Category Archives: Meeting Notes

The Gathering of Scattered Israel

“The Gathering of Scattered Israel,” by Elder Russel M. Nelson, October 2006

There is such a strong spirit about what I am studying this morning. I cannot tell its purpose yet.  As I read about the Lord telling Abraham to get thee out of the land of his father’s inheritance, this resonates deeply and strongly within me. This is much more to learn here.

Thinking more on Ephraim and the covenants promised to his house. The fulfillment of the Abrahamic covenant would not be realized until our day. The Book of Mormon is what teaching about the fulfillment of the Abrahamic covenant.

3 Nephi 29:3, “ye need not imagine in your hearts that the words which have been spoken are vain, for behold, the Lord will remember his covenant which he hath made”

In 3 Nephi 20:29-34, it talk about the restoration of the house of Israel.  An evidence of their restoration will be their conversion to the Gospel of Christ, and particularly in the manner of their prayers: “and shall pray unto the Father in my name.”

It seems to me as I consider it this morning, that in their prayers will be revealed a key to their restoration.

Thoughts and Impressions, 6 March 2016

In no particular order, the following notes are a collection of personal thoughts and inspiration received over the past 36 hours as a result of personal studies, hard work, and participation in Sunday church services:

  • The value of work – the Lord calls those who are already engaged in the work. Christ choose his apostles from fishermen, men who were actively working.
  • The devil on the other hand selects his servants from among the idle and lazy.
  • The Gospel of Jesus Christ can only be experienced by obedience.  A testimony is only gained by obedience to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
  • Even when my wife is wrong, she is right. The same can be said of our priesthood leaders: even when they are wrong they are right. The issue is not so much if what our leaders or spouses  are doing is correct, as much as it is whether or not we are willing to sustain them or in other words, love them.  The past 36 hours has shown me who I am really married to and what I can do to be more supportive.
  • Our call to Gila Bend was as much for us and me as it was to serve the people of Gila Bend. It has been a call for me to learn to follow the commands of the Lord through his servants.
  • Rain or shine, we will give praise to God.
  • Be courageous. Be bold. Stand for moral and family values. These things are being destroyed. Stand to defend them in your work.  Be more bold about testifying of the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
  • The heart of effective Gospel teaching is loving and serving other. There is a reason why gospel teaching happens in small groups, classes of 5 to 10 people. Love, serve, visit, and become aware of the needs and likes and dislikes of those you teach.  Encourage home visits among those you instruct to be better teachers.  Review Pres. Monson’s March 2016 First Presidency message on teaching.
  • FHE- Faith in Christ (John 11:22-28) and the Value of Hard Work (Christ calls fishermen)
    • Prepare Lesson Shortly.

Notes from GenCon Oct15: It Works Wonderfully!

It Works Wonderfully! by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Is the Gospel working for me?  Is my experience in the Church working or me? Is it blessing me and my family with the peace and joy as promised in the Gospel?

Pres. Uchtdorf’s testimony to follow up on these questions is very similar to my own personal conviction about the effectiveness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ:

I know firsthand how the gospel can invigorate and renew one’s spirit—how it can fill our hearts with hope and our minds with light. I know for myself how the fruits of the gospel of Jesus Christ can transform lives from the ordinary and dreary to the extraordinary and sublime.

So the question is why does it seem to work better for some more than others? “What is the difference between those whose experience in the Church fills their souls with songs of redeeming love2 and those who feel that something is lacking?”

Two suggestions to making the Gospel work for each of us:

First, Simplify

Essence of the Gospel is this:

  • Hearing the word of God with earnest intent leads us to believe in God and to trust His promises.3

  • The more we trust God, the more our hearts are filled with love for Him and for each other.

  • Because of our love for God, we desire to follow Him and bring our actions in alignment with His word.

  • Because we love God, we want to serve Him; we want to bless the lives of others and help the poor and the needy.

  • The more we walk in this path of discipleship, the more we desire to learn the word of God.

Second, Start Where You Are

Day two of studying this talk/topic. On day one, I didn’t really feel it was for me. But on day two, I’m considering my family relationships, and how the Gospel doesn’t seem to be working for my family or in my relationships with my family members.

Remember, our weaknesses can help us to be humble and to depend upon Christ. We don’t need to be “more” of anything to become whom God wants us to become.

Ingredients for change:

  1. A willing heart
  2. A desire to believe
  3. Trust in the Lord

BT- As I am contemplating all of this, it seems that in my own life there are two different levels of conversion, one is of my personal habits and disciplines, the other is in my outward expression of faith towards others, primarily towards my own family, but this later level of conversion also deals with all external relationships. I am not nearly as Christ-like towards others as I desire to be.

Notes from CES Devotional: True Millenials

January 2016 CES Devotional – Pres. Russell M. Nelson

President  Nelson:

  1. Learn your true identity and purpose –  Pray about who you really are.
  2. Expect and Prepare to Accomplish the Impossible – The Lord will ask you to do difficult things.  Best efforts and fervent prayers.  It will become less and less popular to be a latter-day saint.  Keep covenants with increasing precision. The Lord will bless you with strength
  3. Learn how to access the power of heaven – Learn best by asking inspired questions. Make your home a holy place where you can escape the distractions of the world.  Give the Lord a generous portion of your time, and he will multiply the rest.
  4. Follow the prophets – Pres. Kimball invited regional reps to learn Mandarin.  Prophets see ahead. They see the dangers that the adversary will place in our path. You may not like what you hear from the prophets.

Born to be true Millenials. Here to do a remarkable work: prepare the world for the 2nd Coming of the Savior.

Priesthood and Personal Prayer

Just re-read this talk on priesthood and personal prayer and there are passages that I want to commit the principles to memory:

This is what I’ve learned: God is not interested in long prayers. Rather He is interested in specific prayers, and us knowing what we should be praying for.

“Ye worship ye know not what… Salvation is of the Jews.”

Here are the paragraphs that I need to come back to:

So you will pray for the way to know their hearts, to know what things are amiss in the lives and the hearts of people whom you don’t know well and who are not anxious to have you know them. You will need to know what God would have you do to help them and to do it all, as nearly as you can, feeling God’s love for them.

It is because you have such important and difficult priesthood calls that President Smith suggests that when you pray, you always plead with God that He will bless you with His Spirit. You will need the Holy Ghost not once but as much as God will grant it to you for your constant companion. That is why we must always pray that God will guide us in our service to His children.

Because you cannot rise to your priesthood potential without the Spirit going with you, you are a personal target for the enemy of all happiness. If he can tempt you to sin, he can lessen your power to be led by the Spirit and so reduce your power in the priesthood. That is why President Smith said that you should always pray that God will warn and protect you from evil.6

He warns us in many ways. Warnings are part of the plan of salvation. Prophets, apostles, stake presidents, bishops, and missionaries all raise the warning voice to escape calamity through faith in Jesus Christ, repentance, and making and keeping sacred covenants.

As a priesthood holder, you are to be part of the warning voice of the Lord. But you need to heed the warning yourself. You will not survive spiritually without the protection of the companionship of the Holy Ghost in your daily life.

You must pray for it and work to have it. Only with that guide will you be able to find your way along the strait and narrow path through the mists of evil. The Holy Ghost will be your guide as He reveals truth when you study the words of prophets.

Getting that guidance will take more than casual listening and reading. You will need to pray and work in faith to put the words of truth down into your heart. You must pray that God will bless you with His Spirit, that He will lead you into all truth and show you the right way. That is how He will warn and guide you into the right path in your life and in your priesthood service.

Sacrament Meeting Notes, 2 Aug 2015

From a ward on the east end of Springville, Utah – Testimony Meeting Highlights

Tom blessed his baby, Matt

Story of the old truck. Two teen boys wrote on truck, “save me, I’m a good truck” so it is with many of us.

Aisain sister read in the scriptures “jesus is my son.” God testifies of his son.

“I am blessed to know that this church is true, despite the opinions of others. ” Amanda’s little brother.


Fear of Men and Fame

“Which Way Do You Face?” Elder Lynn G. Robbins, October 2014 General Conference

In this talk, I’ve learned that I struggle with this particular challenge to make sure that I am facing the right way.  Both in my personal ministering and in professional/business activities.

The reason for which Christ told those that received miracles at his hand to “tell no man” was to avoid as much as possible the fame and praise of the world.

We seek for approval from God, not of man. This feels so right and true! There is not a media institution in the world that subscribes to this truth.

“Finding Lasting Peace and Building Eternal Families”

“Finding Lasting Peace and Building Eternal Families,” L. Tom Perry, General Conference Oct. 2014

Applying the formula of faith to this talk:

  • Hearing the word of God, finding points of action
  • Taking action to experiment upon the words heard
  • Sharing what I’ve learned as a result of that action


Men and women are shaped partly by those among whom they choose to live. Those to whom they look up and try to emulate also shape them. Jesus is the great Exemplar. The only way to find lasting peace is to look to Him and live.

Action Item:  Make a list of admirable attributes from the life of the Savior. Maybe focus on ten distinct attributes.

Result: TBA


A steward managing the field must, with all his or her power, nourish that which is good and make it so strong and beautiful the tares will have no appeal either to the eye or the ear.

Action Item:  Build up your wife, and each of your children. Build up each and everyone around you.  Always build up, never tear down.

Result: TBA

How blessed are we as members of the Lord’s Church to have the precious gospel of our Lord and Savior as a foundation on which we can build our lives.

Action Item: Discuss ways with my children on how we can as individuals and as a family build our foundation on “the precious gospel of our Lord and Savior.”

Result: TBA