Promptings of the Spirit: Revelation Or Brain Chemistry

Recently, I read a post at a well known blog. The Mormon author of the blog is critical of the LDS church and it’s leaders. After reading one of his post and many of the comments, I decided to join in an express my thoughts on the problems unvarnished church history is causing church members. I suggested that when member are challenged by what they learn about church doctrine and history they should turn to the Lord for answers. I stated that some of my prayers have been answered in ways that doesn’t leave room for doubt.

My comments were read by other participants and an exchange of opinions commenced. The blog moderator intervened and selectively deleted some of my comments. I find it ironic that he censored some of my comments that promote faith and belief, but left the comments of others that detracted from faith and belief (The practice of censoring faithful comments is common in some parts of the bloggernacle).

Following is an exchange I had with one commenter. I wrote about my experience with prayer saying that in some instances, “I was answered in a way that doesn’t leave room for doubt”.

Here is his response: Continue reading

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Latter Day Saints at a Faith Crossroads

Cruising the Bloggernacle in recent weeks, I’ve read much on the topic of faith. It appears some church members are standing at a faith crossroads, deciding which road they will travel.

Some of what I’ve read related to the lost of faith. A few commenters even shared their “testimony” of deconversion. Here is a sampling:

One writer related how at a young age she “quite unexpectedly”, became an atheist.

A long time active member of the church relates how she lost her faith when she began to study contradictions and problems with church history and doctrine, and when no one could provide answers—her faith was shattered. Continue reading

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Example of Faith: Ministering Angel Intervenes to Help a Mother and Her Children

I enjoy reading accounts from the Ensign magazine telling about church members who turned to the Lord in time of need and found his helping hand.

The following account was published in the Ensign, under the title  ”‘Save My Life … Comfort My Children”, Sept. 1987, pages 52-53.

It was twilight on a cold and rainy October day in 1968, and I was riding my bicycle home from work in Copenhagen, Denmark. My husband was in Canada on an assignment at that time, and I was alone with two children, a boy ten and a girl seven years old.

On my way home I had to cross a very busy four-lane road with a bicycle lane. For safety, I had made it a habit to get off my bike and walk it across the intersection. On this particular day I got halfway across the street and stopped in the middle to let the cars go by. A small car stopped in the lane to my right, and the driver signaled for me to cross. A big truck stopped in the lane beside the small car, and the truck driver also signaled to me, so I continued across the street. Just as I passed the truck I saw a Volkswagen coming toward me, illegally in the bicycle track, at full speed. There was no time for me to escape, either backward or forward.

In that split second, countless thoughts of my children, my husband, my widowed mother, and my job flashed through my mind, and I prayed more fervently than ever before: “Please, dear Lord, whatever happens-spare my life.” Continue reading

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Using the Book of Mormon to Navigate Problems in Church History

Some church members faith is challenged when they learn uncorrelated (unvarnished) history of the church. In Oct 2013 General Conference, Elder Uchtdorf discussed this concern. There has also been news articles reporting on the challenges the church is currently facing.

The internet has many blogs written by current and former LDS church members who are dedicated to writing about LDS church history. The other day I was reading a popular blog and came across the following comment written by someone named John. 

“Prophets and apostles who claim they are speaking for the lord and are only relaying their opinions is a gross sin…To claim your thoughts and opinions are revelatory because of your title is conceptual revelation…If we now are claiming that our apostles and prophets are giving us conceptual revelation…I cannot see that John the Baptist, Moses, etc. were conceptual revelators.

Councils of church leaders have done the best they could for centuries and attributed their decisions to the holy ghost. How are the LDS leaders any different than the many ecumenical councils that have met over the centuries and governed by unanimous decisions? Continue reading

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Are Church Leaders More Fallible Than We Have Hitherto Supposed?

I was reading at a well known blog today about the difficulties church history is proving to be for some LDS church members. After reading the post and some of the comments, I left my own comment. I decided to use my comment for my blog post today:

There are many ways for church members to react when they become aware of the difficulties with LDS church history and the reality that church leaders are more fallible than was supposed.

As a young returned missionary my worldview was that the church was lead by apostles and prophets who were in contact with Heavenly Father. This meant that the decisions, teachings, and directions of church leaders were the mind and will of the Lord.

In the early 1970′s, I pursued an in depth study of church history and doctrine. I was interested in becoming a religion teacher and even dreamed of the time I might teach at BYU. Continue reading

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Active in the Church? The Lord Defines What it Really Means to be Active in His Church

One of the apostles asked a Stake President what the biggest problem in his Stake is? The Stake President reply is telling. He said that ”Programs and activities of the church are becoming a substitute for testimonies.” When I heard Elder Packer relate this story I immediately thought of an old saying, “active in the church but not the gospel”. 

How is it possible to be active in the church, and yet, somehow be inactive in the gospel?

To answer this question a few definitions are needed. First, to be a member of the church is to have your name officially on record with church headquarters. Based on this kind of record keeping there are over fifteen million members today.

That said, the Lord doesn’t look at the membership tally, the Lord defines His church in a different way: Continue reading

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President Monson Accused of Fraud

When I started this blog in 2007 my objective was to write about the doctrine of Christ as it is taught in the Book of Mormon and by church leaders. As time as gone on, I realize that there are not many LDS who search the internet with the intent of learning about the first principles of the Gospel (the doctrine of Christ). It appears that most LDS are interested in other things than doctrine. To verify this go to the high traffic blogs and look at what they offer.

The Bloggernacle Gathers All Kinds

I read many blogs, including those written by former Mormons who have left the church and now can’t leave the church alone. Why do I read these blogs? Because I am interested in all things pertaining to the LDS church. I’ve known for many years about the controversial teachings, history, and faith destroying material that is creating so much difficulty in the present day. I first learned of them in the early 1970′s. I’ve had a long time to think about it.

The Latest Difficulty Continue reading

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Arouse the Faculties of Your Souls

The language of scripture is powerful and can arouse the faculties of our souls if we have ears to hear.

The Lord explaining this said:

Behold, I am God; give heed to my word, which is quick and powerful, sharper than a two-edged sword, to the dividing asunder of both joints and marrow; therefore, give heed unto my word. D&C 12:2

Using the language of the scriptures, following are three kinds of communication the Lord extends to His children: 1) An invitation to follow Him, 2) A warning to those who are falling from grace, and 3) Encouragement to those who are steadfast.

An Invitation from the Lord Continue reading

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Spencer W. Kimball’s 85 Day Prayer

The following excerpt from a talk given in General Conference by Spencer W. Kimball when he was called as an apostle relates his experience with prayer. 

“…I recall two or three years ago, when Brother Lee was giving his maiden address as an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ from this stand, he told us of his experience through the night after he had been notified of his call. I think I now know something about the experience he had. I have been going through it for twelve weeks. I believe the brethren were very kind to me in announcing my appointment when they did so that I might make the necessary adjustments in my business affairs, but perhaps they were more inspired to give me the time that I needed of a long period of purification, for in those long days and weeks I did a great deal of thinking and praying, and fasting and praying. There were conflicting thoughts that surged through my mind—seeming voices saying:

“You can’t do the work. You are not worthy. You have not the ability”—and always finally came the triumphant thought: “You must do the work assigned—you must make yourself able, worthy and qualified.” And the battle raged on.

I remember reading that Jacob wrestled all night, “until the breaking of the day,” for a blessing; and I want to tell you that for eighty-five nights I have gone through that experience, wrestling for a blessing. Eighty-five times, the breaking of the day has found me on my knees praying to the Lord to help me and strengthen me and make me equal to this great responsibility that has come to me… Continue reading

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I Am No Respecter of Persons

Heavenly Father has revealed many things about himself. Among these revealed truths we learn one of His chief characteristics—”he is no respecter of persons”. The Lecture on Faith teaches in order, “to exercise faith in God we must first have ‘a correct idea of his character, perfections, and attributes’.” The prophet listed six of these and number five says: “God is no respecter of persons, meaning that all his children in all ages will be taught the same gospel and granted the same privilege to enjoy its blessings.”

What does this bit of knowledge mean to you and me? What use can you put this knowledge to, this very hour, to help you acquire greater faith?

I’d like to offer a few ideas to answer these questions.

Elder Boyd K. Packer said, “No member of the Church is esteemed by the Lord as more or less than any other…The Lord is ‘no respecter of persons.’” Boyd K. Packer, “The Weak and the Simple of the Church,” Ensign, Nov 2007, 6-9. Continue reading

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