Sunday, November 26, 2017

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Meridian Idaho Temple Dedication




President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, second counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, dedicated the Meridian Idaho Temple on Sunday, November 19, 2017.

Prior to the dedication, President Uchtdorf conducted the symbolic cornerstone ceremony that signifies the construction is complete and the new temple is ready to be dedicated and ready for sacred use.

Latter-day Saint temples differ from meetinghouses or chapels where members meet for Sunday worship services. Temples are considered “houses of the Lord” where Jesus Christ’s teachings are reaffirmed through marriagebaptism and other ordinances that unite families for eternity. Inside, members learn more about the purpose of life and make covenants to serve Jesus Christ and their fellow man.



I grew up in the beautiful state of Idaho and love how the work of the Lord is progressing there.  I have been gone from the state for seven years but it will always be home to me.  I love seeing temples being built as faithful Latter-day Saints continue to live according to God's laws in that great state.  These beautiful, sacred temples will bring blessings to thousands of people in each region where they're being built.



May you have a blessed Sabbath day today and if you live in the Boise area make an effort to go here as often as time permits.  Even if you just go to walk the grounds and feel of the spirit and love our Heavenly Father has for all of His children.


~ C.J. Poulsen 
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Sunday, September 3, 2017

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To Seal the Testimony - Joseph Smith's Martyrdom




So...Who is this Joseph Smith anyways? What has he done?  Why this verse of modern day scripture?

I will get to that in just a moment...

Today I had the opportunity to facilitate our adult gospel doctrine class during Sunday School.  I was given this opportunity to serve at the beginning of the year and be the instructor once every five weeks.  I, along with four other members of our ward were called to serve in this capacity.  As the instructor, we prepare the content and lead the discussion during this class.  The true teacher of the class, however, is the Holy Ghost which is always present when truths are being discussed.  It is a highlight of my week...to join with other Latter-day Saints and discuss the truths of the restored gospel and be inspired and uplifted by the spirit.

Today was no different; I felt the witness of the spirit testify and confirm to me the truths surrounding the prophet Joseph Smith's life and his martyrdom.  

Modern day scripture reveals the following truth:

2 Nephi 27:23
23 For behold, I am God; and I am a God of miracles; and I will show unto the world that I am the same yesterday, today, and forever; and I work not among the children of men save it be according to their faith.

God has always called prophets in each dispensation to lead His children upon the earth.

He was the first prophet called in this dispensation by our Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ, to restore the precious truths of the gospel of Jesus Christ and establish His church once again upon the earth in preparation for the return of our Savior, Jesus Christ.



3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;



What exactly happened during the Restoration?



So what exactly did Joseph Smith do during his time as prophet as mentioned above in Doctrine and Covenants 135:3

Here are some of Joseph Smith's major achievements and revelations:

     Truths about the Godhead
D&C 130:22-23.  In the King Follett sermon given 7 April 1844, the Prophet taught: “God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens!  That is the great secret. If the veil were rent today, and the great God who holds this world in its orbit, and who upholds all worlds and all things by his power, was to make himself visible,—I say, if you were to see him today, you would see him like a man in form—like yourselves in all the person, image, and very form of man; for Adam was created in the very fashion, image and likeness of God, and received instruction from, and walked, and talked and conversed with him, as one man talks and communes with another”(Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, sel. Joseph Fielding Smith [1976], 345)  
·        The authority of the priesthood
Through the prophet Joseph Smith, heavenly messengers restored the Aaronic Priesthood, the Melchizedek Priesthood, and the keys of the priesthood.  Then, the Lord gave revelations about priesthood offices, organization, covenants, ordinances, duties, and blessings.  Without those revelations, we would not understand the priesthood power or its operations.
·        Truths about our origin and our relationship to God
D&C 76:23-24; Abraham 3:22-28 teach that we are literally children of God and that we lived with him before we came to this earth as mortals.  Think about how this knowledge affects your daily life.
·        Scriptures
While serving in the Quorum of the Twelve, Elder Gordon B. Hinckley said: “[Joseph Smith] translated and published the Book of Mormon, a volume of 522 pages which has since been retranslated into [many] languages and which is accepted by millions across the earth as the word of God.  The revelations he received and other writings he produced are likewise scripture to these millions.  The total in book pages constitutes the equivalent of almost the entire Old Testament of the Bible, and it came through one man in the space of a few years” (Ensign, May 1977, 65)
·        Truths about the plan of salvation
·        Truths about the salvation of the dead
The Prophet taught that those who died without an opportunity to receive gospel ordinances and covenants would have an opportunity to accept or reject these ordinances and blessings just as if they had had the opportunity in this life.   He also taught that we need our dead and they need us for the whole human family to be joined together as the Father intended.  See D&C 128:18.
·        The building of temples and the performance of temple ordinances
The receipt of endowments and the sealing of families together forever were revealed through Joseph so that we might enjoy the blessings of eternal families.
·        Other contributions included:
The Church was restored through him
He began the gathering of Israel and the missionary work to spread the gospel throughout the earth
The Law of Consecration, a celestial principle, was revealed through him
The Lord’s law of health, the Word of Wisdom, was revealed through him
We learned about the future building of latter-day Zion and the New Jerusalem through him
He also wrote the Articles of Faith


I am very grateful for the prophet Joseph Smith.  Because he acted in faith and continued to do the Lord's will we have been greatly blessed in this last dispensation.  As I study and learn more about the prophet's life I am filled with gratitude.  I have gained a deeper understanding and greater appreciation for all that he went through to bring forth these revealed truths in our day.  These truths and the blessings that come from accepting them are available to all who will trust in the Lord.  If this post has touched you in anyway I invite you to pray unto your Heavenly Father and seek His will and confirmation of these truths.  I promise it will bless your life and enhance it in ways you may not have experienced  yet.



~ C. J. Poulsen




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Sunday, April 16, 2017

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PRINCE of PEACE - He is Risen and LIVES


Find peace in a troubled world by learning more of Jesus Christ. This Easter season, learn principles of peace from the #PRINCEofPEACE. Get started at mormon.org.

https://bookofmormoncentral.org/content/easter-2017

This Easter, Explore the Prince of Peace's Jerusalem

Brigham Young University's Virtual Scriptures group has developed an app for taking a virtual tour of Jerusalem at the time of Jesus Christ. This Easter, explore Jesus Christ's Jerusalem, walk through Herod's temple, discover the pools of Bethesda, and more, all from your computer or smartphone. Download the app now for an immersive scriptural experience.

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Sunday, March 19, 2017

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Spiritual Whirlwinds - Stand firm in your FAITH in Christ



We live in a time where evil, hatred, and violence are swirling about us.  The world is in commotion.  Satan knows his time is short and he is working in full force to split apart families and insert divisive wedges between relationships.  He wants us to be miserable like unto himself.  He wants to derail us from the pathway that leads to happiness, fulfillment, and joy.  

This battle is not new and from the beginning he has been waging war against faithful followers of Christ.  In the beginning he was trying to take away our agency.  Today he is trying to destroy our happiness and spiritual progression.  We live in a fallen state and must choose daily who we will serve and follow.  He wants us to oppose the plan of our maker and follow the ways of this world.  He is very good at what he does in blinding the hearts and minds of many...



BUT... we do NOT have to heed or follow his enticings.  We are taught that there is opposition in all things.  We know that wickedness never was happiness.  We can overcome evil by exercising faith in Jesus Christ and following His teachings.   As we act in faith and repent of our wrong doings we are empowered with the armor of God to withstand the storms of life.  

2 Nephi 10:23

23 Therefore, acheer up your hearts, and remember that ye are bfree to cact for yourselves—to dchoose the way of everlasting death or the way of eternal life.
Opposition the action of opposing, resisting, or combating; antagonism or hostility. 
                                                                                                           - Dictionary.com 

2 Nephi 2:11 For it must needs be, that there is an aopposition in all things. If not so, my firstborn in the wilderness, righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad. Wherefore, all things must needs be a compound in one; wherefore, if it should be one body it must needs remain as dead, having no life neither death, nor corruption nor incorruption, happiness nor misery, neither sense nor insensibility.



Jesus Christ invites each of us to Come Unto Him.  He stands at the door and knocks but we must open the door and let Him into our lives.  I bear witness that when we turn unto Christ, He turns to us with open arms of love.  He wants to help us and lift us.

Revelation 3:20

20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and aopen the door, I will bcome in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
 
As we build our lives upon the foundation of Christ and His teachings we are able to bear the burdens that we face.  We are able to withstand the fiery darts of the adversary and find strength and peace through His spirit.  We are set free.



"I am the light of the world, he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness but shall have the light of life."



- C. J. Poulsen



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Sunday, March 12, 2017

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Service brings happiness and joy

This weekend has been awesome as we gathered locally as Latter-day Saints to worship and learn of Christ's teachings together at Stake Conference for the Riverside California Stake of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  Twice a year, Latter-day Saints throughout the world meet for a regional Stake Conference in whatever region or demographic they reside.

This is Stake Conference...not "steak."  We do not meet for a steak on the barbecue as some have assumed. :)

Stake

One of the organizational and administrative units of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. A stake is composed of a number of wards or branches. It generally has a set of geographical boundaries and conforms to the tent image described in Isaiah 54:2: “Lengthen thy cords, and strengthen thy stakes.” Each stake of Zion supports and helps to hold up the Church the way a tent or tabernacle is held up by its stakes. A stake is the gathering place for the remnants of scattered Israel (D&C 82:13–14; 101:17–21).

www.justserve.org

The main topic and theme throughout the conference was Service to others brings happiness and joy. Thank you to all who spoke and sang. We were reminded of the multitude of opportunities that exist wherever we live to plug in and serve on a regular basis within our communities.  JustServe.org is the place to find several opportunities to serve in your local area.  Check it out!  It's a great place to find areas of service.

We were also taught and reminded who our greatest example of service was throughout His life and ministry here upon the earth.  The Savior, Jesus Christ was always serving those around Him.  He taught us by example, and His message was one of peace and goodwill.  He lived a sinless and selfless life.  He is the perfect example we have to follow.

https://www.mormon.org/beliefs/jesus-christ

I love how serving others makes me feel.  I have had many opportunities throughout my life to serve others in various capacities.  Whenever I give of my time and talents I feel uplifted and blessed that I could help someone in need.  It just feels good...  It's rewarding when you know you've influenced someone or touched someone's life for good by serving them and not expecting anything in return.  One goal I have personally set for 2017 is to be a volunteer in helping index family file names on FamilySearch.org.   This is an activity I can do late at night once the kids are in bed and work is done for the day.  It has been a great blessing for me and brings me happiness and joy.


Simple acts of service bring peace and help us develop Christlike attributes.  Is that not our goal?  To become more like our Savior, Jesus Christ?  To be His disciples?  I think it is the common goal of Christians everywhere...



As I think of examples of service, my mind is turned primarily to mothers.  I think of my own mother, my mother-in-law, my grandmothers, and my dear wife who are in constant service mode.  These women are great examples of selfless service and love.  They are in constant service within the walls of their homes and we are blessed daily by their simple acts of service.  Thank you to all mothers everywhere who give of yourself!

https://www.lds.org/media-library/video/2010-06-13-motherhood-an-eternal-partnership-with-god?lang=eng


~ C.J. Poulsen
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Wednesday, December 7, 2016

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The Origin, Loss, and Restoration of The Church of Jesus Christ

Jesus organized The Church of Jesus Christ with twelve apostles at its head. He gave them the power to perform great wonders and the authority to act in His name. History records that by 100 A.D. all the apostles had died and the world went dark for the next 1700 years.


 
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