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calling and election (Joseph Smith)

After a person has faith in Christ, repents of his sins, and is baptized for the remission of his sins and receives the Holy Ghost . . . then let him continue to humble himself before God, hungering and thirsting after righteousness, and living by every word of God, and the Lord will soon say unto him, Son, thou shalt be exalted. When the Lord has thoroughly proved him, and finds that the man is determined to serve Him at all hazards, then the man will find his calling and his election made sure.


Joseph Smith (DHC, Vol. 3, p. 380).

parenting (Loomans)

If I had my child to raise all over again, I’d build self-esteem first, and the house later. I’d finger-paint more, and point the finger less. I would do less correcting and more connecting. I’d take my eyes off my watch, and watch with my eyes. I’d take more hikes and fly more kites. I’d stop playing serious, and seriously play. I would run through more fields and gaze at more stars. I’d do more hugging and less tugging.
-- Diane Loomans

he lived as he taught (George Albert Smith)

When he was 34 years old, George Albert Smith made a list of resolutions that he called his “personal creed”—11 ideals that he committed to live by: “I would be a friend to the friendless and find joy in ministering to the needs of the poor. “I would visit the sick and afflicted and inspire in them a desire for faith to be healed. “I would teach the truth to the understanding and blessing of all mankind. “I would seek out the erring one and try to win him back to a righteous and a happy life. “I would not seek to force people to live up to my ideals but rather love them into doing the thing that is right. “I would live with the masses and help to solve their problems that their earth life may be happy. “I would avoid the publicity of high positions and discourage the flattery of thoughtless friends. “I would not knowingly wound the feelings of any, not even one who may have wronged me, but would seek to do him good and make him my friend. “I would overcome the tendency to selfishness and jealo…

the Lord will take care of you in times of danger, if you will give him the opportunity (George Albert Smith)

On one occasion J. Golden Kimball and George Albert Smith were traveling together and had been invited to spend the night in a small log home. George Albert Smith later recalled: “About midnight we were awakened with a terrible shouting and yelling from the outside. Foul language greeted our ears as we sat up in bed to acquaint ourselves with the circumstances. It was a bright moonlit night and we could see many people on the outside. President Kimball jumped up and started to dress. The men pounded on the door and used filthy language ordering the Mormons to come out, that they were going to shoot them. President Kimball asked me if I wasn’t going to get up and dress and I told him no, I was going to stay in bed, that I was sure the Lord would take care of us. In just a few seconds the room was filled with shots. Apparently the mob had divided itself into four groups and were shooting into the corners of the house. Splinters were flying over our heads in every direction. There were a …

the power of prayer (Brigham Young)

As you advance in life you will find every position and occupation surrounded by its peculiar temptations, the great strength and bulwark against all of which is prayer to our Heavenly Father. Cultivate this spirit and you will find that it shall be a wall of fire around you, and your glory in the midst of you. In its practice you will find a safeguard against the wiles of the adversary, and every good resolution will be fortified by it, and every seductive influence will lose its power to annoy you.


Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, 41 Don Jesse, Letters, Introduction, p. XXXV

the dynamic, powerful element of faith (Hinckley)

If there is one thing you or I need in this world it is faith, that dynamic, powerful, marvelous element by which, as Paul declared, the very worlds were framed. Faith – the kind of faith that moves one to get on his knees and plead with the Lord and then get on his feet and go to work – is an asset beyond compare, even in the acquisition of secular knowledge by His Holy Spirit, yea, by the unspeakable gift of the Holy Ghost.


Gordon B. Hinckley, Teachings of Gordon B. Hinckley , 186

Divine favor

No such sincere, prayerful effort will go unanswered: that is the very constitution of the philosophy of faith.Divine favor will attend those who humbly seek it.


Thomas S. Monson, “Seeking Help From Heavenly Father,” Ensign, August 2011.

healing and relief at the feet of the Great Physician

...we find healing and relief only when we bring ourselves to the feet of the Great Physician, our Savior, Jesus Christ. We must lay down our weapons of rebellion (and we each know what they are). We must lay down our sin, vanity, and pride. We must give up our desires to follow the world and to be respected and lauded by the world. We must cease fighting against God and instead give our whole hearts to Him, holding nothing back. Then He can heal us. Then He can cleanse us from the venomous sting of sin.


Elder Patrick Kearon, October 2010 General Conference


http://lds.org/general-conference/2010/10/come-unto-me-with-full-purpose-of-heart-and-i-shall-heal-you?lang=eng

His Grace is Sufficient (Wilcox)

Christ’s Grace Is Sufficient to Cover Us


A BYU student once came to me and asked if we could talk. I said, “Of course. How can I help you?”
She said, “I just don’t get grace.”
I responded, “What is it that you don’t understand?”
She said, “I know I need to do my best and then Jesus does the rest, but I can’t even do my best.”
She then went on to tell me all the things she should be doing because she’s a Mormon that she wasn’t doing. She continued, “I know that I have to do my part and then Jesus makes up the difference and fills the gap that stands between my part and perfection. But who fills the gap that stands between where I am now and my part?”
She then went on to tell me all the things that she shouldn’t be doing because she’s a Mormon, but she was doing them anyway.
Finally I said, “Jesus doesn’t make up the difference. Jesus makes all the difference. Grace is not about filling gaps. It is about filling us.”
Seeing that she was still confused, I took a piece of paper and drew two dots—o…

obedience is the first law of Heaven (Holland)

Obedience is the first law of heaven, but in case you haven't noticed, some of these commandments are not easy, and we frequently may seem to be in for much more than we bargained for. At least if we are truly serious about becoming a saint, I think we will find that is the case.
Let me use an example from what is often considered by foes, and even by some friends, as the most unsavory moment in the entire Book of Mormon. I choose it precisely because there is so much in it that has given offense to many. It is pretty much a bitter cup all the way around.
I speak of Nephi's obligation to slay Laban in order to preserve a record, save a people, and ultimately lead to the restoration of the gospel in the dispensation of the fulness of times. How much is hanging in the balance as Nephi stands over the drunken and adversarial Laban I cannot say, but it is a very great deal indeed.
The only problem is that we know this, but Nephi does not. And regardless of how much is at stake, how c…

the blessings of the Gospel (Lorenzo D. Young)

The false learning and wisdom of the world, concentrated, cannot compare with one principle of eternal truth revealed to this people through those whom God has set to lead them. Are we worthy of the high and holy calling whereunto we have been called? Do we order our lives so before the Lord of Hosts that we are worthy of his confidence, worthy to walk in the light of his countenance from day to day?...

If we live in such a manner as to receive nourishment from the true vine, into which we have been grafted, then we shall have power to overcome those sins that so easily beset us. There are a great many more things connected with our holy religion besides praying morning and evening, fasting, and paying tithing, as did the Jews. Our religion comprises the holy order of heaven revealed to man in the last days for the final establishment on earth of the kingdom of God, which will never be overthrown; but it will roll on and increase until the kingdoms of this world shall become subject to…

Psalms 145

1  I will extol thee, my God, O king; and I will bless thy name for ever and ever.
2  Every day will I bless thee; and I will praise thy name for ever and ever.
3  Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; and his greatness is unsearchable.
4  One generation shall praise thy works to another, and shall declare thy mighty acts.
5  I will speak of the glorious honour of thy majesty, and of thy wondrous works.
6  And men shall speak of the might of thy terrible acts: and I will declare thy greatness.
7  They shall abundantly utter the memory of thy great goodness, and shall sing of thy righteousness.
8  The Lordis gracious, and full of compassion; slow to anger, and of great mercy.
9  The Lordis good to all: and his tender mercies

the power of music; the mind is like a stage (Packer)

Probably the greatest challenge to people of any age, particularly young people, and the most difficult thing you will face in mortal life is to learn to control your thoughts. As a man “thinketh in his heart, so is he.” (Prov. 23:7.) One who can control his thoughts has conquered himself.
When I was about ten years old, we lived in a home surrounded by an orchard. There never seemed to be enough water for the trees. The ditches, always fresh-plowed in the spring, would soon be filled with weeds. One day, in charge of the irrigating turn, I found myself in trouble.
As the water moved down the rows choked with weeds, it would flood in every direction. I raced through the puddles trying to build up the bank. As soon as I had one break patched up, there would be another. A neighbor came through the orchard. He watched for a moment, and then with a few vigorous strokes of the shovel he cleared the ditch bottom and allowed the water to course through the channel he had made.
“If you want the w…