Saturday, January 30, 2010

Inspiring Quote

“Having ultimate hope does not mean we will always be rescued from proximate problems, but we will be rescued from everlasting death! Meanwhile, ultimate hope makes it possible to say the same three words used centuries ago by three valiant men. They knew God could rescue them from the fiery furnace, if He chose. ‘But if not,’ they said, nevertheless, they would still serve Him! (Dan. 3:18.)” Neal A. Maxwell, Ensign, Nov 1994, 34

Friday, January 29, 2010

Coming Soon... Food Storage Cafe!

February 4th at 7:00 p.m.
1st Course: 3 unique ways of doing food storage
2nd Course: Q&A session
3rd Course: Sampling of cannery items
4th Course: Refreshments
Leave full of knowledge, yet hungry to get your food storage in order.
Nursery provided.

Inspiring Quote!

“...Choose life even though the forces of death seem strong! Choose hope even though despair seems close! Choose to grow even though circumstances oppress you! Choose to learn even though you must struggle against your own ignorance and that of others! Choose to love, even though ours are days of violence and vengeance. Choose to forgive, to pray, to bless another’s life with simple kindness... I promise that you will feel the abundant love of The Savior.” Chieko N. Okazaki, Ensign, Nov 1996, 89

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Inspiring Quote

"One of the big things that [the adversary] has to work on is the fact that we are all poor, weak mortals and fully appreciate our own weakness, and he tries to take advantage of our knowledge on this point to inspire us with the idea that we are no good and what we are doing is not worth the time that we are taking to do it. But we can be assured that if we press on in the little duties which are from day to day resting on us, we will be on hand for greater ones, when, in the kind providences of the Lord, there will come to us greater work to do in the interests of his work" (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Heber J. Grant, p. 39).

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Stake Conference! Come Join Us!

Stake Conference is this weekend, January 30th & 31st.
The Adult Session is on Saturday at 7pm at the Liberty Building.
The General Session is on Sunday at 2pm at the Montgomery Building.
We hope to see you there!

Great Quote

"This, then, should be our aim and object: to learn to make ourselves useful---to be saviours to our fellowmen, to learn how to save them, to communicate to them a knowledge of the principles that are necessary to raise them to the same degree of intelligence that we have ourselves.
"Men may be very good, and yet they may not be very wise, nor so useful as they might be; but the gospel is given to make us wise, and to enable us to get those things in our minds that are calculated to make us happy" (The Teachings of Lorenzo Snow, p. 60).

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Great Quote

“The major work of the world is not done by geniuses. It is done by ordinary people, with balance in their lives, who have learned to work in an extraordinary manner” Gordon B. Hinckley, “Our Fading Civility,” BYU Commencement address, 25 Apr. 1996, 15

Great Quote

“The major work of the world is not done by geniuses. It is done by ordinary people, with balance in their lives, who have learned to work in an extraordinary manner” Gordon B. Hinckley, “Our Fading Civility,” BYU Commencement address, 25 Apr. 1996, 15

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Great Quote

“Thomas P. Malone said: ‘Almost every emotional problem can be summed up in one particular bit of behavior: it’s a person walking around screaming, ‘… Love me.’ Love me, that’s all. He goes through a million different manipulations to get somebody to love him. On the other hand, healthy people are those who walk around looking for someone to love... It’s hard to learn, But it’s good when you learn it.’” Marvin J. Ashton, Ensign, Feb 1993, 64

Thursday, January 7, 2010


"The power of choice is a God-given gift, and the purpose of life is happiness. Things which pertain to the physical nature are so easily obtained and the pleasure so immediate that many spend most of their time seeking them and neglecting the permanent joys of the spirit" (David O. McKay, Gospel Ideals, p. 345).

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Sunday's RS Lesson

A big "thank you" to Erin for sharing this lesson with us:

My body is ______________________. Media technology is ____________________.

Share what is your body? What are your thoughts when posed with that question? What should you think? What do you think? Is there a discrepancy? Why? What can you do to get what you do think, closer to what you should?

Now let’s look at technology in the media. What did you say? How do you respond? There are of course marvelous aspects – list. And the problems – list.

Keep these things in mind throughout the lesson, and we’ll see what Elder Bednar has to say about both topics. Last May, Elder Bednar gave a powerful talk at a CES young adult fireside. The intended audience was primarily the 20-somethings – but our stake RS presidency has asked that we study and discuss it today. Inspite of the fact that the majority of us are not 20-somethings, this is our opportunity to “liken” his words unto us – and feel exceedingly young in our efforts. J I know that all of us, wherever we are in life, can find depth, meaning, and personal application on some level, from his talk.

Elder Bednar prefaces the body of his talk by explaining that we must seek out and acknowledge the truth – or, in the words of Jacob, “things as they really are,” beginning with the doctrine of our destiny.

Who has #1? As she reads, it please look for what we must obtain as part of our progression towards our divine destiny.

In “The Family: A Proclamation to the World,” the First Presidency and Council of the Twelve Apostles declare that as spirit sons and daughters of God we “accepted His plan by which His children could obtain a physical body and gain earthly experience to progress toward perfection and ultimately realize [our] divine destiny as heirs of eternal life” (“The Family: A Proclamation to the World,” Ensign, Nov. 1995, 102; or Liahona, Oct. 2004, 49).

So what must we obtain if we want to progress? A body. Why are our bodies so important? What is it about them that made us shout for joy in the premortal existence, at the mere prospect of obtaining them? DISCUSS

Obtaining, caring for, and finding joy through use of a body is part of our Heavenly Father’s plan for us. Let’s go back to what you wrote. My body is _____________. Anyone say a temple? A place where the Spirit of God may dwell within us? How about an empowering gift which allows us to have joy? Not me… but I should have. J

Elder Bednar taught that our bodies are necessary because they give us experiences which we could not have had solely as spirits. Number 2?

“…our relationships with other people, our capacity to recognize and act in accordance with truth, and our ability to obey the principles and ordinances of the gospel of Jesus Christ are amplified through our physical bodies. In the classroom of mortality, we experience tenderness, love, kindness, happiness, sorrow, disappointment, pain, and even the challenges of physical limitations in ways that prepare us for eternity. Simply stated, there are lessons we must learn and experiences we must have, as the scriptures describe, ‘according to the flesh’.”

We also know that Satan does not have a body. That is his punishment for rebellion. In the New Testament, we read about Satan being cast out of a body which he possessed – and moving into a herd of swine. Bodies are so important, that Satan finds it preferable to be in a pig’s body – than in none whatsoever. Because he does not have a body, his eternal progress is literally damned. He can not progress eternally. He may not have the experience made possible through a body. And so, he works against the Father’s plan, striving to make us miserable, and thereby continuing his rebellion.

How does Satan provide opposition to our Father’s plan in relation to our bodies? DISCUSS

Elder Bednar says there are two main attacks which the adversary uses to beguile us: he tries to influence us to misuse our bodies, and he tries to minimize the importance of our bodies.

In regards to misusing our bodies, he gives the following examples – Number 3?

“When any of Heavenly Father’s children misuse their physical tabernacles by violating the law of chastity, by using drugs and addictive substances, by disfiguring or defacing themselves, or by worshipping the false idol of body image, whether their own or that of others, Satan is delighted.”

We hear about those things often, yes?

But what about minimizing the importance of our bodies? Elder Bednar say this attack of Satan’s is most subtle and diabolical…it is anything that encourages us to put at risk the earthly learning experiences. What does he mean – what could threaten our earthly learning experiences which we obtain through our bodies? DISCUSS

The example he discusses in depth, and the main point of Elder Bednar’s talk, is about technology and the media. He says, “some young men and women in the Church today ignore ‘things as they really are’ and neglect eternal relationships for digital distractions, diversions, and detours that have no lasting value.” He defines digital distractions, diversions, and detours, as excessive video gaming or online socializing.

Who has #4?
“You may now be asking yourself, ‘But Brother Bednar, you began today by talking about the importance of a physical body in our eternal progression. Are you suggesting that video gaming and various types of computer-mediated communication can play a role in minimizing the importance of our physical bodies?’ That is precisely what I am declaring.”

Elder Bednar talks about the good aspects of technology which replicates reality – creating, in effect, a virtual reality. He discusses the benefits of surgeons practicing complicated surgeries via computer enhanced “virtual surgery” – where a doctor may learn without actually touching a real patient…or a pilot practicing emergency landings in a flight simulator. Engineers and other professionals might use similar virtual technology. Sometimes, it is a blessing that we have the technology to create extremely realistic “virtual worlds”. It can, and does, save lives.

However, highly realistic virtual representations are NOT always beneficial. What examples can you think of? DISCUSS

If Satan came down and personally asked any one of us to murder, rob, rape, or plunder another sister in this room, would any of us leap at the opportunity? Of course not – so he uses plan B – he gets us to disconnect from reality. It’s only a game, it’s just fun, a way to relax…it’s not real. #5?

“If the adversary cannot entice us to misuse our physical bodies, then one of his most potent tactics is to beguile you and me as embodied spirits to disconnect gradually and physically from things as they really are. In essence, he encourages us to think and act as if we were in our premortal, unembodied state. And, if we let him, he can cunningly employ some aspects of modern technology to accomplish his purposes.”

How can technology encourage us to think and act as if in our premortal, bodiless – state? DISCUSS

When we pursue our online or other technological activities, it is easy to lose balance and perspective, and find ourselves spending too much time on activities which distort, confuse, or cause us to forget our Heavenly Father’s plan for us to obtain bodies and experience a person-to-person communication. Elder Bednar even cautions against casual use of ‘pixels, texting, ear buds, twittering, online social networking, and potentially addictive uses of the media and the Internet.’ Who has #6?
“Initially the investment of time may seem relatively harmless, rationalized as a few minutes of needed relief from the demands of a hectic daily schedule. But important opportunities are missed for developing and improving interpersonal skills, for laughing and crying together, and for creating a rich and enduring bond of emotional intimacy. Progressively, seemingly innocent entertainment can become a form of pernicious enslavement. To feel the warmth of a tender hug from an eternal companion or to see the sincerity in the eyes of another person as testimony is shared—all of these things experienced as they really are through the instrument of our physical body—could be sacrificed for a high fidelity fantasy that has no lasting value.”
Anyone want to respond? Has anyone had an experience with this that they’d like to share? DISCUSS

Is technology and the media inherently bad? Of course not – we already discussed the simulations; Elder Bednar reminds us we can do even more – we can learn, communicate, lift and brighten lives, even share the gospel. He says we can – and should – do those things. “But,” Elder Bednar warns, ”I am raising a warning voice that we should not squander and damage authentic relationships by obsessing over contrived ones.”

What helps you stay connected and engaged in our physical world? How have you helped your children understand this concept? DISCUSS

He gives us the following tools for us to consider as we ponder the concepts in this lesson:
Does the use of various technologies and media invite or impede the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost in your life?
Does the time you spend using various technologies and media enlarge or restrict your capacity to live, love, and to serve in a meaningful way?

Our bodies are a blessing, designed to help us progress toward our divine destiny as resurrected beings living with our Heavenly Father. Anything which causes us to detach from this part of being human is not of God. Quote #7.

“I repeat and affirm the teaching of the Prophet Joseph: ‘All beings who have bodies have power over those who have not. The devil has no power over us only as we permit him’.”

We are so blessed to be on the earth at this time – to have bodies, and to take advantage of all the good technology can afford us. Elder Bednar says we must not fail to be true to the Lord’s plan. He says that we must recognize and remember that at the same time our leaders are asking us to “raise the bar,” Lucifer is striving “…to ‘lower the bar’ by coaxing us to misuse and minimize the importance of our physical bodies’.” He quotes George Q. Cannon. Quote #8:

“God has reserved spirits for this dispensation who have the courage and determination to face the world, and all the powers of the evil one, visible and invisible, to proclaim the Gospel, and maintain the truth, and establish and build up the Zion of our God, fearless of all consequences. He has sent these spirits in this generation to lay the foundation of Zion never more to be overthrown, and to raise up a seed that will be righteous, and that will honor God, and honor him supremely, and be obedient to him under all circumstances.”

We are able to recognize truth – we have known it for a long time, and as we pray, search for answers, and seek the guidance of the Holy Ghost as we earnestly strive to be obedient to the commandments of God, that we will see – and embrace – things as they really are. I am grateful for the Lord’s plan for us to have bodies, and pray we will all work to honor our bodies – and in so doing, honor the Lord. And I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.