16: “A Mighty Change” (April 20–April 26)"
What would you say to someone who asks: “How do I know if I've been forgiven of my sins?” It can be a hard question, right? Forgiveness of sins is sometimes a difficult concept for us to navigate in our lives. That’s why in this week’s study group we turn to Mosiah 4-6 for answers on how we can receive a remission of our sins, and also how we can retain a remission of our sins throughout our lives. Spoiler alert: there is “exceedingly great joy” involved.
What are the three ways that people responded to the feelings they were having?
- They fell to the earth in reverence, “For the fear of the Lord had come upon them" (Mosiah 4:1). This "fear" is different than the fear referenced in 2 Timothy 1:7, in this verse "fear" refers to reverence.
- They "viewed themselves as even less than the dust of the earth" (Mosiah 4:2). The people were humbled and recognized their fallen condition. Which means that they were humbled (Mosiah 4:2). Refer to Helamen 12:7-8.
"8 For behold, the dust of the earth moveth hither and thither, to the dividing asunder, at the command of our great and everlasting God" (Helamen 12:7-8).
3. They asked the Lord to "apply the atoning blood of Christ" in order to receive a forgiveness of their sins and have their hearts purified (Mosiah 4:2). Refer to Exodus 12:7.
As a result, the people were filled with joy, having received a remission of their sins.
"And it came to pass that after they had spoken these words the Spirit of the Lord came upon them, and they were filled with joy, having received a aremission of their sins, and having peace of bconscience, because of the exceeding cfaith which they had in Jesus Christ who should come, according to the dwords which king Benjamin had spoken unto them" (Mosiah 4:3).
Elder Boyd K. Packer Quote: "Save for those few who defect to perdition after having known a fulness, there is no habit, no addiction, no rebellion, no transgression, no offense exempted from the promise of complete forgiveness… That great morning of forgiveness may not come at once. Do not give up if at first you fail. Often the most difficult part of repentance is to forgive yourself. Discouragement is part of that test. Do not give up. That brilliant morning will come… Then “the peace of God, which passeth … understanding” comes into your life once again. (Philippians 4:7) Then you, like Him, will remember your sins no more. How will you know? You will know!" (Elder Boyd K. Packer, "The Brilliant Morning of Forgiveness," October Conference 1995).
The world "Believe" is used 6 times in Mosiah 4:9-10:
"9 Believe in aGod; believe that he is, and that he bcreated all things, both in heaven and in earth; believe that he has all cwisdom, and all power, both in heaven and in earth; believe that man doth not dcomprehend all the things which the Lord can comprehend.
"10 And again, believe that ye must arepent of your sins and forsake them, and humble yourselves before God; and ask in bsincerity of heart that he would cforgive you; and now, if you dbelieve all these things see that ye edo them" (Mosiah 4:9-10).
Aman: In Hebrew, root for the word meaning “to have confidence in.”
Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf Quote: “God knows you. You are His child. He loves you.
Even when you think that you are not lovable, He reaches out to you.
This very day—every day—He reaches out to you, desiring to heal you, to lift you up, and to replace the emptiness in your heart with an abiding joy. He desires to sweep away any darkness that clouds your life and fill it with the sacred and brilliant light of His unending glory.
I have experienced this for myself.
And it is my witness as an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ that all who come unto God—all who truly believe, love, and do—can experience the same" (Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf, "Believe, Love, Do," General Conference October 2018).
- Acts 17:28-29 "For we are also His offspring"
- Psalms 82:6 "Ye are Gods, all of you are children of the most High"
- 1 John 4:7-8 "Everyone that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God"
- Revelations 15:3 "Great and marvelous are thy works"
- Hebrews 11:6 "He is a rewarder of them who diligently seek Him"
- James 4:8 "Draw nigh, to God and He will draw nigh to you"
- Mosiah 4
Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf Quote: “For some, the act of believing is difficult. In my experience, belief is not so much like a painting we look at and admire and about which we discuss and theorize. It is more like a plow that we take into the fields and, by the sweat of our brow, create furrows in the earth that accept seeds and bear fruit that shall remain” (Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf, "Believe, Love, Do," General Conference October 2018).
"If" statements in Mosiah 4:11:
- “If you have known of his goodness..."
- “If ye have tasted of his love...”
"Then" statements in Mosiah 4:12-16:
- "Ye shall always rejoice"
- "Be filled with the love of God"
- "Always retain a remission of your sins"
Definition of Succor: to run, giving aid or help (see yourdictionary.com, including "Origin of Succor").
Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf Quote: “The scriptures reveal that the more we love God and His children, the happier we become. (4 Nephi 1:15-16) The love Jesus spoke about, however, isn’t a gift-card, throwaway, move-on-to-other-things love. It isn’t a love that is spoken of and then forgotten. It is not a “let me know if there is anything I can do” sort of love.
The love God speaks of is the kind that enters our hearts when we awake in the morning, stays with us throughout the day, and swells in our hearts as we give voice to our prayers of gratitude at evening’s end.
This is the inexpressible love Heavenly Father has for us.
It is this endless compassion that allows us to more clearly see others for who they are. Through the lens of pure love, we see immortal beings of infinite potential and worth and beloved sons and daughters of Almighty God.
Once we see through that lens, we cannot discount, disregard, or discriminate against anyone” (Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf, "Believe, Love, Do," General Conference October 2018).
"And finally, I cannot tell you all the things whereby ye may commit sin; for there are divers ways and means, even so many that I cannot number them" (Mosiah 4:29).
Definition of Divers: Various, several or many (see dictionary.com).
"But this much I can tell you, that if ye do not awatch yourselves, and your bthoughts, and your cwords, and your deeds, and observe the commandments of God, and dcontinue in the faith of what ye have heard concerning the coming of our Lord, even unto the end of your lives, ye must perish. And now, O man, remember, and perish not" (Mosiah 4:30)
Richard G Scott Quote: “Some bad thoughts come by themselves. Others come because we invite them by what we look at and listen to. Talking about or looking at immodest pictures … can stimulate powerful emotions. It will tempt you to watch improper [videos] or movies. These things surround you, but you must not participate in them. Work at keeping your thoughts clean by thinking of something good. The mind can think of only one thing at a time. Use that fact to crowd out ugly thoughts. Above all, don’t feed thoughts by reading or watching things that are wrong. If you don’t control your thoughts, Satan will keep tempting you until you eventually act them out” (Richard G. Scott, “Making the Right Choices,” General Conference October 1994)
Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf Quote: “The healing hands of Jesus Christ reach out to all who seek Him. I have come to know without a doubt that believing and loving God and striving to follow Christ can change our hearts, soften our pain, and fill our souls with “exceedingly great joy" (Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf, "Believe, Love, Do," General Conference October 2018).
How did the people react to what they were taught?
"And they all cried with one voice, saying: Yea, we believe all the words which thou hast spoken unto us; and also, we know of their surety and truth, because of the Spirit of the Lord Omnipotent, which has wrought a mighty achange in us, or in our hearts, that we have no more disposition to do bevil, but to do good continually" (Mosiah 5:2).
The people receive a new name:
"And now, because of the covenant which ye have made ye shall be called the achildren of Christ, his sons, and his daughters; for behold, this day he hath spiritually begotten you; for ye say that your hearts are bchanged through faith on his name; therefore, ye are cborn of him and have become his dsons and his daughters" (Mosiah 5:7).
"I say unto you, I would that ye should remember to aretain the name written always in your hearts, that ye are not found on the left hand of God, but that ye hear and know the voice by which ye shall be called, and also, the name by which he shall call you" (Mosiah 5:12).
- John 8:12 "I am the light of the world"
- Ephesians 5:8 "Walk as Children of light"
- 1 Thessalonians 5:5 "Ye are all children of light...not of the night, nor of darkness"
- Philippians 2:15 "Among whom ye shine as lights in the world"
- D&C 115:5 "Arise and shine forth
- Mosiah 5:7 "Children of Christ"
"Therefore, I would that ye should be steadfast and immovable, always abounding in agood works, that Christ, the bLord God Omnipotent, may cseal you his, that you may be brought to heaven, that ye may have everlasting salvation and eternal life, through the wisdom, and power, and justice, and mercy of him who dcreated all things, in heaven and in earth, who is God above all. Amen" (Mosiah 5:15).
Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf Quote: “I testify and leave you my blessing that as we believe in God, as we love Him and love His children with all our hearts, and as we strive to do as God has instructed us, we will find healing and peace, happiness and meaning. In the sacred name of Jesus Christ, amen” (Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf, "Believe, Love, Do," General Conference October 2018).
On the very first day that I arrived on my mission, I thought for sure I would get a nice tour or something, but I didn't. Immediately, my trainer picked me up, put me in the car with my suitcase, and we drove to a discussion. I walked in to meet this woman with all of her little kids, I was blown away. It was not anything that I expected, but I came to adore and love this woman more than I even thought I could. I got to know a lot about her, and to be honest, I got to know stuff that naive little 21 year old me didn't really even want to know or hadn't even heard of before.
I can remember saying to my trainer, "Can she even get baptized? Like she's done some pretty bad things. I'm pretty sure she might get a 'no' on this." And my very wise trainer and companion, Sister Gee, who I adore, she assured me it's going to be fine. She's going to be fine. Clearly, I had no schema for sin or repentance, or just how far the Lord's arm of mercy could reach people. I'm embarrassed to even say that because I thought that I knew, and I didn't.
She was cleared for baptism, and I can vividly remember that day more than any other day and more than any other investigator or baptism on my mission. I remember how she looked when she came up out of that water, and it was absolutely pure light, absolute joy, and I will never forget that moment in my life.
Today in this discussion we are going to study Mosiah chapters four through six and we are going to discuss this light and joy that comes as a result of the Atonement of Jesus Christ.
Welcome to the Sunday on Monday study group. It's a Deseret Bookshelf PLUS+ original brought to you by LDS Living, where we take the Come, Follow Me lesson for the week, and we really dig into the scriptures together. I'm your host, Tammy Uzelac Hall, and if you're new to our study group, I want to make sure that you know how to use this podcast. You can listen to it all at once in one hour, but my favorite thing about the podcast is that it's also broken up into six segments, and each segment is about 10 to 12 minutes long. So you can just study your Scriptures for 10 minutes a day. How great is that?
At the end of each segment you're going to hear some music like, remember those storybooks when you were a little kid and it played a little music at the end like "bing?" It doesn't sound exactly like that, but there will be noise that will come at the end of the segment so that you know when the segment is finished so listen for the music.
Now another cool thing about this podcast, which is my favorite thing, is that each week I get to bring two of my really good friends to come and discuss the scriptures. And so today I have my really good friends Jalyn Peterson, who we've had before, but my new friend, Diane Gerdy Iman. Hi, ladies.
Hi, Tam, how you doing?
Good, such a pleasure to be here.
Oh, I'm so glad you're here. I feel like I'm home with you both because I've known you both for so long.
Through the thick and the thin right?
Honestly, I mean I've known you the longest Diane.
Longer than a lot of my friends I've had on here.
Right? At least 20 years...
Uh huh. So when I got hired to teach seminary, they put me in a school to do my preservice I think, and you were there, as one of the very few female seminary teachers.
Well, I don't know if you remember this, but we went up to Rick's together.
Oh, that's right, BYU-I.
One summer. It became BYU-I when we were there. It was pretty amazing. But remember, I was pregnant with my first child, so I wasn't going to be teaching much longer.
And you were single and just one of my most favorite people ever.
We had so much fun.
We really did.
Okay, well, we're gonna have so much fun today. So if you want to know more about my friends, you can find pictures of them and fun BIOS that they're going to write about themselves. You can find those in our show notes at LDSLiving.com/SundayonMonday because I always like to see who the person is first before I hear their voice. So go check that out.
This week's Come, Follow Me lesson is Mosiah chapters four through six. Now this is going to be a continuation of King Benjamin's address, and we get to see now how the people responded to what he said to them. And it's some pretty good stuff. So grab your scriptures and let's dig in. You guys ready?
Let's do it.
I have a question for you both. And here's what I want to know. What would you say to someone who asked you this question, "How do you know that you've been forgiven?"
Yeah, I know it's heavy, isn't it? How do you know you've been forgiven?
You know, I don't know that we always truly know. Right? Like, I think you have to hope. I think the Lord is much quicker to forgive than we are to forgive ourselves, but there is definite peace and comfort even if that's just the getting it off your chest part of it. There's definite peace and comfort I think that comes, and I think that's how you know that you're definitely further down the path in the process because yeah...
Right, that's what I think too, is that you just, you have more of a lightness about, you know, just like the weight is off of you. And that's more, "Okay. I'm gonna be okay, and I am alright."
Mmhmm. I agree.
I think the hard thing for me is the idea that I still remember my sins, and so I sometimes wonder, "Well, maybe I haven't been forgiven," maybe I'm kind of delusional about that. I think a lot of us struggle with that idea, and I like how you said Jalyn, that heavenly Father and Jesus Christ are so much quicker to forgive then we can forgive ourselves.
And you know, it's so cool because in the story King Benjamin does this beautiful address, and these people are just feeling the spirit so strong. I mean and many of us have had that experience, you're feeling the spirit so strong it compels you to action, you're thinking "I gotta do something." And that's what's going on here, and in Mosiah chapter four, the beauty of this is found in verses one through three. And we're going to study three distinct ways that these people are responding to this feeling that they're having, and we're going to go slow because I think it's worth talking about these things and marking them in our scriptures.
So let's start in Mosiah chapter four, and we are going to read verse one. And I'm going to kind of stop you here and there in each verse as we read these because I think it's important for us to mark and number, the three feelings or the three things that happened as the people were feeling the spirit.
So Jalyn, I want you to be our reader for these three verses, and I'll just kind of as I do stop you, whatever, you know. So start with verse one.
"And now, it came to pass that when king Benjamin had made an end of speaking the words which had been delivered unto him by the angel of the Lord, that he cast his eyes round about on the multitude, and behold they had fallen to the earth..."
Stop right there. Okay, highlight that in your scriptures. The very first thing that had happened is they had fallen to the earth. And now this is pretty normal, we read about this. Remember King Lamoni and his wife and everybody, they fall to the earth.
Oh yeah I love that story.
Yeah, that feeling you have and it's interesting, and when you read that in Alma 19, and you read right here that these people have fallen to the earth, it's so fascinating because I marked that, I put a little number one right there, and the word that comes to me is just "reverence."
It kind of reminds me back when we studied the different groups of people that went to the tree in Lehi's vision. Remember that group of people that when they finally got to the tree, they fell? And I was like, "Oh, maybe they fell because they were just so exhausted." But maybe they fell because it's just this feeling of utter reverence, just like, "Ahh."
And I think the sheer magnitude of it, right? Just the glory. I mean, it's so glorious that it just overwhelms you.
I think also that when it says "that they fell" that it was an action. It was, you know, something that they had to do, that they were moved to do that.
Perfect. I really like that. And when you read this verse right after it, it says, "...for the fear of the Lord had come upon them." That word "fear," it's important to mark that because it's not the kind of fear that Satan puts in our hearts. And that's such a great scripture and in Timothy where he says, "For I, the Lord, hath not given you the spirit of fear, but of power, of love, and of a sound mind." This word "fear" is reverence. That's what we're talking about here. That they had fallen to the earth because of this reverence that they have for the Lord. Okay, keep going in verse two now.
"And they had viewed themselves in their own carnal state, even less than the dust of the earth."
Highlight that and put a number "two." Now this is interesting, "to view yourself even less than the dust of the earth." What are you thinking that means?
That's a great question.
I know right.
I'm just thinking, humility. Complete humility.
Well, and it's the whole I mean, you know, we were created from the dust and we returned to the dust and that it's very much... God's in control.
Yeah. There's a great scripture cross reference you can put to this verse. It's Helaman in chapter 12, verses seven through eight. And I like the idea of this because it says, "Even the dust or the elements of the earth are obedient to God." To view yourself even less than that, your level of obedience, it's just fascinating to me. I really like that idea. Good thoughts, all of you. Okay, and then read the next one Jalyn.
"And they all cried aloud with one voice, saying: O have mercy, and apply the atoning blood of Christ that we may receive forgiveness of our sins, and our hearts may be purified; for we believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who created heaven and earth, and all things; who shall come down among the children of men."
Go back to right where he says, "O have mercy, and apply," highlight that word "apply." This is the third thing they did. They're asking the Lord to apply his atoning blood, and this is neat, the cross reference for that word, I would put Exodus chapter 12, verse seven. This is the part in the scripture story where the Lord tells the people to put blood over, to apply the blood to their doorposts. And that everyone with that blood will be saved.
Isn't that beautiful? The idea here where they're saying, "Apply the atoning blood of Christ." Like they get it from an old testament perspective. "Apply that to us. Let the destroying Angel pass by us," meaning Satan.
And how, you know, we don't have to, we're at a higher law now where it's not really painting the blood on the door. Although, I had that thought the other day of like, "Wow, if we could just, can we paint the lentil post and everything in COVID-19 and earthquakes will just pass us by?"
I thought the same thing.
I was just like, "Can you just go over us? Can we go back to that?"
Oh I, you know what, I'm just going to post this question out there to anyone listening because I have been thinking about that non stop. "What is the equivalent of the blood on our doors for us today?" And I don't even know the answer. I'm still thinking about it. But if people want to chime in on Facebook or Instagram. Like what is the blood today for us? What is it on our posts that's gonna save us?
What is it that protects us? Right?
Well, and how do you apply? Like, that's the thing. It's not, I mean, this is why it's a higher law because it's not just going out and painting your door. Right? It's now I have to apply...
Could it be that easy?
Yeah. Could it be that easy. And I don't think the answer is yes anymore.
No we have to work for it.
Yeah. Although he's freely giving it to us.
Yes, absolutely. Okay, so let's go in now, after they speak these words, I love the result. So let's go into Mosiah chapter four, verse three. And Jalyn, read the beginning of verse three.
"And it came to pass that after they had spoken these words the Spirit of the Lord came upon them, and they were filled with joy, having received a remission of their sins, and having peace of conscience..."
That's it. That idea "receiving joy." I like to say "my soul was saturated with joy." That's how I felt when I walked out of the bishop's office one time, my soul was saturated with joy. I'd never felt so much joy in my life than hearing the, "Yeah, you're forgiven." And then the idea of peace of conscience. Tell me what that means. What do you think of when you hear "peace of conscience?"
I think it's exactly what Diane was saying is that you feel that weight lifted off of you. That is the application right? I think that is the application of letting it go. And really letting that peace come upon you, and having the faith and moving forward because you could get stuck and ruminate in that sin forever, and that's what Satan wants you to do.
Just give it to the Lord, and just, "Okay. I can move on."
Diane, here's a great quote I want you to read, this is by Elder Boyd K. Packer, and he talks about just what you said Jalyn, that it's for everyone.
“Save for those few who defect to perdition after having known a fulness, there is no habit, no addiction, no rebellion, no transgression, no offense exempted from the promise of complete forgiveness… That great morning of forgiveness may not come at once. Do not give up if at first you fail. Often the most difficult part of repentance is to forgive yourself. Discouragement is part of that test. Do not give up. That brilliant morning will come… Then “the peace of God, which passeth … understanding” comes into your life once again. (Philippians 4:7) Then you, like Him, will remember your sins no more. How will you know? You will know! (Elder Boyd K. Packer, The Brilliant Morning of Forgiveness, October Conference 1995).
Diane, when have you felt that bright morning come?
You know, later on in these chapters it talks about running faster than we have strength, and when I am able just to focus on those things that are important, the things that will help me to be more like my Savior, that is when I feel that forgiveness when I am truly stripped of that pride and thinking that I can do things on my own.
I like that you brought up the "running faster" because Satan is good at that. Definitely.
We've just talked about how we can obtain a remission of our sins. In the next segment, we're going to talk about what it means to retain a remission of our sins and what that looks like on a day to day practice. And we're going to frame the way we understand this by using a talk by Elder Uchtdorf called "Believe, Love, and Do."
Segment 2 13:28
Here's a funny story. At the onset of the Coronavirus, we were driving home from somewhere and I have the girls in the car with me and my 10 year old, she had my phone and she just kind of blurts out, "Mom, you are not going to believe this. Listen to how many people have died of the coronavirus in the Americas," in the "Americas," haha no. She said, "Mom, listen how many people have died of the Coronavirus in America," and she named some astronomical number that I thought, "Were the only people alive on the earth. What just happened?"
Like it's the craziest thing ever? And I said, "Hun, what's your source?" And she just named some something dot something that was so erroneous, and I was like, "Oh, yeah. Um okay, we're gonna have to talk about sources and where we get our knowledge from." Because we live in such a world, my daughter is growing up in a world where you type anything you want and you're gonna get an answer like that. Right?
Anything you want to find. There it is.
True or not.
And it's kind of funny because when you think about this, like, tell me what do you guys believe? What is your go to? What's your credible source? Do you guys have a credible source?
Look, I'm old school man. You get me to the lead of Britannica. I remember my librarian saying, "There's nothing smarter than that encyclopedia. You just quote that thing that's the smartest thing there is." Yeah, but I do pay attention to the source. Like when I look at stuff I'm going to go to the source.
My 12 year old said, "You only can trust it if it says '.gov,'" I'm like, "That's a good start. All right. Sure." So this is a really interesting concept to think about in the world we live in. I want you to look in Mosiah chapter four, verses nine through 10. There is a word that is repeated often, and I want you to look for the word and count how many times you see it. Go.
What's the word?
And how many times did you see it?
I'm using my high school seminary scriptures.
I've got my mission ones and I've always circled five.
Six times you're gonna see that word "believe" in verses nine and 10. Now, here's something really cool. Highlight those words "believe" and then I want to give you we've talked about this before, but it's so powerful. In Hebrew, the word "believe" is "Aman." And it means, it's the root for word meaning "to have confidence in," to have trust, to have confidence in. Now, you can read this where it says, "Believe in God, believe that he is, and that he created all things," but I want to read it now with "have confidence in God." So Diane, will you read that for us replacing the believe with "have confidence in."
"Have confidence in God, believe that he is, and that he created all things both in heaven and in earth. Have confidence in God that he has all wisdom and all power, both in heaven and in earth. Have confidence in God that man doth not comprehend all the things which the Lord can comprehend. And again, have confidence in God, that ye must repent of your sins and forsake them, and Humble yourselves before God, and ask in sincerity of heart, that he would forgive you. And now, if you have confidence in God, all these things see that ye do them."
I love the way that "have confidence" changes. The idea of believe. What do you have confidence in when it comes to God?
I have confidence in the scriptures. I know that they came from God through his prophets, and so I know in reading these verses, that I do have confidence in God. I believe that he is, that he created all things. I believe that he has a plan greater than the plan for my own life and I believe he is in charge, and that through that, that's confidence in everything.
Is it hard to have that confidence?
It is if you... I think if you don't read the scriptures often, if you're not seeking out his word daily, then I think you can easily forget that. It's like the internet. If you Google and you're not going straight to the source, if you're not looking for the truth in everything, then I think it is, I think you can easily lose that confidence.
Oh, I like that.
I have written in my scriptures a couple things. I have where were you talked about having confidence in God, I have, "We couldn't do anything without the Lord." And then also, "Count your blessings. Acknowledge the Lord's hand in all things." And I think that's where my confidence comes, is knowing that I can receive and retain a remission of my sins and have this relationship with Christ. And that he is all powerful and all knowing and everything is gonna be all right.
Diane, can I ask you this? It's personal and so I'm gonna ask anyway, whatever.
Tell me what role this confidence played in your life when you lost your mom?
That's a great question. You were with me as I did lose my mom. I really had to trust the Lord because all of a sudden one day I found out that my best friend had stage four cancer. My mom has been there through it all with me. And it was really, really hard for me to, to give this to the Lord and say, "Okay, you know, please help me because I need my mom here." And I'll tell you, my testimony grew so so much, and I was strengthened because I knew that he was aware of me and he was aware of my mom. And it's been okay.
I think of you in that experience because it's pretty recent. I mean, it's been a couple years. But I look back at that verse, verse nine, where it says, "Have confidence that he has all wisdom." And that's a hard one though, to think that he has all... I mean, think of that, "all wisdom," not "all knowing," "all wisdom."
He is completely in charge. And he knows the end from the beginning, which I think is a huge thing.
But so in thinking about like, Diane, when we were talking about applying the atoning blood of Christ, so applying that teaching, I believe that he has all wisdom because you were asking, like, "I need my mom here with me." So like, how did you apply that to get over that point of like, "I need her here, but I believe that you have all wisdom and are taking her," like, how did you get through that?
That is a great question. I would say that as I really worked on strengthening my relationship with the Savior, that I became stronger, that I just felt like, "Okay, it's okay that she's not gonna be right here. But, you know, I still have her but I also have the Lord right here with me," and I am stronger because of that, you know, I'm stronger because I do have the Savior and it's going to be okay.
And developing that relationship with the Lord. Like what does that look like for you? Is that reading scriptures? How does that look for you?
A big part of it is, I would say going to the temple, that has been my big thing. We had a Stake Conference, a training, and it was just for the women, and the General Authority that came and visited said, "I want you ladies to go to the temple every week for the next five weeks and take three names with you that you have found on your own." And I'm in the stake primary presidency, and we had just been called. So we thought, "Okay, this is the way that we're going to kick off our presidency."
And so I had never done any genealogy. I mean, seriously, I left that to my big sister, you know, I don't do those things.
I'm still leaving it to my big sister and I don't have one.
I know, right.
You know what, I found some names. And I was super excited. Our presidency went every single week and did initiatories, and I'll tell you, why my testimony grew. Like I was more calm. I was, I just felt so much better. And so that is where that strength really comes for me is attending the temple.
Yeah. I just wanted to know the concrete way.
No I'm so glad you asked that, and I love how it developed and the answer because that is, that's how you applied it. It's the temple, the action. It's different for everyone. That was great, great. And you know, it goes right in line with this quote. So I mentioned that we were going to use a talk from Elder Uchtdorf, and I want to read this. So it's a talk titled "Believe, Love, and Do." So we've talked about believing, we're gonna talk a little bit more about that, but I want you to hear this quote, this is what he said.
“God knows you. You are His child. He loves you. Even when you think that you are not lovable, He reaches out to you. This very day—every day—He reaches out to you, desiring to heal you, to lift you up, and to replace the emptiness in your heart with an abiding joy. He desires to sweep away any darkness that clouds your life and fill it with the sacred and brilliant light of His unending glory. I have experienced this for myself. And it is my witness as an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ that all who come unto God—all who truly believe, love, and do—can experience the same.”
I love this talk so much. And I just, when I read it, I thought, "Wow, 'Believe, Love, and Do' that's Mosiah chapters four through six." It just is. And so we're going to study through those words throughout the rest of this episode, but in the next segment, I want us to specifically talk about the part in this talk where Elder Uchtdorf says the darkness that clouds our life.
Segment 3 23:39
The phrase in Elder Uchtdorf's talk where he says, quote, "...he desires to sweep away any darkness that clouds your life," that really like hit me in my heart because I thought, "Boy who doesn't have darkness in their life?" So I want to know, how has he swept that away? Or what has that experience been like for you?
Well, I have a good story about that. As a lot of you here in Utah know that we had a 5.7 magnitude earthquake recently, and I'm living alone, I'm a single person, and I was in my apartment by myself. I've only been in this apartment for like four weeks. It's a, you know, like a bigger building in downtown Salt Lake, and so I wasn't even used to all just the normal noises.
And so all of a sudden, that morning, when it just, I had no clue what it was, it sounded like a freight train hitting the building. I didn't know if it was just this building. It didn't even read. I couldn't even register "earthquake" in my mind at that point. And my little puppy just jumped and I was like, "Well, I gotta save the puppy." And then I was like, "Wah." I was just, you know, I was freaking out and all I could do is just say, "Heavenly Father, Heavenly Father, like, What do I do? How do I...?"
But being alone, like that was the big thing is like I was just by myself. I don't know how moms do it because I was so afraid just even for my dog. I don't even know if it's a child how you do that. But I I just think I didn't know what to do. And my first instinct was to call my family because the power went off and it was totally dark, and the phone line wouldn't go through.
And so at that point, I don't know if like, how big is this? Is this the precursor to a bigger one? And all I could think of is those images of people like in Mexico City where the buildings have collapsed, and I'm now in this building, and I'm just picturing that I'm going to be buried, you know, under rubble, and that's like, my biggest fear of dying is like suffocating or fire or anything like that.
And I just I was like, I literally, "Heavenly Father's all I have right now. Like, I don't know what to do." And at first, I was like, "Geez, Heavenly Father, give us a break. Like we're right in the middle of an outbreak." At my job, I'm talking to people all day long who are going through trauma with their financial situation right now. It just felt like way too much. It's like, I can't do this on top of it.
Like, I think as a single person, it's just it's really hard when you're not surrounded by family, when you're in this and so you have to have, if you don't believe this, if you don't have confidence in God, I don't know what you do. If you can't look back and see the greater picture, to get through the whole thing. And there's so much comfort in knowing that God is in charge.
And so going back to that, quote, Tammy, I'm not sure that God has fully swept away that darkness in my life yet because I still feel on edge. I still feel nervous about it. I'm still struggling with the fact that I'm not able to meet with other saints in the same kind of way that we have been able to meet and to feed off the spirit of other people. And so I'm working on that, but I definitely have hope and have confidence in God that that will be swept away. That it's a process just like I believe repentance is. I think, you know, sweeping away any kind of darkness is a process, but I have absolute faith that God will continue to do that for me.
I love hearing your experience. The thing that really touched me when you said that, and I'm getting a little emotional because I've had those times too, and the thing that I loved, the first thing she said, what did she say when the earthquake came? She said, "I just cried out to Heavenly Father." So here was that action, that believing, putting confidence in the Lord. So even though it didn't make it easier, and, you know, we still are struggling with things. We're reaching out. We are putting our trust in our Heavenly Father and saying, "Okay, help me out cause this is hard."
Yeah. And I think that's honestly the concrete action I'm taking now. Like I asked you before, like, "What does that look like?" It really is still reaching out to Heavenly Father.
And, you know, when you were talking too I was thinking, "How great is heavenly Father?" Like this is what resonated within me was you were talking about how great he is and how wonderful he is and that he is our Father and He loves us, and he's a God of chances. And I think we know that when Christ comes again, he'll come as a thief in the night. I'm so grateful that he wasn't a thief during that time, but that like he's giving us these little moments to go, "Not yet, but you better get ready."
And I think of like when I mother and how I am as a parent, you know, I give my kids steps to get where I need them to go. Rather than go, "Well, you weren't ready," and they go, "Well, you didn't..." I mean, I just think like, I love how he just gives us his little like, "Okay, you know I'm coming, but here's my little nudge just to remind you like it really might happen."
And for those of us who are believers, that was what it meant for us at that time and when you said or just a minute ago, that you said, "I'm still working on my relationship with him." I think that is what is paramount to all of this, is this belief that's just it's the relationship we have with him. And at the top of the page in Mosiah chapter four, I have these verses of scripture written, and it's a scripture chain and you know me, I love a scripture chain, which means we're going to start with a scripture, and then I'm going to give you another one to connect to it, to connect, and we're going to connect about six scriptures that will connect us back to Mosiah that are worth noting and reading because these are some of my favorite scriptures that teach us about our relationship with Heavenly Father.
And so I want us to look at these and start. So the first scripture you're going to put at the top of your page is Acts chapter 17, verses 20 through 29. And you know what, these verses of scripture are great for anyone who's planning to serve a mission. I wish I'd had these when people didn't understand or believe in a god, you're going to use their Bible to show them, "Let me tell you who God is." So let's go there. Jalyn, will you please read for us Acts chapter 17 verses 28 and 29.
"For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring."
"Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device."
How cool is that? We're his offspring. So next to that verse, you're going to put this reference, Psalms 82 verse six. Okay, and then we're going to turn there. So go to Psalms Chapter 82, verse six. Boy, I wish I'd had these on my mission. Not that I wanted to Bible bash with anyone, it just would have made me sound smart. Psalms Chapter 82. And we're going to look at verse six. And so Diane, will you read that for us?
"I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High."
All right. How cool is that?
Yes, I love it. Okay, next to that verse, the next reference you're going to put is First John chapter four, verses seven through eight. So First John, not the Book of John, but First John the epistle First John chapter four verses seven through eight, and Jalyn or no I'm gonna read, I'll take a turn. So First John chapter four, verses seven through eight. It's on page 1,559, verse seven and eight.
"Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God."
"He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love."
I almost want to right next to it, "Diane," like you are to me, you are "love." We were even talking how hard it was for you during the Coronavirus because you're a hugger.
I am such a lover.
You are. You love to love.
It's so hard for me.
You love to love. So I just think that's really neat that those of us, everyone that loveth is born of God and knoweth God. Okay next to that verse, the next reference, put Revelation chapter 15 verse three, and turn there. Revelation chapter 15 verse three, and Jalyn you're next. That's on page 1,580 in the big book.
Oh, thank you.
Dang it, I feel like I'm losing at the Scripture. Our scripture chain chase.
We don't do those anymore really.
I'm gonna miss those. They're the best.
So Revelation chapter 15, verse three.
"And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints."
Next to that, put this verse: Hebrews chapter 11 verse six. Book of Hebrews, chapter 11, verse six, and Diane, you're up for that. Hebrews chapter 11, verse six, that's on page 1,533.
"But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him."
Why do you say that?
He's a rewarder of people who diligently seek and even if, you know even in moments of darkness, like you can diligently seek, you can always diligently seek.
Well yeah, that's you. Yeah, you've always been that way.
Yeah, that's true.
I mean, that was your go to during that earthquake.
Which I was proud of myself.
That's the first thing you did, right?
Yeah, I really...
You always have been that way.
...usually I say a cuss word, but yeah, I did not time.
Next to that verse, let's put this reference James chapter four, verse eight. So go there. James chapter four, verse eight, and that is on page 1,542, verse eight, and I will read that.
"Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded."
But I like the beginning. "Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you." Absolutely. And then next to that verse you're going to put where we started Mosiah chapters four, at the top of the page, Mosiah chapter four, and so that is your scripture chain of believing and trusting and having confidence in God. And all of those verses that we are his children, that he loves us, that he is there for us. Elder Uchtdorf goes on to say this in that talk. Jalyn, will you read this quote by Elder Uchtdorf?
“For some, the act of believing is difficult. In my experience, belief is not so much like a painting we look at and admire and about which we discuss and theorize. It is more like a plow that we take into the fields and, by the sweat of our brow, create furrows in the earth that accept seeds and bear fruit that shall remain.”
Thank you. You're from Heber. You ever worked a plow?
I mean, I was from the west side, but I wasn't that west.
I want you to think about that idea of plowing through the field and what that looks like or has looked like when it comes to believing in God because we're gonna talk about that in the next segment as we talk about loving him.
Segment 4 35:05
I want you guys to tell me what do you love?
Okay, you know, I love me a Raspberry Dream from Swig. It's Christmas in a cup.
Swig is for those of you listening, Swig is like in Utah there are these soda places everywhere where you just go through a drive through and you order your favorite drink, soda, pop, whatever with all this stuff in it and yours is what?
Well, okay, first of all they know me by name. They totally know me. So it is Dr. Pepper, kind of light on the ice, raspberry puree, and coconut creamer. I'm telling you, life changing.
I like that you called it "Christmas in a Cup."
It really is.
It sounds disgusting to me. No offense. But my niece works at a Swig and she's become quite a little a barista.
Well, I don't think they're called baristas, or a bartender. I don't know what...
They're just called "Heavenly Mixologist."
A "mixologist," maybe, yeah.
Jalyn, what do you love?
I love my puppy. Creepy but I love my puppy, like not in a weird way. Not in like "I'm a cat lady" sort of way now that we've gone down like desperate singleness, but I love puppies.
Yeah. Oh, I like that.
What do you love Tammy?
Okay I love mine too.
I mean I really do but I also okay... cheese. I love cheese.
Cheese is God's way of saying, "Everything will be okay."
That's right, it is Jalyn.
I think you taught me that phrase.
I think so. It really is cheese. But I want to know this about you: do you think your guys's idea of love has changed or evolved over the years?
When I think about who I loved in my 19, 20s, 30s.
In your 1920s? How old are you know?
I know haha. When I think about who I loved in my teens, and then in my 20s, and even let's be honest, my early 30s... Wow.
Are we talking about people we love?
Yes, yes. My idea of love has totally evolved.
Oh, totally different.
Yeah? How so?
Well yeah, I think it's as you get older, it's a little more practical. It's not just like, "Oh, love will solve everything." I think it's more... It's more about the quality, right? Like it's about, there's a depth to it.
Oh, absolutely. What about you, Diane?
Yeah, it's not the gushy we think it was. It's more, "Okay, this this love that I have, it is it's so deep, and it's through the thick, the thin, the good, the bad, the ugly."
And I think I thought that you just had it.
Like, you know, you just have love. Like, "I just fell in love." Not like it's something that just happens to you. It's not something that you develop, and you cultivate, and you have to practice and work out.
For sure. Boy, I think there's a lot of truth to that. Especially for me when I married my husband. I also married into two little kids, and that love was not immediate. Boy I had to cultivate and grow, and after, you know, 14 years, I really love these girls, but that was hard at first that love.
Well you have to choose it. I think you have to re-choose them all the time. You have to remake that decision.
And pray for it sometimes. Boy, I had to pray for it. Yeah, I love them. This word is an interesting word when you think about it in context of God -- sin, repentance, all of that. And that's what Mosiah chapter four, verses 11 through 16 are going to teach us. And this is such a great "if and then" and I talk about that a lot because I love "if and then" statements in the scriptures. So let's do this.
We're going to start and we're going to read verse 11. This is the big "if" so I would put to the outside of verse 11, I put in big letters, "IF" and I highlighted it. This is our "if" statement. Our "then" statement is going to start in verse 12. So to the outside of verse 12 I put "then," and then I put verses "12 through 16" because the "then" statement, here's what I love about God, the "if" is one verse, but the "then" is some good stuff. So let's were gonna study and we're going to read these, we're going to start out with our "if" statement. And we're going to read in verse 11. And we are at Diane, will you read that verse for us?
"And again I say unto you as I have said before, that as ye have come to the knowledge of the glory of God, or if..."
There it is. Circle that word "if" or highlight it. There's our "if."
Okay, I've got it.
"...if ye have known of his goodness and have tasted of his love, and have received a remission of your sins, which causeth such exceedingly great joy in your souls, even so I would that ye should remember, and always retain in remembrance, the greatness of God, and your own nothingness, and his goodness and long-suffering towards you, unworthy creatures, and humble yourselves even in the depths of humility, calling on the name of the Lord daily, and standing steadfastly in the faith of that which is to come, which was spoken by the mouth of the angel."
Thank you. There's a lot of "if's" in there. But what really stood out to me was "if ye have tasted of His love." What is that... like tell me about that? Like what do you think of? How would you describe that?
When you taste something you really, you experience it, right? Like it's almost a full sensory thing it takes. You know, you have to have smell to taste it, like it's an all kind of encompassing experience when you taste something, plus a taste is just like a little bit. Right like it's not necessarily...
It doesn't say "feasted" on his love.
Yeah, it doesn't say if you "feasted." Like so they've just heard this talk that he's given them and they've seen themselves in their own carnal state, and so I think that's all they kind of have a taste of right now. We're in that talk and they're like, "Please forgive us. We get it now." And so I think all they have done is taste it. It's not like, we're not digging into the deep. The deep part of it yet. That's what I that's kind of what I think of.
Okay, that is so good. Diane?
I was going to say to add on that, that they ingested, ya know? That they took it into themselves, and they hungered for more.
Yeah. It became part of them.
Well, I think, wow, I love what both of you said because as you're saying it, I'm like, and it's coming alive for me because I thought, "Oh my gosh, you're right." They and they just had, kook what they did, when he says, "tasted of his love." And, "then and have received remission of your sins," like the taste comes even before and it doesn't take a lot. Like just a little taste of wanting to just receive a remission of your sins. Just a taste of his love makes you want to be better.
If you have had that experience in your life, and if you have, I highly recommend you tell your children about that. If you have children, or if you have nieces and nephews and grandchildren, please, please, please share your repentance story. Sometimes we dwell on the idea that we don't want to talk about past transgressions, and I'm not telling, saying you should divulge everything you've ever done, but I feel like if we cannot be like Alma and Paul and tell our conversion experience and how we have repented, then what's the point?
Like, I just want my kids to know. "Yeah, I've had to repent. That I have tasted of his love, I have received remission of my sins." And what's neat is because then here's the "then." And because I have had that experience in my life, look what I am going to now do and get. So we're going to go verses 12 through 16, and Jalyn there's quite a few and I might stop you a little bit, but will you start by reading those verses?
"And behold, I say unto you that if ye do this ye shall always rejoice..."
Pause for a second. It says right there, "Behold, I say unto you that if ye shall do this, ye shall..." Right above that, put that's our "then." "Then" that's where it would go, "...then ye shall always rejoice." So go ahead.
"...and be filled with the love of God, and always retain a remission of your sins; and ye shall grow in the knowledge of the glory of him that created you, or in the knowledge of that which is just and true."
I'm gonna have you pause for a second. Grab your scripture markers if you're reading along with us because there are so many "thens" in these verses that I want you to mark them as we read along and see how many you can find. Keep going Jalyn.
"And ye will not have a mind to injure one another, but to live peaceably, and to render to every man according to that which is his due."
"And ye will not suffer your children that they go hungry, or naked; neither will ye suffer that they transgress the laws of God, and fight and quarrel one with another, and serve the devil, who is the master of sin, or who is the evil spirit which hath been spoken of by our fathers, he being an enemy to all righteousness."
"But ye will teach them to walk in the ways of truth and soberness; ye will teach them to love one another, and to serve one another."
"And also, ye yourselves will succor those that stand in need of your succor; ye will administer of your substance unto him that standeth in need; and ye will not suffer that the beggar putteth up his petition to you in vain, and turn him out to perish."
Let's mark a word in verse 16. The word "succor" -- "s, u, c, c, o, r." It comes up often in Scripture and it's important for us to know the meaning of that word. The word "succor" means to "run giving aid or help." And I just love the imagery of that. "And also ye yourselves will run to give aid or help to those that stand in need of your help." That's pretty cool. Of your running help. This is so cool the idea of tasting of his love, receiving a remission of your sins, and look at all of these "thens" that will be the result of that. Is there one that stood out to you?
Well, I don't know that I've ever thought of those as "thens" that changes the whole context of those verses for me because it's not more of a... I mean, yes, they're commandments to do those things, but it's saying "if you have the knowledge of the glory of God, if you've tasted of his love..."
"If you call on his name daily."
Yeah, if you do those things that are really not huge things that we make, make them out to be, right? Like, it's not a big checklist. Like then you have the power to do all those things, and I think that's how that verse ties in. Diane, that you talked about more about not running faster than you have strength like we make a big deal about that, but really, if we're calling on his name daily and doing those things, then we'll be able to accomplish all those things.
The one that stands out to me is to "succor those that stand in need of succor." And that "you will not suffer that the begger puteth up his petition to you in vain and turn him out to perish." Like I said, I've just recently moved to downtown Salt Lake, and I think I always thought of the homeless problem as, "Oo that's not," it's not my daily purview. It's not something I see every day. And now I run into those less fortunate people every day.
And I've been so probably just consumed, focused on that. And, you know, how can you help? How can you be that person? It's kind of weighed on me of like, "How do I help?" And I've been asking for those opportunities, you know, to help in the way I can help, and this is such like, that's the good news of the gospel of if I've tasted of his joy, and I keep calling on his name daily, then, then, I get the ability to do that.
Let's tie that thought into this quote by Elder Uchtdorf again from his talk "Believe, Love and Do" and here's what he has to say about the scriptures in love.
“The scriptures reveal that the more we love God and His children, the happier we become. (4 Nephi 1:15-16) The love Jesus spoke about, however, isn’t a gift-card, throwaway, move-on-to-other-things love. It isn’t a love that is spoken of and then forgotten. It is not a “let me know if there is anything I can do” sort of love."
Doesn't that sound familiar?
"The love God speaks of is the kind that enters our hearts when we awake in the morning, stays with us throughout the day, and swells in our hearts as we give voice to our prayers of gratitude at evening’s end. This is the inexpressible love Heavenly Father has for us. It is this endless compassion that allows us to more clearly see others for who they are. Through the lens of pure love, we see immortal beings of infinite potential and worth and beloved sons and daughters of Almighty God. Once we see through that lens, we cannot discount, disregard, or discriminate against anyone.”
Wow. That's great. That idea of that love, and how love for us changes, not just as we get older, but just as we believe more, and as we study more, right? Then our love that kind of love changes. So we just read about how this love then will lead us to do things. How tasting of God's love will then lead us to do and we're going to talk about that word "do" in the next segment.
Segment 5 47:25
Okay, are you guys... this one made me laugh when I thought about it because is anyone like me? Are you a crazy thinker? Like driving down the road and your caught with your own thoughts and you're like, "Where did that come from?"
Exactly true. Exactly true.
Can you share the craziest thought you've had?
Oh, craziest? Oh I don't... I don't know. Just random, do you ever get the thing where you start to catastrophize in your head? And like before you know it, you've buried every person in your family. They're all dead and it's you left and you're like, "What am I doing right now?"
I actually have never had that.
But I have because that is my life. I hear a siren and I'm like, "Oh, yeah. My kids, my husband." Oh, I creep out when I am left to my own thoughts.
Yeah, yeah, it's bad.
Well, okay, how do you control your thoughts, though? Can you? I mean, come on we all know we're crazy. How do you control your thoughts?
You absolutely can. I totally believe you can. You have to notice what they are though. And then once you have that little like, "Whoa. What kind of path were you just down?" You can reel it back.
You have to focus and channel it.
You have to focus and channel it like but I think that is such... that's kind of like a superpower because I think if we just let our thoughts run away with us, you know, your thoughts create feelings and feelings create action, and actions create, you know.
So that is awesome Jalyn because what you just said is the key to what we're going to study in the "do" part of this segment. So let's go to Mosiah chapter four, verse 29 because this is how this whole thing has ended. These people just got done hearing the "if and the then" and now they're going to be warned in verse 29.
And we're going to look at verse 29, and 30. And I want us to mark these and we're going to give you a word that's going to help you understand it a little bit better. So in verse 29, I'm going to read these two so I can stop and give you a word.
"And finally, I cannot tell you all the things whereby ye may commit sin; for there are divers ways and means, even so many that I cannot number them."
Circle and highlight the word "divers," and this word means "various or several." So there's a lot, he's like, "I can't even tell you how many of the different ways you could possibly sin, there's just too many." And boy, we absolutely know that in the world we live in, there's just, it's kind of funny like, and I sometimes when I talk to kids about this, I just say there's no sin that you can commit where God's like, "I did not see that coming." Like, come on, there's divers ways, there's so many you can't even imagine.
So he's gonna sum it up in one verse by saying, "So here's what you're going to do." And this is verse 30.
"But this much I can tell you, that if ye do not watch yourselves, and your thoughts, and your words, and your deeds, and observe the commandments of God, and continue in the faith of what ye have heard concerning the coming of our Lord, even unto the end of your lives, ye must perish. And now, O man, remember, and perish not."
Right there, "thoughts, words, deeds," it's what you just said Jalyn. This idea that your thoughts become words and your words become actions or deeds, right?
Yeah, we only ever I mean, I think before that too words, every thought we have creates a feeling, and any anytime we ask, it's because we want to create a feeling. It's because we're trying to, you know, be happier, we're trying to avoid sadness or do whatever. Based on that feelings, it's how we act. It's like when you're having those crazy thoughts in your head and it's making you mad, and it's not the actual sentences they're saying, because those are just words, but it's your interpretation and you have a emotional response to that.
And that emotional response controls your actions. But you can always like back that up and say, "Okay, this thought is not serving me." Or, "I don't even have all the facts. That's just a sentence in my head. All it is, is a sentence in my head. It's not truth. It's not..." Our brain will take us down all kinds of crazy roads and I think Satan loves that tool. It's such an easy tool. I mean, you just go down, down that whole path.
Totally. I mean, if there's anyone who wants to teach us the opposite of this, it's Satan because I feel like we live in such a world where like, "You're not going to be fazed by that. What you think isn't really going to matter." I mean, I am a witness that if I put enough stuff in my brain, I will eventually say that or become that I just... it just is like I am so susceptible to anything with really harsh language.
I tried to read a book one time that somebody recommended to me that everyone was reading and I thought, "Oh, I can read this, it's cute." And I started reading it, within the first five pages, there was a word that was repeated over and over and over again that I actually found myself using it. I was like, "Wait a minute, I don't speak like that." Like for sure my thoughts became my words and words become deeds.
Because the more you have those thoughts, the more they're ingrained in your in your brain.
No one's immune from that. I don't care who you are. It's biological as Aliah said a few weeks ago as a guest.
Yes, it's exactly how the brain works and you're wearing down that path in your brain. And, and it takes a concerted effort a lot of times to undo that. And I think that's the whole part with sin and feeling discouraged is we feel discouraged because we're telling ourselves still, "I'm worthless. The atonement isn't real."
Yeah, thoughts can go either way.
Yeah, "God isn't who he says he is." And I think Satan delights in that so much if he can make you believe the sentences in your brain that are not true that absolutely are not true.
100%. I totally agree. Okay, I want you to read this quote for us Jalyn, this is by Richard G. Scott. I really like what he says about this because this thought it's just perfectly sums up, I mean, if you're going to say anything to anybody about sin, it's just going to boil down to thoughts, words, and deeds.
You couldn't sum it up better than this. So go ahead and read this quote Jalyn.
“Some bad thoughts come by themselves. Others come because we invite them by what we look at and listen to. Talking about or looking at immodest pictures … can stimulate powerful emotions. It will tempt you to watch improper [videos] or movies. These things surround you, but you must not participate in them. Work at keeping your thoughts clean by thinking of something good. The mind can think of only one thing at a time. Use that fact to crowd out ugly thoughts. Above all, don’t feed thoughts by reading or watching things that are wrong. If you don’t control your thoughts, Satan will keep tempting you until you eventually act them out” (Richard G. Scott, “Making the Right Choices,” Ensign, Nov. 1994, 37).h chapt 4 vs 29
I love that it's not just it says, "Don't feed thoughts by reading or watching things that are wrong." It doesn't have to be any immodest pictures or even anything like that. There's so many things, divers ways. But like there's no way in writing this King Benjamin can know there's going to be the internet, and boy are there going to be some divers ways for people to sin. But I think any thought that does not lead you back to "I am a child of God, like I am offspring of God." Anything that's contrary to that thought, is is a lie.
The thing that I really love in these verses is that King Benjamin is not telling us step by step how to act, but he's just simply saying, "Watch yourself. Watch your thoughts."
Yeah. Perfect. And then in Elder Uchtdorf's talk he leads naturally into after he talks about the do, then I love this: “The healing hands of Jesus Christ reach out to all who seek Him. I have come to know without a doubt that believing and loving God and striving to follow Christ can change our hearts, soften our pain, and fill our souls with “exceedingly great joy.”
In the next segment, we're going to talk about the change these people experienced because they were willing to follow Jesus Christ, believe in God, and because of this exceedingly great joy that they felt, and because of all of these things, they took on themselves a new name, we're going to discuss that new name next.
Segment 6 55:43
Are you guys afraid of the dark? Or were you as a kid? Or are you?
I wasn't, but I am now.
I sure was when that earthquake turned the lights off. That was scary.
Right? What's the first thing you do when you walk into a dark room?
Turn on a light and run to it.
Because I'm so scared of what could be there.
Really? You weren't as a kid but you are now.
Yeah. Especially now that I have kids.
My dad made me watch "Orca the Killer Whale." Well remember on Sunday nights when there used to be those movies? You don't? Like "Tower of Inferno."
Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Like the old school?
I sleep with the light on.
Orca the Killer Whale. I was dang sure that Orca the Killer Whale was laying on my floor that night.
Diane, did you say you sleep with the lights on?
I seriously sleep with the hall light on every night.
Yes. Ever since I've had children, I have to see everything.
So you want light?
I do. I have to have light. It keeps me safe.
It keeps you safe. You know this is really cool because in this section that we're going to read about in Mosiah chapter five. There is something beautiful about this idea of light. We have to start with verse two because we're going to see how the people reacted to what they had just heard. So Diane, will you read verse two for us?
Yes, verse two.
"And they all cried with one voice, saying: Yea, we believe all the words which thou hast spoken unto us; and also, we know of their surety and truth, because of the Spirit of the Lord Omnipotent, which has wrought a mighty change in us, or in our hearts, that we have no more disposition to do evil, but to do good continually."
And because of that, oh, turn the page this is beautiful. Because of that they are now going to receive a new name. And this is the new name that King Benjamin said during his address that he was going to give to the people. And now we're going to read what that new name is. Mosiah chapter five, verse seven. As we read this, Diane I want you to read it and when you get to the new name stop so we can mark it.
"And now, because of the covenant which ye have made ye shall be called the children of Christ..."
Highlight that. That is the new name that they're going to be given. "The children of Christ." After you've underlined that, I want you to draw a line up to verse 12. Because I want us to connect these two and I want us to connect the two thoughts between verse seven and verse 12. And in verse 12, Diane, will you read that?
"I say unto you, I would that ye should remember to retain the name written always in your hearts, that ye are not found on the left hand of God, but that ye hear and know the voice by which ye shall be called, and also, the name by which he shall call you."
So what's really cool about this, is that children of Christ, Christ is the light. And so "children of Christ" and "children of light" are the same. They are, they can be exchanged for each other, and they're connected that way through their Savior. He is the light and we are his children.
And I want to show you where it says "children of light," and we did this in our pilot episode for those of you who listen to that back last year, this will probably be just a reminder or kind of a rerun of it, but I think it's worth studying again because I just I really love the way these verses of scripture come together and give us this new name.
Let's start by going to John chapter eight verse 12. That's just in the Book of John, not a First John or anything. So in the New Testament, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and john, John chapter eight, verse 12.
Thank you, Jalyn.
"Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life."
Thank you. So Christ is the light right there. The next scripture we want to go to is Ephesians chapter five, verse eight. And Diane do you have that?
I have it.
Verse eight: "For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:"
Thank you. The next scripture we want to put after that is First Thessalonians chapter five, verse five. I'll read that one. I like this one.
"Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness."
If Christ is light, then the opposite of light is darkness. So who is darkness?
Yeah. And we are not his children. Absolutely not. The next verse then let's go to Philippians chapter two, verse 15. And Jalyn, you want to read that for us?
"That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world;"
What are you thinking Jalyn?
Well, that we are definitely in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation. That we need to shine as that light, and I love that.
Yeah, and shine as lights in the world, shine as Christ, if we're his children. The next scripture reference that I want you to put next to that is Doctrine and Covenants, section 115, verse five. Doctrine and Covenants, section 115, verse five, and Diane will you read that?
"Verily I say unto you all: Arise and shine forth, that thy light may be a standard for the nations;"
And then at the end of that, at verse five, you can just put the verse of scripture we started with Mosiah chapter five, verse seven. In that verse, specifically where it says, "Arise and shine forth that thy light may be a standard for the nations." My question to you is, when you think about this light, and that you took on the name of Jesus Christ, how do you shine for him? What is your light? What is it about you that testifies of Jesus Christ?
That's a really good question. I keep thinking of this story of one of my colleagues that I work with. And you know, I just got moved to a different department and you know, when you don't really know everybody, and so I asked him if he were a member of our faith and his response to me was, "Oh, yeah, big time." And I was like, "Wow, like that is the best answer I've ever heard."
Like, I just expected someone to be like, "Yeah, of course," and he was like, "Nah man I am all in," and I just like that is so to me like that is light shining, like there's no fear about that, there's no apologizing for that, I picture him just running through the gates giving Jesus a fist bump being like, "Dude that was awesome." You know, I was so like, "Gosh, that's amazing that that's your answer of, 'Oh, big time.'" And I thought I want that to be my answer. Like that's, that's light right there. That is testifying straight up.
Big time. Like I always like to say, "I'm a lifer."
Yeah I do too.
I'm a lifer, but that one? That's a child of Christ.
And I think that's what it takes. I think that sometimes we want to be bashful about it. You don't want to offend people. We don't want to you know, be alienating to anybody, but I think the more you know if we have this truth, you know, we need to be testifying in that and not, not timidly.
But don't you think that that light is so contagious? So you heard him say, "Big time. You betcha."
Yeah, and that just hit me.
Right? And then you're like, "Oh, I do wanna be like that." And that is how our light we can give that light to other people. You know you you can tell when somebody has the spirit with them. Yeah, they are definitely, they know who they are, and it's contagious.
Yeah, yeah, I agree.
To be a child of light, that is, you see it in people and this new name they took on themselves that they're "children of Christ" which I love, love, love, love. But when you put it into the context of "he is the light," we've been asked to be "children of light" and what we bring to this world of darkness. We are the lights that shine, and what I like is, I just think it's cool. I don't think it's a coincidence. I don't know maybe it is, but I'm just thinking in my mind, like whenever there's a catastrophe or anything that's happened and members of the Church are in that area, and they are there to help, the colored t-shirts they wear are what?
Yeah, they are a light, they are bright. And I just I want that to be me everywhere I go, I want me to shine bright, shine as a child of Christ. Let's go back to Mosiah chapter five, verse 15. And we're going to end with this.
This is a classic, isn't this the... this was the young woman's theme a few years back.
It's a good one. Mosiah chapter five, verse 15. We're going to end with this. In it he says, "Therefore, I would that ye should be steadfast and immovable, always abounding in good works, that Christ, the Lord God Omnipotent, may seal you his, that you may be brought to heaven, that ye may have everlasting salvation and eternal life, through the wisdom, and power, and justice, and mercy of him who created all things, in heaven and in earth, who is God above all. Amen."
This is how Elder Uchtdorf ends his talk, I think it's perfect for this scripture. Elder Uchtdorf says, “I testify and leave you my blessing that as we believe in God, as we love Him and love His children with all our hearts, and as we strive to do as God has instructed us, we will find healing and peace, happiness and meaning. In the sacred name of Jesus Christ, amen.”
This has been such a great discussion as we've talked about how these people felt and as some of you have shared your own personal experiences. So here's my last question to you: what was your takeaway from today? What hit you, what resonated with you?
For me, I want to be more of a light. I want to just shine and I want it to be so bright that others see it and want to have that as well.
For me, it's in the "do" piece because I really well, for me, personally, I can believe, I can love, but sometimes I get overwhelmed with the "do" part. Like you said, Diane, like I'm not sure I'm doing enough. I'm not sure I'm doing everything I need to do. But in those scriptures where it said, "If ye have confidence in God, if you call on his name daily, then all those things..." like you will know what to do, you will have to do, you'll have that ability that will be given to you.
And I think we put pressure on ourselves to just hustle and buckle down and do it. And, "I should be doing more," instead of like first going to God and gaining that strength through confidence in him, and let him give you the power to do those things.
Yeah. My takeaway was the taste of love. Have you tasted of the love of God? Because just the idea of just tasting it, and then having it go in, and like digesting it, and I think as I've continued to think about that, that it tastes good.
Like it tastes good enough that I recommend it to people. And that's what I think is so intriguing because I don't, I'm picky almost with my food, and I'm not gonna recommend anything unless I love it. And I just think I have recommended this to many people because I tasted it and it was good, and when you brought that up, it's just a taste that made me...
Well, look what just a taste did for those people. All they had was a taste and they were like, "Oh, I'm all in."
"I'm all in. I'm a lifer. Card carrying member." Wow. Thank you. Ladies, we're done. Can you believe how fast that went?
Thank you, it was so great.
It's been such a good day. Oh, I have loved studying these.
It was Christmas morning and I have Christmas in the cup in my car.
I did say that to you guys last night. I'm like, "I feel like tomorrow's Christmas because I get to be with two people that I love."
I knew I was gonna be spiritually fed.
Yeah, we were fed today. Well, I would love to hear, for those of you listening, I would love to hear what your big takeaway was from this episode. So if you haven't already joined our discussion group on Facebook, and if you're not following us on Instagram, I really want you to. It's a great place for you to ask questions throughout the week as you're studying the scriptures and I will answer them. I read them and I answer your questions, and it's so much fun.
I want you to comment on the post that relates to this lesson and let us know what you learned. And I do read every single one of your comments, and I like them or I'll comment on them. At the end of every week, usually on a Sunday, we'll put a post up that says, "What was your big takeaway?" So tell us what you learned, kinda like what we just did right now.
You can get to both our Facebook and Instagram by going to the show notes for this episode on LDSLiving.com/SundayonMonday, and it's not a bad idea to go there anyway because that's where we have all the links to the references and the transcript of this entire discussion. So I want you guys to check it out.
The Sunday on Monday study group is a Deseret Bookshelf PLUS+ original and it's brought to you by LDS Living. It's written and hosted by me, Tammy Uzelac Hall, and today my fabulous study group friends who I love are Jalyn Peterson and Diane Gerdy Iman. You can find more information about these ladies at LDSLiving.com/SundayonMonday.
Our podcast is produced by KaRyn Lay with post production and editing by Erika Free. It is recorded and mixed by Mix at Six Studios and our Executive Producer is Erin Hallstrom. Thanks for being here. Hopefully we'll see you all next week, and please remember, you are God's favorite.
Oh yeah, that totally did yeah. I have to actually catch myself and go, "Wait, I don't really know if that's true, but boy, it sounded good." It's probably in my favor of course, like everybody's involved.
Why would your conversations with yourself be in favor of someone else? I'm the only person I trust.
Well, thank you.
Well, I am. I'm the only person that matters, maybe that's my problem. Um how would you then... with these crazy... you guys have crazy thoughts.
Can we back up a little, we're really not gonna end it that way.
Dang it, because I was going to ask them then how do you control those thoughts?
No, I love it, I just mean we can't end with what you just said
Oh, I'm the only person that matters? I kind of am.
That's not your brand.
I mean, there's times when I thought I'm the only person that matters, and then I have to kind of like...
Come on that's funny. People know I'm kidding. I'll say "just kidding." Okay, I'll say that.
You're really not.
I mean, I'm the only person that really matters. Okay, just kidding.
In my head... Yeah, I am.
I mean, if you can't be the superstar in your own head, where can you be the superstar?
I'm a rock star in my head, that's where my thoughts lead me.
And in my car, exactly.
Right down to Hollywood Boulevard where I put my own star.