Saturday, December 30, 2017

“We beheld his glory, the glory as of the Only Begotten of the Father"

Today's profound message comes from Simon Dewey, the artist of this painting, Grace and Truth:

"I love the Gospel of John. The opening verses of chapter one are at once poetic and sublime, simple yet profound:

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God....In him was life; and the life was the light of men.” To each of us on this journey home, John’s powerful witness of the Savior remains a guide as we come to realize the reality of it for ourselves. “We beheld his glory, the glory as of the Only Begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” -Simon Dewey

May we all live worthy so that when we see the Savior, we will be able to behold his glory, and live in his presence again. He is the Life and the Light of men. And he is real, and involved in the details of our lives, and if we trust in him, he will lead us back to our heavenly home.

Read more about Christ in the Book of Mormon, another testament of Jesus Christ. Find out for yourself the promise of The Book of Mormon online now at http://bit.ly/10t8QYm or get a free copy at http://bit.ly/11WKJ1G

Questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

YOu can find this print at Altus Fine Art

Friday, December 29, 2017

Wonderful, Counsellor, the Mighty God...The Prince of Peace

Our Savior and Redeemer is over all, and has redeemed us forever.

"And the Government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace."  (Isaiah 9:6)

This glorious Savior is real, and touches the hearts of all.  Indeed, if we serve him and serve others, we experience, as the two men on emmaus road "Did not our hearts burn within us...?"  May we seek him out, so that we may be filled with the spirit.  For he suffered so that may happen. 

Christ accomplished the atonement, and bled from every pore, and suffered on the cross, and "partook and finished my preparations unto the children of men." He rose from the dead, appeared unto many, and ascended back to the Father, and has restored his gospel in the Latter-Days to prepare for his second coming. 

And he will come again.  As the Joseph Smith Translation of Revelation 1:7 says: "For behold, he cometh in the clouds with ten thousands of his saints in the kingdom, clothed with the glory of his Father. And every eye shall see him; and they who pierced him..."

And his salvation will be forever, as Doctrine and Covenants 76:108 says, "Then shall he be crowned with the crown of his glory, to sit on the throne of his power to reign forever and ever."

And we will dwell with him and our families in the Celestial Kingdom as we live worthily, as is said in D & C 76: 94-95: "They who dwell in his presence are the church of the Firstborn; and they see as they are seen, and know as they are known, having received of his fulness and of his grace;

And he makes them equal in power, and in might, and in dominion."

May we ever live worthy to live in Glory with our Savior and Redeemer, our Heavenly Parents, and our Families, ancestors, and posterity forever.

What a glorious promise.

Want to find out more about Christ? The Book of Mormon, along with the Bible, is the Word of God. I know it to be true. God Showed prophets what to include in the Book of Mormon for our day. Read the Promise of the Book of Mormon online now at http://bit.ly/10t8QYm or get a free copy at http://bit.ly/11WKJ1G

Questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is Prince of Peace by Akaine Kremarik

Thursday, December 28, 2017

We are all children of God

"The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God." (Romans 8: 16)

Among the greatest treasures of knowledge that we have been given is this: we are all the children of God.  This truth carries with it great blessings.  It should guide us in how we treat those around us and in how we view ourselves.  Each of God’s children are of great worth with immeasurable potential.

In this painting we see children from many different cultures and backgrounds.  They stand with Christ, bearing witness with him that they are children of God.  All of the kids look directly at the viewer confident in the joy they feel in the presence of their Savior.

When we strive to see others as God would see us, our hearts are softened, our minds are opened and the Spirit comes to dwell with us, bringing peace and joy." 

Find out more about Christ. Along with the Bible, his words are in the Book of Mormon. Find out for yourself and read the Promise of the Book of Mormon online now at http://bit.ly/10t8QYm or get a free copy at http://bit.ly/11WKJ1G

Questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Message is from the artist of this picture, Howard Lyon, picture is I am a child of God, used by permission, available at his website

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

"I am Jesus Christ...I am the life and the Light of the World"

Scripture records the following spoken by Christ himself to the prophet Joseph; "Behold, I am Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I am the life and the light of the world. I am the same who came unto mine own and mine own received me not; But verily, verily, I say unto you, that as many as receive me, to them will I give power to become the sons [and daughters] of God, even to them that believe on my name." (D&C 11:28-30)

Do we receive Christ into our lives so that we may become the Sons and Daughters of God?  Do we have enough faith in him to be saved? Do we seek to know him so that we can learn how to become like him?

As we have more Faith in Christ our hearts will be changed, our desires will become more like his, and at the last day we will embrace our Savior having become like him, and what joy will fill our hearts at that time. To embrace him and feel the joy beyond compare is worth every sacrifice.  

We can feel a bit of that love every day of our lives as we serve others and do the work of the Lord. And we will be able to share that love with others who don't have that in their lives. Glory be to God for this marvellous plan of salvation that we have. 

Pour your hearts out to the Father in gratitude and faith, do his work, and feel of the Love of the Savior in return. For because of him, we have light in our own lives. And if we do, we will be exalted at the last day.  For he is Jesus Christ, the only way that we can be saved.  

That we may come unto him is my prayer.  

Find out more about Christ. Along with the Bible, his words are in the Book of Mormon. Prophets in Book of Mormon times were shown what to include in the Book of Mormon for our day, because God showed them what our day would be like. Find out for yourself and read the Promise of the Book of Mormon online now at http://bit.ly/10t8QYm or get a free copy at http://bit.ly/11WKJ1G

Questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is I Am by Simon Dewey. Available at Altus Fine Art.  Used with permission. 

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

The Lord is our Good Shepherd-surely goodness and mercy will follow us forever

The analogy of the Lord as our Good Shepherd is one of the most quietly glorious there ever has been.  Psalms eloquently describes the peace he gives us;

"The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever." (Psalms 23).

Very seldom are we able to hear such peaceful words.  The peace described here is as cool water to a parched earth, and brings comfort to our weary souls.  It mirrors the love we can feel as we reach out in prayer, and the peace we will find in the life to come if we are faithful. 

Jesus Christ is the source of that peace.  He will ever be at our side as we come unto him.  He has ransomed us forever.  I love him with all of my heart, and invite all who read this to continue to come unto him.  For in him is a fulness of peace and Joy. 

That we may all come unto him is my prayer. 

Find out more about Christ. Read the Promise of the Book of Mormon online now at http://bit.ly/10t8QYm or get a free copy at http://bit.ly/11WKJ1G

Questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is The Lord is my shepherd by Simon Dewey, available at Altus Fine art

Monday, December 25, 2017

The Birth, Life, and Glory of the continuing Mission of Jesus Christ, and your part in it

Over 2 millenia ago, a tiny baby was born into the most humble of circumstances.  This royal son, the only begotten of the Father, was not clothed in silken robes, but was wrapped in swaddling clothes, and laid in a manger.  He was prophesied of by many ancient prophets.  He was the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.  

Truly unto us a child was born, and the Government of Heaven and earth was upon his shoulders.  His name truly is Wonderful, Counsellor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace. 

Of his kingdom there is no end, for his coming into the world had been planned from before the foundations of the world, and the effects of his life will give life to all of humankind and will stretch into the eternities and beyond. 

But his life was not to be easy.  He taught with power, performed miracles, and showed the love of God to all he met.  Yet the Pharisees and Saduccees, instead of accepting him as the promised Messiah, said his miracles were done by the power of the Devil. 

But this was foretold as well.  As Isaiah says, he was despised, rejected, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief…surely he hath borne our griefs and carried our sorrows…and with his stripes we are healed.  He knows OUR sorrows.  We are not alone.  

Betrayed by his own, abandoned by all, he faced the indescribable agony of the atonement, where his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling to the ground.  Then he faced the abuse of the Jewish leaders, the flogging of the Roman troops, and yet meekly he still succumbed to the horrors of crucifixion.  And while there, he prayed, "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." A fitting example for us to follow.  

He was laid to rest in a borrowed tomb.  During that time he went to his father, and to the world of the Spirits of the just.  He organized his work there, that others might know of the good news of his triumph over sin and death. 

After 3 days, the prison doors were rent, and he became the firstfruits of them that slept.  Angels rolled back the door of the tomb, and reported he is not here, he is risen, and beckoned all who came to the tomb to come and see the place where the Lord lay.

He appeared to many, Mary Magdalene, many women, to Peter, then to the apostles and disciples alike.  He then went to visit the other sheep in his fold, the people of the Americas and other places.  Prophets in those places had testified of his coming and death, had seen in vision what the Savior, the fulfillment of prophecy, would do.

He taught them his gospel, and organized his church there, with all of the saving ordinances that he brought to the old world, and then ascended into heaven. 

This once tiny baby still lives today as the Savior and Redeemer of the World.  And he has restored his gospel, once lost for millennia, to the earth today.  The lord whom ye seek has suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant. 

Prophecies are again being fulfilled at his hand, inspiring the minds and hearts of men and women all over the world.  His greatest desire is to draw all to him so that they might feel of the love of God that emanates from him.  That each person on the face of the earth might feel of his love through the spirit.  

The fullness of his New Testament Gospel is again on the Earth, to bless the lives of all who come unto him.  And it touches each individual heart with the tenderness of a God who is aware of each of us, and involved in our lives more than we know, but can if we open our hearts to him, and do his work.

He said to Peter that if he loved him to feed his sheep.  There are many out there who need the bread and water of life.  As the prophet says, we are God’s hands on earth, with a mandate to serve.  As we serve others, they are able to feel of the love of God as well.  It softens them. 

This is one of the keys that Christ knew, and was willing to give his life for.  He tirelessly served others, and as we serve others too, we will come to know this great key to happiness in this life and in the next.  And we will become like Christ as we do. 

When we meet him face to face, how wonderful a time that will be for us as we see that we have become like him.  To embrace him and to join with him in rejoicing as we realize that we have been dependent upon him our whole lives, and his power has lifted us, and will for eternity. 

And how wonderful it will be to know that those whose lives we have touched will also be able to dwell with the Savior and us again.  That is the secret of life.  To become connected to those around us, bound together by the Love of the Savior.

We come to Christ through exercising faith on his name, Repenting, being baptized, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end.  We receive additional covenants that bind us to him and our families together forever.  We are told in scripture that we will be able to live with him forever, and that is possible through the him, and made active in his restored Gospel in our day.

He lives.  He is Real.  He stands at the head of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  He came, lived, died, was resurrected, and has now restored his church to the earth, and will come again, to rule and reign.  And at the last day, he will present the kingdom to the Father and will say "the work is done."

May we all be on his right hand at that day is my prayer.   

You can find out more about Christ by reading the Promise of the Book of Mormon online now at http://bit.ly/10t8QYm or get a free copy at http://bit.ly/11WKJ1G 

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is Light of the World, by Brent Borup

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Silent Night-Reflections on that Sacred Night Long ago

"And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger" (Luke 2:7). Over 2000 years ago, the Savior was born in a lowly stable, watched over by the angels of heaven.

As I get older, each year I reflect upon that night, and I am more amazed each year at the magnitude of what happened that night.  At what time of the world did many people start talking about seeing angels descend from heaven singing praises to their king. Or of seeing an angel speak of this Savior, this Christ the Lord?  

It was to the poor, the downtrodden, the pure in heart that these signs came.  Even at his birth the poor in heart were lifted, as Christ later would do in his ministry.  And on that sacred night, shepherds, wise Men, and animals, beasts of burden attended this child who one day would take our burdens upon him.   

This great church is a continuation of his life and mission, to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man. May we all take the opportunity to be grateful this time of year for the Blessings we have because of the Life of the Savior, commemorated at Christmastime.

His love did not just begin at his birth. It reaches from before the foundations of the World and into the eternities and beyond. Please take the time to thank our Father in Heaven for the Life, atonement, death, resurrection, and work of the Savior, for "[He is] the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by [him]." (John 14:6).

Over this Christmas season, I have included a different part of Luke 2 in the posts.  I encourage you to read all of Luke 2 on this night, either online, in a paper copy of the Bible, or using the Gospel Library Mobile App.  On this night, may we be caught up in the spirit of what Christ's birth would mean to us, and to the whole world.  May we ever be brought closer to Christ on this night, and always.  

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is Silent Night by Liz Lemon Swindle. 

Friday, December 22, 2017

President Monson "This child was to become the King of kings and Lord of lords, the promised Messiah"

"With the birth of the babe in Bethlehem, there emerged a great endowment—a power stronger than weapons, a wealth more lasting than the coins of Caesar. This child was to become the King of kings and Lord of lords, the promised Messiah—Jesus Christ, the Son of God." — Thomas S. Monson, President and Prophet of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints 

That tiny babe was the Savior and Redeemer of the World, the Only Begotten of the Father, and his name, as Isaiah says, is Wonderful, Counsellor, The Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

I love my Savior, Jesus Christ, with all of my heart.  I know he lives and works for the salvation of all who live or who ever have or ever will live on the earth.  It is through him that salvation comes.  At this time of year, I pray that all of us might come unto him, embrace him and his restored gospel, and in the end, return to his presence and the presence of our Heavenly Parents.  

With all of my heart, I encourage you to give yourselves to him, and pour out your hearts in prayer to the Father, in the name of Christ, and give thanks for the matchless gift of Christ's birth, life, atonement, death, resurrection, and continuing work to save us.  

That we may do that is my prayer

Find out more this Christmas about Christ at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is "Hope" by Joseph Brickey

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Behold the Lamb of God...even the Son of the Eternal Father!

Scripture records the following from an American Prophet 600 years before Christ's birth: "the angel spake unto me, saying: Look! And I looked and beheld the virgin again, bearing a child in her arms. And the angel said unto me: Behold the Lamb of God, yea, even the Son of the Eternal Father! (1 Nephi 11:19-21)

The son of God, he who had been foreordained from before the foundations of the earth, was shown to numerous prophets who testified that he would come.  In the Old world and in the new, Prophets of God were shown in vision the birth and life, and resurrection of the Savior, just as Nephi was in this scripture. 

When the time came for his birth, Heavens and Earth and all of creation rejoiced with the birth of their Lord, the Savior of the World.  May we ever rejoice, may we ever thank our Father in Heaven for the gift of his Beloved Son to us.  

For it is through him that we are able to return back to their presence again with our families.  

Find out more this Christmas about Christ at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is Be it unto me by Liz Lemon Swindle

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

"And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger"

The account says "And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. (Luke 2:15-16)

Oh the wonder of that night. After seeing and angel from heaven, and seeing and hearing the hosts of heaven singing, the shepherds ran with haste to see the Christ child.  And then, rejoicing told all they saw about what they had seen. 

That babe in the manger is our Lord, our Redeemer, and Savior. Undoubtedly he was watched over by the Father and by countless angels who joined all of heavens and earth rejoicing at the birth of their King, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

May we ever remember that at this time of year.  

Find out more this Christmas about Christ at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture courtesy of lds.org

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

"And Mary kept these things and pondered them in her heart" and it's application today

With all that happened with the Birth of Christ, scripture concludes with the phrase "And Mary kept these things and pondered them in her heart." So important and sacred were the events of that night that Mary kept them inside, in awe of what had happened to her and this tiny baby.

May we similarly be in awe of the import of what happened that night. May we realize the significance of the Son of God coming into the world.  We remember it best by serving others as he would.  May it affect us so much that we become kinder, serve others with more love, and become the hands of heaven on earth.  For in lifting and serving others, we serve the Savior.  

It is the best way to commemorate Christmas.  The Son of the Living God had come to earth, and would eventually offer salvation to all through his atonement.  We can do for others what the Savior would do if he were here.  And in serving them, we serve him.  

If you do, you will feel a closeness to the Savior that is worth more than anything else in the world.  And, you will allow him to #LightTheWorld 

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

Find out more this Christmas about Christ at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is Mary Kept all these things, by Howard Lyon. Used with Permission

Monday, December 18, 2017

The Nativity "How fitting that he who would bear all of our burdens would be born in a place which housed them"

The Nativity is full of rich, deep symbolism of what Christ would later do in his life. The more I look at them, the more I see how fitting it is he was born in a stable in the surroundings he was in. 

That he was born in a stable is fitting.  Stables were places for beasts of burden, and how fitting that he who would bear all of our burdens would be born in a place which housed them.  

It is fitting that shepherds were there, for often the Savior is referred to, both in the Old Testament, and during his ministry as the good shepherd.  Who can forget his declaration "I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep...and I lay down my life for the sheep" (John 10)

At this glorious time, those fortunate shepherds heard an angel declare the mortal advent of the Savior of the World, and heard the angelic choirs sing the praises of their God.  And as the account says, they straightway went to see the Savior, and later "the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen."

We often see lambs pictured in nativities.  Again that is fitting as we remember that Christ is the Lamb of God.  Who can forget the words spoken by John the Baptist, now immortalized in Handel's Messiah; "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world." (John 1:29).  It reminds us that he is the perfect, sinless lamb without blemish. 

Often Mary is portrayed as riding a donkey, and that comes from the Protovangelism of James.  So, in many nativities, a donkey is shown there.  How fitting, for not many years later, Christ would ride a donkey in fulfillment of Zechariah's prophecy and recorded in Matthew as the throngs of people declared him as the Messiah just a week before his crucifixion. 

The last one I will discuss is the manger.  A manger in Christ's time was often a feed trough for the animals.  It brings to mind his teachings that he is the bread of life.  The account records; "I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world." (John 6:51)

Many have marvelled that the Savior of the world was not born in marble halls, with kingly attendants, but was born into the most humble of circumstances.  At this time of year, that is important to remember that the gifts of the world are not as important as he whose birth we celebrate, he whose name this season is called by.  May we seek after Christ and the gifts of the spirit this Christmas season.  May we remember what all this is really about. 

That we might come closer to Christ this Christmas Season is my prayer.

Find out more this Christmas about Christ and how to #LightTheWorld at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is The Nativity by Thomas Kinkade

Saturday, December 16, 2017

"For unto us a Child is Born," and now grown, he can comfort and lift us through the spirit

"For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace" (Isaiah 9:6).

Over 2000 years ago, the Savior of the World was born in a humble stable, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. His coming had been prophesied of by Isaiah and many other prophets.

The Savior came, as Isaiah also said, "to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound," (Isaiah 61:1) and he did that for both the living and the dead.

This great latter-day work goes on still, with that once tiny baby now glorified at the head of it.  This work is for the living and the dead through missionary work, strengthening the members, and through the work of the dead in temples. This work will go on until, as the Standard of truth says, "The Great Jehovah shall say the work is done."

At that time, the work begun from before the foundations of the world will be complete, and the Sons and Daughters of God will dwell with him forever.




And even with the grand scope of this work, he works with each person individually.  He knows the righteous desires of our hearts, and knows our pains and sorrows, and can lift them.  It is by the power of Christ that we can be lifted, strengthened, comforted, and redeemed. 

Often we can become close to him by serving others as he would if he were here.  I pray that we all might become engaged in serving others, and in the work of the Lord. At this Christmas season and always, may we ever seek out the Babe in Bethlehem, our Savior, Our Redeemer, our all.

Find out more this Christmas about Christ and how you can #LightTheWorld at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is For Unto Us A child is born by Simon Dewey, courtesy of Altus Fine Art

Friday, December 15, 2017

From President Monson "What Gifts would the Lord have me give to him or to others?"

President Monson states below two things we need to do to keep the sacredness of Christmas in our hearts.  He says "When we have the spirit of Christmas, we remember Him whose birth we commemorate at this season of the year: “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:11)

Do we remember the Savior, and keep him in our thoughts throughout the Christmas season to avoid getting caught up in the hustle and bustle?  President Monson Goes on and give more counsel:

"What gifts would the Lord have me give to Him or to others at this precious season of the year?...In this marvelous dispensation of the fulness of times, our opportunities to love and give of ourselves are indeed limitless, but they are also perishable. Today there are hearts to gladden, kind words to say, deeds to be done, and souls to be saved." (President Thomas S Monson, Rediscovering the Christmas spirit, Dec 2012 Ensign Magazine)

As our Prophet has said, may we ever have the spirit of Christmas by serving others, and as we do so, we remember Christ.  That is what Christ would have us do.  He knows and is saddened by those of his children who have needs, and when we reach out to help others, it is the same as helping him.

May we ever remember that, and do that both at Christmas, and always. 

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

Find out more Christ this Christmas at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is of Temple Square at Christmastime

Thursday, December 14, 2017

"And she brought forth her firstborn son..."

"And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn." (Luke 2:7)

In the quiet of that sacred night, Heavens and earth rejoiced at the birth of their king, he who would break the bands of sin and death, and deliver the captives from their prison, to dwell in the presence of God and the Lamb forevermore.

May we read of his life, pour our hearts out in gratitude in prayer, and do the Savior's work as we serve others this season and always, that we may be filled with his love.

Find out more this Christmas about Christ at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is Let us Adore Him by Jon McNaughton

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

"Unto you is born this day...a Savior"

"For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger" (Luke 2:11-12)

In the quiet of that sacred night, Heavens and earth rejoiced at the birth of their king, he who would break the bands of sin and death, and deliver the captives from their prison, to dwell in the presence of God and the Lamb forevermore.

May we read of his life, pour our hearts out in gratitude in prayer, and do the Savior's work as we serve others this season and always, that we may be filled with his love.

Find out more this Christmas about Christ at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is The Nativity by Jon McNaughton

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

The Announcement of the Mortal Advent of the Savior of the World, even Jesus Christ

What would it have been like to have heard the tale told by Mary?  The scriptural account says the following: 

"And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God.  And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name Jesus.  He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest" (Luke 1:30-32).

With those words were announced privately the mortal advent of the Son of God into the world.  He who dwelt in the heavens above condescended to come to earth to dwell for a time.  

He is the Only Begotten of the Father, sent as a baby to grow, and ultimately to save us from our sins, to redeem us, and to help us return back to our Father's presence again. What started in Bethlehem was planned from before the foundations of the world, and would change the world forever. And it still changes lives.

May we all be grateful for how he has changed our own lives, and seek to change others for the better through service and kindness, simple acts of caring, and pure Christlike love.

Find out more about Christ this Christmas at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Meme courtesy of lds.org

Monday, December 11, 2017

"And wrapped him in swaddling clothes..." Oh that the whole world could know the import of that Sacred Night

"And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them at the inn" (Luke 2:7)

Oh that the world could know of the import of that sacred day, of what happened eternally because of the birth of that child, the Savior of all. May we spread the gospel with all we know so that others might know of the peace of Christ.

I sometimes wish like Alma, "O that I were an angel, and could have the wish of mine heart, that I might go forth and speak with the trump of God, with a voice to shake the earth, and cry repentance unto every people!"

But that is not the way it is done.  It is done one by one, as our leaders have stated.  Please take the time to share your testimony of the Savior this Christmas, and the message that he still lives, and watches over the children of men, working for the salvation of our souls.

You may be the instrument in God's hands to bring others to Christ, though you may never know it.

Find out more about Christ this Christmas at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture courtesy of lds.org

Saturday, December 9, 2017

May Christmas point us to the Savior of All, the Redeemer of the World

At this time of year, may we all be grateful for the Savior.  What a wonderful time of year to reflect on he whose birth we celebrate.  It reminds me from the following, taken from The Living Christ, the Testimony of the Apostles: 

"We solemnly testify that His life, which is central to all human history, neither began in Bethlehem nor concluded on Calvary. He was the Firstborn of the Father, the Only Begotten Son in the flesh, the Redeemer of the world." 

With all of the beauty that comes with the lights and tinsel and trees, may they all point us to the Savior of Mankind, the Redeemer of the World, to the King of King and Lord of Lords, who has ransomed us, and beckons all to "come unto him" and to "partake of eternal life," to live forever in the presence of God with our families.  

Christ is real.  He lives.  He is as real as the sun rising in the morning, and has the power to reach into the eternities, and yet comfort the tenderest soul.  He is indeed, as President Monson has said, involved in the details of our lives.  

This Christmas season, may we take a moment as we look at the tinsel and the lights, and reflect on the Savior, of what his birth means to us individually. 

May we see the good he has done in our lives, and take a moment to express our gratitude to him and the Father in heartfelt prayer.  May we draw close to him, through the spirit.  

And, as our prophet has urged us to do, may we determine to follow his example and serve others, lift and strengthen them, and help lead them closer to Christ as we do.  

May we ever remember that, and follow him, this season and always.  

Find out more about Christ this Christmas at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S
  
When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is Temple Square at Christmastime.  More can be found at https://www.lds.org

Friday, December 8, 2017

From President Monson: This Christmas Season we should rededicate ourselves to Christ

At this sacred time of year, and always, may we follow the counsel of our Prophet, President Monson: “There is no better time than now, this very Christmas season, for all of us to rededicate ourselves to the principles taught by Jesus Christ.

“Because He came to earth, we have a perfect example to follow. As we strive to become more like Him, we will have joy and happiness in our lives and peace each day of the year. It is His example which, if followed, stirs within us more kindness and love, more respect and concern for others.

“Because He came, there is meaning to our mortal existence.

“Because He came, we know how to reach out to those in trouble or distress, wherever they may be.

“Because He came, death has lost its sting, the grave its victory. We will live again because He came.

“Because He came and paid for our sins, we have the opportunity to gain eternal life.” (President Thomas S. Monson, 2011 First Presidency Christmas Devotional)

May we ever follow the Savior, is my prayer.  

Find out more about Christ this Christmas at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is a son is given by Howard Lyon  

Thursday, December 7, 2017

President Monson: "The King of Kings, and Lord of Lords, the promised Messiah..."

"With the birth of the babe in Bethlehem, there emerged a great endowment—a power stronger than weapons, a wealth more lasting than the coins of Caesar. This child was to become the King of kings and Lord of lords, the promised Messiah—Jesus Christ, the Son of God."— Thomas S. Monson.

Christ is the source of this great endowment.  He has power over all.  Often as we see the wickedness in the world, we wonder.  But the closer we get to the Lord, the more we will see he is over all, and we are preparing to return to his presence.  No King, no amount of money, nothing can stop Christ's work from progressing.  And Christmastime is a wonderful time to remember that and more. 

Every little thing that is done good is influenced by the power of the Atonement. He who created the universe came into this life as a tiny baby, as do us all, and made it possible for us to return to our Father in Heaven again if we will but follow him, do his work, and serve others. May we ever do that, and feel of the love of our Savior for us.

This Christmas, and always, seek him who is the creator of all good, and who has power over all. This once tiny babe who is the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords, the promised Messiah, even Jesus Christ.  

Find out more this Christmas about Christ at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is Christmas at the Washington DC Visitors Center, courtesy of lds.org

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

On that holy night - by President Uchtdorf

"Think of the simple yet dignified way our Heavenly Father chose to honor the birth of His Son. On that holy night, angels appeared not to the rich but to shepherds. The Christ child was born not in a mansion but in a manger. He was wrapped not in silk but in swaddling clothes.

The simplicity of that first Christmas foreshadowed the life of the Savior. Though He had created the earth, walked in realms of majesty and glory, and stood at the right hand of the Father, He came to earth as a helpless child. His life was a model of modest nobility, and He walked among the poor, the sick, the downcast, and the heavy laden.

Though He was a king, He cared neither for the honors nor the riches of men. His life, His words, and His daily activities were monuments of simple yet profound dignity.

Jesus the Christ, who knew perfectly how to give, set for us the pattern for giving. To those whose hearts are heavy with loneliness and sorrow, He brings compassion and comfort. To those whose bodies and minds are afflicted with illness and suffering, He brings love and healing. To those whose souls are burdened with sin, He offers hope, forgiveness, and redemption.

If the Savior were among us today, we would find Him where He always was—ministering to the meek, the downcast, the humble, the distressed, and the poor in spirit. 

During this Christmas season and always, may we give to Him by loving as He loves. May we remember the humble dignity of His birth, gifts, and life. And may we, through simple acts of kindness, charity, and compassion, fill the world with the light of His love and healing power." - (President Dieter F Uchtodorf Christ and the Spirit of Giving)

May we all come to the Savior, and seek to serve others this season, and always.

Find out more this Christmas about Christ at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P 

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is Behold the Lamb of God by Walter Rane, courtesy of lds.org

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

"Unto You is Born this day...a Savior, which is Christ the Lord"

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. (Luke 2:11-12)

Have we found the Savior, as those shepherds did long ago?  And have we shared what we have found with others?  

The gift of the Savior was a gift for all of God's children, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (John 3:16).

After the gift of our lives, our souls, our happiness, and eternal life with our Father in Heaven and families that the Savior has given to us, what gift will we give to him and to others? So many out there who need to be lifted, and who need to feel the love of the Savior.

May we serve them, love them, and help them return as well.  Pick something you can do this Christmas season to serve others.  Then quietly go about doing it.  Make that your gift to Christ this season. 

Find out more this Christmas about Christ at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is God So Loved the World by Simon Dewey, courtesy of lds.org

Monday, December 4, 2017

The Angels of Christmas

Nativity figures from their box are retrieved,
Near a crackling fire on a Christmas Eve.
Each is unwrapped with excited haste,
Then slowly, carefully, thoughtfully placed.
The scene comes to life when viewed by a child,
The babe seems to stir, and the mother just smiled.
Safeguarded here and kept far from danger,
The baby is kissed and laid in a manger.
This night is for children,
and their spirits can lift us,
They are the magic, the guardians,
the “Angels of Christmas”
-Greg Olsen, the artist of this picture.

When seen through the eyes of a pure-minded child, Christmas becomes more meaningful as we remember what the season is really about. May we ever remember him, this season, and always.

Find out more this Christmas about Christ at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture is Angels of Christmas, by Greg Olsen, who also wrote the poem.

Saturday, December 2, 2017

How to Prepare and how to watch this year's First Presidency's Christmas Devotional

What a sacred opportunity we have to watch Apostles and Prophets and disciples of Christ testify of the divinity of the Savior at this holy time of year.  

We, as a church, get to commemorate Christ's birth through talks and sacred music from the Tabernacle Choir.  This is a perfect start to a season that should center around the Savior, on service to others, and should be a sacred time for all of us.  

This year's Christmas Devotional is on Sunday December 3rd at 6 PM, MST. 

To prepare for the devotional and to celebrate the Christmas season, you can download and share 5 free Christmas songs from the Mormon Tabernacle choir.

During the Devotional, you may also tweet highlights on twitter using the hashtag #ChristmasDevo

In addition to being broadcast to stake centers, the devotional will be available live on BYUTV online or through your local cable provider.  It will also be streamed online on lds.org, and on the Mormon Channel via their website, YouTube Page, mobile app, Roku, Apple TV, Android TV, and Amazon Fire TV.   

Video and audio recordings of the devotional—along with text from the messages in English, Spanish, and Portuguese—will also be provided on https://broadcast.lds.org within a week. These recordings may be used as part of local unit or family Christmas celebrations and gatherings.

To find out more about the devotional, see the announcement page in the Church News

Find out more this Christmas about Christ at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

Picture courtesy of lds.org

Friday, December 1, 2017

"And there were shepherds, abiding in their fields..."

"And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 

And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. 

And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord." (Luke 2 8-11)

The shepherds heard the announcement by the angel, and heard a multitide of the heavenly hosts proclaiming the birth of the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords, the Creator of all things from the beginning, starting as all of us do, as little babies. 

May we ever be grateful for that sacred moment.

Find out more about Christ this Christmas at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

picture courtesy of lds.org

Thursday, November 30, 2017

What Isaiah saw about the Babe in Bethlehem, and the growth of his Great Latter-Day Work

Read what Isaiah saw about the Savior, and see what started with humble beginnings has grown in our modern day into the Kingdom of God on this earth.  

Isaiah saw this in vision as he wrote "unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace" (Isaiah 9:6).

Over 2000 years ago, the Savior of the World was born in a humble stable, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. His coming had been prophesied of by Isaiah and many other prophets. 

The Savior came, as Isaiah also said, "to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound," (Isaiah 61:1) and he did that for both the living and the dead. 

What is spoken after the first scripture of this post is often not mentioned.  Isaiah says "Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end..." (Isaiah 9:7)

This once tiny baby is our Savior and Redeemer, the Mighty God, and has restored his gospel to the earth in these latter days, never again to be taken from the earth.  This great latter-day work goes on still, for the living and the dead through missionary work, strengthening the members, and through the work for our ancestors in temples. The Book of Mormon has been translated, and leads people to Christ.  The prophet Joseph said the following of how that relates to the Power of God on this earth:

"Let us take the Book of Mormon, which a man took and hid in his field, securing it by his faith, to spring up in the last days, or in due time; let us behold it coming forth out of the ground, which is indeed accounted the least of all seeds, but behold it branching forth, yea, even towering with lofty branches and Godlike majesty, until it, like the mustard seed, becomes the greatest of all herbs. … God is sending down His powers, gifts, and angels to lodge in the branches thereof” (Teachings: Joseph Smith, 301).

This work will continue unabated, as President Monson says, until, as the Standard of truth says, "The Great Jehovah shall say the work is done."

At that time, the work begun from before the foundations of the world will be complete, and the Sons and Daughters of God will dwell with him forever, as recorded in the Bible and Modern Revelation. It is incredible what started with one tiny baby in Bethlehem, indeed started long before that, before the foundations of this earth.  

Become engaged in serving others, and in the work of the Lord. At this Christmas season and always, may we ever seek out the Babe in Bethlehem, our Savior, Our Redeemer, our all.  And may we ever serve him.  

Find out more about Christ this Christmas at http://bit.ly/1jE0F7S

When Christ was born, the people in the American continent saw the star, and had another sign of his birth, a night of light, even though the sun had set. This was prophesied by prophets in the Americas. Read more by clicking here http://bit.ly/J8J59P

More questions? Click here to chat online http://bit.ly/14NQosW or, to meet with representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, go to http://bit.ly/10t9mW7

picture courtesy of lds.org