Monday, December 17, 2012

Greetings from Nephi (at least, two Nephites) ;)‏

We had a spiritual day at church, as always, beginning in Sacrament meeting and moving on through our other meetings of the day. Bro. Paul Sutorius spoke about the great gift the Savior gave each of us: the atonement. He spoke of the wise men (we really don’t know how many there were) and how they were “seeking” of the Savior when the star appeared. They knew it for what it was, because they were prepared to recognize it when they saw it. They went to Herod who had, apparently, either not seen the star or had not attributed it to anything of import. However, the wise men did understand its significance and did follow it seeking the Christ. 

Bro. Sutorius spoke of the many stars each of us have to guide us, chief among those the scriptures, our families, our teachers, the prophets and others who love and serve us. Those are stars we may follow in our own seeking of the Savior. First of all, we must seek the Christ and then He will grant us the stars we need to lead us to him. Our stars, in addition to the scriptures, are usually people.

We have a young woman in our ward who was injured in a terrible car accident a couple of months ago. For awhile, it was not certain whether she would live or, if she did, if she would walk again. She is now on crutches and is our ward miracle girl. At any rate, Bro. Sutorius asked her to hop to the podium and asked he a few question. He then asked her what she saw when she looked out at the congregation and she replied, “Stars.” She did so a bit tearfully and many of us shared her tears.

His main message? We must remember that the Savior can only be found if we are looking. 

He was also our instructor in Sunday School. We discussed charity and its meaning. We learned from the Book of Mormon that the word atonement can be substituted for charity. Because charity is the love of Christ for us, expressed by his willingness to atone for our individual sins and for our pain and suffering. We must accept the gift he bestowed upon each of us and each day of our lives we should try to emulate our Savior in our daily living. If we seek Him, we must try to be like Him.

We also learned great lessons about charity in our Relief Society lesson.

We are enjoying your letters and we know that you are serving others as you serve our Savior. Certainly, you are having experiences that will help you all of your life. We are also enjoying your letters and that we are grateful that you include us in your circle of loved ones. 

Judging from the many young women coming to the temple to be endowed prior to their going on missions, many of them coming in your direction, you will soon have an army of young women there to assist you in your efforts to bring the gospel to the Latinos in California.

Take care and know that you are loved and that we pray for you often each day. We love you!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

About Program

I'm sorry that I invited you to the Christmas Relief Society program held in our stake. 

I could tell, by their sobbing, that some of the sisters found the program very touching. Judging from their crying throughout, I thought that they were active participants emotionally, sitting there in the dark with hands on laps turned upward so that we each could feel as items, such as the coarse linen, were placed in our hands. Our ears could hear the sounds from the music and narration but I really am a visual learner and it was not as appealing to me as it could have been had my eyes been allowed to see.

I noted that none of us cried. I know that neither of you like the "touchy-feely" sort of program any more than I do. In addition to that, there were some parts that bothered me, like wearing a blindfold for 75 minutes and having babies cry because of the dark and having to have their feet touched. I know that we were to touch the small baby feet and think of the birth of our Savior as though we were at the stable but I did not think the point was worth having a baby be the representative.

I also do not know if Satan tempted Jesus in the period of time that Heavenly Father left him alone on the cross so I did not like the song that was sung during that period. I do not think that music from "Jesus Christ, Superstar" was as appropriate as words from a more sacred work might have been. For example, I think I may have liked something from the "Messiah" much better.

I value the Savior, His life and His sacrifice, but I prefer more visual programs than the one we attended. 

I just wanted you both to know that I was not as sold on the program, after seeing it, as Annette Lovell was, prior to the program, when she was telling us that it would change us for the better. At any rate, I wanted you to know what I thought. 

You have such busy lives and made time to go to the program with me simply because I am your mother and I invited you. We went early, another sacrifice for each of you on a busy day during December, so that we could gain entrance and would not be turned away since there were a set number of seats available. That took even more of your precious time.

Dad said I should probably appreciate the work someone had put into the program but I found it a bit maudlin (effusively or insincerely emotional). Perhaps you both loved it and were glad I invited you. If so, just ignore this.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Investing Tip

Investing for the future might need to be more practicle than ever thought. According to an email being sent around, folks should maybe think more about stocking up on canned goods and water than on hiding away gold or investing in stocks and bonds.

In advancing the email, Gordon Smith, had one more suggestion. "Add toilet paper to that list.  I never did like using the old Sears catalogues," he said. 

I actually did not know what that catalogue was doing in the old outhouse I visited when I was little. I sat and looked at it and wondered where the toilet paper was. ;) Eventually, someone came and found me and then I knew what it was for. That was at an older lady's house, Grandma Kate Childs' home, where we were visiting for a holiday. She made really good cookies in her old coal stove's oven. YUM!