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Showing posts from December, 2016

Discipleship: Where am I?

The Lord extends the invitation to all of us to follow him. He stands at the door and knocks. (Revelation 3:20).   His arms of mercy are extended to all of us.  The simile that is used several times in the scriptures about how He will gather us as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings applies to all of us.  We have to allow Him to gather us in and protect us.  If we run away when the arms of mercy are extended, then we won’t receive the benefit of his protecting arms. His invitation is for us to come to him. We are all invited.   We know that the fruit of the tree of life is the greatest of all the gifts of God and is the most precious and desirable of all other fruits (1 Nephi 15:36).   God’s greatest gift was manifest when he sent His Son to redeem his people.  It is clear that we must reach out and partake of the fruit.  Just as we have to accept the invitation to come unto him, we also have to reach and partake.  There is no force or coercion.  We simply have to make the c…

Ponderize Jacob 4:14 - Looking Beyond the Mark

After hearing Elder Quentin L. Cook’s talk "Valiant in the Testimony of Jesus" in the last general conference.  This quote has been on my mind.
"While there are many examples of looking beyond the mark, a significant one in our day is extremism. Gospel extremism is when one elevates any gospel principle above other equally important principles and takes a position that is beyond or contrary to the teachings of Church leaders.”
This phrase "looking beyond the mark comes from Jacob 4:14.  
 14 But behold, the Jews were a stiffnecked people; and they despised the words of plainness, and killed the prophets, and sought for things that they could not understand. Wherefore, because of their blindness, which blindness came by looking beyond the mark, they must needs fall; for God hath taken away his plainness from them, and delivered unto them many things which they cannot understand, because they desired it. And because they desired it God hath done it, that they may stumb…

Ponderize Moses 4:21 - Enmity

This week’s ponderize came to me during a recent visit to the temple.   When I heard the word enmity, I decided to spend some time pondering what it means.

We know that enmity is the state or feeling of being actively opposed or hostile to someone or something.

If you look in the 1828 Webster’s Dictionary, you find the following definition.  (Again, I use this dictionary when I am pondering things that were revealed to Joseph Smith because this is the context he would have been using)
EN'MITY, noun
1. The quality of being an enemy; the opposite of friendship; ill will; hatred; unfriendly dispositions; malevolence. It expresses more than aversion and less than malice, and differs from displeasure in denoting a fixed or rooted hatred, whereas displeasure is more transient.
2. A state of opposition. With the definition of enmity in my I have been pondering what this scripture means.
15. And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bru…

Section 9.12 - Kindness

Kindness

I believe it is appropriate that I end my list of desirable leadership traits with kindness. This last leadership trait ties closely with my core principle, “Leadership is Love in Action”.   In my life, I have found that more leaders have difficulty with the kindness part of leadership than they do with being an enforcer of the rules or an assigner of tasks.   We would all do well to remember this poem.

                I have wept in the night
                For the shortness of sight
                That to somebody’s need made me blind;
                But I never have yet
                Felt a tinge of regret
                For being a little too kind.
                Author unknown, in Richard L. Evans, “The Quality of Kindness,” Improvement Era, May 1960, 340      

Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin taught:
Kindness is the essence of greatness and the fundamental characteristic of the noblest men and women I have known.
Kindness is a passport that opens doors and fashions frie…