Thursday, February 18, 2010

One weakness, one weakness only

In the struggle to make daily choices we face one question. The question is disguised among layers and layers of other choices. Many of the choices may seem unrelated to the "one" question. What is that one question: Will I obey God?

Similar to one question we have one weakness. It may seem we have several, but they are only the upper layers of a deeper weakness. We may rid ourselves of one weakness only to find another and another, but we are peeling away the layers until we get to the one true weakness. That weakness is the underlying cause to all our disobedience.

Ether 12: 27

27 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.

Many read this scripture incorrectly. They replace the word weakness with weaknesses. It is singular: weakness. That weakness is our unwillingness to obey God. When we truly look deep inside ourselves we will find that we willingly disobey God. That is our weakness. Only by humbling ourselves (choosing God's will over our own) can we be made stronger.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Financial Principles

There are five financial principles that all should follow in order to survive the last days. These have been taught by our modern day prophets and apostles.

1. Pay tithes and offerings.
2. Put money in savings.
3. Keep a budget.
4. Avoid unecessary debt.
5. Teach children how to keep these principles.

The blessings that come from following these principles are tremendous. I have been blessed greatly in my life when I have followed them. A few years ago I was not following them. I was paying tithings and keeping a budget, but I was not saving and avoiding unecessary debt. I was able to pay bills, but was just a check away from destruction. Today I am still a check away from destruction. However, I am following the five principles. I am slowly moving away from the precipice of financial destruction. By the end of the month I will have 1,000 dollars in emergency savings. I am also paying off debt. It will be a few years before I can breath a sigh of relief, but I know the Lord will help me become free. Once free I can then help others.

I find it distressing that our government follows none of the principles, except one. The government does help others who are in need. The government does not spend within their means. The government does not avoid debt. The government does not teach people to stay out of debt. The government does not save money. Can you see why we need to follow the five principles ASAP?!

Sunday, February 7, 2010


Survival, both spiritual and temporal, in the last days will require service. It is through service that those who have are able to give to those who do not. Service is voluntary and should not be mandatory. Those forced to give service are called servants, and that has never resulted in anything good.

King Benjamin, a great prophet and leader in the Book of Mormon, said that "when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God" (Mosiah 2:17).

It is through service that lives are changed. Helping someone move, visiting the sick, serving in a church calling, and many things can be considered service. We learn to be Christ like when we give service.

Many believe that mandatory service brings blessings. Service only brings blessings when it is given freely. Moroni said, "if a man being evil giveth a gift, he doeth it grudgingly; wherefore it is counted unto him the same as if he had retained the gift; wherefore he is counted evil before God" (Moroni 7:8).

Many feel it is OK to do good and give service by forcing others to pay for goods and services that the unfortunate may need. This is often done through taxes and extensive welfare and social security systems. These systems forcefully take from those who have and give to those who have not. These systems also require no improvement on the part of the recipient. As a result many remain on welfare for their lives and never improve their circumstance. Many families teach their children how to live off of the welfare system. No man or woman should ever willingly give up their responsibilities as parents and wages earners to the government. That should not be. That is not God's way. God's way enables and empowers people to solve their own problems.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

The Reason Why

The past month my wife and I decided that we would make a concerted effort to eliminate our debt. This will take many years, but in the end we will be free. As a result our spending habits have changed a little.

Candace has a pair of shoes that have cracks in the soles and let water in. I found them in the garbage a few days ago and asked her why. She told me about the cracks. I told her about Shoe Goo and offered to repair the shoes for her. Normally I would not have bothered, but with money being tight I wanted the shoes to last as long as possible.

I have repaired her shoes and polished them up for her. It was a nice opportunity to give service. But did I give service because I wanted to or because of necessity. I did want to, but I would not have even thought of it had we not changed our spending habits.

This made me reflect on the things I do and the reasons I do them. Does circumstance or a self will create a change of heart. I know that both can occur. I would much rather change myself than be forced to change through circumstances.

About Me

Oregon, United States
I am currently a band teacher on the Pacific coast of the United States. I am also a Bishop of an LDS ward. I have been married for 16 years and have four sons. I am working on getting a Masters in Education Curriculum and Instruction: Technology.