Sunday, January 30, 2011

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Baptism is an essential ordinance of the gospel of Jesus Christ. We are commanded to follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized by someone who holds the proper priesthood authority.

Baptism is known as the gateway to salvation. We first must exercise faith unto repentance. Once we have faith in Christ and are willing to repent of our sins and mistakes, the Savior invites us to "Come Follow Me." The way we show the Savior and others our willingness to follow Him, we take upon us his name by being baptized.

2 Nephi: Chapter 31

Nephi tells why Christ was baptized—Men must follow Christ, be baptized, receive the Holy Ghost, and endure to the end to be saved—Repentance and baptism are the gate to the strait and narrow path—Eternal life comes to those who keep the commandments after baptism. About 559–545 B.C.

Baptism is symbolic of the death, burial, and resurrection of new life just as the Savior died and rose again.

Christ taught us to repent and enter in at the straight and narrow gate that leads to eternal life.

3 Nephi 27:20,33
20Now this is the commandment: a
Repent, all ye ends of the earth, and come unto me and be bbaptized in my name, that ye may be csanctified by the reception of the Holy Ghost, that ye may stand dspotless before me at the last day.

Enter ye in at the astrait gate; for strait is the gate, and narrow is the way that leads to life, and few there be that find it; but wide is the gate, and broad the way which leads to death, and many there be that travel therein

The first principles and ordinances of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ are:

1. Faith in Jesus Christ
2. Repentance for the remission of sins
3. Baptism by immersion
4. Receive the gift of the Holy Ghost

This coming week I will get to witness a couple of baptisms. My nephew will be baptized at the age of 8 and a friend of 25 years old will be baptized along with her son who just turned 8. As the Ward Mission Leader for my ward, I will be attending the baptism of Judith and Terrence Joe.
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Sunday, January 23, 2011

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Gratitude - today in our Elder's quorum we discussed this topic and I have been contemplating it all today. A few of the main reasons we tend to lack gratitude is because our pride and ego get in the way. Often we take life for granted along with the many blessings we've been offered. We also discussed that many of us feel entitlement for that new car or house or keeping up with the neighbors and always "wanting" more...never satisfied with what we've been given. It was a great lesson that made me ponder all that I am grateful for.

I wanted to illustrate what I have been thinking today with the following acronym:

G - Gospel, I am extremely grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ and my understanding and testimony of it. I feel very blessed to have the fullness of the gospel at my fingertips each new day when I get up. I hope and pray more people may discover the truths of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ this year of 2011! WHY become a Mormon?

R - Repentance, Jesus Christ has made it possible for each of us to overcome sins through repentance. The ABC's of Repentance are 1. Admit you've done something wrong, 2. Be SORRY, 3. Correct the problem, 4. Don't do it again!

2 Nephi 31:17
Wherefore, do the things which I have told you I have seen that your Lord and your Redeemer should do; for, for this cause have they been shown unto me, that ye might know the gate by which ye should enter. For the gate by which ye should enter is repentance and abaptism by water; and then cometh a bremission of your sins by fire and by the Holy Ghost.

A - (At - one) - ment, The Atonement of Christ enables each individual to repent, be cleansed and become at one with Christ. I am very grateful for the opportunity I have been granted to improve and work at overcoming my weaknesses.

T - Testimony, I am grateful that I have a testimony of our Savior, Jesus Christ. I am also very thankful for the testimonies of the living prophet and apostles.
I - am a Mormon. My heart is full of gratitude for the privilege it is of being a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

T - Temple, I love to see the temple and go there as often as I can. It is a special place of holiness where one can learn the mysteries of God such as where we came from, why are we here, and where are we going after this life.

U - Understanding, I am grateful for my understanding of the Plan of Happiness our Heavenly Father has laid out and revealed to us through scriptures and living prophets and apostles.

D - Discipleship, I am grateful that I get to stand as a witness of Christ each day and strive to live my life by example. Being a follower of Christ is a huge blessing with many benefits.

E - Eternal Perspective, As I ponder all of these things I gain an eternal perspective of what I have been given and blessed with throughout my life. I know that where much is given much is required. I hope to teach my family about gratitude and to become more grateful this year.

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Sunday, January 16, 2011

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Happy New Years ~ Goals for 2011

Another year has come and gone; 2010 was a great year and 2011 will bring many new and exciting experiences. I love the fresh start of a new year, new month, new week, and new day.

My family experienced many new things this past year, but the best part of our year was that we added a little one to our family. It was the highlight of the year for sure. Becoming a parent is a great blessing. It is a privilege to be entrusted a little baby to raise, train, and teach. I am so grateful to be a new daddy.

In 2010, I also began a graduate study program in Human Resources and business management at Utah State University. So far it has been a lot of work but a great experience. I have met many new friends and colleagues.

Today, my wife and I were asked to speak in church. Our topic was priorities and goals.

My beautiful wife gave a great talk on making relationships a top priority this year. She gave great insights on how to enrich our current relationships with our Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, our spouse and family members, as well as friends and colleagues. Due to time restraints, she was not able to speak about developing new relationships which is also important.
My talk leaned more towards setting goals, especially spiritual goals.

I decided to break up the word GOALS and focus on some key ideas and suggestions for spiritual growth in the New Year.

G ospel, Get to work, Go to the temple. Sharing the gospel and our testimonies of it will help strengthen us and those around us. Get to work - by being anxiously engaged in a good cause.

27Verily I say, men should be aanxiously engaged in a good cause, and do many things of their own free will, and bring to pass much righteousness;

Go to the temple - here we can learn about the plan of salvation with lessons of where did we come from, why are we here, and where are we going after this life.

O bedience - Jesus Christ is our perfect example of obedience unto God the Father. He gave His will unto the Father in all things and lived a sinless life. We should obey the commandments and learn to follow Him.

A t-one-ment - When we develop a personal relationship with Christ, we can become At-One with Him. By repenting of our sins and applying the Savior's atonement for us, we can be forgiven and progress spiritually.

L ove - We should love our neighbors as ourselves. We should love our spouse and children. And we should love life! Charity is the pure love of Christ. In the Book of Mormon we learn more about this. REPLACE the word charity with Christ . This is a true principle for everyone.

46Wherefore, my beloved brethren, if ye have not charity, ye are nothing, for charity never faileth. Wherefore, cleave unto charity, which is the greatest of all, for all things must fail—

47But acharity is the pure blove of Christ, and it endureth cforever; and whoso is found possessed of it at the last day, it shall be well with him.

48Wherefore, my beloved brethren, apray unto the Father with all the energy of heart, that ye may be filled with this love, which he hath bestowed upon all who are true bfollowers of his Son, Jesus Christ; that ye may become the sons of God; that when he shall appear we shall cbe like him, for we shall see him as he is; that we may have this hope; that we may be dpurified even as he is pure. Amen.

S acrifice, Service, Spirit, Savior - These all go hand in hand. As we sacrifice our time and talents to serve others we are following the Savior's example and allowing the spirit to be our guide.

With my ideas and suggestions, perhaps we can set some new goals to improve in any one of these areas.

In 2011, I hope to work on going to the temple once per week and developing a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ through prayer, scripture study, and temple worship.

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Sunday, January 2, 2011

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New Year's: Look Not behind Thee

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