christian virtues. Humility is the root of genuine faith in God.
The message and hope is found in the Book of Lamentations written by the Prophet Jeremiah. There is not going to be a complete or understandable explanation for what we are most likely going to endure in the next few months. Maybe within the next few years. We already are seeing the silencing of certain voices, censorship on an unparalleled scale. We will be standing as witnesses to greater human suffering and sorrow that past generations may not have ever seen. Many Christians are appearing to be blindly led toward false hopes and securities with the claims that Christ's coming is on the threshold of human history.
My profession of faith was more of an outwardly expression of how I wanted to be seen and thought of. It was not until realizing that the inside of me was still full of filth and grime. What needs to happen is that the cup needs to go through the process of cleansing before it is able to be filled and used. This takes faith and patience because of Christ's infinite atonement. We may be redeemed and justified before God. However, our work begins by cleansing ourselves of ungodliness. We endure. As our faith increases, so does our ability to become resilient. Spiritual maturation does not happen overnight. It takes work. It takes obedience.
Today, we do well to focus on the teachings of our Heavenly Father. Work to walk in faithful obedience to His divine and righteous council. Stand firm on the truth of His personal revelation and will for our lives. Sit with those who are working out their faith with fear and trembling and fighting the good fight (See, Philippians 2:12 and 1 Timothy 6:12, KJV).
James spends a few verses teaching us how Genuine faith produces authentic religious piety. He begins by sharing with us how we are to listen and be slow to wrath. He instructs that we are to set aside the disposition of the natural man and replace it with the righteousness of Christ through the message of the Gospel. Third, he teaches that we are to become workers of righteousness and love. James also reflects the importance of bridling our tongue so that we do not defile ourselves. And finally he instructs that our purpose is to visit those who are marginalized and care for their needs.
Think about some of the articles that have inspired you. Some of the stories you've read. What emotions came up as you've read them? How powerful were the words to evoke such emotions and thoughts? Did it challenge your present beliefs and values? What impact did that have on you as a person? Without honesty, our writing will be flat and ineffective in influencing and impacting other people.
The ability to mindfully and critically read information is to objectively learn new ideas and concepts. To accurately take notes is to translate what you have gained insight on and share that with others. What you do not want to do is to develop content that is merely copy-and-paste of other peoples writings. This is only done when you are quoting from another person.
One of the key observations that link mindfulness, meditation, and happiness is this: The ability to regulate and manage our emotions. It is one of the mainstay recommendations and truths I share with my patients when sitting in counsel with them. We either are learning how our emotions work so that we are adequate in managing them. Or, we are giving ourselves permissibly over to our emotions so that they manage us and our lives.
When we are sick, unhealthy, and feeling less than adequate - we suffer depression, anxiety, and even spiritual deprivation (meaning, lack of meaning and purpose - feeling unfulfilled). Any casual research will show that there is a definitive link between unhealthy eating habits, sleep, and depression and anxiety.
This is the second weekly round up regarding some writing, and blogging, that I have done at my various websites. From daily devotions, entering into a first every short story contest, to working on two WIP's for publication, and even producing some apologetic articles on religion.
Developing the right type of attitude will determine whether or not the reader will understand the message. This fits within our clear understanding and purpose of writing. As writing is a passionate form of communication and expression. If our writing is vague, lacking any supportive evidence, or poorly constructed, then the attitude may come across as being lazy and slothful. If our writing comes across with strong language that is vitriolic we may risk causing our readers to be offended and even communicate defensively (think about some of the social media commentary going on regarding particular hot topic content). It is our disciplined goal to be objective, while remaining passionate, regarding particular subjects.
Often times I feel like I am not receiving what I desire from others because I am not willing to allow myself to be open enough to receiving. It's as if I have a little shop set up for people to come in and yet maintain locked doors.
The best way one is able to begin expressing gratitude is by keeping a journal. Doing so allows an individual an opportune moment to not only write private expression of thankfulness that helps us recognize the blessings bestowed upon us. It is a treasure of reflection and meditation for us to turn to in times where we may forget what brings us comfort and joy. It highlights those good things we share in our lives with others.
Last year, the theme was Focused. Making 2019 a year of focus entailed understanding how to grow spiritually through mindfulness. This year will be centered on the theme of Impact. The goal is to further our spiritual growth as Christians in order to make an influential and spiritual impact in our lives and the lives … Continue reading A New Year for Spiritual Influence and Impact
The aim of living in recovery is to deepen our transformation and help us become more like Jesus Christ. For this reason, when we engage in recovery, we’re not just looking for new information; we want to become a “new creature” (2 Corinthians 5:17). This means relying on Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ to help us change our hearts, our views, our actions, and our very natures.
How do we come to understand our sense of worth, know who we are, and how does this matter? Today's society has consistently defined and redefined what it means to be someone. In this message, I explore the idea of identity in Christ by looking at the two questions Christ asks. Focusing on our identity … Continue reading Finding our Identity through Christ
Today, many individuals face problems where there is no easy solutions. Yet, we must face those challenges. A person needs clear vision and pure intentions to lead themselves into a place where they have a significant spiritual impact and influence on those around them. Daniel writes: And they that be wise shall shine as the … Continue reading Spiritual Impact and Influence
How do we walk in peace during times of tribulation and sorrow? When the hearts of men fail them daily? When there is so much contention and divisiveness within our culture? The answer is when we give ourselves over to Christ daily. The heart of the message of the Gospel is for all humanity to come and find peace whereby they are at peace within themselves and at peace with others.
There is an awakening that occurs in the heart and minds of every person who is suffering and perishing. Those who awaken to their awful condition and state of being see the destruction for what it really is. We see ourselves as unclean. Filthy. And, a great burden is on our back that weighs us down. As much as we do not want to face this truth - we must face it or continue to suffer and perish. This is where we find Christian. Faced with the reality of a coming destruction. The reality of the burden he bears.
By setting pure intentions and living with purpose and meaning through Jesus Christ, other people's opinion and understanding of who we are becomes unimportant. We are not here to please others. And, when it comes to our opinion of ourselves - we adopt the eternal perception of who we are through Christ Jesus. Sons and Daughters of the Most High.
Authentic recovery separates those who are being in recovery and those who are doing recovery. Much like the Christian faith - this means an individual cannot escape their Garden of Gethsemane. We are tasked to experience the painful awareness of our behaviors that were the results of our dependence on substances, sex, food, gambling, et al. It is the painful process of moving toward the new life. Putting to death the old man in order to rise up with a newness of life. Unfortunately, many rather be in recovery instead of actually doing recovery.
Damascus Way Recovery is looking forward to a new year of spiritual growth, enlightenment, and deepening one's faith in Christ and God. This past year has been one of focus on developing a mindful Christian life. Going into the 2020 is no different and will continue to maintain the foundation of living a focused and … Continue reading Come Follow Me – Our Spiritual Call to Action