Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Day 37

Day 37:
-Read: Mosiah 26-28
-Mark: Mosiah 26:29-30

"You always need to confess your sins to the Lord. If they are serious transgressions, such as immorality, they need to be confessed to a bishop or stake president. Please understand that confession is not repentance. It is an essential step, but is not of itself adequate. Partial confession by mentioning lesser mistakes will not help you resolve a more serious, undisclosed transgression. Essential to forgiveness is a willingness to fully disclose to the Lord and, where necessary, His priesthood judge all that you have done.”
~ Elder Richard G. Scott

Something to think about: Why is confession an essential part of repentance?

Interestingly enough, we have been talking about Repentance in my institute class the past few classes. In fact, I think today's lesson we'll be finishing up on it. :)

One of the questions our teacher asked us was, "After we repent, is forgetting the sin evidence that we are forgiven?" The answer is no. You don't want to completely forget your sin(s). If you do, you might just repeat them over again! The Lord will forget us of our sins, if we repent. Like I said, if we have fully repented, we should not completely forget our sin, but rather just not dwell on them. The past is past; don't let your past sin eat you up if you have repented. Let God forgive you. Let Him take away that pain you once felt. You are not the person you used to be....learn from sin, don't let it bring you down.

So, what are the steps of repentance?
--A: Admitting you sinned/were wrong
--B: Be sorry.....feel Godly sorrow
--C: Confess and forsake your sins, and make restitution
--D: Don't do it again :) Learn from the experience! Ask God for His forgiveness.
--E: Endure to the end!!

God knows we are not perfect. The great thing is, HE DOESN'T EXPECT US TO BE!!! Just do your very best, and repent if you know you have done something wrong. He loves us, and only wants us to be able to come home to Him again one day.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Day 36 ~ "Forget me not, O Lord!"

Use your reading chart to find the chapters you still need to read to be caught up through:
Mosiah 25


If you're up to date with your reading, take time to study:
Mosiah 14-15

Something to think about: Abinadi quoted Isaiah to testify of the Savior. What did Isaiah teach about Christ? What can you learn about the Savior from Abinadi's testimony?

Since I am up-to-date on my reading, I decided to read President Uchtdorf's "Forget Me Not" talk that he gave during the General Relief Society Meeting. What a wonderful talk it is! :)
MEN: Just because it was in the Relief Society meeting, doesn't mean you can't/shouldn't read it. It is MOST DEFINITELY for everyone! It contains a beautiful and powerful message.

During the talk, he mentions the tiny, forget-me-not flower, and how its 5 petals made him consider 5 things we would be wise to never forget. I'm going to recap it for you:

First, forget not to be patient with yourself.

God is fully aware that we are not perfect. And he's fully aware that the people we think are perfect, are not. "We spend too much time and energy comparing ourselves to others--usually comparing our weaknesses to their strengths. This drives us to create expectations for ourselves that are impossible to meet. As a result, we never celebrate our good efforts because they seem to be less than what someone else thankful for all of your small successes."

Second, forget not the difference between a good sacrifice and a foolish sacrifice.

"An acceptable sacrifice is when we give up something good for something of far greater worth....How can we tell the difference for our own situation? We can ask ourselves, 'Am I committing my time and energies to the things that matter most?' There are so many good things to do, but we can't do all of them. Our Heavenly Father is most pleased when we sacrifice something good for something far greater with an eternal perspective. Sometimes, that may even mean nurturing small but beautiful forget-me-not flowers instead of a large garden of exotic blooms."

Third, forget not to be happy now.

"There is nothing wrong with righteous yearnings--we hope and seek after thing that are 'virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy.' The problem comes when we put our happiness on hold as we wait for some future event--our golden ticket--to happen.....The lesson here is that if we spend our days waiting for fabulous roses, we could miss the beauty and wonder of the tiny forget-me-nots that are all around us.
This is not to say that we should abandon hope or temper our goals. Never stop striving for the best that is within you. Never stop hoping for all of the righteous desires of your heart. But don't close your eyes and hearts to the simple and elegant beauties of each day's ordinary moments that make up a rich, well-lived life."

Fourth, forget not the “why” of the gospel.

"Sometimes....we unintentionally overlook a vital aspect of the gospel of Jesus Christ... In our diligent efforts to fulfill all of the duties and obligations we take on as members of the Church, we sometimes see the gospel as a long list of tasks that we must add to our already impossibly long to-do list....We focus on what the Lord wants us to do and how we might do it, but sometimes we forget why. My dear sisters, the gospel of Jesus Christ is not an obligation; it is a pathway, marked by our loving Father in Heaven, leading to happiness and peace in this life and glory and inexpressible fulfillment in the life to come. The gospel is a light that penetrates mortality and illuminates the way before us.
While understanding the "what" and the "how" of the gospel is necessary, the eternal fire and majesty of the gospel springs from the "why". When we understand why our Heavenly Father has given us this pattern for living, when we remember why we committed to making it a foundational part of our lives, the gospel ceases to become a burden and, instead, becomes a joy and a delight. It becomes precious and sweet....
The "what" and the "how" of obedience mark the way and keep us on the right path. The "why" of obedience sanctifies our actions, transforming the mundane into the majestic. It magnifies our small acts of obedience into holy acts of consecration."

Fifth, forget not that the Lord loves you.

"You are not forgotten.
Sisters, wherever you are, whatever your circumstances may be, you are not forgotten. No matter how dark your days may seem, no matter how insignificant you may feel, no matter how overshadowed you think you may be, your Heavenly Father has not forgotten you. In fact, He loves you with an infinite love.
Just think of it: You are known and remembered by the most majestic, powerful, and glorious Being in the universe! You are loved by the King of infinite space and everlasting time!
He who created and knows the stars know you and your name--you are the daughters of His kingdom.
...My dear sisters, you are closer to Heaven than you suppose. You are destined for more than you can possibly imagine. Continue to increase your faith and personal righteousness. Accept the restored gospel of Jesus Christ as your way of life. Cherish the gift of activity in this great and true Church. Treasure the gift of service in the blessed organization of Relief Society. Continue to strengthen home and families. Continue to seek out and help others who need your and the Lord's help.

..Sisters,...please never forget that you must be patient and compassionate with yourselves, that some sacrifices are better than others, that you need not wait for a golden ticket to be happy. Please never forget that the "why" of the gospel of Jesus Christ will inspire and uplift you. And never forget that your Heavenly Father knows, loves, and cherishes you."

I hope we can all take this message to heart. We are all children of the most powerful Being in the universe! He knows and loves all of us! Don't ever feel like you are not important, cuz that is so not true.

One last thing....Happy birthday to my most wonderful mother, who I love a lot. She does more for me and my family than we probably deserve, so thank you mama mia :) Wish I could give you a big hug today!

Monday, November 28, 2011

DAY 35: This is for you...

Day 35: -Read: Mosiah 24-25
-Mark: Mosiah 24:14-15

"We should seek to be happy and cheerful and not allow Satan to overcome us with discouragement, despair, or depression."
~Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin

"The Lord,....loves us..., comforts and strengthens us, and enables us to bear our afflictions with patience and fortitude."
~Elder George Q. Cannon

Something to think about: How can we submit more cheerfully to the will of the Lord?

I loved today's reading and the quotes. We all have trials and things in life that we feel are going to be unbearable to get through, but we just have to always remember that the Lord is here for us. He will never leave us. Never. Also, your situation could always be worse. Be grateful for the trials he has given you....He knows you are capable of handling them--that's why He didn't give you someone else's trials!!

I was actually just talking about this with my mother over my Thanksgiving break last week. We went on a run together; something that used to be enjoyable for my mom. Something that was a release and escape from the world for her. Now? It just puts her in pain, and she usually can't go on a whole run without stopping, feeling out of breath and hurting. What's wrong? you may be wondering....over the past year (plus some) my mom has had chronic pain in her hip and lower back. She has gone to multiple doctors to try and figure out a solution as to what is causing this problem, but to no avail. No one can figure it out :( So she is choosing to just live and deal with it. What else can she do? It has been rough for my whole family to watch because it is really getting her down. She feels like she can't do much of anything that she used to love to do anymore. Some days are better than others.

Mom, I know you are going to read this at some point or another today.....these are the words from the prophets! So today, this is for you. Please take them to heart and keep your chin up :) Just because you can't physically run and race anymore without pain, remember you can always spiritually run/race forever, and that is even more important. Focus on those things, and the rest. will. fall. into. place.

I just wanna leave ya'll with this poem that I love. Really take to heart it's beautiful message:

I hope you all have a wonderful day!!! Keep plugging along. After all, life is amazing! :) Enjoy it while you have it, cuz it only gets better after this!!