Storm's a-Comin'

Written by Sister Kenah Lobzun on Monday, 04 May 2020. Posted in Miracles Hits 304

Storm's a-Comin'

Today's Miracle Monday happened just a few weeks ago on Easter Sunday. We hope you find encouragement from this testimony from Sister Kenah Lobzun.

Through the week, we were being warned about a bad storm coming on Resurrection Day. We had seen some wind and rain, but before we went to bed, nothing that seemed too bad. We then went to bed for the night. It was then that I had a dream about 3:30 a.m. on Resurrection Day.

I dreamed that Richard and I were lying in bed exactly as we fell asleep. I felt a heavy vacuum-type force. I felt that we had an incredible force pushing us down into the mattress in the exact position we fell asleep. I couldn't move. I also heard a type of vacuum force on the entire room and walls. The walls were doing a tight, controlled rattle. And then I woke up. It felt so absolutely real.

Spread the Good Word: Galatians 5:25

Written by GospelBlog on Friday, 01 May 2020. Posted in The Good Word Hits 398

Spread the Good Word: Galatians 5:25

Good Word Friday Theme: Abiding in His Spirit

Today, we're bringing you a brand-new theme for Good Word Friday. For the month of May, we're focusing on scriptures that encourage us to abide in Christ and His Spirit.

We've all gone through times when we've felt disconnected from God, like He's in a galaxy far, far away, busy ruling the universe. And we are slogging through the details of our own lives, doing the best we can — on our own.

God doesn't want us feeling this way, like He's a big, giant mountain way off in the distance, and we are a tiny little flower at the bottom of a valley, barely peeking over the grass. The truth is, we should feel like we are part of the same entity — like a vine and its branches. God wants us to be close, to be connected to His Holy Spirit, drawing life and strength from it, moment to moment. Abiding in Him.

Canine Joy

Written by Sister Christina DiCenzo on Thursday, 30 April 2020. Posted in Devotional Hits 484

Canine Joy

Today, we're bringing you a special devotional from guest writer Sister Christina DiCenzo.

I love to worship the Lord! I do it by singing songs to Him and sharing my days in communication with Him, at times, in my closet expressing my gratitude, love, and adoration for Him. This is when I feel His presence most.

One day, in worship, it came to me very clearly, "You bring Me joy." Wow. I can bring the Lord joy? As days passed, I pondered and prayed, "Lord, how exactly do I bring you joy? Show me, what exactly do you mean by that?"

One day I was feeding my very particular dog, Buddy. I have to hand feed him when he tries a new food. The Lord showed me how sweet he was at patiently waiting, as I would tear off a bite-size piece of soft dog food and feed him. It seemed to be in slow motion. I took it in. Buddy kept looking at me and then the food, but he waited patiently till I felt ready to give it to him.

The longer he patiently waited, his sweet eyes looking at me, then at the food, expecting me to feed him ...the more he brought me joy.

Seeking, Receiving, and Following God's Direction (Ether 2)

Written by Brother Jerry Valenti on Wednesday, 29 April 2020. Posted in Scripture Study Hits 312

Seeking, Receiving, and Following God's Direction (Ether 2)

In the previous chapter, the Lord had told the brother of Jared that He would lead his group of Jaredite people away from the Tower of Babel to "a land which is choice above all the lands of the earth…And thus I will do unto thee because this long time ye have cried unto me" (Ether 1:42-43). So, because the brother of Jared was diligent in calling upon the Lord for direction, God said He would provide that direction for the Jaredites.

In Ether 2, the journey begins. The brother of Jared prays for direction and the Lord speaks to him from a cloud, "command[ing] them that they should go forth into the wilderness, yea, into that quarter where there never had men been" (verse 5). They cross some bodies of water on barges, "being directed continually by the hand of the Lord" (verse 6). Finally, they arrive at the ocean.

At this point, things get off track somewhat. The people set up tents on the ocean shore — and they remain there for the next four years! What happened to the journey? Perhaps the people are enjoying the beachfront property so much that they can't bring themselves to move on. Perhaps they're uncomfortable moving out of their comfort zone into an unknown area.

The Lady Who Felt Sorry for Me on Thanksgiving

Written by Brother P. on Tuesday, 28 April 2020. Posted in Devotional Hits 332

The Lady Who Felt Sorry for Me on Thanksgiving

Today's article is another installment in Brother P.'s column, "Lessons From the Nursing Home."

A big part of my job is helping people in a nursing home to walk, but sometimes I learn lessons that could have been preached from the pulpit at church.

I went to work this last Thanksgiving morning, and a little lady that I walk with told me that she was very sorry that I had to come into work on Thanksgiving, and unless I am remembering it wrong, I believe I saw her eyes water a little.

Let me first tell you about my great sacrifice. I went into work to walk with a few people for a few hours on the morning of Thanksgiving. Afterward, I had Thanksgiving dinner with my family — and my family puts on a Thanksgiving that would out-Thanksgiving most others. Lots of food, lots of family, sometimes even games and some time to talk about our blessings.

In God We Trust

Written by Sister Cheryl Cervone on Monday, 27 April 2020. Posted in Miracles Hits 264

In God We Trust

Today's Miracle Monday comes to us courtesy of Sister Cheryl Cervone from the Simi Valley Branch, California.

In a recent online church service from the Irvine Branch, Brother Jim Cotellesse and Brother Steve Kerby spoke of how our Lord works with us and through us in such a profoundly personal way. He is ever listening, always tuned in, and often responds in surprising ways, which I think of as “Godwinks” (can’t take credit for that one!).

Spread the Good Word: Psalm 23:3

Written by GospelBlog on Friday, 24 April 2020. Posted in The Good Word Hits 324

Spread the Good Word: Psalm 23:3

Good Word Friday Theme: Refreshment and new life

There's a reason why Christians keep on memorizing the six verses of Psalm 23 generation after generation. What a refreshing and peace-giving passage!

The third verse says that God restores the soul. If you feel like your spiritual life is off track and in need of some rejuvenation, then think about this for a moment. God can restore it to full strength.

Finding Joy in the Ordinary

Written by Sister Mallory McNamara on Thursday, 23 April 2020. Posted in Devotional Hits 330

Finding Joy in the Ordinary

I think everyone would agree with me when I say we are living in extraordinary times. As I am writing this, we have been confined to our homes, unable to see family and friends, some of us not working. We have been pushed out of our routines.

Do you miss the ordinary? Work, dinner with friends, going to see a movie? Things like that sound so luxurious now.

Did they sound luxurious before this pandemic hit our world? Probably not. They are things we were used to, things we expected. They are the ordinary things we took for granted.

Keep Speaking the Same Language (Ether 1)

Written by Brother Jerry Valenti on Wednesday, 22 April 2020. Posted in Scripture Study Hits 294

Keep Speaking the Same Language (Ether 1)

In an earlier chapter (Mosiah 8), Mormon records that the people of Limhi had discovered 24 gold plates upon which was engraved a history of a group of people who traveled to America many years prior to the Nephites. After describing the translation of this history (in Mosiah 28), Mormon adds that "this account shall be written hereafter; for behold, it is expedient that all people should know the things which are written in this account" (Mosiah 28:19).

The Book of Ether is the account referred to above. It is named for the man, Ether, who compiled the history on the 24 gold plates. Moroni is following the stated desire of his father in the verse above by adding this history to the otherwise completed Nephite record.

As you read the Book of Mormon from cover to cover, don't be confused into thinking that this portion chronologically follows the Nephite history. This story begins more than 2,000 years before Christ and is about a totally different group of people — people who are referred to as the Jaredites.

Virtue or Virtual?

Written by Sister Linda Scolaro on Tuesday, 21 April 2020. Posted in Devotional Hits 660

Virtue or Virtual?

During the past few weeks, the word "virtual" has taken on new meaning for me. I have been forced to provide virtual teaching for students, attend virtual meetings with colleagues, supervisors and parents, do professional development virtually, and the list goes on. I am sure that many of you have joined me in this virtual world, trying to do our jobs and accomplish daily routines in a different way. Things that take me a few seconds in person have taken me hours to develop online.

The face-to-face contact that virtual technology provides, when it is live, allows us to see each other’s facial expressions, body language, etc. Also, I am grateful that on a Sunday morning, through live streaming, my family and I have had the opportunity to gather around our television via computer and still hear the word.

These are the benefits of our virtual world, but here are some cons. I have to record lessons on video. For a few minutes, I speak to my students with excitement. Immediately, I can turn my excitement off with one button, “Stop.” In reality, or in person, there is no Stop or Pause, because I know from their expressions, body language, or immediate questions when they don’t grasp what I am teaching, and I reframe it and pull out all my tools until they understand.

My job is to teach students to read and comprehend. Interestingly enough, Merriam-Webster defines virtual as “being on or simulated on a computer or computer network.” Merriam-Webster also defines it as being “a hypothetical particle whose existence is inferred from direct evidence.”

Jesus Sees, Jesus Saves

Written by Sister Susan Genaro on Monday, 20 April 2020. Posted in Miracles Hits 367

Jesus Sees, Jesus Saves

Today's Miracle Monday is a testimony of God's divine protection submitted to us by Sister Susan Genaro.

I was driving home from work one day and had glanced down for one brief moment only to then look up to find the car in front of me suddenly making a left turn into a driveway. 

In that brief moment, I cried out aloud, "Oh Lord, please help me!" because if I swerved to the left, I would encounter oncoming traffic, and I didn't think I could avoid hitting the car. The Lord physically steered and moved my car to the right side of the road and placed me out of danger. 

Spread the Good Word: Ephesians 4:24

Written by GospelBlog on Friday, 17 April 2020. Posted in The Good Word Hits 401

Spread the Good Word: Ephesians 4:24

Good Word Friday Theme: Refreshment and new life

Today's passage in Ephesians instructs new Christians to leave their old, corrupt ways behind and pattern their lives (inner and outer) after God in righteousness and holiness. What does that mean for us?

He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands

Written by Sister Dianne Maddox on Thursday, 16 April 2020. Posted in Devotional Hits 393

He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands

He's got the whole world in His hands.
He's got the itty bitty baby in His hands.
He's got a-you and me brother in His hands.
He's got a-you and me sister in His hands.

He's got the whole world in His hands!

I can’t think of a time when this happy little song has made more sense, because I can’t think of a time, at least in my lifetime, when the entire world has been so impacted by one thing. As this song states, He, being Jesus Christ, has the whole world in His hands. Not just you, not just me, not just The Church of Jesus Christ, but the whole world.

I’m sure by now you know I am referring to the coronavirus. The virus that has turned our lives upside down and inside out. A virus that has changed history and caused confusion, concern, anxiety, unrest, and so many other unpleasant emotions. Ironically, this ugly disease that has caused so much grief and pain in our world has also united our world.

I can be chatting with a customer service rep from any country in the world and say, “Stay safe and healthy,” and he or she will know exactly why I said it. Our often divided world is united in defeating this virus. We are all on the same side. “I don’t want the Coronavirus to be eliminated!” said no one ever, in any place or in any language.

God Is Still the Same (Mormon 9)

Written by Brother Jerry Valenti on Wednesday, 15 April 2020. Posted in Scripture Study Hits 332

God Is Still the Same (Mormon 9)

With the Nephite story essentially complete, Moroni addresses a few additional topics in Mormon 9 for the benefit of those who will eventually read the book. Among the topics covered is the concept of an unchanging God. His central statement is one that is similar to other parts of the scripture:

"God is the same, yesterday, today, and forever, and in him there is no variableness neither shadow of changing" (Mormon 9:9)

One area where people tend to think that God has changed is regarding miracles. While it's one thing to believe the stories in the scriptures, it's apparently too much of a leap to believe that God still performs miracles today. Has God gone out of the miracle business? Is He retired? Moroni stresses that if you think that God is not still a God of miracles, then "ye have imagined up unto yourselves a god who doth vary" (verse 10).

I have been blessed in my lifetime to witness and even be used as a participant in several of God's miracles. Whenever it happens, it reinforces my feeling and thankfulness that God is still the same. Here's one example:

The Shadow We Cast

Written by Brother Richard Lowman on Tuesday, 14 April 2020. Posted in Devotional Hits 351

The Shadow We Cast

I was recently reading in Acts 5:15-16: “Insomuch that they brought forth the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and couches, that at the least the shadow of Peter passing by might overshadow some of them. There came also a multitude out of the cities round about unto Jerusalem, bringing sick folks, and them which were vexed with unclean spirits, and they were healed every one.”

Wow — what faith! They wanted to be in Peter’s shadow. Prior to this in Acts 4, the Apostles were given the gift of The Holy Spirit. Then by the next chapter, everyone who was in need was healed!

It is said that in the Asian customs to this day the shadow has much power. For example, if a person of ill repute walks by in the street, people will make certain that the shadow doesn’t fall on them or their children. On the other hand, if a person of great influence or importance passes by, people want to be in the shadow.

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