Sunday, March 24, 2013

Sunday Morning Stake Conference, 3-24-13

3-24-13 Sunday Morning Stake Conference

(These are my notes; they have not yet been revised)

President Kinser—sustainings

President Garvin

Deep appreciation; thankful for kind acts of service. Spirit bore witness of Elder Garne’s goodness and the necessity of following his counsel.

Daughter developed interest in ice skating. Impressed with symmetry of paired skaters. Wife had interest in BYU ballroom dancing. Pairs impressive. Unity expressed in step moving at times. These cannot approach husband and wife working together with in harmony with the gospel in their homes and raising their families. Synchronized swimming also impressive. The beauty and greatest of a family working together acting in harmony with the gospel. Some families find themselves under water, but they continue to work together as one.

We have the tools to work together in harmony.

1. Come unto Christ effort.
Family prayer, family scripture study, family home evening, and the blessings of church activity.

Rodgersons—recently sealed in the temple. Together than can weather adversity well, and they can come off conquerors.

Remember the times when all of us knew that home was a part of heaven, and the dews of heaven distilled upon our family.

Prayer is, as it were, the breath of life to my soul. President Garvin

Tears shed in happy unity of purpose.

Grateful for the scriptures; iron rod that has blessed my life. Reread chapter in Book of Mormon over and over again; received strength to do what previously had seemed impossible. Comforting assurance that we can achieve the oneness that is expected of us. Blessings will come as you see your children married in the temple. (Gold medals) As you join with them in blessing their children. Etc. Surely there couldn’t have been a happier people.

Sister Amy Shellhouse

God lives and we are His children. Christ lives and has made it possible for us to return to Heavenly Father. Standards. The church stands as an anchor in a world of shifting values. D&C 115:5: Arise and shine forth, that thy light may be a standard to the nations.

Rise to higher ground. Be so sure of our faith that there is no room for any doubt.

President Monson admonishes youth to build testimony which will keep them safe. Be firm in faith, so when trials come, we will know what we believe. My beliefs define who I am.

Truly felt Savior’s love and her testimony was strengthened. We never know who we can touch. If even one is touched, the trials are worth it. We can be the difference, and we can bring the change. I know that God lives, and I am His daughter. I know that Christ lives, and that He is my older brother.


Isaiah 2:2-3

Mountain of the Lord. We go to the temple to receive revelation, our own endowments, others endowments, to have our prayers answered.

D&C 87:8 Stand in Holy place and be not moved. Stand strong. Don’t let things of world pull us away. Remember that we have made covenants and that we must keep our covenants.

D&C 97:15-16 Don’t suffer uncleanness in Lord’s house. Glory will be upon it. See God.

We need to keep the commandments and do our best to live as disciples of Christ. Striving for perfection.

Howard W. Hunter—Temple loving people. Hasten to temple as time and means allow.

Place of beauty, revelation, peace, house of Lord, holy to Lord, should be holy to us.

Mosiah 2: People gather together, go up to temple. Pitched tents round about with door towards to temple. We need to center our lives around the temple. Do we center our lives around Jesus Christ and around the temple?

Sealed as family in Mesa Temple. Second experience travelling with youth from San Diego to Mesa for baptisms. (Her husband was on one of those buses, but they didn’t know it.)

Stand in holy places—for it cometh quickly saith the Lord. Timothy 4:12. Gather together and stand in holy places.

President Faust says we stand in so many unholy places; strive to stand often in holy places. Temples, place of holiness and comfort. Take our families; search for records of kindred dead. Holiness is a strength of the soul—faith and obedience.

Fear not, I am with thee, O, be not dismayed.

Draw near unto me, and I will draw near unto you.

Sister Godwin

Grateful for people in this stake and how good we are to the missionaries.

Painting of person carrying so many things. Rod of iron over his head. He can’t let go of any of his possessions to grab the iron rod.

The missionaries let go of the things of the world when they come out to serve the Lord. It is difficult for them to do that. But they have a testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ. That’s why they come.

Blessings and physical evidence of miracles in missionaries lives because of their level of commitment. Their commitments are intensified with the experiences that they have. “This diligence and obedience stuff that you are always talking about is finally kicking in.”

We are all away from home for a season. We need to realize our commitment as well, and let the things of the world go behind.

Mormons believe in Christ. We believe in living prophets. Do we remember what he has said?

Little boy wanted to shake the prophets hand; Sister Kapp shook his hand so he could say that he shook hands with someone who had shaken hands with the prophet.

We have the opportunity every week to take the sacrament.

President Godwin

Touched in heart when President Garvin said this will be their last Stake Conference here.

Elder Ballard in Hisperia: lifted hand and asked everyone else to; then they shook hands together.

Alma 29: O that I were angel. Missionaries are a trumpet crying repentance and love.

Faith—the first principle of the gospel. Faith is an oasis in the heart that cannot be realized by a caravan of learning. Faith comes from experiences in which you have hope. Faith—things that are hoped for and not seen. Declare our hope, our desire for something. Go about doing something to bring it about.

Exercising faith is more than having faith. Physically manifest it. Holy Ghost can testify of truth of something you are doing. Holy Ghost will testify, not as we are thinking about it, but as we are doing.

Missionaries—be prepared to teach a lesson and go to that lesson. If they weren’t there, there would be someone else very close prepared to receive that message. The missionaries went about 200 yards to teach the very lesson to a man in an apartment building. Tears came; they brought an answer to his prayer. They left him a Book of Mormon and passalong card to They went back the next day. He had read 36 chapters. He went to for 2-3 hours. What did you learn? I learned that the gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored to the earth, and that the prophet Joseph Smith was called to restore the gospel, and that there is a prophet on the earth today, Thomas S. Monson. I know by what you’ve taught and by what I’ve studied that these things are true and I want to be baptized. He was baptized 3 or 4 weeks later.

Matt 14—Savior teaching on desert hills. 5 loaves and two fishes. God and feed the multitude. 5,000 men + women and children. They fed everybody. 12 baskets of fragments left. Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; He said go and do, and they did.

As we exercise our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, He will make all things possible.

He will prepare us to return to Heavenly Father.

Patriarch Stehmeyer

A wonderful feeling to be standing before you. Opportunity to serve in this stake for 53 years. He’s seen Patriarchs whom he has thought very highly of. He never thought it would happen to him. He knows, like Nephi, that he’d never be called to any calling to which the Lord would show and help you with the calling.

He has a testimony. He asks for our prayers. That through the Holy Ghost those who receive a blessing will know that it come through Heavenly Father.

Coming up on 60 years of marriage. “The Lord will guide you. You will do whatever the Lord will ask of you.” “And I’ll try. I’ll humbly ask for His help in fulfilling this calling.”


Sister Garnes

No ‘greater gift that you can give to your parents than to be a faithful son or daughter of God. Align yourself with the gospel of Jesus Christ, so that you may give that sweet gift to your parents.

Heavenly Father is aware of our burdens; He knows our journey, and He knows what we need.

We are led in this church by a prophet of God. Elder Garnes watches the 7 presidents of the Seventy and does what they do. Prophet entered jovially. As that they came in, they stood; when they sat, they sat. Prophet peered around and winked at her. Great sensitivity that prophet has is real.

We have the true gospel of Jesus Christ led by prophets, seers, and revelators that are in tune with Heavenly Father’s plan. Obedience—first law of heaven. If we follow, we will be blessed.

She didn’t hear her husband’s command to move; the boat lost balance, and they all went under.

They prayed. A boat came out of nowhere. Two young men; they saw the children and came. One of the men helped right the catamaran.

Grateful for healing power in her life. Miracle to be healed of cancer. She prayed that the Lord will glance her way. She told the doctor that she knows that there is a God in heaven, and she knows that there is a Savior, and that they answer our prayers. We need to bear witness of them, no matter what the answers will be.

Be faithful, follow the prophet, we will be blessed and our families will return.

Elder Garnes

Godwins real dedication and consecration to the Savior. He was still Stake President as he became a Mission President.

Faulty—the more righteous we are, the fewer trials we’ll have.

The Lord will not take trials from us. Although, we will feel the Lord’s blessings for our righteousness.

He thought one little piece of sheet metal was insignificant to his car, but once there was a little strain, he realized differently.

If we are neglecting the little things, when trials come, we will not be prepared. We will overheat; something is going to happen and not work out. It is by the small and simple things that great things are brought to pass and that we have the strength to deal with the challenges in life.

The Lord has a line; it does not move. Hopefully, our line is moving closer to the Lord as we live His commandments.

The little things that we do in life, and try to justify that it’s okay; not the way it works; the Lord has a standard, and it isn’t okay to leave the little things out.

How does prayer fit it?

Youth curriculum—assuring that they have experiences that will develop faith and deeper conversion. They are being asked to take a step in life—not only knowing what is right, but being what is right. Youth are being asked to step it up and be prepared earlier. What does that mean to the rest of us?

D&C 88 I will raise up elders and send them unto you. I will hasten my work in its time. President Monson is fulfilling prophesy. We have a responsibility to be a part of this. We have a responsibility to make this happen, make sure that they are prepared.

We are not just seeking transfer of knowledge. We need to provide experiences that will change lives; that they will know in their hearts that the Savior lives and their testimonies strengthened. Change our ways and increase our capacity.

Obedience. The key to success here and throughout eternities. Hallmark of all great prophets, and source of their strength. The prophets understand the plight that we are in.

Mosiah 3:19: The natural man is an enemy to God. Become a saint. Willing to submit to all things as a child submits to His father. He understood how we feel today.

Paul –For the good that I would, I do not. But the evil which I would not, that I end up doing.

We can do it. The Lord will bless us with that strength.

Luke—those things that are impossible with man, are possible with God.

We need the Lord to be able to do the things that we should do.

Prayer of Faith

Please help me that I will be able to do more than I can do on my own. Our Heavenly Father is waiting in the wings to help us do those things that we cannot do on our own.

Saturday Evening Session Stake Conference, 3-23-13

3-23-13 Evening Session Stake Conference

(These are my notes; they have not yet been revised.)

President Kinser

Fear of D&C 68:25—Teach your children , or else. If we do not teach them, the sin be upon us.

King Mosiah was given keys of kingdom by father Benjamin. His sons went about trying to destroy the church. His and Alma’s prayers were answered. An angel of the Lord came and gave them a wake up call, changed their lives, and changed the course of many people.

His sons went to teach the Lamanites. He was assured that they’d be delivered out of the hands of the Lamanites, many would believe in their words, and they would have eternal life.

Don't know much about you
Don't know who you are
We've been doing fine without you
But, we could only go so far
Don't know why you chose us
Were you watching from above
Is there someone there that knows us
Said we'd give you all our love

Will you laugh just like your mother
Will you sigh like your old man
Will some things skip a generation
Like I've heard they often can
Are you a poet or a dancer
A devil or a clown
Or a strange new combination of
The things we've handed down

I wonder who you'll look like
Will your hair fall down and curl
Will you be a mama's boy
Or daddy's little girl
Will you be a sad reminder
Of what's been lost along the way
Maybe you can help me find her
In the things you do and say

And these things that we have given you
They are not so easily found
But you can thank us later
For the things we've handed down

You may not always be so grateful
For the way that you were made
Some feature of your father's
That you'd gladly sell or trade
And one day you may look at us
And say that you were cursed
But over time that line has been
Extremely well rehearsed
By our fathers, and their fathers
In some old and distant town
From places no one here remembers
Come the things we've handed down

Marc Cohn
But you can thank us later
For the things we've handed down . (Mr Cohn)

It was his belief that in every generation, the parents become better parents.

Reflect on your role as a parent. What are you handing down? What kind of parent are you going to be?

One cannot conceived of a parent not being interested in everything that pertains to his children…(Richard L. Evans)

How do we strengthen our families in the gospel and hand down the truths that we know?

We can’t force them to hold to the

Must have the faith to teach our children and bid them to keep the commandments. Our worthiness is not determined by their choice of whether or not to keep the commandments.

Our faith, prayers, and …will be consecrated for the good of their children.

Proclamation in regards to the raising of these children. (The discharge, not the acceptance.)

Help them understand that we will love them always.

Just as Adam sought the counsel of the Lord, so our children seek our counsel, even when it seems that they do not want it. When the prodigal returned, he knew that his father wouldn’t reject him, because he knew his father. Have open hearts and arms for all your family members. They don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.

He told his children about the crucifixion and the nails driven through the hands and feet of the Savior. He had the opportunity to let his children know that he knew it was true. As family likens scriptures to themselves, they will learn to trust the Lord. They will know that they are children of God, have the sword of faith and the shield of …

That Brandon is just heart-headed about the way he lives his life. He told the coaches that there behavior was not appropriate; the team expected more with them. He learned how to communicate with respect as a result of serving a mission.

As faith in the Lord grows in our families, our homes will become a haven from the world. We need to ensure that our homes maintain a contrast between what we see in the world.

Sacred nature of family; greatest joy in families; not greater work.

Sister Suzanne Ewell

Just sent her first missionary on a mission. Song—A young man prepared.

Mothers who raised young men prepared—Army of Helaman. They paid tribute to their mothers. They had buried their weapons and past mistakes deep in the earth. They made covenants.

We must honor our covenants so that our children and youth understand covenant keeping. We do not doubt our mothers knew it.

The responsibility of parents has never required more diligence.

One of my greatest blessings has to be a mother. We need righteous women to bring children into their homes.

Nothing will be so important as the question of how your children turned out. (Hinckley)

Obey every word of commandment with exactness and honor. Helaman would not allow their parents to break their covenant. They sent their sons to war with faith in Christ.

Attending church week after week helps to develop stripling warriors.

As we do things consistently in our lives, we are adding a drop to the oil of our lives and our children’s lives. (Joy in first son passing sacrament. That’s the point.)

Mary Fielding Smith’s 9-year-old had to lead the oxen team. He was successful. In their home in SL Valley, they ate together and studied scriptures. Out of this home, came two prophets. It takes courage to meet our expectations of being good parents. We need to practice righteous patterns consistently in our homes.

Mothers should teach children about prayer. Let your children see you praying. She loved her mother for her faith and for seeing her pray. Miracles were performed in their family’s life because her mother had faith.

We need to expect our children to do hard things. Have the courage to expect something of our kids and not let them off easy.

We need women who are tender and kind and refined and faith and goodness and virtue and purity.

If we don’t teach our children, the world will. It’s worth it; don’t give up. These little children are learning a lot, and Satan is not able to tempt them, so don’t miss the opportunity.

As mothers, we have a great work to do; by small and simple things, great things are brought to pass.

Sister Sandy Kerr

Attentive, reverent, sweet Spirit here.

It takes many hands to make the temple run smoothly.

Saints that received their own endowment today. Each of us has a story; we have entered the path to lead us back to our home.

Temple work is all about families. As work is done vicariously for our brothers and sisters, one by one, the Lord is pleased. It is a privilege to do the Lord’s work in any capacity. Covenants empower us to do things beyond our own abilities.

Her feelings of inadequacy. Satan, the destroyer, cannot create, so he spends his time trying to destroy: depression, despair… The Savior always has more power. We can rise above these things as we put our trust in the Savior. The temple helps. His Spirit is there; personal revelation is received there; answers to problems. Please come to the temple. The gifts of the Spirit are abundant in that holy place.

Lives are changed as people make commitments to come to the temple. Your lives will be better as you invest time in the temple. Reality of Savior and His work; we all have the opportunity to be engaged in this work, and to feel of his power. May we take advantage.

President Nolan Kerr

Participated in ROTC in college. 6-week summer camp, army camp in Washington. Rifle training. (Hit first, second target. Young man behind him called out miss. Third same thing. The young man in next fox hole is getting credit. He has been shooting down the other young man’s range than down his own range.) If we are lined up on the wrong targets in our lives, it doesn’t matter how successful we’ve been, when the time comes to tally up the score, we will not have scored very well.

One of the most important targets for us is the temple. Prepare to receive own endowment. Line up better, and attend more often.

Elder Scott—Don’t let things of world crowd in and take higher priority than the important things. Satan would have us fill our lives with “good” things, so that there is not time of essential things. Ordinances of the temple are essential; we cannot return to God’s glory without them.

Water your grass so that the roots go deep.

If we are not going to the temple and remembering the covenants that we’ve made, we are just living on the mists and not developing roots; and when trials come, it will be stripped away.

April 1929—Orson F. Whitney Eternal sealings of faithful parents and the divine promises made to them for the valiant causes in the cause of truth, will save them and their posterity. Pray for careless and disobedient children…hold on, trust on, until you see the salvation of God.

Sean Goodrich

He just lost his hear and doesn’t know where it is. Challenges. He knows temple blessings are important. You will receive answers there; even if they are not expected. You will feel the Spirit in the ways you can’t anywhere else. Savior died for us so that we can all be saved. He will help you if you pray and come to Him honestly. You don’t have to be perfect to receive blessings and to have His love in your life. The scriptures will guide us and help us. It will give you want you need at that time. It will give you the instructions that you need, that you cannot receive anywhere else.

Sister Rogerson

I lost my heart, too.

She was inactive for a time. She has two children. Four years ago, she met her husband. Her daughter wanted to know why they couldn’t go into the temple. She explained, and her daughter said, “Let’s do this.” They began the missionary lessons. They started going to church. Her husband started going to church with them. Two years ago, he began missionary lessons. They got married one day; he was baptized the next. Last month they were sealed. Temple prep classes were amazing. They are trying to be there every week. So grateful that her daughter wanted the lessons, and that they had great sister missionaries to give them the lessons.

Sister Garnes

Heart pounding for two that preceded her. So grateful for good spirits, and their desire to bear testimony on such short notice.

The counsel we’ve received tonight is what we need to know to strengthen our families and put our families on the path to eternal life. Take it home and implement it.

As I have been obedient, attended the temple, listened to the Spirit. Every opportunity for our success.

Her mother just passed away. During a mission (president), two of their sons between inactive. Given set of scriptures, continue on mission, continue declare what is true. The laborer is worthy of his hire; her family would return. Because of temple covenants, her parents will retrieve their children.

Intruders in home; husband slept; she prayed. Cautioned not to wake husband again. Spirit said not to. Crawl over him and get to phone. Call operator and whisper help.; Cautioned not to do it. Third, crawl out window and run to neighbors; Cautioned not to do it. Crawled back into bed; put covers over head. Nothing happened. Lucky that there was no confrontation. Good thing that they did what they did. Her first reaction was to do something.

We will have intruders every day of our lives; people will want to come into our homes and destroy our peace; we are bombarded. Vital to lives, physically and spiritually. Pay attention to the Spirit and do what is directed. Keep the invaders from coming in and penetrating our safety.

What can I do to protect my children so that I can bring them back to thee? Dream—beams created a Z on front door: family prayers; scriptures; family home evening. Those are the things that will keep the world out of our homes; latch the door to keep our homes holy, peaceful, and a place of refuge.

The Lord loves us and He is grateful for the saints who are trying so hard.

Her son sent out letter about genealogy. A lady with name Garnes in line gave them 76,000 names of work to do in the temple. The Lord loves his people; He is trying in every way to recover us; we have a responsibility to make it happen. Hold on, be obedient, be committed.

Elder Garnes

Married 37 years. Thankful for how she raised children and continues to raise him. Bright light; vision for what they should be and where they should go.

President Garvin is a humble and strong man at the same time. Blessed to hear him counsel and bear testimony to members of the stake. He is a man of God, called of God; he is leading the stake in a righteous way; the way the Lord would lead if He were here Himself.

Everything that’s been said here tonight is true and wonderful.

Bear testimony of personal things; principles and doctrines that they are living. It is who they are, disciples of Jesus Christ. They wouldn’t be able to bear their testimonies without living it.

Grateful for the Ewels and their righteous example. Getting to the Celestial Kingdom is all about doing the hard thing. Prove to Heavenly Father that we can follow Him when it is easy and when it’s hard.

It take trust, trust in the Lord. 1 Nephi 4—Ready to go back and get plates. Two times, driven out, lost their possessions. Nephi went back. I was led by the Spirit, not knowing beforehand the things that I should do.

We’ve all been in that place. We may have thought impossible. Nevertheless, went forth. First step, when we don’t know what to do—Trust in Lord.; Things will work out.

Packer—Need to walk to edge of light; take step into darkness; with that faith, the Lord will light the way just a bit so we can find our way. He will not light the way until we show our trust.

Those things that are impossible with men, are possible with God.

Parents, from Park City, moved to Los Angeles. Didn’t fit in, inactive 12 years. They became active. He didn’t know anything but active parents. They served in the church. Wonderful parents. Journeyman. The private in the army. Did the work; not a lot of recognition. His dad called to be Bishop at 65-years-old. Served 5 years. Just before age not to go on mission; Stake President called them in to release as Bishop and call them on a mission. “We’ll think about it.”

Dad said they should go to temple and pray about it. Mother, “I don’t want to go to the temple and pray about it.” They reconciled new path and served a mission. They enjoyed it. South Carolina. Set example for family: this is who we are. Family culture. We are teacher our children and then grandchildren that this is who we are: we serve missions.

Daughter said she didn’t want to go on mission. But I feel like the Lord wants her to go and that she should go. The Lord blessed her for doing the hard thing.

Faust—I am grateful for those experiences that I had wished I didn’t have.

Be grateful for trials in our lives. We are better people because of the hard stuff.

Seldom has found success in the first mile; but has often found great success in the second mile. First effort is an expression of our desire to do a duty; if we pursue it to produce fruit, the second mile is usually done out of love. Put forth effort; more difficult. Endure to the end. Don’t give up on each other. 3 Nephi 18:32—Don’t cast them out; unto such shall you continue to minister. They may return and repent, and I shall heal them. Not giving up on each other. Wonderful to be a part of relations when others are converted. Grateful for the encouragement we find in sharing the gospel.

Elder Cook, October conference: Talking to leaders around world. Church is doing well in general sense.

One challenge—living in world that is increasingly wicked.
Concerned about apathy and lack of commitment with some members. Lack of commitment.

Deepen our conversion and commitment to the Lord.

No outside worldly support for problems with chastity: immorality and pornography. We need to be teaching in our homes.

The Lord and Savior loves us all; He will bless us as we serve in the Church and teach in our homes. He will fill in the gaps and teach us the way. Treasure up words of life; given to us in very hour we need. We will know what to say and do. Thankful for prophet and his vision to guide us. They lead this Church today according to the will of the Lord.

Regional Young Women Conference, 3-9-13

3-9-13 Regional YW Conference Held in Rancho Cucamonga

(These are just notes, and they have not been revised.)

Let’s move to Fontana and speak Spanish. The choir is wonderful.

Sister Featherstone and Sister Wixom

What part of the song touched your heart and why? YW--I’m trying to be like Jesus, because that is what I strive to do every day. Primary--I love the part that says “Jesus love you,” because He does. He died for us and we are all living here.

Who can find a virtuous woman? Her worth is far greater than rubies. I thought that we should have worn sunglasses tonight, because of your light.

Teach me to walk in the light—sing and sign.

Oct 6—Sisters can go on missions at 19. Who is excited to serve? YW theme.

Sister Featherstone

Help the girls to love their mommies; tell them to be best friends to their mommies; tell them to listen to their mommies; tell them to be kind.

The Little Princess

If you stay inside the circle, you will be safe.

Every woman is a princess; it is their right. “Is every girl a princess?” Sarah=princess.

Little girl’s dad passed away, and the boarding woman stripped her of everything. Sarah took a piece of chalk and drew a circle around herself. She remembered that she was a princess.

“Didn’t your daddy ever tell you that every girl is a princess?”

You darling girls are all princesses, whether you are short or tall, fat or skinny. You were born to be a queen. You have royal blood flowing through your veins. “Remember who you are.” In premortality, you chose good.

You are chosen because you chose our Heavenly Father’s plan. You promised Him that you would lead virtuous lives. You have made covenants to step out of the world and into His kingdom. Each Sunday, you renew those covenants. You are our future leaders, and the future wives and mommies. Stay on the path and keep your eyes on the temple. Remain virtuous and pure.

10-year-old drew circle around herself. She is not alone. She has Heavenly Father, Jesus, and the Holy Ghost to keep her safe. (Also, we are all here to help her.)

2nd circle—Pray morning and night; read the Book of Mormon every day for 5 minutes; obey standards in For the Strength of Youth; smile. (Serve with a smile)

Circled about by her family, friends, church family, primary, YW, leaders, bishop, unseen angels.

Elisha’s servant was a teenager that was afraid. “What will happen to us.” “I pray that his eyes will be open, for they that be with us are greater than they that be with them.” He saw it.

Because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, you can be virtuous and pure and return to your Heavenly Father.

Our Father knows us by name. He called Joseph Smith; He called Samuel; He called Moses; and He calls you. He answers your prayers. (Sometimes , not yet, I have something better for you.)

His hand is stretched out still.

The way that we talk to God is through prayer. The way that He talks to us is through scriptures and through prophets.

Arm yourselves; remember you are daughters of Heavenly Father. Remember you are a princess, born to be a queen.

(She felt overwhelmed with having death sons. The Spirit will teach them faith. Sometimes we are all death. We all need to learn through the Spirit and walk in faith.)

Sister Wixom

Sister Featherstone is happy.

Be pretty if you are;
Be witty if you can;
But be cheerful if it kills you.

(Elder Scott—Go to bed with a hanger in your mouth)

Rosemary and Roseanne. (Sister Featherstone and her twin, Rosemary and Rosedbud)


“If I trusted the Lord like I trust this navigation device, my life would be so simple.” We need to trust what is true. When dissonance comes, hang on, and you will have the sweetness of a pure tone.

(Grandpa called them Twinkies)

(The piece of gum that President Monson shared; the little girl gave half a piece back. He keeps it in his desk.)

She said her heart skipped a beat and that tears streamed down her face when the call was issued to be the Primary President. She knew that she would not be alone in this calling.

Elder Hales asked, “What’s that taproot that is going to anchor a child in the wind?” Know where you’ve been, why you are here, and where you are going.

We are baptized; the boys get the priesthood; the girls get the power and the blessings of the priesthood as well; etc. “I will stay on the path back to my Heavenly Father.”

Iron rod=Word of God. Word of God=Jesus Christ.

We voted to come to this earth. We did not flinch when we made that decision. We shouted for joy, because we knew who we are and that we could make it back to Him. Because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we can always come back to the path.

Lagoon—concerts—dresses to concerts at Lagoon. Chocolate nut sundae on a pink chiffon dress. She bent down and put her arm around that five-year-old boy. She looked up at her date and said, “Don’t worry, he’ll buy you another one.” This came from inside of her. She was 100%. Every morning prayer was part of her day. She knew that she was a valued daughter of God. Because she knew who she was, she could handle every situation. The scriptures were part of her life. They filled her with the words of Christ. She internalized it, and was becoming more like Him.

She wanted to be popular. “Jeff, what’s the secret. How do you have lots of friends?” Number one, be kind to everyone. Call them by name, and say hello. Say hello to those who don’t have many friends.

Obituary, “Kind.” Look at others in the eye when you see them. Empathize. How do they feel? Love them for who they are. Pray for Heavenly Father’s love. God will give you a portion of His love, and then you can love someone else; you can even love your enemies.

“Be of good cheer.” Regardless of trials or where our paths take us. Her niece was killed in a car accident when she was 19. Our challenges are all different. Her sister is of good cheer, because she knows her Savior Jesus Christ, and she has turned to Him when she’s needed Him.

Heavenly Father, am I really thy daughter? Do you know my name? Watch what happens. You will be flooded with His love; you will know He knows your name. Stand as a witness and take upon yourself Him name. Do His will. Pray to know His will. Heavenly Father has a plan for all of us.

Elder Higham

He has never spoken took such a large group of sisters. Tenderness

“We are daughters of our Heavenly Father who loves us, and we love Him.”

Missionaries teach that we are children of God.

Story from Sister Featherstone’s father-in-law 40 years ago.

Eagle’s egg put in with the chicken. The eagle was raised as a chicken. “Thou art an eagle, fly.” He jumped off the farmer’s arm and acting like a chicken. As long as he saw the chickens, he acted like a chicken. Once he took him away to a high point, he looked to the sun rays and he flew.

The world would have us down scratching in the dirt, but our destiny is much better than that.

Virtue=of good character, clean, pure

Proverbs 31:10—virtuous woman.

Heavenly Father loves us; He wants us to be happy; virtue is one way for us to be happy.

“Charity never faileth.”

D&C 121 Bowels full of charity; virtue garnish thought; confidence wax strong in sight of God. Doctrine of Priesthood distill. Holy Ghost constant companion. Etc.

Scepter=symbol of loyalty.

Jesus Christ lives; He is the Savior of the world; He knows you and loves you; “I invoke His blessings upon you.” You will find a renewed happiness in your life that will be refreshing to you.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Identity Theft? No, I am a Child of God

Identity Theft? No, I am a Child of God

We live in a world of identity theft. It happens everywhere. If you have not been a target yet, you probably will be in the future. It has happened to my husband and me a few times.

The first time, it was more an error than theft. There are so many people with the name Robert Stevenson in this world that somehow, either by human error or electronic error, my husband's identity was mixed up with someone else's; and the someone else did not have a good financial history or credit background. So it hurt my husband's credit until it was resolved.

Another time I woman stole mail out of our mailbox. From that she obtained some credit card information and purchased many things online using my name. The silly woman actually used our phone number as a second phone number to call though, so she was found out. But still she got away with stealing a great deal of merchandise.

The most blatant identity theft with which we have had to deal so far came from a trusted employee. She used Bob's name to order cell phones. She also stole checks written to him and deposited them in her own bank account. Before we were aware of this theft, she had stolen upwards of $16,000. She felt that she had the "right" because of the amount of time she'd been working for Bob.

Identity theft is not new. It didn't even begin in this mortal world. Satan attempted identity theft while we were still all in the presence of our Father in Heaven. We all lived in the presence of our Heavenly Father before we came to this earth. We loved Him and we wanted to become like Him. Jesus was the oldest spiritual begotten Son of our Heavenly Father. His name was Jehovah. Satan was one of the oldest as well. His name was Lucifer, or Son of the Morning.

When Heavenly Father presented His plan to us in the Grand Council in heaven, we shouted for joy! He would give us the gift of agency, which is the ability to choose right from wrong. When we came to earth, we would no longer be in His presence, and we would not remember what things were like before our mortal life. We would have to live by faith. We were anxious to gain the experiences of a mortal life that would help us become more like our Father in Heaven (see Gospel Principles Lesson 2).

The tests in this mortal life would be new to us, and none of us would be able to live in harmony with the glory of God at all times. We would fall short, and we would need a Savior. Heavenly Father said that through faith in the Savior's Atonement, repentance of our wrongs, and obedience to God's commandments, we would all be able to progress and return to live with Him again. But we would have to choose righteousness (see Gospel Principles Lesson 2).

Because we needed a Savior to pay for our sins and teach us the way to return to our Heavenly Father, Our Father asked us, "Whom shall I send." Jesus answered, "Here am I, send me" (Abraham 3:27).

Jesus's love for us was so great that He was willing to submit to all that Heavenly Father wanted Him to do. He was willing to be born in humble circumstances and to give His life for all mankind. He was willing to follow the Father's plan which would allow all of us freedom to choose our own paths or to follow Him. He would do all this because He loved His Father and wanted to please Him and bring honor to His name; and He would do all this because He loved us and wanted us to be able to choose to return to live with God (See Moses 4:2). "Father thy will be done, and the glory be thine forever," is what Jesus said (See
Gospel Principles Lesson 3).

Satan, wanted all the glory for himself. He wanted to destroy the agency that God had given to men. He wanted to force all of us to live in harmony with God's laws. And he wanted all the glory for restoring God's children to Him (See Moses 4:1-4; Gospel Principles Lesson 3). He wanted to take God's place and have His glory. He wanted to steal our Heavenly Father's identity.

Because Heavenly Father knew that Satan's plan would not work, He chose Jesus to be our Savior. Satan then rebelled against Heavenly Father, and He rebelled against Jesus, God's Chosen One. Jesus was foreordained by Heavenly Father to be the Savior of the world.

Satan didn't rise in rebellion by himself. He took a third part of the hosts of heaven with him. Satan waged war against Jesus and His followers. He did this because of anger and jealousy. And because he sought to take away the agency of man and also God's identity, and because he rebelled against the priesthood authority that God had given to His Only Begotten Son, Satan and those who followed him were cast out of heaven (See Isaiah 14:12-15; Revelation 12:4, 7-9). Satan succeeded in confusing one-third the host of heaven about their true identity as sons and daughters of God, and because of their anger, jealousy, and rebellion, they chose to forfeit that identity and follow Satan. They will never have the opportunity to receive mortal bodies and to progress to become like our Heavenly Father. That was their own choice because of their willingness to fight against what they knew was right; to fight against God's Chosen Vessel, and to seek to usurp power, and steal the throne of God. In so doing, they became sons and daughters to the devil, instead of to God. Now they try to thwart our progression as well; and one of their main tactics is to confuse us concerning our identity and to rob us of our identity by persuading us to use our agency wrongfully. Another tactic is to get us to speak against our living prophets and against priesthood authority and against the Lord's servants.  

It's important that we learn and claim our identity as children of God. So many would rather identify themselves with factions, thinking that they are promoting themselves better by doing so; but, there is no better position to be in than to know that we are children of God and that He desires us to feel His love and acceptance and to, eventually, become like Him.

There is a prevailing attitude in the world, and now in the church, among so many that we have to accept "anything goes." We do not have to accept that, nor should we. We have the scriptures, and we have living prophets. If we read, study, pray, and follow the commandments, the Lord has promised us that He will be with us, and we will not be deceived. We also have the Holy Ghost and the Atonement of Jesus Christ, and we can find strength in renewing our covenants every week as we partake of the sacrament worthily with a repentant heart and an eye single to the glory of God. Yet, Satan tries to cause factions and disharmony and to be a grand puppeteer of those who are willing to believe his lies and deceit concerning who they are and concerning Heavenly Father's plan for them. The sophistry of the devil is in great abundance, but it pales to the Light of Christ and in the light of those who are following Him and His prophets. 

Identity. We all knew our identity in our pre-mortal life, and we chose to follow our Heavenly Father's plan, and we chose to accept Jesus as our Savior. Satan tried to steal our Heavenly Father's identity, and He continues to try to steal our identity. And if he confuses everyone enough, he knows he just might be able to do so. So he spreads lies concerning both gender and same sex attraction, causing people to find false identity by defining themselves in limiting ways.  And he spreads lies about inequality, where no inequality is found. And he spreads lies concerning the very facets of our identity as children on God who are dependent upon Him for all that we have and are. And he spreads lies concerning the goodness of God and God's prophets. And he spreads lies telling people that their logic is correct and that it is just as good as God's prophets or God Himself. 

We have seen "gay marriage" being upheld and endorsed by those who are in authority in our state and federal governments. Like Satan, these people will endorse or uphold whatever they believe will bring them more power and glory. They are willing to enslave the people in order to rob them of their basic freedoms and identity in an effort to bring equality to all, they say; or in other words, to enslave the people so that they can reign supreme. To take away the voice of the majority is to rob the country of freedoms that will keep her free.  

Since December 2012, we have been seeing the fruits of the lies Satan has been spreading by the many distractions being cause by feminist groups, by a group called All Enlisted, and another called Ordain Women, to name a few, who believe that it is their purpose to promote feminist agenda that is contrary to the organization of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Satan has convinced many of these people that they are doing so in harmony with the Spirit of God, and that they have a right to counsel both God's prophets and God himself.

Because  so many people are caught up in self-pity and disenfranchisement, they are willing to support the efforts of feminist groups that may touch a certain common chord of disharmony in their own lives. Without searching to find what the driving force and true agendas are behind these movements, many are jumping on the bandwagon thinking that they are doing all of us God-service by rallying a political movement within God's church, which is in opposition to the character and nature of the order of God's church. 

Satan is pleased to see so many confused and disenfranchised, and he grabs onto whom he can to further his plan to steal our identity. What many do not realize is that these feminist groups include many men as well. They seem to be the most fierce in driving these feminist page of the month clubs. Also, many who are adding fuel to the fire are apostate or excommunicated members already. Caught up in it all though are people who honestly feel disenfranchised and who do not understand God's plan or His scriptures. It is difficult for me to remember to be charitable when I feel like the Lord's Church is being attacked so fiercely. But that is exactly what we need to be now and in the coming days. 

You know, it seems like every discussion that I've participated in where  feminist issues of disenfranchisement are being discussed, no feminist woman for these causes has any solid thing to say. There are a whole lot of men out there thinking that they are being supportive of these feminist groups by repeating the rhetoric; and I am left to wonder whose fight for equality this really is. But then again, I know that it is Satan stirring up division in the Lord's house so that he can rob the Lord's children of their true identity. I also have seen many men and women who support the prophet and the Brethren; men and women, who have strong and solid testimonies, saying that they do not agree with these feminist ideas or tactics. And for that, they are belittled and told that they are stupid, passive, and conservative. We cannot think to impose the limited understanding of men's politics in relation to the Lord's Church. We are always to seek to gain counsel from God, through His prophets and the Holy Ghost, and not seek to counsel Him. 

So while we should all be rejoicing in our commonality as children of the Highest, Satan is delighting in the contention and division that he is causing. 

I am thankful for the understanding that I have of both priesthood power and authority. No one has ever said that women will not ever hold the priesthood. We already share in the power of the priesthood and act under the direction of the priesthood. Ultimately, priesthood power will be held jointly between husbands and wives who are faithful and become exalted. In my opinion though, women will never hold the same offices of the priesthood as men do. This has never been the order in the Church or Gospel of Jesus Christ. I love the gospel, and I am grateful for Christ's atonement, and that is sufficient for me. It should be for all of us. I think it is arrogant to demand anything more from the Lord or from our Father than what they have already provided for us and promised us. 

Here on earth, the priesthood is known to be the authority to act in the name of God. No one can receive that authority except from God. Seeking it by relying on the arm of flesh is godless. There is no pretense or arrogance in saying so.

Because I believe so strongly in my identity as a daughter of God, and because I believe that Jesus Christ is my Savior and the One who stands at the head of His own Church, I feel strengthened by their strength and their goodness. I identify with Them. Because I am a daughter of God, I thoroughly trust that the prophets are called of God and that they are not running this Church alone, but that Jesus Christ stands at the head. So I will put my trust in the Lord and His prophets. And, therefore, anyone who issues calls to action to members of the Church on behalf of the Church, who does not have authority to do so, I will not follow.

God knew that we would make mistakes and fall short; that is why He sent His Son. Even Jesus Christ had to grow from grace to grace in remembering His identity and learning His purpose. But He always did all things to please His Father. That is because He knew and remembered who He was. God has sent His Spirit to testify concerning Himself and His Son and concerning our true identity as sons and daughters of God. Jesus did not think it robbery to become like God, because God had promised Him Eternal glory for His obedience (see  Philippians 2:5-16); whereas Satan actually sought to rob God and keep all the glory for himself. And Jesus provided for us to all become joint-heirs with Him to all that the Father has (see Romans 8:16-18). What a grand and glorious plan and purpose. Who could ask for anything more?

I pray that we will all humble ourselves sufficiently in order to become recipients to the Spirit of Truth that will teach us all things which we must do, and which will testify to us of God's love and our own identity, so that we can hold onto it and not allow anyone to rob us of it. We kept our first estate, and we are promised eternal glory if we keep our second estate. We need to remember and claim our identity as children of God, and we need to follow the prophet and proper priesthood authority in order to remain valiant in doing so.