Sunday, January 31, 2010

"The Holocaust" : Project By Seth Adam Smith

[ *As always noted, those whom receive e-mail messages concerning new posts to blog; You will need to visit the blog to watch the videos* ]

May we all remember, and never forget.


Another Great Video: "Have I Done Any Good in the World Today?"

[ *As always noted, those whom receive e-mail messages concerning new posts to blog; You will need to visit the blog to watch the videos* ]

"Well Done, Thou Good And Faithful Servant....."

Let us have the Love of the Lord present in ALL our daily activities!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

" Life In The Covenant " - A Video By Brother Beardsley

[ *As always noted, those whom receive e-mail messages concerning new posts to blog; You will need to visit the blog to watch the videos* ]

Or Go to The Beardsley Family You Tube Channel @

Plainview Texas Branch; Lubbock Stake Announcements;

** Sunday, January 31st : 5th Sunday Lesson - 1st) Sacrament 2nd) Sunday School [Old Testament] 3rd) Combined Priesthood & Relief Society 

Monday, January 25, 2010

President Monson Announces Temple in Payson, Utah

A new temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is to be built in Payson, Utah, it was announced today by Church President Thomas S. Monson.
The new temple will help meet the needs of a growing Church membership in the area and will ease the heavy use of the Provo temple, which is one of the busiest in the Church. The Payson temple will bring to 15 the number of operating and announced temples in Utah.

The property for the Payson temple is located on gently sloping ground at approximately 930 West and 1550 South on the southwest side of Payson, a mile from the 800 South I-15 interchange.  The property offers scenic views of the area as well as easy access to the freeway.

The new temple will serve approximately 22 stakes from Spanish Fork to Nephi comprising approximately 78,000 Church members. Temple-going members have been driving to Provo or Manti for temple services. 
Artists’ renderings, the size of the temple, groundbreaking dates and other information will be released as they become available.

“Temples answer those soul-searching questions of the purpose of life, of why we are here and where we are going.  They are sanctuaries from the storms of life and bless the lives of members of the Church who worship within their sacred walls,” said President Monson.

Latter-day Saint temples provide a place where Church members make promises and commitments to God and where the highest sacraments of the faith occur such as the marriage of couples for eternity. Temples differ from the tens of thousands of local meetinghouses where members typically meet for Sunday worship services and midweek social activities.

The practice of temple building is rooted in both the Old and New Testaments, and from its historical beginnings to the present day the Church has constructed temples.
The first temple was built by the Church in Kirtland, Ohio.  The first Utah temple was completed in St. George in 1877, followed by Logan in 1884, Manti in 1888, and Salt Lake City in 1893.
The Payson temple will bring the total number of temples worldwide already in operation or in the planning and construction phases to 152. A letter was sent to local Church leaders today regarding the new temple.
Plainview Texas Branch; Lubbock Stake Announcements;

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Look To The Light

Look To The Light Video As Mentioned In Elders Quorum Today ( January 24th, 2010 )

Please, take the time, to pray before you watch this video. Then watch, and see how the Spirit burns within you!

[ *As always noted, those whom receive e-mail messages concerning new posts to blog; You will need to visit the blog to watch the videos* ]

Plainview Texas Branch; Lubbock Stake Announcements;

Saturday, January 23, 2010

That Your Burdens May Be Light

That Your Burdens May Be Light

Elder L. Whitney Clayton
Of the Presidency of the Seventy
Burdens provide opportunities to practice virtues that contribute to eventual perfection.
Elder L. Whitney ClaytonMany years ago I walked at dawn through the narrow cobblestone streets of Cusco, Peru, high in the Andes Mountains. I saw a man from a local indigenous group walking down one of the streets. He was not a big man physically, but he carried an immense load of firewood in a huge burlap sack on his back. The sack seemed to be as big as he was. The load must have weighed as much as he did. He steadied it with a rope that looped under the bottom of the sack and circled up around his forehead. He gripped the rope tightly on both sides of his head. He kept a rag on his forehead underneath the rope to keep it from cutting into his skin. He leaned forward under his burden and walked with deliberate, difficult steps.

The man was carrying the firewood to the marketplace, where it would be sold. In an average day he might make just two or three round-trips across the town to deliver similarly awkward, heavy loads.
The memory of him bent forward, struggling down the street has become increasingly meaningful for me with the passage of years. How long could he continue to carry such burdens?

Life presses all kinds of burdens on each of us, some light but others relentless and heavy. People struggle every day under burdens that tax their souls. Many of us struggle under such burdens. They can be emotionally or physically ponderous. They can be worrisome, oppressive, and exhausting. And they can continue for years.

In a general sense, our burdens come from three sources. Some burdens are the natural product of the conditions of the world in which we live. Illness, physical disability, hurricanes, and earthquakes come from time to time through no fault of our own. We can prepare for these risks and sometimes we can predict them, but in the natural pattern of life we will all confront some of these challenges.

Other burdens are imposed on us by the misconduct of others. Abuse and addictions can make home anything but a heaven on earth for innocent family members. Sin, incorrect traditions, repression, and crime scatter burdened victims along the pathways of life. Even less-serious misdeeds such as gossip and unkindness can cause others genuine suffering.

Our own mistakes and shortcomings produce many of our problems and can place heavy burdens on our own shoulders. The most onerous burden we impose upon ourselves is the burden of sin. We have all known the remorse and pain which inevitably follow our failure to keep the commandments.

No matter the burdens we face in life as a consequence of natural conditions, the misconduct of others, or our own mistakes and shortcomings, we are all children of a loving Heavenly Father, who sent us to earth as part of His eternal plan for our growth and progress. Our unique individual experiences can help us prepare to return to Him. The adversity and afflictions that are ours, however difficult to bear, last, from heaven’s perspective, for “but a small moment; and then, if [we] endure it well, God shall exalt [us] on high.”1 We must do everything we can to bear our burdens “well” for however long our “small moment” carrying them lasts.
Burdens provide opportunities to practice virtues that contribute to eventual perfection. They invite us to yield “to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and [put] off the natural man and [become] a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and [become] as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon [us], even as a child doth submit to his father.”2 Thus burdens become blessings, though often such blessings are well disguised and may require time, effort, and faith to accept and understand. Four examples may help explain this:
  • First, Adam was told, “Cursed shall be the ground for thy sake,” which meant for his benefit, and “by the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread.”3 Work is a continual burden, but it is also a continual blessing “for [our] sake,” for it teaches lessons we can learn only “by the sweat of [our] face.”

  • Second, Alma observed that the poverty and “afflictions [of the poor among the Zoramites] had truly humbled them, and that they were in a preparation to hear the word.”4 He added, “Because ye are compelled to be humble blessed are ye.”5 Our economic challenges may help prepare us to hear the word of the Lord.

  • Third, because of the “exceedingly great length of [their] war,” many Nephites and Lamanites “were softened because of their afflictions, insomuch that they did humble themselves before God, even in the depth of humility.”6 Political unrest, social disorder, and, in some areas of the world, modern Gadianton robbers may humble us and motivate us to seek heavenly shelter from societal storms.

  • Fourth, Joseph Smith was told that the terrible things he suffered for years at the hands of his enemies would “give [him] experience, and . . . be for [his] good.”7 The suffering we experience through the offenses of others is a valuable, though painful, school for improving our own behavior.
Further, bearing up under our own burdens can help us develop a reservoir of empathy for the problems others face. The Apostle Paul taught that we should “bear . . . one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.”8 Accordingly, our baptismal covenants require that we should be “willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light; yea, and [be] willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort.”9

Keeping our baptismal covenants helps relieve our own burdens as well as those of burdened souls we serve.10 Those who offer such assistance to others stand on holy ground. In explaining this, the Savior taught:
“When saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?

“When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?

“Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?

“And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”11

Through it all, the Savior offers us sustaining strength and support, and in His own time and way, He offers deliverance. When Alma and his followers escaped from the armies of King Noah, they established a community named Helam. They began to till the ground, build buildings, and prosper.12 Without warning, an army of the Lamanites brought them into bondage, and “none could deliver them but the Lord their God.”13 That deliverance, however, did not come immediately.
Their enemies began to “put tasks upon them, and put taskmasters over them.”14 Although they were threatened with death for praying,15 Alma and his people “did pour out their hearts to [God]; and he did know the thoughts of their hearts.”16 Because of their goodness and their obedience to their baptismal covenants,17 they were delivered in stages. The Lord said to them:
“I will . . . ease the burdens which are put upon your shoulders, that . . . you cannot feel them upon your backs, even while you are in bondage; and this will I do that ye may stand as witnesses for me hereafter, and that ye may know of a surety that I, the Lord God, do visit my people in their afflictions.
“And now it came to pass that the burdens which were laid upon Alma and his brethren were made light; yea, the Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord.
“And it came to pass that so great was their faith and their patience that the voice of the Lord came unto them again, saying: Be of good comfort, for on the morrow I will deliver you out of bondage.”18
Mercifully, the Son of God offers us deliverance from the bondage of our sins, which are among the heaviest of all the burdens we bear. During His Atonement He suffered “according to the flesh that he might take upon him the sins of his people, that he might blot out their transgressions according to the power of his deliverance.”19 Christ “suffered these things for all, that they might not suffer if they would repent.”20 When we repent and keep the commandments, forgiveness and relief from our burdened conscience come with the help that only the Savior offers, for “surely, whosoever repenteth shall find mercy.”21
I remember that man in Peru, hunched over and struggling to carry that enormous sack of firewood on his back. For me, he is an image of us all as we struggle with the burdens of life. I know that as we keep the commandments of God and our covenants, He helps us with our burdens. He strengthens us. When we repent, He forgives us and blesses us with peace of conscience and joy.22 May we then submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord, I pray in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

1. D&C 121:7–8.
2. Mosiah 3:19.
3. Moses 4:23, 25.
4. Alma 32:6.
5. Alma 32:13.
6. Alma 62:41.
7. D&C 122:7.
8. Galatians 6:2.
9. Mosiah 18:8–9.
10. See Matthew 10:39; 11:28–30; Mosiah 2:22.
11. See Matthew 25:35–40.
12. See Mosiah 23:5, 19–20.
13. See Mosiah 23:23–26.
14. Mosiah 24:9.
15. See Mosiah 24:10–11.
16. Mosiah 24:12.
17. See Mosiah 18:8–10; 24:13.
18. Mosiah 24:14–16.
19. Alma 7:13.
20. D&C 19:16.
21. Alma 32:13.
22. See Mosiah 4:3; Alma 36:19–21.
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Monday, January 18, 2010

Preparing for Your Spiritual Destiny

“Preparing for Your Spiritual Destiny” 
CES Fireside for Young Adults • January 10, 2010 • Brigham Young University
My dear young brothers and sisters, I cannot see all of your faces here in the Marriott Center and, of course, I cannot see your faces in the thousands of chapels across the world, but I can feel of your goodness, your desire to do right, and your love of the Lord and His restored gospel. One of the blessings of being a General Authority is that we have the opportunity of being with you across the world. In the past few months, we have seen your faces and shaken your hands in many locations in the United States. We traveled with President and Sister Uchtdorf last June to Eastern Europe, Russia, and the United Kingdom. In October we were in South Africa and West Africa. In November we returned from Central America. There is a great power of righteousness among the young adults and youth of this Church. Take comfort in knowing that you are joined by thousands and hundreds of thousands in the challenges you face and in the important purposes you feel. I love you and pray that the Spirit of the Lord will be with us as we discuss things that are important to you tonight.
I have lived in this mortal life three to four decades longer than most of you, but it is not my experience that brings me before you. Realizing my own weaknesses, I stand before you as an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ, ordained and commissioned to testify of Him and to speak the things He would speak. My assignment tonight comes from the Savior’s chief Apostle, President Thomas S. Monson.
As I look at you, I think of myself 37 years ago. I had just returned from a mission to France. With few resources other than a little borrowed money, I had come to Brigham Young University. I had found work as a window washer on the campus. It would be another year before I would meet the light of my life, Kathy Williams. I felt somewhat alone and unsure about the road ahead. I remember thinking, “What is in my future, and how should I prepare for it?”
Remembering these thoughts, I have entitled my message tonight “Preparing for Your Spiritual Destiny.”
When Jesus was upon the earth, He would often speak of tangible objects to help His disciples better understand the intangible, the spiritual. He spoke of seeds and grain and barns and hens and flowers and foxes and dozens of other physical objects to help people understand more about faith and repentance, spiritual power and salvation.
He did not speak of airplanes, as they were not a part of His society, but President Uchtdorf has made up for that in the last few years and has given us wonderful teachings from his own experiences as a pilot.
I have an airplane story tonight that will teach us about preparing for our spiritual destiny.

Captain Sullenberger and US Airways Flight 1549

Exactly one year ago this week—January 15, 2009—US Airways Flight 1549 took off from LaGuardia Airport in New York City and lifted quickly into the sky on what was expected to be an uneventful trip to Charlotte, North Carolina, along the eastern coast of the United States. The airplane captain was Captain Chesley B. “Sully” Sullenberger. He had more than 19,000 hours of flying behind him, and he expected the next hour and a half would be very routine.
Captain Chesley B. Sullenberger
As the Airbus A320 climbed to 3,000 feet, the unexpected was suddenly right in front of him. A flock of mammoth Canadian geese with six-foot wing spans was directly in the path of the airplane. The large birds hit the plane. Worse still, the giant engines on the two wings, drawing air into their turbines with enormous force, drew as well the geese in the path of the plane. There was a terrible grinding sound as the birds were sucked into the engines. Then, a deafening silence—the engines had stopped.
Flight path of US Airways Flight 1549 before crash landing in the Hudson River
Captain Sullenberger immediately began determining how he could safely land the plane. He first considered returning to the airport, and then to a different airport not far away. The dangers and risks were enormous. He did not know how long he could glide the plane without engine power. He had only a moment to decide. Captain Sullenberger determined his best chance was to land the plane in the Hudson River, a river that runs close to New York City. In those few seconds all his training as an airline captain, all his judgment, his instincts, and his talents were brought to bear on the emergency landing ahead of him.
US Airways Flight 1549 glided only 900 feet above the George Washington Bridge.
On January 15, 2009, US Airways Flight 1549 landed in the Hudson River, New York.
With skyscrapers outside the windows, the plane dropped quickly, flying only 900 feet above the George Washington Bridge. Then, with the plane flying as slowly as possible and with the wings perfectly straight across the water, he pulled the nose up and glided the belly of the plane onto the water. The plane, weighing 120 tons, skipped across the water and then safely stopped fully intact.
Passengers of US Airways Flight 1549 awaiting rescue; Reuters/Jane Doe
Winter weather was well below freezing, and the captain knew the plane would begin sinking. The passengers were quickly assisted out the emergency exits onto the wings. The plane’s life rafts were inflated, and boats from the shore moved quickly to rescue the passengers. The news was almost unbelievable. While a $60-million plane had been lost, Captain Sullenberger had landed safely, and all of the 154 passengers and crew were safe, as well as Captain Sullenberger.
As Jesus did in His teachings, let’s relate the tangible with the intangible, the material to the spiritual. Let’s discuss three areas where our spiritual destiny—your spiritual destiny—can be seen in the flight of US Airways #1549. First, you are on a journey through mortality. Second, you are to be a captain in the Lord’s cause with a specific mission to accomplish. Third, your sacred duty is to return safely and bring many with you.

Journey through Mortality

Number 1: You are on a journey through mortality.
The passengers of Flight 1549 did not begin their existence as they entered the plane in New York. They were on a journey. Much had occurred in their lives prior to the flight, and much would occur following the flight. Likewise, this mortal life is not where we began nor is it where we will end. We are on a journey. This journey began a very long time ago in a premortal state where we received our “first lessons in the world of spirits and were prepared to come forth in the due time of the Lord” (Doctrine and Covenants 138:56). We are literally spirit sons and daughters of heavenly parents. The Lord has said, “I am God; I made the world, and men before they were in the flesh” (Moses 6:51), “for in heaven created I them” (Moses 3:5).
The poet William Wordsworth wrote these beautiful words:
Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting:
The Soul that rises with us, our life’s Star,
Hath had elsewhere its setting,
And cometh from afar:
Not in entire forgetfulness,
And not in utter nakedness,
But trailing clouds of glory do we come
From God, who is our home.1

Our premortal life was not a passive existence. We had choices to make there as we do here. We had progressed and were in need of a physical body and the experiences of mortality. We needed to prove our willingness to live by faith. Our Heavenly Father presented a plan to us. Central to that plan was the role of His Only Begotten Son to provide a way back for us. We accepted the Father’s plan and rejoiced in the chosen Savior. Our foreordained opportunities and responsibilities help shape what we are to do in mortality. In ways not fully understood, “our actions in the spirit world influence us in mortality.”2
We are now here—in our long-awaited mortality. Although we have no present memory of our premortal life, it rings true to us. Even in this life we don’t remember all the things that are important. For example, do you remember speaking your first words or taking your first steps? Do you remember thinking, “You know, my mother is not carrying me around as much as she used to. So, if I am going to move around like I want to, I better get up and walk”? It is not difficult for us to sense deep inside that who we are did not begin with our birth into mortality. We are sons and daughters of God. There is a passage in Alma that describes the role of the scriptures to “[enlarge] the memory of this people” (Alma 37:8). Our memories have been enlarged, and we know that we prepared for the life we are now living.
Just as our life began before our birth into mortality, our life does not end with the stopping of a heartbeat. We will continue on. Who you are—you, the distinct individual—you will always be you. Some may say, “I don’t like myself.” Sorry. You can shape who you become, you can be more than you are today, but you will always be you.

A Captain in the Lord’s Cause

Number 2: You are to be a spiritual captain in the Lord’s cause, with a specific mission to accomplish.
You and I have a spiritual destiny, and it does not allow us to ride passively in the back of the plane traveling through mortality. The Lord promised Abraham that in his seed all the nations of the earth would be blessed (see Genesis 22:18; Abraham 2:9). He was speaking of the spiritual blessing brought to the world through us, whom He referred to as “children of the covenant” (3 Nephi 20:26). Alma described some as “called and prepared from the foundation of the world according to the foreknowledge of God” (Alma 13:3).
Have you ever wondered: Why is it that I am who I am? Why is it I feel the way I feel? Why have I chosen to believe so fully in the Lord Jesus Christ? Why do I choose to keep His commandments when others do not care about them? Why do I feel the way I do about the Book of Mormon? Why do the words come off the page of scripture and go directly into my heart when others are almost indifferent about this sacred book? Why have I been willing to make sacred covenants through baptism, make covenants in the temple, and—for many of you—serve a mission?
You were chosen and foreordained to have the gospel in your life and to be a leader in the cause of the restored gospel.
Captain Sullenberger had more than 19,000 hours of flying at the time of Flight 1549. In reflecting about his decision to become a pilot, he said that at age 16, after less than 8 hours of flying in a small single-engine plane, he knew that flying would be a part of his destiny.3
Accept that you have an eternally important destiny, a spiritual destiny. Read your patriarchal blessing. As was said of Queen Esther of old, “Thou art come … for such a time as this” (Esther 4:14). Believe it, and embrace it!
Realizing who you are and who you are supposed to be doesn’t make you a captain in the Lord’s cause. There are obstacles and temptations much more treacherous than a flock of giant Canadian geese that would keep you from your destiny. You must be on guard. To be a captain in the Lord’s cause, there needs to be preparation. And that preparation isn’t easy! The Savior said, “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me” (Matthew 16:24). He further explained that “for a man to take up his cross, [means he] is to deny himself [of] all ungodliness, and every worldly lust, and [to] keep [the Lord’s] commandments” (Matthew 16:24, footnote d; from Joseph Smith Translation, Matthew 16:26).
In reflecting on his time in training at the Air Force Academy, Captain Sullenberger said:
“It was an intense experience. … We were being tested, … challenged. And we had to watch a number of those in our ranks fall away. …
“… It made me realize that if I dug deep enough, I could find strength I didn’t know I had. If I hadn’t been forced to push myself … , I would never have known the full extent of what inner resources I had to draw upon.”4
Spiritual preparation will uncover your own inner resources. There is power in prayer. There is strength in the scriptures. We learn to step forward in faith and to be more fully obedient. Worthily preparing for and taking the sacrament each week renews and protects us. We receive the priceless gift of the Holy Ghost. This heavenly gift is real and absolutely essential to keeping us safe.
In talking about being an airline captain, Captain Sullenberger warned:
“Not every situation can be forseen or anticipated. There isn’t a checklist for everything. 5
“You have to know what you know and what you don’t know. …
“You also need to understand how judgment can be affected by circumstances.”6
These same principles apply to our spiritual mission. Personal revelation received through the gift of the Holy Ghost guides us through the unforeseen in accomplishing what we are here to do. And personal righteousness is essential to having the gift of the Holy Ghost. We will not be guided by the Holy Ghost if we are casual about our obedience.
Central to all that we think and do is the Lord Jesus Christ. His life is our model. It is because of Him that we will live again. It is by the power of His Atonement that we can stand clean in the presence of our Father. We learn to love our Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ, with all our heart, might, mind, and strength. I like the statement “He loves the Lord with all his heart who loves nothing in comparison of him, and nothing but in reference to him.”7 Jesus said, “If ye love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15).
There are many good people upon the earth. There are many unselfish people. There are others who believe in Christ as we do. We are not alone in praying to our Heavenly Father or in receiving answers to our prayers; our Father loves all of His children. But we must never forget that only in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the priesthood of God. Only here is the Lord’s prophet. Only here is the sacred sealing power that allows families to continue as families forever.
Although this broadcast is being transmitted in 33 languages, we are few in number compared to the billions upon the earth. Peter called us “a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, … a peculiar people” (1 Peter 2:9). Do not dismiss nor diminish the specific role and responsibility that has been given you. You are to be a captain in the Lord’s cause, charged with holding the banner of the restored gospel high, for the Lord has said that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will be “a messenger before [His] face to prepare the way before [Him]” (Doctrine and Covenants 45:9).

Your Sacred Duty

Number 3: Your sacred duty is to return safely and bring many with you.
Much of your spiritual destiny will be etched in the lives of those you help spiritually. What made Captain Sullenberger a hero? What made him respected and appreciated? Was it that he could think quickly? That he made the right choices when the engines stopped? Was it that he knew how to keep the wings perfectly level as he landed in the water? Well, it was all of that! But most importantly, 154 lives could have easily been lost, and he saved them. And in saving them, he also saved himself.
Captain Sullenberger said of saving the physical lives of his passengers: “In the abstract, 155 is just a number. But looking into the faces of all of those passengers—and then the faces of all their loved ones—it brought home to me how profoundly wonderful it was that we had such a good outcome on Flight 1549.”8
Can we apply this to our mission? Members of this Church are enormously generous in helping the poor and needy both in the Church and across the world. However, our divine mission, the blessing the Lord said would come through the posterity of Abraham to the world, is primarily spiritual.
We are to turn our lives outward, helping others to return to our Heavenly Father with us.
The Lord has said, “He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it” (Matthew 10:39). Let me read from Matthew 25, thinking about our role as spiritual captains, inserting the word spiritually:
“Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
“For I was an hungred [spiritually], and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty [spiritually], and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger [spiritually], and ye took me in. …
“Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred [spiritually], and fed thee? or thirsty [spiritually], and gave thee drink? …
“And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me” (Matthew 25:34–35, 37, 40).
Who are you to bring with you? First of all, for all who have the opportunity, you are to marry and bring your spouse and your family. This is your first responsibility. Families are the organization of heaven.
To appreciate this responsibility we look far beyond what we see right in front of us. The spiritual effect of raising a righteous family is only understood as we look through our generations to our grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and beyond. Captain Sullenberger understood this principle even in saving the physical lives of his passengers. He said: “I don’t know the good things still to be accomplished by the 154 people on my flight. I can’t fathom what contributions might be made to the world by their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren yet to be born.”9
Let me share with you the effects of spiritually preparing a family through many generations.
Henry Arline
Henry Arline lived from 1841 to 1919. In 1898, at 57 years old, he heard the missionaries preach the gospel in a schoolhouse in the state of Florida in the United States. He told his wife, “For the first time, I have heard the truth.” He and his family were baptized. A few years later they traveled by train to Utah, a trip of more than 2,000 miles, so they could receive the sealing ordinances of the temple. He returned to Florida and remained true and faithful the remainder of his life.
Sophronia Arline Williams
His daughter was Sophronia Arline Williams, and her son was James Bernard Williams. Bernard Williams met a beautiful young lady, Martha Aman. She honestly investigated the Church, developed a firm testimony, and was baptized.
Wedding photograph of James Bernard and Martha Aman Williams
J. Bernard and Martha Williams family photograph with Sister Kathy Williams Andersen as a young child
Eight years after their marriage, they were sealed in the Salt Lake Temple with their three children. Their little daughter was Kathy Williams, whom I met years later at BYU and begged her to be my wife. We now have 4 children and 13 grandchildren.
Neil and Kathy Andersen family portrait; Scott Breen Photography
I will forever be thankful for Kathy’s righteous mother and her righteous great-grandfather who joined the Church and remained true and faithful all the rest of their lives. These two people never knew each other in mortality. They lived at different times. Yet they are captains in the Lord’s cause, helping to bring our family with them because of their spiritual choices.
It’s true that not all will have the opportunity to marry in this life, but an eternal companion is promised in the eternities to the righteous who desire such a blessing. Those who do not marry can do much in piloting the Lord’s cause and bringing souls with them. This past conference, Sister Barbara Thompson, who is in the Relief Society general presidency and is single, shared these words:
“When I left high school, my goals were to attend college … , get married to a handsome man, and have four perfect, beautiful children. …
“Well, as you may know, many of my goals were not realized in the way I had hoped. I finished college, served a mission, got a job, continued on with my schooling … , and continued working in my profession for many years. … But there was no handsome man, no marriage, and no children. …
“One work colleague who was not a member of our Church said to me, ‘Why do you continue to go to a church that puts so much emphasis on marriage and families?’ My simple answer to her was, ‘Because it is true!’ … With the Church and gospel of Jesus Christ in my life, I found happiness and I knew I was on the path the Savior would have me follow.”
She spoke of one way she could influence others spiritually while being single: “I had the opportunity to serve many years in Young Women and felt that gave me an opportunity to teach and testify to younger women who were developing their testimonies.”10
Twenty-five years ago Sister Thompson was Shellie Nielson’s Laurel adviser. Shellie Nielson—who is now Shellie Nielson Seager—wrote Sister Thompson more than 20 years after being in her Laurel class, expressing her appreciation. Sister Seager wrote:
“I woke up at 5:15 a.m. and started thinking about you and what an impact you have had on my life. …
“… We were a priority to you. You always showed us so much attention, care and love. You were always so much fun! … Most importantly, we knew you had a strong testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”11
Sister Seager now has a family with five children. Sister Thompson’s influence for good will forever touch Sister Seager and the generations that follow.
The Lord said:
“Remember the worth of souls is great in the sight of God. …
“And if it so be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this people, [and crying repentance simply means helping people return to God] and bring, save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father!
“And now, if your joy will be great with one soul … , how great will be your joy if you should bring many souls unto me!” (Doctrine and Covenants 18:10, 15–16).12
As we turn our attention to others—first our spouse, then our family, and then to others—spiritually lifting them and helping them remain firm and steady, we are saving generations and fulfilling our eternal destiny.
Luciano Cascardi is president of the São Paulo Brazil Ipiranga Stake. Brother Cascardi was a six-year-old boy when his family was baptized in São Paulo, Brazil. President Cascardi came to the United States this past October looking for the missionary who had taught his family 40 years before. He knew one thing for sure: the first name of the missionary was Elder.
Through a number of miracles, Brother Cascardi found him—Brother Larry Wilson, a strong Church leader in northern California. In a letter to Brother Wilson, President Cascardi compared finding his missionary with finding a lost father after many years. Then, referring to the spiritual seed that sprouted 40 years ago and has multiplied and touched so many lives since, President Cascardi said, “You can count the seeds in an apple, but you can’t count the apples in a seed.”13
We don’t have to be on a mission to strengthen and lift others. President Monson constantly teaches us to reach out and rescue those around us. Do you remember the story of him reaching out as a young bishop to someone who was not attending church?
President Monson said:
“When I was called as a bishop, I recognized I was the president of the priests quorum, and I wanted to get every boy out. There was one boy that never came, and I thought to myself: ‘I’m sitting here with the priests. They’ve got an adviser. I’ll leave them to get the lesson from the adviser. I’m going to go find Richard Casto.’ And I went over to his home. His mother and dad were home, and they said he was working over at the West Temple Garage.
“I went over to Fifth South and West Temple, and the door was open but nobody [was] there. And so I started looking around, you know, and nobody. So I went around the back, and there was one of these old-fashioned grease pits.
“And I looked down into the darkness, and I could see two eyes looking at me. He said, ‘You got me, Bishop. I’ll come up.’ And he came up out of the grease pit.
“And we had a nice little visit there together. And I said, ‘Richard, we need you. You have a way with people. And I want to have every priest in attendance. Will you come?’ He said, ‘I’ll come.’ And he came.”
Years later, Richard Casto shared what happened after that incident:
“After that I served a mission. I was sealed to my wife in the temple. We have five great children—two of them have served missions. I’ve served as a bishop twice. My children have a great love for him, and my wife has a great love for him because of what he did for me. It’s probably one of the greatest blessings that I had ever received in my life.”14
In the October 2009 general conference, President Monson said: “I believe the Savior is telling us that unless we lose ourselves in service to others, there is little purpose to our own lives. Those who live only for themselves eventually shrivel up and figuratively lose their lives, while those who lose themselves in service to others grow and flourish—and in effect save their lives.”15
You are to be a captain in the Lord’s cause, with a specific mission to return home safely and bring many with you.

Endure with a Brightness of Hope

I close with a personal experience. It too is an airline story.
This past November 9, my wife, Kathy, and I were traveling back from Guatemala City with a connecting flight in Miami, Florida. We had an important appointment, and it was vital that we catch the plane in Miami. We started early that morning, leaving our hotel outside of Antigua, Guatemala, for an 8:55 a.m. departure to Miami. As we traveled into Guatemala City, the traffic was unusually congested. We were concerned about reaching the airport on time. We arrived with just enough time to catch our plane.
We rushed through immigration and toward the departure gate. At the gate, we learned that our plane would not be leaving for an hour and a half. It had arrived late the night before in turbulent weather. The pilots and crew were required to have a certain amount of time to rest. With this delay, we worried about making our connection in Miami. We boarded the plane an hour and a half later, but, after backing away from the gate, we learned that there was an electronic malfunction in the cockpit. This delayed us another 40 minutes. We took a deep breath, wondering if there was any possibility of making our connection.
The plane made good time between Guatemala City and Miami. We arrived in Miami with only 30 minutes before our connecting plane was scheduled to leave. Thirty minutes did not seem long enough, but we were determined to try. We ran as fast as we could. Surprisingly, the line at Immigration was short. We headed for U.S. Customs, silently praying that the luggage we were pulling behind us would not be chosen for inspection. Our prayers were answered. Glancing at the airport monitors, I noted that our airplane was at Gate D-3. After running to the D concourse came the painful process of security screening: Off with the shoes. Liquids in a plastic bag. Laptop separate. Hope that the security monitor doesn’t buzz when moving through the screener.
Completing the security check, we had only 10 minutes before the scheduled departure. I looked up at the monitor again. To my horror, I had made a mistake—the plane was not leaving from D-3 but from E-3. We were in the wrong concourse. We were out of breath. The plane doors were probably already closed, and we were several hundred yards away. We thought about giving up. But, receiving encouragement from each other, we pushed ourselves toward the finish. Off we sprinted, rolling bags right behind. As we rounded the turn to Gate E-3, we heard them call our names. It was a miracle. The door was still open. We made it!
Your spiritual destiny will have obstacles, delays, and equipment malfunctions. There will be mistakes. You may wonder if you are going to make it. Don’t be discouraged! You will also have moments of hope and faith as doors open and obstacles are overcome. Continue, persist, above all, believe in Christ and learn to follow Him and His prophets; endure, as Nephi said, with a “brightness of hope” (2 Nephi 31:20). As you do, I promise you, one day you will hear your name. You will make it.
Our Heavenly Father lives. We are His sons and His daughters. Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer. He restored His gospel through the Prophet Joseph Smith. President Monson is His prophet today. I pray that all the blessings of heaven that await you may be yours as you prepare for your spiritual destiny. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
© 2010 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved. English approval: 5/09. PD50018081


1. William Wordsworth, “Ode: Intimations of Immortality from Recollections of Early Childhood,” in The Oxford Book of English Verse, ed. Christopher Ricks (1999), 351.
2. Dallin H. Oaks, in Conference Report, Oct. 1993, 97; or Ensign, Nov. 1993, 72.
3. See Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger, with Jeffrey Zaslow, Highest Duty: My Search for What Really Matters (2009), 5, 10.
4. Sullenberger, Highest Duty, 93, 95.
5. Sullenberger, Highest Duty, 188.
6. Sullenberger, Highest Duty, 119–20.
7. Howard W. Hunter, in Conference Report, Apr. 1965, 58.
8. Sullenberger, Highest Duty, 286.
9. Sullenberger, Highest Duty, 264.
10. Barbara Thompson, “Mind the Gap,” Ensign, Nov. 2009, 119.
11. Letter addressed to Barbara Thompson from Shellie Nielsen Seager, dated Apr. 2, 2007.
12. See Neil L. Andersen, “Repent … That I May Heal You,” Ensign, Nov. 2009, 40–43.
13. From a personal letter from Larry Wilson, dated Nov. 14, 2009, and an e-mail message to the Wilson family from Luciano Cascardi, dated Oct. 9, 2009, translated from Portuguese.
14. Transcribed from On the Lord’s Errand (DVD, 2008).
15. Thomas S. Monson, “What Have I Done for Someone Today?” Ensign, Nov. 2009, 85.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

A Brand New Year 2010 : Part Two "Our Doctrines"

Hello Brethren,

First, before I start what it is I wish to speak about (Part Two), Allow me to extend a well and great loving call to our dear Brother Olmsted. Although some small battles of health have frequented our great Secretary of The Elders Quorum, he is an ever great example of how one could and should be in the Gospel, and love for others. We extend a wish of speedy recovery, and of dear loving regard.

On January 9th, 2010.... I posted the first of a multiple (One per week) series of how we could and should better utilize our online resources for our personal edification. That first suggestion, was "The First Presidency Message" (Click Here To Be Directed) . Another suggestion is as follows;

Suggestion Number 2: Our Doctrines

Underneath "The First Presidency Message" and "Visiting Teaching Message" is a often overlooked section called "Our Doctrines". It seems that perhaps nearly twice a month The Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter-Day Saints puts up new videos on their home site and known YouTube channel (Also known as Mormon Messages). Currently featured on are three neat additives;

First, there is Faith In Christ , which is the entire record of The Living Christ: The Testimony of the Apostles
as given in January 1st of 2000. Seems that history may suggest that sometimes we take lightly the witnesses that bear record and personal testimony of that which The Holy Ghost has confirmed to ALL OUR HEARTS, that The Book Of Mormon is true! Every Prophet and Apostle of The Lord Jesus Christ that has ever served in that capacity has been a living witness to us that Jesus is the Christ, The literal living Son, of our literal living (Heavenly)Father. Records have been kept concerning this group of affirmation, but the most well known, most noteworthy are first, those whom bore witness of the plates of which Joseph Smith was led to by the Angel Moroni, the very same plates that he translated The Book Of Mormon from! So what are their names? Lets look to the preface of the book, page three.

First, let us read what it was that the above mentioned witnesses testified to!

Be it known unto all nations, kindreds, tongues, and people, unto whom this work shall come: That we, through the grace of God the Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ, have seen the plates which contain this record, which is a record of the people of Nephi, and also of the Lamanites, their brethren, and also of the people of Jared, who came from the tower of which hath been spoken. And we also know that they have been translated by the gift and power of God, for his voice hath declared it unto us; wherefore we know of a surety that the work is true. And we also testify that we have seen the engravings which are upon the plates; and they have been shown unto us by the power of God, and not of man. And we declare with words of soberness, that an angel of God came down from heaven, and he brought and laid before our eyes, that we beheld and saw the plates, and the engravings thereon; and we know that it is by the grace of God the Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ, that we beheld and bear record that these things are true. And it is marvelous in our eyes. Nevertheless, the voice of the Lord commanded us that we should bear record of it; wherefore, to be obedient unto the commandments of God, we bear testimony of these things. And we know that if we are faithful in Christ, we shall rid our garments of the blood of all men, and be found spotless before the judgment-seat of Christ, and shall dwell with him eternally in the heavens. And the honor be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost, which is one God. Amen. 
Oliver Cowdery
David Whitmer
Martin Harris
Ask yourself this question, or perhaps, ponder whether you could fictitiously bear testimony of the above mentioned declaration given if it wasnt true. Consider this testimony (Given by a Latter-Day Apostle Of Jesus Christ) of Elder Jeffrey Holland:

That was from this past 179th Semi-Annual General Conference (Oct. 2009)

The Prophet Joseph Smith and his brother, Hyrum, died for it! They died firm in the Faith, and Faith is always the first step in our climb to Heaven. The Law of Consecration puts forth what Faith is required to be diligent. Try...... Unwavering. I testify, Faith can fix us! Consider also.....

The second portion of "Our Doctrines" is ALL about Families. The Family Is Of God ; To site one thing contained on that Proclamation says;

"All human beings—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny."

If we are all Sons and Daughters of a Heavenly Father, then we all should take greater care in knowing his commandments concerning such. He is sending those beloved spirit children, and is trusting us to raise them to him. But That "Faith..... & Family........" is not all currently listed under there, but so is Self Reliance. visit that site for further information.

Till Next Time!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

"Our Heavenly Family" - Chapter 2 Gospel Principles Lesson For January 17th, 2010

“Chapter 2: Our Heavenly Family,” Gospel Principles, (2009),8–12

We Are Children of Our Heavenly Father

  • • What do scriptures and latter-day prophets teach us about our relationship to God?
God is not only our Ruler and Creator; He is also our Heavenly Father. All men and women are literally the sons and daughters of God. “Man, as a spirit, was begotten and born of heavenly parents, and reared to maturity in the eternal mansions of the Father, prior to coming upon the earth in a temporal [physical] body” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph F. Smith [1998], 335).

Every person who was ever born on earth is our spirit brother or sister. Because we are the spirit children of God, we have inherited the potential to develop His divine qualities. Through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we can become like our Heavenly Father and receive a fulness of joy.

 • How does your knowledge that you are a child of God influence your thoughts, words, and actions?

We Developed Personalities and Talents While We Lived in Heaven
  • • Think about talents and gifts you have been blessed with.
The scriptures teach us that the prophets prepared themselves to become leaders on earth while they were still spirits in heaven (see Alma 13:1–3). Before they were born into mortal bodies, God foreordained (chose) them to be leaders on earth. Jesus, Adam, and Abraham were some of these leaders. (See Abraham 3:22–23.) Joseph Smith taught that “every man who has a calling to minister to the inhabitants of the world was [fore]ordained to that very purpose” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith [2007], 511). However, everyone on earth is free to accept or reject any opportunity to serve.

We were not all alike in heaven. We know, for example, that we were sons and daughters of heavenly parents—males and females (see “The Family: A Proclamation to the World,” Ensign, Nov. 1995, 102). We possessed different talents and abilities, and we were called to do different things on earth. We can learn more about our “eternal possibilities” when we receive our patriarchal blessings (see Thomas S. Monson, in Conference Report, Oct. 1986, 82; or Ensign, Nov. 1986, 66).

A veil covers our memories of our premortal life, but our Father in Heaven knows who we are and what we did before we came here. He has chosen the time and place for each of us to be born so we can learn the lessons we personally need and do the most good with our individual talents and personalities.
  • • How have other people’s talents blessed you? How can your talents and gifts bless others?

Our Heavenly Father Presented a Plan for Us to Become Like Him

  • • How does earth life help prepare us to become like our Heavenly Father?
For teachers: Class members or family members are more likely to give a thoughtful answer to a question if they are given time to ponder their response. For example, after asking a question, you could say, “Please take a minute to think about your response, and then I’ll ask for answers.” Then give them time to ponder.
Our Heavenly Father knew we could not progress beyond a certain point unless we left Him for a time. He wanted us to develop the godlike qualities that He has. To do this, we needed to leave our premortal home to be tested and to gain experience. Our spirits needed to be clothed with physical bodies. We would need to leave our physical bodies at death and reunite with them in the Resurrection. Then we would receive immortal bodies like that of our Heavenly Father. If we passed our tests, we would receive the fulness of joy that our Heavenly Father has received. (See D&C 93:30–34.)

Our Heavenly Father called a Grand Council to present His plan for our progression (see Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith, 209, 511). We learned that if we followed His plan, we would become like Him. We would be resurrected; we would have all power in heaven and on earth; we would become heavenly parents and have spirit children just as He does (see D&C 132:19–20).

We learned that He would provide an earth for us where we would prove ourselves (see Abraham 3:24–26). A veil would cover our memories, and we would forget our heavenly home. This would be necessary so we could exercise our agency to choose good or evil without being influenced by the memory of living with our Heavenly Father. Thus we could obey Him because of our faith in Him, not because of our knowledge or memory of Him. He would help us recognize the truth when we heard it again on earth (see John 18:37).
At the Grand Council we also learned the purpose for our progression: to have a fulness of joy. However, we also learned that some would be deceived, choose other paths, and lose their way. We learned that all of us would have trials in our lives: sickness, disappointment, pain, sorrow, and death. But we understood that these would be given to us for our experience and our good (see D&C 122:7). If we allowed them to, these trials would purify us rather than defeat us. They would teach us to have endurance, patience, and charity (see Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Spencer W. Kimball [2006], 15–16).

At this council we also learned that because of our weakness, all of us except little children would sin (see D&C 29:46–47). We learned that a Savior would be provided for us so we could overcome our sins and overcome death with resurrection. We learned that if we placed our faith in Him, obeying His word and following His example, we would be exalted and become like our Heavenly Father. We would receive a fulness of joy.
  • • List some of Heavenly Father’s attributes. How does the plan of salvation help us develop these attributes?

Additional Scriptures

Sunday, January 10, 2010

A Wonderful Talk- A Farewell To Sterling Sharp

Today, [January 10th, 2010] we, the Plainview Texas Branch of The Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter-Day Saints , got the chance to feel and partake of such a powerful, and enriching feeling that came by the Power of The Holy Ghost and dove deep into my heart and soul.

Sterling Sharp, a man of great upbringing, one with focus and commitment received his Mission Call not to long ago, and we had his farewell today. He is called to the "Salt Lake City - Utah" Mission.

We had the great and wonderful pleasure as well, to listen to a special musical number, played both by his Mother, Sister Sharp (Our Relief Society President) and him.

As For The Order Of the events in Sacrament.... it was a divine and inspired layout. First, traditional with any Sacrament meeting, there is the welcome and announcements. (There were other announcements of great significance, but those will be mentioned in the blog to follow this one.) We sang our opening Hymn, then our first talk by Sister Sharp, following Brother Sharp, then Sterling Sharp. What well prepared, spiritually inspired comments, which filled us all to the brink and brought many to tears.

We pray for his enjoyment of the mission, and in his success in bringing many unto Christ.

On behalf of the Branch Sterling, May the Lord God bless you, sustain you, empower you and place you where you are needed, and when you are needed there. Your blessings are coming without measure.... we love you.

Plainview Texas Branch; Lubbock Stake Announcements;

Saturday, January 9, 2010

A Brand New Year 2010

On behalf of the Plainview Texas Branch, of The Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter-Day Saints, From The Elders Quorum Presidency, Happy New Years! (A little late, we know)

If you have not taken the chance to go through and "Digest" the greatest amount of wonderful Spiritual Food available on the Church websites, That being , (*AND*) .... Please do so! The information available at is frequently updated, but not utilized nearly as much as it should be! Below I will outline some suggestions that the Presidency (Of The Elders Quorum In The Plainview Texas Branch) have to better help the individual, the family and entire brethren of the Church- world wide to apply the Gospel to their lives.

Consider this Quote from Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, of The Quorum Of The Twelve;

"Jesus said, “Without me ye can do nothing.” I testify that that is God’s truth. Christ is everything to us and we are to “abide” in Him permanently, unyieldingly, steadfastly, forever. For the fruit of the gospel to blossom and bless our lives, we must be firmly attached to Him..."
With that plain explanation in mind, I now show how I feel that the above mentioned sites can better
"help the individual, the family and entire brethren of the Church- world wide to apply the Gospel to their lives."

Suggestion Number 1: The First Presidency Message

As any member of the church knows, we have a monthly magazine called the "Ensign / Liahona" in which one of the members of The First Presidency Of The Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter-Day Saints, print an inspirational talk. A message specially delivered through divine revelation needed for the time, (Or month) it is printed in. This is a message in which I have seen in my life, seems to always apply to something going on in my life, or in the life of family or friends both in and out of the church. It never fails to enlighten me;

Is it any wonder why this message is the grounds for our Home Teaching Lessons? Knowing that, is it any wonder why we are to take it and apply it in life and callings as Latter-Day "Scripture" ? Even more phenomenal and amazing to me, is how the first message, for the first Ensign of this new year is a back to basics message.

Although the message for this month, given By President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, is labeled Hold on a Little Longer the message is really all about our ability to hang on with greater diligence if we have followed the council given us by the General Authorities. Before listing the suggestions, allow me to pull out the abundant information that I had available to use this past Sunday (January 3rd, 2010) but had time insufficient to pleasantly discuss it all. 

"In a world that is ripening in iniquity (see D&C 18:6), members of the Church face the challenge of sustaining a pattern of obedience to gospel principles that will result in their being increasingly different from the general behavioral trends of the world. This will require all of the spiritual reinforcement that can be drawn upon. Prayer, scripture study, participation in worship services, and the giving of service will become increasingly essential. The influence of the temple will be important as a part of this spiritual undergirding."  ("The Importance of the Temple for Living Members" By Elder Dean L. Larsen Of the Presidency of the Seventy; Ensign » 1993 » April)

Our strength against the wiles, the anger of others, the pains of persecution, the vast and many fingers of scorn by them whom willingly take housing in Babylon, will reside in our conviction and conversion. The courage to turn off that which is not edifying, to stop reading that that does not enlighten and encourage and to steadfastly remain resolute in our interior knowledge and understanding will be the measure of our ability to live the gospel. I have seen this to be the case in my own life. To best understand this, I'd like to use the words of Nephi:

"And men are instructed sufficiently that they aknow good from evil. And the blaw is given unto men. And by the law no flesh is cjustified; or, by the law men are dcut off. Yea, by the temporal law they were cut off; and also, by the spiritual law they perish from that which is good, and become miserable forever." (2nd Nephi 2: 5)

"Behold, he offereth himself a asacrifice for sin, to answer the ends of the law, unto all those who have a broken heart and a contrite spirit; and unto bnone else can the cends of the law be answered.
Wherefore, how great the importance to make these things known unto the inhabitants of the earth, that they may know that there is no flesh that can dwell in the presence of God, asave it be through the merits, and mercy, and grace of the Holy Messiah, who blayeth down his life according to the flesh, and taketh it again by the power of the Spirit, that he may bring to pass the cresurrection of the dead, being the first that should rise." ( 2nd Nephi 2: 7-8)

Then there is a landmark one-two (boxing metaphor) that follows, saying......

"And because of the intercession for aall, all men come unto God; wherefore, they stand in the presence of him, to be bjudged of him according to the truth and choliness which is in him. Wherefore, the ends of the law which the Holy One hath given, unto the inflicting of the dpunishment which is affixed, which punishment that is affixed is in opposition to that of the happiness which is affixed, to answer the ends of the eatonement— For it must needs be, that there is an aopposition in all things. If not so, my first-born in the wilderness, righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad. Wherefore, all things must needs be a compound in one; wherefore, if it should be one body it must needs remain as dead, having no life neither death, nor corruption nor incorruption, happiness nor misery, neither sense nor insensibility. Wherefore, it must needs have been created for a thing of naught; wherefore there would have been no apurpose in the end of its creation. Wherefore, this thing must needs destroy the wisdom of God and his eternal purposes, and also the power, and the mercy, and the bjustice of God. And if ye shall say there is ano law, ye shall also say there is no sin. If ye shall say there is no sin, ye shall also say there is no righteousness. And if there be no righteousness there be no happiness. And if there be no righteousness nor happiness there be no punishment nor misery. And if these things are not bthere is no God. And if there is no God we are not, neither the earth; for there could have been no creation of things, neither to act nor to be acted upon; wherefore, all things must have vanished away" (2nd Nephi 2: 10-13)

I take that all, into this (very short paraphrase) "You've Been Told The Way, You've Been Shown The Way, The Scriptures Have Instructed The Way, You Can (And Must) Walk The Way".

Next, lets visit another statement:

"Nurturing our testimonies and growing in spirit require increased effort as we move up the spiritual ladder. This is hard work, and we are not always willing to pay the price of promised blessings. As we consider the atonement of Jesus Christ, which caused him, “even God, the greatest of all, to … suffer both body and spirit” (D&C 19:18), we can ask ourselves the sobering question, Can we expect to repent of sin, overcome faults, abandon cherished but false beliefs, and grow spiritually as we desire to do without effort commensurate with the growth and blessings we seek?"

"Personal righteousness is a prerequisite to personal revelation and continual spiritual growth. In our zeal to lay a figurative pipeline to heaven, do we sometimes forget the small daily things essential to our spiritual advancement, like prayer, scripture study, acts of service and charity? Can we not be content if our pathway to progress consists of small, almost imperceptible changes associated with regular repentance?" ( "I Have A Question" [Ensign; July 1993, 54-55] )

Getting warmer in understanding? There are many things (Listed above) which are things that need be done as a pre-requisite to having all the strength needed to "Hold On A Little Longer" - [January 2010 First Presidency Message] .

"We know that our physical bodies require certain nutrients to sustain life and to maintain physical and mental health. If we are deprived of those nutrients, our physical and mental vitality are impaired and we have a condition called malnutrition. Malnutrition produces such symptoms as reduced mental functions, digestive disorders, loss of physical strength, and impairment of vision. Good nutrition is especially important for children, whose growing bodies are easily impaired if they lack the nutrients necessary for normal growth. Our spirits also require nourishment. Just as there is food for the body, there is food for the spirit. The consequences of spiritual malnutrition are just as hurtful to our spiritual lives as physical malnutrition is to our physical bodies. Symptoms of spiritual malnutrition include reduced ability to digest spiritual food, reduced spiritual strength, and impairment of spiritual vision. We know the principal sources of spiritual food: prayer, studying the scriptures, attending inspirational meetings, singing the hymns of Zion, serving in our callings, fasting, partaking of the sacrament, and making other covenants, such as in the temple. We also know that some experiences can interfere with the assimilation of spiritual food, just as certain poisons can interfere with obtaining needed physical nourishment from physical food. For example, anything that drives away the Spirit of the Lord, such as pornography, profanity, or anger, will prevent us from obtaining the spiritual nourishment we need from experiences that would normally be effective as spiritual food. Some physical substances, like those forbidden by the Word of Wisdom, are harmful to both body and spirit." ( "Nourishing The Spirit" From An Address Given At Ricks College by Dallin H. Oaks on 13th February 1996 )

What a great bit of information to review, as spoken by Elder Oaks. Sadly, alot of what weakens us, we allow to do so;

One of the most impressive doctrines found in the Book of Mormon is that Satan’s power over a person increases as that person becomes more wicked, until eventually the person is “taken captive by the devil” and bound with the “chains of hell.” (Alma 12:11.) Satan’s method is to influence the thoughts of men, tempting them and enticing them, always working “in the hearts of the children of men.” (2 Ne. 28:20.) Nephi chillingly describes the method: “He whispereth in their ears, until he grasps them with his awful chains, from whence there is no deliverance.” (2 Ne. 28:22.)

But Satan’s power is not unrestrained. Joseph Smith taught that Satan has no power over us unless we give it to him. (See Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, sel. Joseph Fielding Smith, Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1938, p. 181.) And Nephi explained that the righteousness of a people deprives Satan of his power, “for he hath no power over the hearts of the people, for they dwell in righteousness.” (1 Ne. 22:26.)
Between the extremes of Satan’s power to captivate and his utter powerlessness stretches the spectrum of his ability to entice or tempt. As a being of spirit, he works in the realm of spirit, counterbalanced by the Spirit of God. In this way, free agency is preserved, giving us a choice between good and evil. As Lehi taught, “Man could not act for himself save it should be that he was enticed by the one or the other.” (2 Ne. 2:16.) If Satan entices us to do evil, so the Holy Spirit “entices” us to virtue. (See Mosiah 3:19.) Free agency demands that neither the Holy Spirit nor the evil spirit have power to control the person against his will.

Each of these forces, being spiritual, works directly on the mind of man—or the heart, as the scriptures call it—until the individual willfully chooses to obey one and ignore the other. Then the balance of power shifts and the person begins to move upward to eternal life or downward to destruction and misery. A person who has elected baptism and received the gift of the Holy Ghost has shifted the balance greatly in favor of God’s influence, whereas a person whose wickedness has caused his conscience to be “seared with a hot iron,” as Paul says (1 Tim. 4:2), may have put himself wholly within the realm of Satan’s influence. The spirit of the Lord may cease to strive with such a person. (See 1 Ne. 7:14.)

In his effort to entice, Satan has great power. As Elder Joseph Fielding Smith taught, “We should be on guard always to resist Satan’s advances. … He has power to place thoughts in our minds and to whisper to us in unspoken impressions to entice us to satisfy our appetites or desires and in various other ways he plays upon our weaknesses and desires.” (Answers to Gospel Questions, comp. Joseph Fielding Smith, Jr., 5 vols., Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1957–66, 3:81.) The temptations we all are subject to often take the form of whisperings and promptings to our minds and hearts. ( See Also “Questions and Answers,” Tambuli, Apr 1985, 29–31 )

Why is it important to know the mysteries of God? President Spencer W. Kimball (1895–1985) explained:

“Of all treasures of knowledge, the most vital is the knowledge of God: his existence, powers, love, and promises. … 

“If we spend our mortal days in accumulating secular knowledge to the exclusion of the spiritual then we are in a dead-end street, for this is the time for man to prepare to meet God; this is the time for faith to be built. … 

“Secular knowledge, important as it may be, can never save a soul nor open the celestial kingdom” (The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, edited by Edward L. Kimball [1982], 390).

The knowledge of God and His plan of salvation is the kind of knowledge that saves, and this kind of knowledge can be obtained only in the Lord’s way.

God reveals Himself and His eternal truths—the spiritual food that the scriptures call the bread of life and the living water—to those who seek, who serve, who keep His commandments, and who wait and listen in humility for His teaching. Study and reason are appropriate to begin this process, but “the things of God cannot be learned solely by study and reason. Despite their essential and beneficial uses, the methods of study and reason are insufficient as ways of approaching God and understanding the doctrines of his gospel. We cannot come to know the things of God while rejecting or failing to use the indispensable method God has prescribed to learn these things. The things of God must be learned in his own way, through faith in God and revelation from the Holy Ghost” (Dallin H. Oaks, The Lord’s Way [1991], 56).

Only in this way can we obtain the spiritual illumination, nutrition, and power necessary to teach and transmit faith and testimony.

Gospel learning is usually initiated by study and reason, but so far as I can observe, intellectual methods, standing alone, are not effective in transmitting abiding faith and deep spirituality from one person to another or from one generation to another.

Missionary work will help in this cause, consider this:

"In this great battle for the souls of men, the rules of engagement in missionary work are more clearly defined for each of us. Members are to accompany full-time missionary companionships as they teach the lessons and play a vital role in the conversion process of others. Missionaries are “to preach my gospel by the Spirit” 17 with words from their own hearts, words of truth treasured up by much study and prayer. Our missionaries’ roles in the continuing conversion process of others do not end at baptism. They are to continue to teach new members and others who need spiritual nourishment."
"Strengthen Thy Brethren" : Robert J. Whetten [Liahona, May 2005, 91-93] )

So, to finish Suggestion 1 and to close this particular post [blog entry] I wish to extend my testimony, and heartfully bear with conviction that following the Prophets, the council of our General Authorities as well as sticking to the basics we can and will rise above the relentless assault of Satan. I know this to be true, and leave that with you brethren, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.