DIY, Eco-Friendly, Spirituality

I Know it. I Live it. I Love it.

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints worldwide gather twice yearly for what they call “general conference.” During this conference, which is available to anyone interested in attending or watching live via the internet, we have the opportunity to listen to Church leaders speak on a variety of spiritual topics.

These talks are addressed not only to Latter-day Saints, but also to government, faith and community representatives and other conference guests. Speakers include the worldwide leader of the Church, President Thomas S. Monson, and his counselors in the First Presidency, the Quorum of Twelve Apostles and other church leaders.

One of my favorite talks, which has had a lasting impact on me, was given in the October 2012 General Conference by Sister Ann M. Dibb, second counselor in the Young Women General Presidency. Her talk was titled I know it. I Live it. I Love it, and focused on the importance of possessing and developing confidence in our identity as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

One of the things I loved about her talk was how she reminded me that when we live faithful, obedient, Christ-like lives, the blessings we receive not only affect our own lives, but also the lives of countless others in profound and often unknown ways.

When I heard this talk, I was in the last stages of serving the Lord as a full-time missionary in the England London South Mission, and this was a lesson Heavenly Father was already helping me to learn and to develop a testimony of. Through the experiences and examples of the faithful members of the ward I was serving in, I was learning that our Heavenly Father has a purpose for placing us in the different life situations we are in.

Where we live, and where we work, and where we go to school and what places we frequent are not by chance. The people who are our neighbors, and those who are our coworkers and schoolmates-they don’t happen to be in our lives just because-we are in each other’s  lives for a reason. I believe that we have been placed where we are for purposes that are often unknown to us, and whether those purposes are ever fulfilled depends on us and on our courage to stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things and in all places. Being reminded of this often helps me because it encourages me to find the reason and purpose for being wherever I am in life. By being aware of this truth, I find myself being more aware of situations where I am presented with opportunities to fulfill those purposes.

The motto Sister Dibb coined in her talk has stayed with me since then, and is something that I’ve often repeated to myself when I have been hesitant or timid about doing a good deed, choosing the right, sharing who I am, what I stand for or what I know to be true. It has been during these moments that I have repeated Sister Dibb’s words; I am a Mormon. I know it. I live it. And I LOVE it! On more than one occasion I have been inspired by this phrase.

I Know it. I Live it. I Love it.

This week I had the opportunity to participate in a career night hosted for the Young Women in our ward. As the day for the activity drew nearer I felt a desire to make something for the girls to take home. I wanted to make something  they would appreciate while still embodying what I do for a living.

I decided to make them a bracelet since this is something that would be a simple and time-efficient item to make for 15 girls. Also, I had some awesome scraps of natural tanned leather waiting to be transformed into something useful. As I thought about what design, logo or phrase I wanted to put on their bracelets, I thought of Sister Dibb’s conference talk, and right away, I KNEW what their bracelets would say.

I Know it. I Live it. I Love it. Leather bracelets

I intentionally left out the first part of Sister Dibb’s motto; I am a Mormon. I hope that as the girls wear their bracelet, someone will ask them what it means and they will be the ones to explain that the words refer to their sentiment regarding their membership in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

General Conference is upon us once more. In two short weeks we will once again be blessed to hear the words of a living prophet of God. I testify that conference has something to offer to each and every one of us. I invite you to come and see and to listen and hear what messages God has for you.

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Spirituality

Promises

I like to end my day by taking out my computer and going on the http://www.mormonchannel.org website. I’ll usually watch 2 or 3 Mormon Messages or videos from the ‘I’m a Mormon” campaign before closing my lap top, offering a prayer and going to sleep. I find that, regardless of the kind of day I’ve had, I immediately feel calmer, more peaceful, inspired and motivated to “try a little harder to be a little better”.

try a little harder to be a little better

Today as I was brushing my teeth and washing my face I kept thinking about how I’d missed my morning scripture study and hadn’t yet been spiritually nourished by the word of God today. My thoughts lingered over different passages in the Scriptures that I could possibly read before going to sleep, but for some reason, none of the passages that crossed my mind struck me as being what I needed to study.

When I finally got in bed, I decided to find a video to watch and I came across this one:

I watched it a few times and found my attention being drawn to the blessings being promised.

As I pondered the significance of these blessings, a quote was brought to my remembrance. It was something President Gordon B. Hinckley had said during a general conference address many years ago. I remember reading this talk in an Ensign magazine when I was a teenager and how, even after all these years, his words still resonate within my memory. This is what he said;

      “Brothers and sisters, without reservation I promise you that if you will prayerfully read the Book of Mormon, regardless of how many times you previously have read it, there will come into your hearts an added measure of the Spirit of the Lord.  There will come a strengthened resolution to walk in obedience to his commandments, and there will come a stronger testimony of the living reality of the Son of God.”

Wow. What amazing promises.

Regardless of where in life’s journey you are, or what your spiritual state may be, who among us can say that they wouldn’t benefit from or want an added measure of the spirit of the Lord?Who out there can say that they don’t need a greater resolution to walk obediently to the commandments of god? Or a greater testimony of Jesus Christ? Certainly not me. These are things that I need and deeply desire to have, especially now with the things I am struggling to overcome, the upcoming decisions I’ll soon have to make and the life changes that lie on the horizon.

I, for one, can’t afford NOT to have these promised blessings in my life. What about you?

In regards to studying the Book of Mormon, President Benson said the following:

“There is a power in the book [of mormon] which will begin to flow into your lives the moment you begin a serious study of [it.] You will find greater power to resist temptation. You will find the power to stay on the strait and narrow path. The scriptures are called ‘the words of life’, and nowhere is that more true than it is of the Book of Mormon. When you begin to hunger and thirst after those words, you will find life in greater and greater abundance.”

And that’s when it hit me! I realized that even though I had been diligent about reading the scriptures every day (for the most part), it had been a while since I’d undertaken a serious study of the Book of Mormon.

It was like one of those aha! moments and I immediately knew this is what had been missing from my life these past months. I can’t tell you how much I desire to be more spiritually in-tune with my Father in Heaven… so tonight I have decided to accept the same challenge that so many youth across the world have probably already accepted and carried out!

I accept the invitation to read the Book of Mormon every day for at least 20 minutes and to write my thoughts in a journal. I can’t wait to see these promised blessings being fulfilled in my life, and I look forward to sharing my thoughts and experiences with you (whoever you are). I will share some of my thoughts and insights on this blog every night and I hope my experiences will be for the benefit of my brothers and sisters, that perhaps I too may inspire hungry souls like mine to accept this invitation and reap the blessings God wants to give us.

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