Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Saturday, June 11, 2011

What, So What, Now What?

My new way of studying the scriptures!:


So What?

Now What?

WAY too often I read in the scriptures but get very little out of it. I've done different things at different times to enhance my study and this is my most recent method. At the end of reading a chapter (or any given amount) I record the answers to these three questions in my study journal. I recap WHAT I've just read with a short summary. "SO WHAT?" covers why its so important. What's the big deal? Why is that even in the scriptures? What relevance does it have in my life? etc. NOW WHAT? What good will the scriptures do me if they don't find application in my life? The introduction to the Book of Mormon promises that "a man will get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts than by any other book." We don't come nearer to God simply by reading it! We need to apply it! Abide by its precepts! Now, each time I read, I identify one thing I'm going to do or change as a result of my study.

Its worked so far and has my recommendation to anyone else willing to try it!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

What are YOU known for?

"...And they were also distinguished for their zeal towards God, and also towards men; for they were perfectly honest and upright in all things; and they were firm in the faith of Christ, even unto the end."

Its always been so interesting to me that we become known for certain things. Think back to high school where people received labels because of the sports they played, the clothes they wore, the car they drove, the friends they had, etc. As we get older we may become known for the job we have, the house we live in, or the amount of christmas lights we put up each year. 

This scripture hit me this morning because I realized what these people had become known ("distinguished") for: zeal towards God, honesty & uprightness, firm faith, and endurance! What a list! I'm somewhat apprehensive at what my friends might say they know me for... but don't many of us feel that way?
In my favorite General Conference talk called "The Love of God," President Uchtdorf said the following:

"Of all the things we want to be known for, are there attributes above all others that should define us as members of His Church, even as disciples of Jesus Christ? Let us be known as a people who love God with all our heart, soul, and mind and who love our neighbor as ourselves." (October 2009 General Conference)

While serving my mission in Pennsylvania, I met a man who typified what President Uchtdorf described. To me, this man exemplifies the Christ-like love referred to in the scriptures as charity. Before ever meeting him, he called me to introduce himself and thank me for my service as a missionary. Each time I'd see him, he'd give me a hug, look me straight in the eyes and honestly ask how I was doing. He would call as he'd travel from work, seek to know and help us personally. Those who know him cannot deny his great love for everyone. What an example!

What are you known for? And questions rivaling in importance: What do you want to be known for? How can you realize these hopes? I know it is only through the grace of Christ that such is possible.