Archive for the 'Ponderizing' Category

Ponderizing

It amazing how quickly the last 12 weeks had gone. When I took on the ponderizing challenge, I was not sure how long I would continue to do it. I have enjoyed it a lot. About 6 weeks into my posts, however, I made a decision that it would be a short term addition to my scripture study. I had several daily study items and continuing with this could eventually cause a bit of overload. So, my goal became to see it to the end of the year, and here we are.

2015 has been a year of trials and personal growth for me. Not huge trials, but difficult ones for me in my own little world. I would not have gotten through them as well as I did, without daily study and prayer. I am so grateful for the suggestion to uplift my thoughts through focusing on one verse of scripture each week. My plan is, to continue to pick a verse and make it a focus in my thoughts, but I will not be sticking to some specific schedule or posting regularly about it. That being said, I encourage anyone reading this blog, to ponderize the word of God. It is a blessing to feast upon His word. I know it can bring true happiness to your life, because it does to mine.

Happy 2016!

Ponderizing – Week 12 Thoughts

The verse I have chosen to ponderize this week, is Doctrine and Covenants 59:23.

But learn that he who doeth the works of righteousness shall receive his reward, even peace in this world, and eternal life in the world to come.

The greatest blessings that can be ours, are peace and eternal life. The Lord promised this peace to his apostles during his ministry on the earth. We learn of this in John 14:27, when we read, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” God gives us peace. His peace, is a peace of mind. His peace keeps fear from our hearts. His peace is only available when we strive to live righteously. I believe that this is because, when we do works of righteousness, we invite the spirit into our lives. The spirit brings heavenly peace to our hearts and minds. The reward for doing right, is the companionship of the spirit and the peace we can feel in knowing we are going to be okay. This peace can encourage us to continue enduring whatever may happen in our lives. This peace can be a driving force in the choices we make, which will ultimately lead us to God and the gift of eternal life, which he offers to the righteous. This verse is a promise, that the best gifts will come to those who faithfully do good and bring the light of Christ to others through their actions.

With this verse in mind, I ask myself something like, what am I doing right now, to enable me to feel the peace that the Lord promises to me? What am I doing to ensure that eternal life will be my reward? Is this thing I am doing right now, leading me towards the peace of mind that I desire and the life in heaven that I hope for? If not, what do I need to do differently? If so, how can I continue on this path? I know that this principle is a true and eternal principle of life.

But learn that he who doeth the works of righteousness shall receive his reward, even peace in this world, and eternal life in the world to come.

In light of all the Christmas baking this week, my thoughts go to logic in the process of baking. I could not make bread if I did not add the right ingredients together in order to make dough. If bread is what I want, I need to add those things that are known to produce bread. Seven cups of flowers in my dough will result in a mess without any substance or shape. Likewise, works of unrighteousness added into my life, will not be able to result in a reward of righteousness. Do good to receive the greatest good.

Ponderizing – Week 12

The verse I have chosen to ponderize this week, is Doctrine and Covenants 59:23.

But learn that he who doeth the works of righteousness shall receive his reward, even peace in this world, and eternal life in the world to come.

What’s your verse?

Ponderizing – Week 11 Thoughts

The verse I have chosen to ponderize this week, is 2 Nephi 10:24.

Wherefore, my beloved brethren, reconcile yourselves to the will of God, and not to the will of the devil and the flesh; and remember, after ye are reconciled unto God, that it is only in and through the grace of God that ye are saved.

I know there something beyond this life. I have had personal experiences in my life and have heard stories of family members and friends who have experienced things, that have taught me there is life after we die. My understanding and belief of what that life is, comes from the gospel of Jesus Christ, which teaches me that there are great blessings awaiting me there, beyond anything I can imagine. However, the blessings will not be the same for everyone. This is because, in this life we make choices and every choice has a consequence. These consequences do not only come in this life, but they will also come in our life after death. Every choice that is wrong, separates us from God. Because of the eternal laws of justice, all of us would be separated from God after this life. If this was the consequence we all were to receive, without any hope of changing it, there would have been no point in God’s plan to send us to this earth. We would be lost. God, however, made a plan, which allowed for a Savior, to be sacrificed to answer the law and to show mercy to all of us, if we would choose to accept it. This sacrifice was made by the Lord, Jesus Christ, and is called the atonement. With the atonement, Christ provides mercy and grace, which are the only reason any of us can be saved and hope to receive the blessings of God after this life.

How then, do we choose to accept this gift of sacrifice, which the Lord has provided for us? This verse gives us the answer. We must “reconcile [ourselves] to the will of God”. We have to choose the right way. Everyday we make choices. No matter what the world may tell us, there are choices that are morally right and those that are morally wrong. Not every decision we have to make, will be either right or wrong, but a lot of them will be. Those things that are right, will always be aligned with the things that God wants for us. Those things that are wrong, will always be aligned with the things that the devil wants for us, or those things of the flesh. To be reconciled is to settle differences or to bring harmony into our relationship with God. We can only do this by doing the things that He asks of us. Throughout the scriptures, their is a repeated phrase, that teaches us He wants us to keep His commandments. We become reconciled to the will of God, when we make the choice to keep the commandments of God. If we choose to do those things that we know to be morally wrong, we choose to put ourselves in harmony with the devil and his plan to destroy the work of God.

Sadly, there are things in this world, that confuse what is right and wrong. In order to know that we are doing what is right, we must know the expectations that God has set for us. We must know the commandments, expectations, and statutes of God. We can come to know these through prayerful study of the gospel as found in the holy scriptures, as well as from the mouths of His modern prophets. In order to be reconciled to God, we need to study the scriptures and pray for guidance from the Lord.

Finally, when we make mistakes, we reconcile ourselves with God by repenting of those things we have done wrong. Repentance means recognizing we’ve done wrong, asking for forgiveness, making restitution, turning away from sin, and allowing God to change our hearts through the atonement. When we repent, we settle the differences between our choices and what God wants for us. Reconciliation requires repentance.

Wherefore, my beloved brethren, reconcile yourselves to the will of God, and not to the will of the devil and the flesh; and remember, after ye are reconciled unto God, that it is only in and through the grace of God that ye are saved.

I know that God is real. I know that the gospel of Jesus Christ is true. Knowing this helps me to know that we can either choose to stand with God, or stand with Satan. I believe that Satan offers me nothing in return for choosing to follow him, while the Lord offers me everything he has if I choose to follow Him. I know that families can be together forever and that is what I desire as my future. This blessing is only offered to me by God, and can only be made a reality if I become reconciled to God. I know that repentance is real. I know that the atonement is real. Grace is the offering that will save me, but I need to do my best to live as God wants me to live, so that I will want to accept His offering. Knowing and believing these things, gives me direction in this life and I am so grateful for that.

Ponderizing – Week 11

The verse I have chosen to ponderize this week, is 2 Nephi 10:24.

Wherefore, my beloved brethren, reconcile yourselves to the will of God, and not to the will of the devil and the flesh; and remember, after ye are reconciled unto God, that it is only in and through the grace of God that ye are saved.

What’s your verse?

Ponderizing – Week 10 Thoughts

The verse I have chosen to ponderize this week, is 2 Nephi 28:30.

For behold, thus saith the Lord God: I will give unto the children of men line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little; and blessed are those who hearken unto my precepts, and lend an ear unto my counsel, for they shall learn wisdom; for unto him that receiveth I will give more; and from them that shall say, We have enough, from them shall be taken away even that which they have.

God is our creator. He knows how every particle of our being works together and allows us to breathe, move, think and love. He knows how we learn, and while we all learn at different paces and our learning is focused in different areas from one another, there is an eternal principle that applies to all people. We learn by building on the things we already know. This is why it takes time to build a vocabulary. This is why we study our alphabet and sounds for quite a bit of time before we start to read. This is how we are able to retain the basics in order to understand deeper concepts. In keeping with this eternal principle, and because God desires for us to learn and gain understanding and knowledge, God distills his teachings upon us in this manner: line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little.

If God intended for us to have all knowledge at once, or even in just a short span of time, we would not have needed to live any longer than that short amount of time. Yet, we live and are learning to the day we leave this mortal life. And, I believe, that our learning may continue after this life, for as long as is necessary for us to gain a perfect knowledge. In his perfect understanding of His creations, God gives us time to learn and time to grow in knowledge.

This verse teaches us that we can choose what to do with the teachings that come for God. The first option, is to hearken to God’s precepts and to listen attentively to His counsel. The second option, is to decide that there has been enough knowledge given by God. The promised consequences of choosing the first option, are wisdom and more teachings to learn from. On the other hand, the promised consequences for choosing the second option, is that the knowledge one already has, will be taken away. This may seem unloving of God, to remove our knowledge from us. It is not, however, something that changes the perfectly eternal love of God for his children. In fact, it is a gift of love, because there will be a day when all will be judged. Those who have a knowledge of His teachings, will be held accountable for how they lived their life according to that knowledge. In His great and eternal mercy, God removes those things which we cannot seem to handle, so that we will not be held accountable for actions against those things that we clearly have not understood.

This life is a gift of preparation for our eternal lives. We were given this opportunity to work towards something. We choose if we will move forward in our personal progression, or if we turn away from that. There is no option for standing still when time continues to move forward. We have a blessed opportunity to learn from God each and every day of our lives, so that we can become better people.

For behold, thus saith the Lord God: I will give unto the children of men line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little; and blessed are those who hearken unto my precepts, and lend an ear unto my counsel, for they shall learn wisdom; for unto him that receiveth I will give more; and from them that shall say, We have enough, from them shall be taken away even that which they have.

I am so grateful for the patience and wisdom of God. He is truly long-suffering with me. He is loving and knows me perfectly. I know that there are many things I am taking a long time to learn, but thankfully, I also know that God will only give me what I can handle at this time. When I have chosen to live according to what I learn, I know He will give me more to learn from. I hope that more of God’s children will have a desire to learn rather than to give up on God in His role as their teacher. I know He is our loving Father and that His greatest desire is for us to grow in the light and truth of His teachings, because it will bring us back into His presence and allow us to continue to progress in the eternities. He wants to see us grow into beings of great wisdom and knowledge. We need to be patient with God in what he gives us to learn. Likewise, we need to be patient with ourselves in our level of learning. Finally, we need to remember to be patient with others, who are also learning line upon line in their own lives.

Ponderizing – Week 10

The verse I have chosen to ponderize this week, is 2 Nephi 28:30.

For behold, thus saith the Lord God: I will give unto the children of men line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little; and blessed are those who hearken unto my precepts, and lend an ear unto my counsel, for they shall learn wisdom; for unto him that receiveth I will give more; and from them that shall say, We have enough, from them shall be taken away even that which they have.

What’s your verse?

Ponderizing – Week 9 Thoughts

The verse I have chosen to ponderize this week, is
Doctrine and Covenants 90:24.

Search diligently, pray always, and be believing, and all things shall work together for your good, if ye walk uprightly and remember the covenant wherewith ye have covenanted one with another.

This promise is amazing. I love this verse, because it is a reminder that no matter what I am experiencing, it will all work out. If I can remember the covenants I have made with God and do the little things that I have been taught to do each day, things will be for my good. Scripture study (ancient and modern), continual prayer, believing in the Lord, keeping the commandments and covenants, are the things I must do. Earlier in my life, I looked at that simple list as daunting. I thought I would never be able to do all that was required of me each day. I have learned and continue to learn, that as we do these specific things, God blesses us with the capacity to do them and so much more. When we make the time to study the scriptures, diligently and with purpose and dedication, we begin to truly understand the purposes of prayer. Then finding the time to formally pray often, and to keep a prayer in our hearts throughout the day, becomes easier and even something we have a natural desire to do. Experiencing the results of regular study and prayer, helps to build our faith and belief in Jesus Christ and our Father in Heaven. The more we believe in Them, the greater desire we have to live in a manner that is pleasing to God. Likewise, we will think more often about the promises, or covenants, that we have made and the blessings hoped for by keeping them. For myself, doing these things has blessed me with a greater perspective in my life. It is awesome to me, how something that could have broken me in the past, becomes something I can not only handle, but also something that I can see good in. This does not mean that it always works out the way I want it to, or may have thought it would, but it does work out. God’s ways are better than my own, in fact, they are the best ways for where who I will ultimately become from this life experience. Through following these steps, I can see that my experiences provide opportunities for growth and learning, help me to have greater empathy and compassion towards others, and give me strength to do more and become more like the Savior.

Ponderizing – Week 9

The verse I have chosen to ponderize this week, is
Doctrine and Covenants 90:24.

Search diligently, pray always, and be believing, and all things shall work together for your good, if ye walk uprightly and remember the covenant wherewith ye have covenanted one with another.

What’s your verse?

Ponderizing – Week 8 Thoughts

The verse I have chosen to ponderize this week, is
2 Nephi 25:26.

And we talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy of Christ, and we write according to our prophecies, that our children may know to what source they may look for a remission of their sins.

Jesus-Portrait

I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Everything I do to live my faith and my religion, revolves around the understanding that Jesus is the Christ. That He is the Lord who, under the direction of His Father, created the world I live on today. That Jesus is the God of the Old Testament, who spoke to the prophets of old, and cared for His people. He came down to the earth, to live and die for all mankind. He has made it possible for all men to live forever as resurrected beings. He is the only way that we have the opportunity to return and live with our Father in Heaven for all eternity. This opportunity can only come through our acceptance of His infinite atonement. He has done his part, but we need to choose to accept Christ into our lives and live faithful to Him and His commandments. Through the atonement, we can repent and be forgiven of all our sins. The faith and hope I have in Jesus Christ, has blessed my life beyond anything I ever thought possible.

As a covenant member of the church of Christ, I have a duty to share that understanding with others around me. This scripture is one of my favorite verses in all of the scriptures, because I am a parent. I personally find so much joy in believing in Christ, and I have a great desire to share all that I can about this with my children. I believe that families on earth, can be families in heaven. The gospel teaches that each person much choose this for themselves, and so if I hope to have my family with me forever, I have a responsibility to teach them of Christ and the power of His atonement. How will my children know Him, if I do not speak of Him? How will they know that He can bring the greatest joy, if I do not rejoice in Him? How will my children know that He is still actively leading His people today, if I do not teach them about the prophesies of Him that have come to pass and are still to come? How will they know where to go to learn of Christ, if I do not show them the importance of reading the holy scriptures and modern revelations, where the prophets’ writings of Him can be found? How will they know, that Christ is the only way to becoming and remaining free of the bondage of sin, if I do not do all that I can to teach them this truth? This freedom is the only way to have true happiness in our lives. This is eternal happiness.

There are places that people can learn of these things without their parents, such as church, but the best place for children to learn is within their own homes. A parent, who has already gained a testimony of Christ and his mission, would be shirking their greatest responsibility by selfishly keeping this knowledge to themselves. I understand that whether I have my own children or not, my responsibility would still be to help others in my sphere of influence, to learn these eternal truths, because everyone should have the same opportunities to learn them if possible.

And we talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy of Christ, and we write according to our prophecies, that our children may know to what source they may look for a remission of their sins.

Jesus taught, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) My heart yearns to tell the world as Alma’s of old. “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! Yea, I would declare unto every soul, as with the voice of thunder, repentance and the plan of redemption, that they should repent and come unto our God, that there might not be more sorrow upon all the face of the earth.” (Alma 29:1-2) In no other place does this mean more to me, then in my home. Jesus Christ, who’s birth we celebrate at this special time of the year, is the way.


About My Scripture Study Buddy

I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I love the scriptures, but I am not a scriptorian. I've been told that I'm too "deep" for some, but if you are willing, I'd love to have others join me in my quest for a greater understanding of the gospel. Please feel free to leave me comments and hopefully we can help each other to learn.

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