Mormon Reflections on the Word: Agency

This article was written by Katherine T., a student at Brigham Young University.

Alma 42:27 “Therefore, O my son, whosoever will come may come and partake of the waters of life freely; and whosoever will not come the same is not compelled to come; but in the last day it shall be restored unto him according to his deeds.”

 

In our church we believe in free agency. We have the power to choose the course of action we take, and as a collective group we pattern our life after the Savior Jesus Christ. As a young adult (or emerging adult as my elders continue to remind me) I thought it was fitting to focus on a scriptures about free agency, because let’s face it I love being able to decide what to do. I love being in college and the freedom I have to decide for myself what to do, whom I hang out, and where I go. Finally I am at I point where I no longer have to follow the rules my parents have set for me, and what do I do?….I follow them anyway. (more…)

Mormon Reflections on the Word: Learning From the Journey

Mormon Reflections on the Word: Learning From the Journey

There are many examples in the scriptures of the Lord relocating His people: Moses leading the Israelites out of Egypt, the Jaredites being led to the promised land, and Lehi and his family being called to travel to the promised land are just a few examples. In these instances, the Lord is calling on the people to have faith in Him and His plan. At these times, He doesn’t tell them what they are to expect and doesn’t give them reasons they have to go to that particular place. The Lord requires them to follow Him. He does this to bring them closer to Him and to strengthen their faith in Him. We, too, are called by the Lord at times to make this same sacrifice in our lives. He will ask us to leave a place or part of our lives in which we are comfortable and content in, and move out of that comfort zone and take a leap of faith. Sometimes this is when we are asked to move from our homes and relocate our families. Other times we leave the comfort of our families to go off to college or we leave to go serve missions. At these times, the Lord knows that we have reached the highest potential possible in the place we are and wants to stretch us to the next level.

Joy in the JourneyI have experienced two of these changes and will be experiencing the third soon. Last fall, I moved across the country by myself, leaving my old Kentucky home to go to college at BYU. This was hard because I was very comfortable at home, and I had my friends and family. Looking back at the summer after I had graduated high school, I have realized that there wasn’t much left for me there. I spent the whole summer working for college money and then spent all my spare time getting ready for college. I know that I have grown so much by leaving home and being forced to develop independence. It has helped me to look to the Lord for more answers and comfort. To my surprise, my family moved to Utah at the beginning of this year. My dad had been looking for a job, and the only one that worked out was the one out West. Everything worked out so perfectly, and the job offer was more than we could ask for. So it has been very hard, but my family has moved out and are now living in Utah. I recently talked to my mom, and she has had a hard time with the move because she had to leave friends and family behind. She is wondering why the Lord asked them to move to a place where she feels alone. We have also talked and discovered many blessings that we can already see from the move. We also talked about how we had been living there for 9 years, and maybe the Lord has a need for my family here and needs them to grow through this move into a “wilderness.” I am also going to leave on a mission later this year. As I have been filling out my papers and preparing for this experience, it has been exciting but I have also felt stretched. I know that I will have to rely on the Lord greatly through this experience. (more…)

About Mormons: Life is Like Rock Climbing

About Mormons: Life is Like Rock Climbing

As you can tell from the title, I have come to the conclusion that we are all rock climbers.

Our goal in rock climbing is to become strong and in shape. As we start climbing, some people are wonderful at it. They begin climbing and just keep on going and going and going — reaching incredible heights. And others are not so wonderful at it. They start climbing, and then they fall. And they start again, and fall again. And again they start, and fall. And it seems like they are making no progress at all. But the goal was never to climb the highest — the goal was to become strong and fit. So even the people who fall and slip and mess-up can reach the ultimate goal — as long as they try again. The only way they will be unsuccessful is if they become discouraged by their falls and decide to give up.

Rock Climber MormonThe plan of salvation isn’t a grand-total tally where we get positive points for doing good things and negative points for doing bad things and there is a certain point threshold that you have to meet to be granted access to Heaven. This life is about becoming better. Heavenly Father wants us to succeed. He wants us to go rock climbing so that we can become stronger and better and happier than we were before. And at any point along the way we can say: “Heavenly Father, I’m sorry I haven’t been doing so good. I am going to be better starting now.” And Heavenly Father says, “Okay, this is your new starting point.”

Of course, there is a bit more to it than that. (more…)

About Mormons: Christ Will Never Turn His Back On You

About Mormons: Christ Will Never Turn His Back On You

Hello, once again! This week we finished up Hebrews and read through the epistle of James. I have a few scriptures that I want to share, so we’ll just jump right in.

First, Hebrews 13:5 stuck out to me. It states: “Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” There are two parts to this scripture that applied to me in different ways. The first was about our conversations and being content. I touched on this subject in my last post, but sometimes it is easy to get caught up in the “give me, give me, give me” phase. I know that I’ve gone through this a lot since I’ve been here in college. It’s very easy to compare yourself to a friend who seems to have it all and be very down on yourself. At least, for me, I felt that I was inferior and not as good as others because of my clothes, interests and field of study. However, this scripture states that the exact opposite is true. We should forget these earthly cares because we have the best gift of all: the Atonement. Our Savior’s love is infinite, and it doesn’t matter what car we drive, if we can afford to go out to eat, or if we get asked out on dates—the Savior loves us all the same.

Jesus Christ MormonThe second part of this scripture was the simple phrase: “I will never leave thee.” WE are the ones who turn our backs on the Lord and wander away—it’s never the other way around. However, no matter how many times we turn our backs on the Savior, He will never forsake us and will accept us in His loving arms. How fantastically terrific is THAT?! (more…)

About Mormons: Good Gifts Come From God

About Mormons: Good Gifts Come From God

This week I wrote another post just to the general public and posted it to my family’s blog. I hope that it will help people to come to know God.

If a man or woman struggles with his/her testimony, a way that can help to build it up is to come to know God better.

New Testament James MormonIn James 1:13, James preaches to the twelve tribes and tries to help them become familiar with God. He says, “Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man.” Oftentimes when people are going through trials or struggles, they wonder why God is doing this to them. Some trials may come from God, but a temptation will never come from God. He loves us and will only help us to overcome what is already placed in our path by the devil. This helps to build a definite trust between man and God. (more…)

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