Saturday, January 19, 2013

wintry day

wintry day

wintry day with no clouds but wind
flying through the trees and whistling through the eaves
from my window, your voice is whispering that it is warm
outside, but from inside I can see
the boughs of the trees being tempest tossed
even the cat has run for shelter

wintry day with no voices of children at play
I can hear the echoes of your laughter
peal and repeal as layers of licking wind flap
and fowls take to flight
not a soul in sight
echoes flinging of autumn singing
and the dog scratching to come in

wintry day abundant in sound and sight
melodious dissonance of cackle and joyful
laughter combined in chaotic timing
your very song thrills and chills
seeping ever more deeply
as I safely sip cocoa in reflective

Friday, January 18, 2013

An Unsent Letter to the First Presidency, the Quorum of the Twelve, and our other Leaders

This letter is not actually being sent to our leaders at this time, because they are being inundated with letters from various people who feel disenfranchised from the church, and are in effect demanding change. (And I realize that they do not have time to read so many letters that are either negative or positive in nature.) I just wanted to express my love and faith in the leaders that the Lord has chosen. If you share my sentiments of love and devotion to the Lord, His leaders, and this great work, you may share this blog. Or you could write a similar blog of your own to share with family and friends.

We need to Let our light so shine before men [and women], that they may see our good works, and glorify our Father which is in heaven. (See Matthew 5:16)

To the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve; also, to the Seventy, the Bishopric, and the Leaders in all the Auxiliaries of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

I feel to thank you for your faith, love, prayers, and service to the entire church body membership and to the world at large. I know that you carry a heavy load on our behalf and on the Lord’s behalf. Because of His love for us, and because of our love for Him, we are engaged in the building of His kingdom together.

I can more fully feel the love of my Savior in my life because of your love for all of us. It is a powerful service that you are rendering, and it is humbling to know that the Lord loves us so much that He has given us the gift of prophets and apostles and a manifest order to the structure and workings of His Church. It is the same organization that existed when Jesus was on the earth and established it. He has established it here again for our day.

And He gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, and for the edifying of the body of Christ.

(See Ephesians 4:11-16)

We believe in the same organization that existed in the Primitive Church, namely, apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, evangelists, and so forth.

(See Article of Faith number 6)

I know that the Lord has always spoken through His prophets.

Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.

(See Amos 3:7)

I also understand that none of you sought for your offices. You have only sought to do the Lord's will and to serve Him. 

And no man taketh this honour unto himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron.

(See Hebrews 5:4)

For this reason, I will not try to second guess the workings of the Spirit or the direction of the leaders within the Lords church; nor will I seek to take honor or glory unto myself which does not belong to me. Why should I, when I know that the Father has promised me everything that is His in due time? Unfaithfulness, bitterness, and seeking for power or for more than what is allotted to me would come at too great a cost and at too great an eternal sacrifice. When there are things with which I disagree or lack understanding, I will pray for the Lord's Spirit to be with me to restore light and truth to my mind and heart. 

The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

It is through the Gift of the Holy Ghost that I feel secure and peaceful and directed. I know that the Lord is at the helm and He is the Leader in this latter-day work through you. Because I trust Him, I also trust you, because I know that you were called by Him.

We have been promised that no latter-day prophet will lead us astray. I truly believe that. I saw the mantle of authority newly fallen on President Monson when he spoke at a news’ conference soon after he became prophet. He has had years of tutelage in preparing for this moment, and he has lived a life full of examples of following the Spirit with exactness and honor in serving as the Lord would have him do.

I am thankful to the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve for their relatively new and inspired documents of scripture: 


I know that these are true and inspired documents. And they were given in the Spirit; therefore, I deem them as scripture. 

I have found the principles and doctrines within these documents to be true and remarkably on target for the times in which we live. The Spirit can confirm the truth of these things to everyone. They are in harmony with all other scripture and the words of all previous prophets. I am thankful that our Heavenly Father would give us renewed direction through His chosen and called prophets and apostles. 

I have full trust in following the counsel, commandments, directions, or strong recommendations which are given in our General Conferences. I know that my time isn't being wasted with personal opinion, but that I am being taught by the servants of the Lord. Because I have the scriptures and because I have the Gift of the Holy Ghost, I know that I am entitled to personal revelation concerning the things which I hear spoken in these assemblies. And again, they are in harmony with the testimony I already have and with the words of scriptures that are already a part of me. 

I want you to know that I am trying to be patient and understanding with our brothers and sisters who are currently lacking in faith. But at the same time I feel to say as Paul did:

I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation.

(See Romans 1:16)

And also as Alma said, I seek:

To stand as a witness of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that I may be in, even until death, that I may be redeemed of God, and be numbered with those of the first resurrection, that I may have eternal life.

(See Mosiah 18:9)

I pray that our Heavenly Father will continue to support and sustain you. I also hope and pray that you can feel the love and support and sustaining influence from the majority of the members of the church. I deem it an honor to be able to follow a living prophet, and I am most thankful that the Lord is giving us direction for our times and for these seasons of particular unrest, uncertainty, infidelity, and pride. I will rededicate myself to the service of the Lord and seek to do His will. I hope that I will never be found choosing to be involved in any group or company that is offensive to Him; while, at the same time, I pray that I will be found worthy to let my light shine in His behalf. 

Thank you for your sacrifice and service on our behalf and on the Lord's behalf. I personally am extremely grateful. I love the Lord and I honor you as His servants.

Most sincerely, from your sister in the gospel,

Heidi Sommerfeld Stevenson

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Cancer Spreading through our Country

Stupid, stupid cancer. All any of us wish for is to retain most of our hard-earned wages, have the means to pay our bills and feed our families, and maybe have a little left over for a rainy day or personal enjoyment or educational development. We live in a country full of cancer with a cantankerous government who doesn't want to pursue treatment, or who is only willing to place a Band-Aid on the greatest bleeding ulcer ever. We live in a country full of cancer with citizens who are so plagued with the effects of the disease and so accustomed to the Band-Aid treatments that they are unwilling to undergo the perceived drastic changes that social chemotherapy and radiation may have to offer. It appears that an appeal to conservatism or liberalism is a cover-up for those who are neither conservative or liberal. We keep doing the same stupid things and getting the same stupid results. It's simple math that we all learned in middle school: garbage in, garbage out. So unlike true cancer victims who recognize that they are fighting a deadly disease and who are struggling to hold onto the things that they hold most dear, the United States is burying its head in the sand and ignoring the imminent dangers of the spreading disease. Until we wake up, and stay awake for more than half-an-hour or half-a-day; until we are ready to accept that we are dealing with destructive economic, societal, and moral demons and dependencies; until we look to the only known cure from slavery and poverty, the source which will bring freedom and prosperity, this cancer will continue to spread.