Nov 15, 2012

Should I Serve a Mission?

 

"Who Knoweth Whether Thou Art Called to the Kingdom at Such a Time as This"

What is a mission like?

 
My daughter who is currently serving a mission wrote a letter home to her sisters to help them prepare to possibly serve a  mission as well.
 
This is a great letter that could help you if you are also thinking of serving.


  • It is hard! Physically, mentally, and emotionally. You won't understand this fully until you are out on your mission.
  • None of your time is yours, it all belongs to the Lord.
  • The greatest 18 months of your life.
  • A great preparation for life and marriage


 * Remember that a mission is a Priesthood responsibility.  Young Women can serve, and make great missionaries, however, it may or may not be in the plan for your life. You need to find out!
 
 

How do I know if  I  should serve a mission?

What should I specifically do to prepare?

 
  • Go and do as Enos did and pour out your whole soul unto him with all sincerity of heart truly desiring to know.
  • Make Preach my Gospel part of your daily study
  • Be familiar with where scripture stories are
  • Memorize scriptures: scripture masteries, and scriptures that mean something to you personally
 
 
 
Pray about it!  Follow your Patarchal Blessing [recieve one if you don't]! 
 
 Prepare as if you were going, then no matter what happens, you will be ready. 
 
 
 
 

Oct 2, 2012

The Temple, the Savior, the Family: The Focus of Personal Progress

For our 5th Sunday this past month, our Bishopric asked our YM President and me to talk to the adults about Duty to God and Personal Progress.  I was super excited for the opportunity to teach the parents the purpose of the Personal Progress program. I was also very nervous to not bore them with the details they have heard many times from us already. It was a little bit of a challenge knowing HOW to best present the material that would be edifying to all the adult ages in our ward-from those who have Young Women, those who don't, and those who are elderly. 

I am journaling this experience here, for my future reference, and if it could help anyone else in a similar situation...GREAT!

If I were to teach this twice or even three times, I know it would get better with each experience, and be different each time.  I wanted to include some material in this that I will link below, because it is still very pertinent, but as I was teaching, I wasn't directed to go there.  I didn't have the time to cover all I wanted to.  That is how the Spirit works as we are teaching. We are to prepare our best, then go with the flow! 

Here is the lesson:

YW Theme:  I had the Poster with me, so that as I was quoting it, the adults not familiar with the theme, could read along.  This theme is so powerful, that I wanted to read it so they could understand the words and capture the meaning.  This gave me an opportunity to briefly mention the experiences, 10 hour projects,  how Virtue was added 3 years ago, and to touch on the importance of the YW reading the Book of Mormon for that project. Emphasizing the last paragraph of the theme...preparing for temple covenants led me right in to the first principle I wanted to cover.

I love the 4 statement overlayed on the theme poster: WE are daughter, WE will stand, We Believe, We will be prepared. They each have a message that is worth discussing.

The Personal Progress Book: I let them know that we were not going to talk about what was INSIDE the Personal Progress book, but instead what was at the front of the book (the temple, the invitation to Come Unto Christ) and what was in the back of the book, (The Family: A Proclamation to the World, and The Living Christ)

This is the "WHY" of Personal Progress

Temple:





The very first page of this entire book is an overlay of the temple.  There is also a temple on the  front of the Personal Progress book as well as on the Young Women medallion.
Question: Why the focus on the temple?
Principles to teach:
  • The temple is  not for looks…it is has a holy purpose!  The official vision of the YW program is to lead the YW to the temple
  • We need to teach our youth about the temple. They need to understand more about the temple then just temple marriage, although that is the greatest blessing.  There are other ordinances that prepare and qualify them (Initiatory and the endowment) As they come to the temple to be married, they need to be prepared to make and keep sacred covenants throughout their whole lives.
  • Virtue was added because the key to entering the temple is to be worthy
  • Personal Progress is a temple preparation coarse


Quotes:




     
  • …The Lord doesn’t want people who have just “Been” to the temple, but he wants people who “GO” to the temple!
  • The First Presidency has said: “We want the young people of the Church to be valiant and righteous servants of God, dedicated to living each day so they can go to the temple and receive God’s greatest blessings for them.
  • Sister Beck explains: “The way to prepare to make temple covenants is to remember and keep the commitments you’ve already made. Personal Progress is a temple preparation course.”
  • Picture of the temple that is sent around Face Book with the quote: "If this isn't your castle, then you're not my prince!" The intent of this is good, in that the YW won't settle for anything less than a temple marriage, BUT this is very misleading to YW who are pretty unfamiliar with the temple. The YW need to know and understand that a temple is NOT a castle! It is SOOOO much more!!! It is not just about accomplishing the goal to get married in the temple, but it is about being ready to be there and knowing they are making sacred and holy covenants for their whole lives.



COME UNTO CHRIST:






The invitation in the PP book is “to come unto Christ”  this is about each YW experiencing her own conversion and realizing the need for the Savior in her life. The Personal Progress program allows personal conversion for each young woman. 
Question: What is conversion?
Conversion is about seeing things with new eyes and a new purpose.  Through Personal Progress they will come to see their lives differently.  If they are on a sports team or club in school, they will come to see their teammates differently, their daily routine differently, what they do in between competitions differently, what they do when they are away from home differently.  Their heart become centered on the Savior and what he wants them to do.

Principles to teach:
  • Personal Progress is about personal conversion, by coming unto Christ
  • This isn’t about adding or fitting in another section into their lives.  The Personal Progress program gives meaning and purpose to all they do.
  • Personal Progress is not fluff or entertainment. The youth do not need us to sneak up on them with the gospel. They don't need it sugar coated. They are youth of the last days...they can take it undiluted! 
  • The doctrines of the gospel are explained in the most inspired way to engage the youth, apply it to their everyday lives, and bring them to Christ.
  • The Personal Progress program will get the young women IN the scriptures as they study by topic.  This may help some of our youth who struggle to read their scriptures straight through.
 Example FAITH experience #1: The first principle of the gospel is faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Learn about faith from the scriptures and living prophets. Read Hebrews 11; Alma 32:17–43; Ether 12:6–22; and Joseph Smith—History 1:11–20. Read two general conference talks on faith. Exercise your own faith by establishing a habit of prayer in your life. Begin by regularly saying your morning and evening prayers. After three weeks of following this pattern, discuss with a parent or leader what you have learned about faith and how daily personal prayer has strengthened your faith. In your journal express your feelings about faith and prayer.
  • The Personal Progress book covers the Atonement!  It is so important that the YW begin to understand how the Atonement is personal for them, and how they can apply it in their lives right now for comfort, strength, forgiveness, and power.
  • The young women, are BUSY.  So busy doing so many good things, they should all have their medallions right now.  If they are in a school play or sports team: PROJECT. If they give a talk in Sacrament meeting: EXPERIENCE.  They should be getting credit for all that they are doing. 
  •  Sunday is the best time to work on Personal Progress. Schedule it in.




The Family: A Proclamation to the World and

The Living Christ

 
Principles to teach:
  • These two documents are the most powerful documents they could have put in the book to testify of Christ and lead them to their most important goal of having a righteous family now and in the future.
  • The Family Proclamation is applied in almost every single experience and project.
  • The gospel of Jesus Christ is about family...with the emphasis on the temple. 
"The Creation, the Fall, and the Atonement, are known as the Theology of the Family.  The Creation of this earth, was the creation of an earth where a family could live.  The Fall provided a family.  Without the Fall, there would have been no family.  The Atonement makes it possible for us to live after this life , with our Father in Heaven, as families...this is what it is all about."  Julie B. Beck
 
Quote :

"Give me a young woman who loves home and family, who reads and ponders the scriptures daily, who has a burning testimony of the Book of Mormon. Give me a young woman who faithfully attends her church meetings, who is a seminary graduate, who has earned her Young Womanhood Recognition and wears it with pride!  Give me a young woman who is virtuous and who has maintained her personal purity, who will not settle for less than a temple marriage, and I will give you a young woman who will perform miracle for the Lord now and throughout eternity."President Ezra Taft Benson

Sep 24, 2012

YW Lesson 34: Worthy Thoughts

ldshandouts.blogspot.com

Our Thoughts!

  Can you think of anything harder to control or more important? The trouble with our thoughts is the fact that no one else sees them or  hear them...so we can go quite a ways without feeling we need to fix them.

  My mission president once taught us missionaries that learning to control our thought was HUGE, probably more important than even reading our scriptures everyday. " If you can control your thoughts", he told us, "you have conquered everything."

We are all familiar with the quotes about thoughts:

"As a Man Thinketh in His Heart So is He"
 
 
 


The youth today have so much to fight against. You know that thoughts are one of them.

We focused our lesson on this scripture:

Doctrine and Covenants 121:45 "Let virtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly; then shall thy confidence wax strong in the presence of God"

We talked about what a garnish was. I was shocked that these cute 16-18 year old young women(two of them my daughters) did not know what a garnish was. They gave me several elusive ideas, but no one really knew what it meant to garnish.

We talked about what a garnish is with food, and how virtue can be the garnish for our thoughts- not forgetting the principle of the scripture. : "then shall they confidence wax strong in the presence of God"

Then the questions come to mind...how would be the best way to teach the principles of this lesson? What questions do they have? What do they worry about? Where do they feel most vulnerable? What do they struggle with? Where are their strengths when it comes to thought control?

Only the Lord knows the answer to these questions as the nature of thoughts are so private and really only between us and God. He knows these youth individually, and He knows what they think about. So I left it to Him, for guidance.

I bumped into something [aka tender mercy] that seemed perfect for the Laurel age girls: A talk on CD from Brad Wilcox: Let Virtue Garnish Thy Thoughts Unceasingly. I found this in our CD shelf. Who knows where it came from or why we have it. It was perfect for this lesson.

On this CD Brad Wilcox is very animated and interesting to listen to. He lists 4 questions that youth have about their thoughts, and several ways they can control their thoughts.

I gave all of the young women a worksheet/list/hand-out paper that numbered the questions and the several points. I asked them to listen for these questions and points, and to write them down along with their own thoughts.

Brad Wilcox has lots of examples and stories to illustrate these points. These principles would also make a good youth fireside.

4 Questions youth may have about their thoughts:


  1. Am I normal if I have bad thoughts?
  2. Where do bad thoughts come from?
  3. Are my thoughts sins?
  4. How do I control my thoughts?

Tips on Controlling unwanted thoughts?

  1. Replace wrong thoughts with right thoughts. [this is a good place to intercede some points from President Boyd K. Packer's talk Worthy Thoughts, Worthy Music]
  2. Remove Stumbling Blocks [get rid of what is causing you the problem]
  3. Change environments [get out when needed]
  4. "Sunday School answers" pray, read your scriptures, go to church,etc.
  5. Move your body...[there is a direct relation to moving our body and changing our thoughts]
  6. Celebrate private victories
  7. Be with others doing good things


 



Aug 27, 2012

Half and Hour to Power

Introducing a scripture reading challenge for your family, youth group, or just for you.
We will be using this challenge for our youth in our ward ....beginning TODAY! But let's suppose this is for YOU.
This program is all about encouraging personal daily scripture reading, creating a personal goal of improvement, and striving to be better. Have an end goal or create an opportunity to share and report.
No matter how consistent you are, or how deep of a scriptorian you feel you are or aren't....we want to UP it! Let's take it to the next level.
If you are someone who never reads...let's start with opening your scriptures and setting a goal to read for at least 10 minutes.
If you already love the scriptures but lack consistency...let's make a goal for daily scripture reading. In my seminary days we used to have a Consecutive Club to see who could read the most days in a row. That could work for us right now. Make it a goal and plan for it in your day to read the scriptures every day.
If you are already very consistent at reading...Challenge yourself and improve the quality of your scripture study. Try to read for the full 30 minutes.

Some other ideas:

  • If you are reading in the Book of Mormon and have read 1 Nephi...
" I, Nephi, having been aborn of bgoodly cparents..."
too many times to count....
  • Try starting with 3 Nephi and reading about Christ's visitation to the Americas
  • Respond to the challenge: Half an Hour of Power
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Aug 26, 2012

Answering the Three Questions

Growing up in "the mission field" of the Church, I was always surrounded by other Christian faiths who knew very little about my faith, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  The thought that always ran through my mind was  how blessed I was to have the answers to the very basic questions of life we call The Plan of Salvation.

These questions are: Where did we come from?  Why are we here? Where do we go after this life?

Go to President Monson's talk from May 2012 Ensign The Race of Life ( pg 90)

Using this talk, how would you answer those three questions to  your friends?

Jul 9, 2012

Scripture Journals

Do you have a scripture journal?  

--a journal to record all of your favorite scripture references and special insights you have gained while reading them?

Shannon from theredheadedhostess.com shares how to get started and the importance of reading and studying the scriptures.

This video is 41 minutes ...and well worth yout time.....ENJOY!!

Jul 2, 2012

Writing to a Missionary

Are you writing to a missionary?  Do you wonder what to say or write about?
 Here are some ideas.  The most important thing to remember is to keep your letters light and  positive.  Your missionary needs encouraging, uplifting, even spiritual letters that make him or her better after having read them.
Things to ask about

  • The work
  • Their schedule
  • The culture
  • Their experiences
  • Who are the teaching?
  • When they tell you about an investigator, follow up and ask about them
Things to share

  • Insights you’ve gained in the scriptures, seminary or Church lessons
  • Testimony building experiences you’ve had
  • News about mutual friends who are also serving missions
Things to avoid

  • Asking how many baptisms they have had
  • Don’t complain or criticize them if they haven’t written back to you
  • Mentioning problems that arise at home. There are some problems they should know about, but many that would only distract or worry them unnecessarily
Good Things in small packages

  • Missionaries love receiving thoughtful packages but make sure to honor the guidelines of their mission
  • Remember to keep your gifts simple. Include an extra item for their companion
  • Check before sending off a box to a missionary abroad-due to custom fees
Messages from Family and Friends

  • Tell them the important things that are happening in your life with school, family, and the gospel.
  • Encouraging, friendly, non-romantic letters
  • You can help them focus on the work of the Lord with uplifting letters and reassurance that they are where they need to be.

  • Avoid gossip stories or what party you went to last week
  • Do not write “I love you” “I miss you” “I can’t wait to see you again..this is very distracting.
  • Avoid romantic allusions

May 23, 2012

What the Atonement Feels Like


When I think of the Atonement, I think of a blanket that covers me.

Do you have a favorite warm blanket that you love?  Why do you love it?  Does it soothe you just having it close to you? 
 

By nature I am almost always cold. I hate to be cold more than anything else. If I am cold, I cannot sleep at night, and cannot concentrate during the day. My mind just wants comfort and warmth.

Turning to the Lord, and having the Atonement applied in my life and letting it cover my pains, heart-aches, struggles, and sins...feels like the perfect warm blanket on a cold night warming, soothing, comforting, loving, and bringing healing to a needing body.
 
How does the Atonement of Jesus Christ make you feel?


May 12, 2012

Dare to Stand Alone

Scared to Death
This picture is me at the challenge course at the Heber Valley Girls Camp in Heber, Utah... and I was as scared as I have ever been. 

I am petrified of heights and if you could see my face... you would know that.  My daughters remind me often, while laughing, that "you should have seen your face mom!"  No doubt, it was a scary thing.

I knew I was safe.  I had a harness, and I was connected to a cable. I had these loving guides all around me, including an audience of young women and leaders below encouraging me along and cheering for me to keep going and not give up. 

 I knew if I happened to slip and fall (heaven forbid), I would just swing and dangle around.  I wouldnt' really fall and get hurt.

 For me, I just had to keep talking myself through every step forward.  I could feel every step.  Each one felt like the greatest performance. 

I was reminded how completely dependent I am upon others and the Lord.  And with faith and the support of others, weak things in our lives, are possible. We can accomplish anything we set our mind to accomplish.


Check out this must read talk from  the October 2011 General Conference! 
President Thomas S. Monson



I encourage you to have the strength to try hard things, to be the first, or the only one if necessary to stand for what you know to be true. 




May 7, 2012

Standing as Witnesses: YW in Excellence

This one is from the archives, but a good one to remember and share. 
 Could also be used for Standing as Witnesses, the Worth of Soles, Standing for Truth and Righteousness, etc. 


Young Womens in Excellence 2010  

“Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest” (Joshua 1:9).
We designed our program around shoes and being strong and courageous.

We asked each young women to bring a pair of shoes that represented when they feel they stand their strongest.  We gave them a paper to fill out that described their shoes and why they feel courageous in them.

Examples: Track shoes, dance shoes, Sunday shoes, "sneakers" basketball shoes, etc.

We displayed these shoes as neat and organized as possible along with one thing they worked on or passed off in Personal Progress that year.

We typed up their shoe description on a nice folded card


We had a wonderful program which included a short talk about a time I felt strong and courageous as I hiked the Grand Canyon with my husband.

We also asked the parents to write about a time their daughter was strong and courageous.  We read each an everyone of those short experiences.  There were many tears as we talked about their daughters.

For our handout we handed out socks: Colorful socks with an iron-on logo "Stand Strong and Courageous"  that the young women loved wearing.  Many of them put them on right then and there.

It was a wonderful night and I wanted to share this with anyone that could use it. It is easily adaptable and had a great message.

May 4, 2012

Quality Lessons By Asking the Right Questions


Questions to ask while preparing a lesson
1. What principles do I want the young women  to know and apply?
2. Which verses should I search to help the young women discover the principle?
3. What should the young women look for as they search these verses?
4. What questions can I ask to make sure young women understand the principle?
5. Is there anything I can do to have the young women learn from each other?
6. What applications do I want the young women to make?  What can I do to help them?


Questions to ask after preparing a lesson

1. Is there variety in the lesson?
2. Have I asked the Lord to help me teach the lesson with power?
3. Is there opportunity for class participation?
4. Have I prayed about the young women? 


Preparation Questions:
1. What is the object of this lesson?
2. What are the principles or doctrines to be covered?
3. What the converting life-changing principles?
4.What would be most beneficial to the young women I teach?

Search Questions:
Search questions should avoid YES/NO responses and obvious answers.  Search questions requires students to look in the scriptures for answers.


Analyze Questions:
Analyze questions require your class to think and ponder the significance of what they are studying.

-What did you find.....what evidence...
-What does it mean...
-Why is is that...How is it that...
-What is...the difference...are the differences...
-How do you think...How does
-What are some ways...


Application Questions
Application questions require the class to look at their lives and what they might do to make their lives better.

-What have you learned...
-What difference would it make if...
-When have you felt...
-What do you feel/think God wants
-Share a time ...or experience...
What does God..expect...desire...


* adapted from a teaching guide for seminary teachers










Arise and Shine -What it Means to YOU

How are YOU arising and shining forth?





May 1, 2012

Personal Progress Tips

Finishing experiences, reading all the scriptures, conference talks, For the Strength of Youth pamphlet, and working on goals for several weeks at a time can be overwhelming. 

"There are so many distractions."

"And TIME...how do I fit in in?"

"I keep forgetting what I was working on and I keep having to start over!"

"I don't know where my book is"

Progressing through Personal Progress does not need to be hard.  You can do it!  Here are some tips!

  • Try working on your Personal Progress on-line.  You won't have to keep track of your book!  Go to lds.org/menu/serving in the church/young women/personal progress
            -All you need is your membership number (ask your ward membership clerk.
              They usually hang out around the Bishop's office)
          -set up your lds account with a user name and password
  • Each time you read a scripture, read an article, mark it with a highlighter or colored pencil.  The next time you open your book, you will not have to re-read the same scripture..you can go on to the next one.
  • Use a dry erase marker to write a reminder message to yourself on your bedroom mirror. "Don't gossip for 2 weeks" 
  • Use sticky notes to remind yourself of your goal that you are working on "Read the Book of Mormon every night "
  •  Have you given a talk, been in a play, are you on a sports team, learning a musical instrument, served others, etc. You are already doing so much good..get credit for it in Personal Progress!
      

Why? Personal Progress

 Personal Progress (you) can change the world
        "When you save a girl, you save generations. She will grown in strength and righteousness. She will marry in the house of the Lord. She will teach her children the ways of truth...I see this as the one bright shining hope in a world that is marching toward self-destruction" ("Standing Strong and Immovable" Gordon B. Hinckley)


It can change You

By small and simple things are great things brought to pass.  As you set and accomplish the small goals of your Personal Progress experiences...great changes will take place in your personal life and in who you are.  You will notice those changes as you become more like our Savior.


Because You Are Really Busy

huh?  That is why I can't do Personal Progress, right?! If you are like many young women, your life is packed with a lot of good things.  You have school, homework, music lessons, sports, hanging out with friends, family time, church meetings and activities, an after school job,..etc. How could you possibly fit in Personal Progress?

Sunday is a great day to pull out your Personal Progress and work on some goals, read some scriptures, read a conference talk, etc.

Personal Progress helps you make time for things that will be important to you long after a test score or sports event have passed. 

Personal Progress allows you to "get credit" for all the good things in you life you are already doing.  Open it up and see what you have already earned.

Take time and make time for Personal Progress.


Personal Progress Leads You To the Temple

"Personal Progress is a temple preparation coarse" (Julie B. Beck)

Have you wondered why the temple is a symbol in the Personal Progress program.  It is on the medallion as well as on the front of our Personal Progress book.  The First Presidency has said:
"We want the young people of the Church to be valiant and righteous servants of God, dedicated to living each day so they can go to the temple and receive God's greatest blessings for them.  Therefore we have chosen the temple as a symbol for the youth of the Church" (Guidebook for Parents and Leaders of Youth)
"The way to prepare to make temple covenants is to remember and keep the commitments you've already made."


Personal Progress Can Help You Reach Your Dreams

Who do you want to be?  What kind of person do you wish to become? Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

Fulfilling your dreams can start with one Personal Progress goal.  Then another, and another.
In time, you will be on your way of becoming the person of your dreams.

What dreams will Personal Progress help you achieve?


see article Five Reasons to Love Personal Progress {CLICK HERE}

Apr 26, 2012

Modest Prom Dresses


That is where it is at.

Look at the glow these young women have...

They are beautiful

and pure

inside and out.

...and it shows


Personal Progress

Ideas, tips, and inspiration for Personal Progress coming soon.

For Such a Time As This



We were born at this time because we're supposed to be here NOW!

We were all foreordained to a specific mission or missions here on this earth. It is our responsibility to find out what that is and try our best to fulfill it.

We are all " Esther-like". What is our time? How can we seize our opportunities for strength and greatness?

There is only one way: to depend on the Lord and trust Him. He will lead us and guide us through our lives.

He will write a story for our lives, better than anything we could even come close to on our own. As we do this, our lives will continually surprise us as we realize over and over again that we are capable of being and doing so much more than we ever realized.

Having Faith



 Faith is being willing to trust God

Turning your hopes and
problems over to Him
and trusting in His wisdom

Knowing that somehow
everything will turn out for the best
and no matter how difficult
of dark things become,
there is always a light.

Choosing Missions



Elder Jeffrey R. Holland's talk, We are All Enlisted, from October Conference was a call for young men to serve missions and be worthy to do so.

"From every man, young and old, who bears the priesthood, I ask for a stronger and more devoted voice … a voice for good, a voice for the gospel, a voice for God."-Elder Holland


A young woman I know recently started being interested in a young man who has not left on a mission yet. He is handsome and looks the part, is 19, but is not interested in serving a mission at this time.


He is "waiting" to see if that is what he wants to do. We definitely don't want missionaries out in the field who are not worthy to be there. But I am hearing this a lot from the young men. They are waiting to see if that is "what they want to do." Thankfully, they usually end up going. But their whole attitude concerns me.

I don't have any sons, so obviously I haven't dealt with this first hand. But I do have brothers, nephews, friends, and neighbors, and have been a missionary myself. That is a head-scratcher to me. I don't get the lack of commitment and the "I don't have to do anything I don't want to do" attitude.

We need to be preparing these young men with the expectations that this is what they have been commanded to do by a prophet of God.

Youth need to be exposed to spiritual experiences, where they can feel the spirit and strengthen their faith and testimony on a regular basis. That desire to go is not going to just happen on it's own. They need exposure to the Spirit.

I don't mean to be harsh, but I also don't understand the mothers who are almost afraid to bring up the subject with their sons. They want it to be their son's decision. They stand back and wait to see if their sons decide to go or not. In my opinion, I think a more pro-active, high expectation approach needs to be taken. We need young men serving missions and preparing for this long before the time comes and parents who expect them to do so.
We had a general authority speak to us at one of our Regional conferences and he mentioned the fact that a mission experience is irreplaceable in so many ways. He said, " It would take a person 40 years outside the mission to learn what a missionary learns in 2 years on his mission."
40 years!
A mission is an irreplacable experience that can't be duplicated.
We need young men choosing missions.

Christ the Real Gift of Christmas





"The gift of Christmas isn't wrapped up in presents or parties. The gift of Christmas is Jesus Christ, the Only Begotten of the Father, the Son of God. As you follow Him, you put people first. You may spend less time in lines and more time serving others. You may spend less money on - and more time with - the people you love. You may lose yourself and you may find everything else that matters."
(Christ: The Real Gift of Christmas Go check out this website from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints)

 


Toilet Paper Roll Pillow Boxes

These were a big hit as a Christmas gift for our Laurels.  I added some special wrapped chocolate inside each box.


This is a craft using none other than TOILET PAPER ROLLS.
I am not kidding. They are so cute and so....affordable. Start saving your rolls!!



You can use scrap-book paper to dress it up or leave it with-out

Although these look a little wider than toilet paper rolls....
the idea is still there of what you can do to make it look cute

I am thinking....this might be a cute something for my Laurels for Christmas. I am not sure what to put in it...maybe some candy, or a picture, or a quote...etc.

Here is my attempt at it:


To make these all you need is:


toilet paper roll
paper cut to 10 1/2 X 14 cm
any accessories




Feasting Upon the Scriptures



2 Nephi 9:51 Wherefore, do not spend money for that which is of no worth, nor your labor for that which cannot satisfy. Hearken diligently unto me, and remember the words which I have spoken; and come unto the Holy One of Israel, and feast upon that which perisheth not, neither can be corrupted, and let your soul delight in fatness.

If you think about feasting, you probably have visions of a great Thanksgiving-type meal with everything you love to eat before you. You don't just take a nibbling of food and be done. NO-you feast!


Most of us probably eat too much at these holiday meals. We fill up on turkey, stuffing, potatoes, gravy, salads, veggie trays ,sweet potatoes, rolls etc. As we are feasting, we are having this wonderful experience with the food on our plate. It tastes so good! Our taste-buds are dancing with delight. There is a part of us that doesn't want it to end. We'll ask Aunt Helen "how did you make these delicious rolls? They are so soft and buttery!" We go on and on fully engaged and partaking of this feast before us.

After a while, we then fill up on the fatness mentioned in the scripture above. And oh how we love that part of the holidays! We love the pies and desserts.

This is feasting. This feels good to the soul to be able to indulge like this physically every so often.

After we physically feast on food, our stomachs eventually empty, and we want it all over again. Although the meal is momentarily satisfying, it is not eternally lasting.

The Lord says, "...come unto the Holy One of Israel, and feast upon that which perisheth not"

We are reminded that a true feast, is a spiritual one.
John 6:35 And Jesus said unto them, I am the abread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never bthirst.

Interesting that the Lord uses the word FEAST when talking about reading and studying the scriptures. He could have said read, glance over,flip through, skim, apprehend, or learn. Instead he used the word FEAST, which conjures up all kinds of emotions, visuals, and meaning inside us. Being mortal, we love to eat.

As we were discussing this verse in Sunday School, it really made me ponder..

Where is my scripture reading at?
Do I feast?

Faith as an Anchor

A must read talk {Faith an Anchor to the Soul} by Brad and Wendee Wilcox
In Ether 12:4 we read: “Wherefore, whoso believeth in God might with surety hope for
a better world, yea, even a place at the right hand of God, which hope cometh of faith,
maketh an anchor to the souls of men, which would make them sure and steadfast,
always abounding in good works, being led to glorify God.”