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Showing posts from June, 2017

The Parable of the Tent

A family excitedly purchased a premium dome tent. They decided to try out the tent in their own yard. The night they intended to camp, they noticed very many pine cones on the ground. They spent the whole first night picking up the pine cones, and ran out of time to set up the tent. The next night, they began setting up the tent. Despite the apparent simplicity of the instructions, they struggled. The pictures seemed to skip necessary details. Through each step, the physical result made it clear that their previous understanding of the instruction was off slightly. Through experience, they managed to tweak their understanding of the instructions until the status of the tent vindicated their interpretation.  After the tent itself was finished, the kids rejoiced. The father did not. He explained to the kids that they still had to put on the rain fly. This being a large, sophisticated tent meant that this final step was even more difficult a task than all the previous ones combined. Af

Past feeling and kicking against the pricks

In the past few years I've had opportunities from God to get to know and pray for and help several individuals. In some cases, the potential of these people has been revealed to me. I see how their lives would be lived if they leveraged all their character-building opportunities and saw things as they really are. The potential of any person is incredible, and it is merciful of God to keep it hidden most of the time. If we knew our own potential, we would be overwhelmed and shut down. If we know the potential of others, we would be filled with indescribable sorrow by watching them fail to achieve it. When God gives me these glimpses, it gives me strong motivation to continue to try to help an individual until they openly reject my association. I cannot verbalize the sorrow I've experienced in watching them walk away from such richness of opportunity. Here is a leap ahead handed to them on a golden platter, and they throw it to the pigs. On a rare occasion, these people know

The Authority to Baptize

The LDS church, like the Catholic church, teaches that God can give his permission to men to do works in his name without his input. In other words, he makes men his agents, and they are free to do with that power what they believe is right. They believe that only priests have God's permission to baptize, and that ordination is required before a person can baptize. The rest of the Christian world believes that the commission at the end of Matthew applies to the whole world. This would mean that anyone (men, women, children, believers, non-believers) can baptize anyone. Both are wrong. Priesthood is not a permission slip. God does not give his power to men to use independent of his will. There is no such thing as freelancing when it comes to God's power. It can only ever be used exactly as he would use it, and this requires revelation from him in every case. Because of this, it is better to focus on God's will instead of God's power. The latter is never found out

"Upon my house shall it begin"

Today I was led to investigate the following passage: 23 Verily, verily, I say unto you, darkness covereth the earth, and gross darkness the minds of the people, and all flesh has become corrupt before my face. 24 Behold, vengeance cometh speedily upon the inhabitants of the earth, a day of wrath, a day of burning, a day of desolation, of weeping, of mourning, and of lamentation; and as a whirlwind it shall come upon all the face of the earth, saith the Lord. 25 And upon my house shall it begin, and from my house shall it go forth, saith the Lord; 26 First among those among you, saith the Lord, who have professed to know my name and have not known me, and have blasphemed against me in the midst of my house, saith the Lord. (D&C 112) I was curious as to how the Lord would fulfill this prophecy. I inquired of the Lord, and he answered me. "Upon my house shall it begin" does not refer to a future event. The judgment described in verse 24 began shortly after this revelat

Eclipses and Little-known Faults

Interesting facts about upcoming eclipse: The shadow will be 70 miles in diameter. The eclipse is the first to be fully contained within the USA. The eclipse will divide the nation in two. The eclipse will trace the 1,700 mile "crack across America" fault. The eclipse will occur 33 days before a once-in-7,000 years Revelation 12 sign. It will happen 2,422 days or 346 weeks or 6.6 years from a second, criss-crossing eclipse. Interesting facts about the 2024 eclipse: It happens on the last day of the last year in the Hebrew calendar. It traces through a second large fault running Northeast from the New Madrid seismic zone.

The interplay of God's attributes

One key to achieving an intimate relationship with God is knowing his will in many aspects of your life and the world around you. Knowing what God did can't always accurately predict what he will do, since modern circumstances may vary from ancient ones, preventing direct application of what might be a peculiarly historical situation. Knowing why God did what he did, on the other hand, yields principles that translate to any time and any place. While the scriptures describe much of what he has done, they do not necessarily describe why he has done it in immediately obvious ways. When we study God's mind and will, we must also study his character. The key to understanding why God has done what he has done is to ask how his actions fulfilled aspects of his character. God's character is rich beyond description. If we were to limit his attributes to, say, nine one-word descriptors, maybe we would say he is: Patient Meek Loving Kind Knowledgable Consistent Ju

Friends like Nephi

Yesterday I had the pleasure of reading through a lot of scripture. One book that I re-read was 1 Nephi in the Book of Mormon. Nephi is such a rock-solid person. I couldn't help wishing that I could have a person like Nephi as a friend. Most people would not like Nephi as a friend. As someone who possessed real love, he would have striven to point out all your faults until you either fixed them or God told him to leave you, even if you tried to kill him multiple times. I rejoice in learning about my errors, so I love when I meet someone who knows more than I do and is willing to help me to where they are. It has happened many times in my life, and most of what I am today is due to the intervention of others. As I got to thinking about Nephi, I realized that I in fact have at least 2 friends like Nephi. When I read the account, I realize they are just like him. Like Laman and Lemuel, most people never appreciate the Nephis in this world. Perhaps they expect someone to go around pe