“When we put God first, all other things fall into their proper place or drop out of our lives.” -Ezra Taft Benson

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Annie's New Blog

Hello Everybody! I set up my new blog. It's still pretty sparse, but you can check it out if you'd like:


I love you and miss you all!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ

This last weekend we listened to Elder Tad A. Callister, one of our church leaders, speak. This is my recollection of the main points he talked about:

The Book of Mormon is either of God or of the devil. There is no middle ground. This is similar to Jesus Christ. He can only be either the Son of God and the Savior of the world or a fraud. There is no middle ground.

One way to know if the Book of Mormon is of God is to read from it and ask ourselves, "Does this bring me closer to God or the devil?"

Here is one passage from the book that we can do that with:

"And now...remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery...because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall" (Helaman 5:12).

If the Book of Mormon brings us closer to God, it cannot be of the devil because, as Christ said when He was accused of casting out devils by the power of the devil, "if a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand" (Mark 3:24).

However, the Book of Mormon, is not just a nice book that brings us closer to God. It stands with the Bible in confirming truth. After all, if every point of truth were indisputable from reading only the Bible, why are there so many churches that use it and disagree on so many different points?

The Bible, then is like a point on a piece of paper through which many straight lines can be drawn. Those lines are answers to questions like, "Should I be baptized? and, if so, how should I be baptized?" The Book of Mormon is like another point on a piece of paper. There can only be one straight line drawn between them. This straight line represents the truth with answers to questions like the ones just posed about baptism.

The most important thing the Book of Mormon does is declare that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that through His atoning sacrifice and resurrection He is our Redeemer.

These points laid out by Elder Callister are extremely important and compelling. For me, however, they are not as important as my own experience.

I remember the first time that I asked God, my Heavenly Father, in the name of Jesus Christ if the Book of Mormon was true. Through the Holy Ghost I felt a powerful, good feeling that I do not remember feeling that strongly ever before. I also heard in my mind a voice saying, "You already know that it is true." Thanks to that experience I knew that the Book of Mormon was true and I knew that I knew it.

Although you don't need to read the whole book to know that it is true, before that experience I had read and since then I have read every page of the Book of Mormon again and again, and I add my voice to millions upon millions of others in testifying once more that I know that the Book of Mormon is true. It is the word of God as surely as Jesus Christ is our Savior.

The invitation has been extended for you (and everyone) to bring with you all that you have that is good and true which you have received from whatever source, and come to His Church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and let us see if we may add to it. If you have not responded to this invitation, or perhaps you have but not for some time, reading from the Book of Mormon and confirming for yourself that it is true is a crucial step that you can take, and you can do it today.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Tomorrow! Tommorrow! I love you! Tomorrow! It's only a day away.

This link is to a video of Jeffrey R. Holland speaking about something very important. He did so a day before his sweetheart's birthday, and I'm posting it in honor of the day before my sweetheart's birthday. I love you Annie!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Sunshine in my heart

Today was a beautiful day. It rained all day (what!? beautiful?) But yes, it was beautiful. Ren and I got to walk around campus just before it started raining, and I was filled with a sense of awe at how inspiring and wonderful Heavenly Father's creations are. When it finally did start to rain, it poured and it thundered. Ren and I went into one of the buildings and watched the rain coming down like Noah's flood. We finally decided to brave it and walk back to our car so we could get home and have dinner. As we were walking through the rain with newspapers over our heads, Ren reminded me of something that our nephew, Owen, said to his Mom one day in church. In Andrea's words:
"At church today we sang a hymn and part of the chorus was "...if there's sunshine in your heart..."
Owen smiles at me, and pulls me over so he could whisper in my ear and asks, "Mommy? Is there sunshine in your heart?" I smiled and responded, "Yes." Owen smiles back at me and says, "Me too!"' 
In that cold, soggy moment as we laughed about this, I had sunshine in my heart. And the wetter and colder I got, the more I realized just what a beautiful day it had been and just how much Heavenly Father loves me. It reminded me of a video I recently saw about El Teide, the tallest mountain in Spain. If you haven't seen it, it's definitely worth your time. It expresses so sweetly the glory of the stars, the wind, all those simple things we take for granted. It'll put sunshine in your heart.
for more info about the film (the film itself is slow. The youtube one is better):

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Happy Easter

We were so glad for the opportunity to visit the Carl Bloch exhibit here at BYU on Friday. My view of the Savior was enriched as a result of seeing some of Bloch's original work. I also came out with a greater appreciation for the talent the artist was blessed with. It was a great way to spend our time this past Good Friday.

I'm so grateful that this time of year gives us all a special and sacred opportunity to reflect on the miraculous life, sacrifice and death, and especially resurrection of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

I'm also thankful for the hope that the Savior gives to the world and to me. Although, "I cannot say the smallest part [of] what I feel", I can say that I know that He lives.

My sister-in-law, Laurie, recently introduced a song to me about our Redeemer's marvelous sacrifice. If you choose not to click on any of the other links in this post, I hope you take the time to listen to the song as a part of your remembering Jesus Christ's incomparable gift to us this Easter.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

The Best Two Years of My Life (so far)

Annie and I were joined in marriage for time and all eternity two years ago today. As I've prepared for an attempt to wrap up the multitude of good things that go along with this occasion into a nice, well-written blog post the following quotes from Gregory Peck's character, Father Francis Chisholm, in the film, The Keys of the Kingdom, came to mind:

"How out of proportion the events of our lives to the words with which we describe them."


"No one has ever been able to write pain or love or fear or God as well as we can feel them."

Those thoughts notwithstanding, I want anyone and everyone reading this to know that these two years have truly been the best two years of my life, and the best is yet to come.

I'm especially grateful to my Heavenly Father, my Savior, Jesus Christ and His Gospel, and my wonderfully amazing wife for having generously given me an abundance of love, help, and support, and for having made our marriage a beautiful and continually more perfect way to live.