So far things are going pretty well. I talked to my BSP today, which felt good, and reviewed with him where I’m at.
Today I’m going to study the talk by Ann Dibb titled I Know It. I Live It. I Love It.
There’s quite a bit of great information in this talk that pertains to me and others who I’m praying for. I’m going to break it down into the three main points she makes – I’m a Mormon:
I Know It.
What do I know about the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints?
How did I come to this knowledge?
What am I doing every day to increase that knowledge?
These are some questions that came to mind as I read this section. I feel I know quite a bit about the gospel of Jesus Christ. I feel I’m learning that it’s not as difficult as some people make it out to be. I feel my knowledge grows as a seed (see Alma 32).
I know that Jesus Christ lives. I know He died on the cross for me. I know He suffered in Gethsemane for my sins, weaknesses and imperfections. I know He called apostles and prophets before His birth, during His ministry, and that He continues to follow that pattern today. I know that He and the Father created a plan – the Plan of Happiness – that gives all of us a chance to return and live with God forever. I know that some parts of this plan are given to us simply based on our choice to come to earth, to follow Christ’s plan as opposed to following Satan’s plan – resurrection and eternal life. I know that the other part of this plan, living with God and being comfortable in His presences, is something we have to work for – we have to be “doers of the word and not hearers only”. (James 1:22)
I know that Christ restored His gospel on the earth after an apostasy of the church He initially established during His ministry. I know that Joseph Smith was called of God to restore this Gospel. I know that he translated the Book of Mormon, “Another Testament of Jesus Christ”, by the power and authority of God. I know that Joseph wasn’t a perfect man; but I also know that his intentions were just and he truly wanted to do God’s will.
I know that the priesthood is the power to act in God’s name. I know that this power is given so that we can perform the ordinances of the Gospel like baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and other saving ordinances.
I know that the temple is where we go to prepare to meet God. I know that in the temple, we learn more fully about the plan of happiness and how Christ is the mediator between us and the Father. I know that in the temple, I can get answers to my prayers if I go with an open heart and a specific purpose.
I know that missionary work is called of God. I know that as I strive to be a missionary, not only does it help me get closer to God, but it also helps the people I’m teaching find the truth; and together we can follow Christ via his gospel.
I know that marriage is ordained of God. I know that marriage and family helps me understand God’s love for me even more. I know that through marriage I have to learn to love, sacrifice, and give up things I want now for things I want most.
I know that the Atonement of Jesus Christ is real. I know that the 12 Step Program is a specific guide on how to use the Atonement in my life every day, every moment.
I know that “The burdens of life are lighter and easier to bear, the enjoyments of life are greater and easier to appreciate for those who believe in God and His son, Jesus Christ, and try to keep Their commandments, than for those who do not.” – Dave M. I’ve felt this very statement in my life.
So, that’s a summary of what I know.
How do I know it? Because I’ve studied it, I’ve prayed about it; I’ve taught it. I’ve felt the Spirit testify of it’s truthfulness as I’m reading, studying, praying and teaching it. I’ve lived it and seen the direct blessings as I strive to do what’s right. And I feel that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is a blessing given to all those who want to live closer to God. I can’t deny this.
I Live It.
I mentioned it earlier, but the scripture that Sister Dibb uses here is found in James 1:22, where it says:
22 But be ye adoers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.
I think this is really interesting, especially based on what I’ve heard Mandy say about grace and believing in Jesus is enough, that baptism and other “actions” are only optional.
I cross-referenced “doers” and found these scripture references:
- Deut. 6:5
- Mark 12:30
- Moro. 10:32
- Deut. 10:12
- Josh. 24:15
- 1 Sam. 12:24
- Matt. 4:20
- Matt. 7:24
- Luke 6:47
- Luke 9:62
- Luke 12:43
- John 14:15
- Col. 3:23
- James 2:24 – Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.
All of these scriptures talk about DOING the will of the Lord, KEEPING His commandments, SERVING Him. And the final one talks about “…by works [is] a man justified, and not by faith only.”
I’ve studied about grace before. I found these statements about grace:
Because of personal choices, everyone also experiences the effects of sin (see 1 John 1:8–10; Mosiah 16:4). These effects are called spiritual death. No one can return to the presence of God without divine grace. Through the Atonement, we all can be forgiven of our sins; we can become clean before God. To receive this enabling power, we must obey the gospel of Jesus Christ, which includes having faith in Him, repenting of our sins, being baptized, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and trying to follow the teachings of Jesus Christ for the rest of our lives (see Ephesians 2:8–9; James 2:17–22; 2 Nephi 25:23; 31:20).
The grace of God helps us every day. It strengthens us to do good works we could not do on our own. The Lord promised that if we humble ourselves before Him and have faith in Him, His grace will help us overcome all our personal weaknesses (see Ether 12:27).
I also found these talks about what Mormon’s believe about grace:
- Receiving Divine Assistance through the Grace of the Lord
- “Have You Been Saved?” – this is the only one I read so far and it’s really AWESOME and direct!
- Words of the Early Apostles: Grace
- In the Strength of the Lord
- Tough Topics: Are You Saved by Grace or Works?
- Salvation: By Grace or By Works?
I won’t have time today to go through all the content but my feeling is this: We are saved by Grace AND by works (after all we can do). Christ has already paid the price for our mistakes. Now all we have to do is our best and he’ll make up the difference. Only WE know what our best truly is. WE will primarily be the judge of our own works. WE will know and feel if we’ve honestly done the best we can and if we’ve relied on the Grace of God to save us.
I Love It.
From the talk:
Our love for the gospel grows as we experience the love of our Father in Heaven and the peace promised by the Savior as we show Him we are willing to obey and follow Him.
At different times in our lives, whether we are new converts to the Church or lifelong members, we may find that this vibrant enthusiasm has faded. Sometimes this happens when times are challenging and we must practice patience. Sometimes it happens at the peak of our prosperity and abundance. Whenever I have this feeling, I know I need to refocus my efforts on increasing my gospel knowledge and living gospel principles more fully in my life.
One of the most effective but sometimes difficult gospel principles to apply is humility and submission to the will of God. In Christ’s prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane, He expressed to the Father, “Not my will, but thine, be done.”8 This should be our prayer as well. Oftentimes, it is in these quiet, prayerful moments that we feel encircled in Heavenly Father’s love and those joyful, loving feelings are restored.
I too know that submitting my will to God is one of the most difficult things to do. It goes right along with the talk about pride and how pride is putting my will against God’s will – it’s saying, “I know better than you do regarding what’s best for me…”
I’m grateful for today’s study.
I feel good about the progress I’m making.
I look forward to communicating with others and making this a habit in my life.