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Showing posts from May 29, 2011

trials (John Taylor)

So far as I am concerned, I say, let everything come as God has ordained it. I do not desire trials; I do not desire affliction: I would pray to God to “leave me not in temptation, and deliver me from evil; for thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory.” But if the earthquake bellows, the lightnings flash, the thunders roll, and the powers of darkness are let loose, and the spirit of evil is permitted to rage, and an evil influence is brought to bear on the Saints, and my life, with theirs, is put to the test; let it come, for we are the Saints of the most High God, and all is well, all is peace, all is right, and will be, both in time and in eternity... I used to think, if I were the Lord, I would not suffer people to be tried as they are; but I have changed my mind on that subject. Now I think I would if I were the Lord, because it purges out the meanness and corruption that stick around the Saints, like flies around molasses. John Taylor, Journal of Discourses 5:114-15

inspiration and teachings of the Spirit

I will now say that inasmuch as many of us have received the Gospel and gathered with the Saints of God, it is important that we labour to-day—that we live under the influence of that Spirit, that it may continue to increase and to govern us in our acts among the children of men. Now, when a man has the Holy Spirit and hears the plain, simple truths of salvation, they appear more valuable than all else besides, and he is ready to sacrifice everything of a temporal nature to secure himself salvation; but when people’s minds become darkened, they lose the Holy Spirit and the value of that Gospel, and they do not realize the privilege and the honour of being associated with the Saints of God in these valleys of the mountains, neither do they maintain their allegiance to their Heavenly Father, and honor his name upon the earth, or prize their association with those that bear the holy Priesthood, and therefore they go into darkness. Why has the word reformation ever been named in Zion? It

we are mirrors

We are mirrors whose brightness, if we are bright, is wholly derived from the sun that shines upon us. C.S. Lewis Therefore, hold up your light that it may shine unto the world. Behold I am the light which ye shall hold up—that which ye have seen me do. 3 Nephi 18:24


If the devil says you cannot pray when you are angry, tell him it is none of his business, and pray until that species of insanity is dispelled and serenity is restored to the mind. Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 10:175

living in a wheat and tares world

In a "wheat and tares" world, how unusually blessed faithful members are to have the precious and constant gift of the Holy Ghost with reminders of what is right and of the covenants we have made.  "For behold, ...the Holy Ghost...will show unto you all things what ye should do." (2 Nephi 32:5).  Whatever the decibels of decadence, these need not overwhelm the still, small voice!  Some of the best sermons we will ever hear will be thus prompted from the pulpit of memory--an audience of just one! Neal A. Maxwell ("Behold, the Enemy is Combined"), Ensign, May 1993, p. 76


Vice is a monster of so frightful mien, As, to be hated, needs but to be seen; Yet seen to oft, familiar with her face, We first endure, then pity, then embrace. Alexander Pope (An Essay on Man, epistle i, I. 217)

being of good cheer

We are justified in being of good cheer for ultimate reasons---reasons to be distinguished, however, from proximate circumstances.  If, for instance, our attitude towards life depends upon the praise of men, the level of interest rates, the outcome of a particular election or athletic event, we are too much at the mercy of men and circumstances. Neal A. Maxwell, Ensign, November 1982, p. 66

"Just what we went for..."

Brother Kimball referred to Zion's Camp going to Missouri.  When I returned from that mission to Kirkland, a brother said to me, "Brother Brigham, what have you gained by this journey?"  I replied, "Just what we went for; but I would not exchange the knowledge I have received this season for the whole of the Geauga County; for property and mines of wealth are not to be compared to the worth of knowledge."  Ask those brethren and sisters who have passed through scenes of affliction and suffering for years in the Church what they would take in exchange for their experience, and be placed back where they were, were it possible.  I presume they would tell you that all the wealth, honors and riches of the world could not buy the knowledge they had obtained, could they barter it away.  Let the brethren be contented, if you have trials and must have hard times, learn to acknowledge the hand of the Lord in it all.  He directs the affairs of this world... Brigham Young

being saved today and every day

I will offer a word to all, whether they are mechanics or common laborers.  No matter what calling you may follow in life, you have need, at this juncture of your existence, to observe and treasure up one thing carefully and faithfully in your minds, namely, if you live a proper life before the Lord, you know that you have the fellowship of His Spirit, so that you know your prayers are heard and answered, because you receive the things you ask for.  If you live so as to always have the witness of the good Spirit, you will be saved today and every day, and thus it will be well with you.  But if you are heedless of this day, and calculate on tomorrow, you have no assurance that you will realize your hopes tomorrow.  The only certain stepping stone is...that you be faithful to your covenants with God and secure thereby the fellowship of the Spirit, and walk in the counsels of it today; if you do this, you will have the good that is for you tomorrow. Franklin D. Richards, Journal of Dis

little acts

Chemists who are familiar with analyzing matter, inform you that the globe we inhabit is composed of small particles, so small that they cannot be seen with the unaided natural eye, and that one of these small particles may be divided into millions of parts, each part so minute as to be indiscernible by the aid of the finest microscopes.  So the walk of man is made up of acts performed from day to day.  It is the aggregate of the acts which I perform through life that makes up the conduct that will be exhibited in the day of judgment, and when the books are opened, there will be the life which I have lived for me to look upon, and there also will be the acts of your lives to look upon.  Do you not know that the building up of the Kingdom of God, the gathering of Israel, is to be done by little acts?  You breathe one breath at a time; each moment is set apart to its act, and each act to its moment.  It is the moments and the little acts that make the sum of the life of man.  Let every s

to be happy, live the Gospel

There is not a man or woman in this congregation, or on the face of the earth, that has the privilege of the holy Gospel, and lives strictly to it , whom all hell can make unhappy.  You cannot make the man, woman or child unhappy who possesses the Spirit of the living God; unhappiness is caused by some other spirit. Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 3:343

treat carefully what you receive from Heaven

There is one principle that I do wish the people would observe, that is, do not ask God to give you knowledge, when you are confident that you will not keep and rightly improve upon that knowledge...Do not ask for revelations to dictate you in this, or the other, unless you are sure that you can obey them.  Do not suffer yourselves to falter in your faith, and to say that the door of revelation is closed, for I tell you that there are now too many for your good, unless you hearken more diligently than you have hereto, unless you apply more closely in your lives what is revealed and live your religion more faithfully. Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 3:338