Devotional

My Best Friend

Written by Brother Ryan Lesperance on Thursday, 27 December 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 597

My Best Friend

Do you remember the name of your best friend in elementary school? I do…his name was Shawn. There are so many names that flood my mind when I think of my childhood friends. Shawn was my BEST friend. We were always together, and we talked about everything.

The neat thing about a best friend is you can only have one. Typically, you or I would protect that friendship, and it's not a sharing kinda thing. Shawn was my best friend, and I didn’t really share that friendship with anyone else. Over time, though, we began hanging out with different crowds and our “best” friendship slowly reduced to an acquaintance.

But, I’d love to tell you about my best friend since I was 15 years old, and I’m willing to share Him.

A Small Prompting

Written by Sister Mallory Batson on Thursday, 20 December 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 584

A Small Prompting

Have you ever had someone randomly pop into your head? Maybe it’s someone you haven’t seen in a while, or someone you haven’t even thought of in weeks, months, years. It could happen during your morning coffee or your bedtime prayers. Someone’s name comes to you, and you’re not sure why or what made you think of them.

It would be easy to brush it off and move on with your day, but what if there was a reason you thought of that person?

The Perfect Gift

Written by Sister Vicki Ali on Tuesday, 18 December 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 842

The Perfect Gift

"If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your Heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?" (Luke 11:13)

We are in the midst of the biggest gift-giving season of the year. Organized folks are most likely finished buying gifts for loved ones. Maybe you’re still searching for that elusive perfect gift to give someone.

What exactly is a perfect gift — either one we are expecting to receive or planning to give? Some try to treat others to something they can’t or won’t get for themselves. As givers, what joy it is to see pure delight in the recipient’s reaction.

I’ve also often heard advice from parents not wanting to over-indulge children, describing giving them three gifts during the holidays: 1) something a child needs (like a clothing item), 2) a book (to educate or grow the mind), and 3) something special they want.

Welcome to Our World: Christmas Playlist 2018

Written by Sister Erin Light on Tuesday, 11 December 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 482

Welcome to Our World: Christmas Playlist 2018

Often, when we think of Jesus Christ as a baby, we think of the manger scene and how nice it is and how exciting it must’ve been for them to be there on that holy night. We hear the stories of Mary and Joseph, how they traveled a difficult journey and Mary’s faith in what happened to her.

But it’s not too often that we think about God as a small baby. The lyrics in "Welcome to Our World" by Chris Rice are extremely touching.

“How I wish we would’ve known”...

Not many people welcomed Christ into the world. We expected a King, someone regal and large in presence. This song expresses the humbling realization of God coming down to take on flesh and blood for us. But He was essentially a stranger, unnoticed for so many years, until He comes into His own.

Genie in a Bottle

Written by Brother Richard Lowman on Thursday, 15 November 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 617

Genie in a Bottle

I find it interesting that we — and I really mean me — treat the Lord like a genie in a bottle sometimes. We go through a trial, and we want the Lord to immediately “fix it” and take the pain or discomfort away. Lately, I've had a pity party for myself. We've had some adversity. Here are some examples:

My wife, Gina, and I have started hosting a “Pasta and Passage” every other Sunday in our home after church service. We eat spaghetti and then study The Book of Mormon, chapter by chapter. The attendance has been pretty good, between 20 to 25 people regularly. I think it no coincidence that on three of these Sundays we've had our upstairs air conditioning go out. The A/C hasn’t gone out any other time, and on the Monday or Tuesday of the following week, the A/C has been repaired. With the A/C out, the upstairs temperature climbs to 90 degrees, and it makes it hard for the kids to go into the playroom so the adults can study. Coincidence? No. Satanic attack? Yes. Satan would've liked us to cancel. Cancel often enough, and people will lose interest.

Cane Pride

Written by Brother P. on Tuesday, 13 November 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 636

Cane Pride

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

In the branch of The Church of Jesus Christ where I belong, we have a brother who calls his walking cane “Pride.” I am not exactly sure of his reasoning.

Maybe his pride is lost because he uses the cane now? Maybe it keeps him from using the walker, which could be a source of pride? Maybe “pride goeth before a fall.” (I guess I should have asked him.)

The Gift of Sight

Written by Sister Natalie Shawver on Tuesday, 06 November 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 555

The Gift of Sight

For the past seven years, I’ve had the opportunity to volunteer through my company’s philanthropic efforts at community vision screenings around Cincinnati. Our teams visit various schools around the city and check elementary children’s eyesight to determine if they need glasses. It’s a wonderful day spent away from my desk. Instead of writing, I’m helping to potentially give the gift of sight to a young child.

When each child walks through the door, we take the exam sheet and explain the vision screening test we’re about to do with them. They cover one eye and read the letters on the eye chart we point to. We record the score and repeat the process on the other eye.

Each child varies in what he or she can see — some read the letters without a single mistake; others pause and question if what they saw was correct. And some, unfortunately, have such a difficult time seeing the letters that they simply give up, and we move along to the next portion of the screening.

Swap Shoes With the People Who Irritate You

Written by Brother P. on Thursday, 01 November 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 622

Swap Shoes With the People Who Irritate You

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

When working in the nursing home, I often hear the clinical staff complain about particular patients, and over the years I've noticed a few themes reoccur. One such complaint is regarding the patient with chronic respiratory (COPD) problems. Staff members complain that patients with difficulty breathing can be very rude with short, snappy answers, and they do not want to do anything.

Look Up

Written by Sister Colleen Moore on Tuesday, 30 October 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 713

Look Up

Think back to when you were a young child. Did you ever have moments that you felt insecure? Not good enough? Compared yourself to others? Now, fast forward to where you are today. Has that changed? Or, do you still have those moments?

We can all relate. I believe we have each experienced that feeling at some point in life. Not just as a child either, but as adults too. Who do you think is whispering that thought into your heart and mind? That’s right, the evil one.

If you ever feel this way, then think about this...

The Old Record Still Stands

Written by Brother Richard Lowman on Tuesday, 23 October 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 664

The Old Record Still Stands

I recently went to renew my Texas driver's license and was told that the current, unexpired license I had, which was issued by them, was not sufficient to renew my license. I argued with the person that the item I was replacing was the exact same thing with a different date, and the license I was holding was issued by the state of Texas. Not only did I need my license I was renewing but also the original or a certified copy of my birth certificate. Sounds crazy, right? You may be wondering how this ties back to the Bible and Book of Mormon. Here goes:

In a recent Sunday school lesson, we were looking at different scriptures, and in the front of my Bible, I saw all the places where you can record marriages, births, deaths, and any other significant information. I have both of my grandparents' Bibles and know that all of that information is complete up to the days past when I was born.

Hope With Substance

Written by Sister Vicki Ali on Thursday, 18 October 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 819

Hope With Substance

"But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear." (1 Peter 3:15)

Reading this verse years ago as a young, shy person, it inspired me to mentally rehearse sharing God with someone asking questions about my faith. To someone terrified of public speaking, and also awkward in lesser social interactions, it made sense that planning to be "ready always to give an answer" for the hope of Christ within me was worthy of practice.

Although this logic isn't necessarily wrong, I grew to understand maybe the verse alludes to a deeper readiness, and the word "always" in the verse stood out. True preparedness measurements are thrown upon us unexpectedly. The questioning of our hope might not arise from a place of comfort, but instead when pain becomes the platform. Lyrics from a song "Even If" sung by Mercy Me speaks of this:

The Basics of Life

Written by Sister Mallory Batson on Tuesday, 16 October 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 925

The Basics of Life

I recently ran across a bookmark I have in my Book of Mormon from GMBA Campout 1996. The theme was “Back to the Basics.” I was 9 years old at the time, so I can’t say I remember much from this particular campout, but that theme immediately reminded me of a song called “The Basics of Life” by 4HIM. Although this song was released in 1992, its lyrics are more relevant today than ever. The chorus sings like this:

"We need to get back
To the basics of life
A heart that is pure
And a love that is blind
A faith that is fervently grounded in Christ
The hope that endures for all times
These are the basics, we need to get back
To the basics of life"

Fear Is a Liar

Written by Sister Colleen Moore on Tuesday, 25 September 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 902

Fear Is a Liar

I love singing and listening to the songs we have in our church. They are all so beautiful in their own special ways. For me, many have sweet memories attached to them. Some remind me of growing up at the old Branch 3. Some remind me of being at campouts as a kid, and many stir up memories of when God touched my heart. These songs are all so precious and dear to me.

I also enjoy listening to Christian songs on the radio. There is one right now that I find so powerful called "Fear Is a Liar" by Zach Williams. The words give me chills. I want to share the chorus with you today:

Trusting the One Unseen

Written by Brother Richard Lowman on Thursday, 20 September 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 909

Trusting the One Unseen

As I was recently traveling on a plane, which I do frequently, I came across an interesting paradigm. You see, I am one of the people who actually LIKES turbulence in the air. It reminds me of a roller coaster ride.

I was on a plane recently when we encountered turbulence, and the man seated beside grabbed my arm with both hands and asked me, “Do you believe in God?”

Lessons Learned From a Bad Haircut

Written by Sister Rachel Alessio on Tuesday, 18 September 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 1124

Lessons Learned From a Bad Haircut

Plain and simple, a bad haircut is just bad. More often than not, if you are the victim of the heinous “crime” of an unruly trim, it may seem like all hope is lost and that nothing can be done. Being the victim of one such offense, I learned some valuable lessons about myself, about life, and about God.

LESSON ONE: Communication Is Key

Although I was very clear about how I wanted my hair to be cut, I don’t think the stylist understood and ended up doing something very different than what I asked her to do. In hindsight, I should have said something to her as she was finishing up, but I was so shocked at the outcome of the cut that the last thing I wanted to do was stay in the salon any longer than I needed to.

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