I love studying and pondering to write these posts! Thank you for all who have found a way to let me know that you take the time to read the scriptures with me on these posts. =) I know focusing on scripture study makes a difference in how close we feel to Heaven!
I have many favorite things about my husband Joseph. Lately, though, I’ve been loving how he takes our boys skiing!
Some people look at this picture and say “how cute, little skiers.”
Anyone who has ever dressed a child for snow, however, looks at it and says, “Wow…how long did it take to put on that many pairs of long johns, ski socks, fleece shirts, hats, goggles, coats, ski pants, ski boots, skis, TWO mittens, AND fruit snacks in every pocket!!!???
Taking children anywhere is a feat. Taking children anywhere that requires that many extra pieces of equipment a few times a week– for FUN–now that is something worth congratulating and laying down the red carpet. #myhusbandmakesitlookeasy
The other day, Joseph told me the most excruciating part of taking three boys (aged 7, 5 and 3) skiing is convincing them to walk with their skis from the car to the lift while carrying the 3 year old’s gear and his own gear.
Yesterday something happened that gives us a window into the human pysche…
Joseph found a inlet behind the dumpsters that was about 15 feet from the ski lift. He dropped off the boys and their piles of stuff, told them to wait right there, parked the car and ran back to the spot he had left them… where he saw footsteps in the snow leading away from their pile of stuff and straight up the snow-covered hill that overlooked the ski lift. 200 yards up, he saw his boys climbing up the steep mountain side that rivals Mount Everest…(if you are 4 feet tall anyway, ha).
Later he called me from the ski lift and remarked, “I can hardly hike them across the parking lot without everyone complaining and at least one of them doing a limp flop on the ground saying “I’m too Tiiiii-eeeeerrrrrrrrrDDDD! Then, they happily go climbing all the way up a super steep hill, just for fun. It’s like the fact that I want and expect them to walk is what makes them so unwilling to walk!”
1. When we choose to do something for ourselves, we are much more motivated to do it.
Which scenario would you guess might bring better results: the boss or relief society president gives you a big assignment with detailed bullet points how exactly he or she wants it done OR they present you with the situation and ask you to find a way to meet the needs?
2. When we become what we are saying we believe, we will find our dedicated efforts will bring much better results than if we are living merely by a checklist.
So, God sent us to Earth to find out for ourselves if we care enough to put in the work and make the motivation come from within our own hearts…
If you do not already have a testimony of these things, do that which is necessary to obtain one. It is essential for you to have your own testimony, for the testimonies of others will carry you only so far.
3. Someone telling you to walk will only inspire you to walk so far….but to want to walk yourself–that is when you will really end up where you want to be.
As you study the scriptures and words from the prophets, think about these three points
1. choosing for yourself = more motivated
2. becoming brings the best results
3. inner motivation alone is what can inspire us to the point that we can reach our goal
enjoy your study!
S: (Prayer/Ask) How will strengthening my own testimony allow me to generate enough power to propel me up the hills of life?
- Right after being called as an Apostle in 1984, Dallin H. Oaks gave this enlightening talk on why we serve. He teaches six motivators of why people serve, listed below. Read his talk. Think about how the reasons he points out extend beyond service- these are reasons why we obey, why we do hard things, why we went to church on Sunday, and specific to this study– why we do (or do not) have a strong enough testimony
- hope of earthly reward.
- fear of punishment.
- sense of duty or out of loyalty to friends or family or traditions
- One higher reason [is a] hope of an eternal reward. This hope—the expectation of enjoying the fruits of our labors—is one of the most powerful sources of motivation.
- Moroni 10:3-5 This is a scripture you know well…before you read it, say a prayer that you will see something speaking strongly to you in the familiar words.
Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts.
And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.
And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.
- Doctrine and Covenants 67:3 Look for why an answer was not given. Think about how this might apply to our testimony being strong or weaker than it was yesterday.
Ye endeavored to believe that ye should receive the blessing which was offered unto you; but behold, verily I say unto you there were fears in your hearts, and verily this is the reason that ye did not receive.
- Why do most of the scriptures about asking God for assurance include the stipulation of sincerity and pure intent?
- Look back to the quote from Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. In what ways do you think this might be, in some form, the way God goes about His work? How can we apply this principle to the work we do for Him among His children?
- How strong is your assurance God lives and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is His church? Is it strong enough to keep you going to church every week? Is it strong enough to put aside things in your life you know are not pleasing to God? Is it strong enough that you’d stay on the path if something terrible happened to your family? In what ways do you feel it is not strong enough?
R: (Write) your thoughts, what you learned, impressions you received, and anything else in your scripture journal (include your thoughts on the study session question: How will strengthening my own testimony allow me to generate enough power to propel me up the hills of life?) Also consider writing down the following:
- Write a list of the times in your life when you felt your testimony grew the most (for example, during my mission, at a youth conference, after a trial, while in a certain calling) Next to each, write a few reasons why you think this opportunity allowed for so much growth. (for example, in this calling I was constantly preparing lessons..)
- Look again at Moroni 10:3-5. Make a chart with two columns, the first column labeled “God’s Part and the second labeled “My Part.” Underneath the chart, copy down the words from Doctrine and Covenants 82:10, but instead of “ye,” write your name.
I, the Lord, am bound when ye do what I say; but when ye do not what I say, ye have no promise.
E: (Prayer/Thank)- thank God for what you’ve learned and ask if there is anymore.
The Challenge: Look back to what you have written. In those words, you will find something you feel you lack in your testimony. Write a few lines in your scripture journal about this lack. Say a prayer for the Lord to help you fill this void.
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