Your Past Does Not Define You

I was struck this morning by something Elder S. Gifford Nielsen observed about Joshua: He was raised as a slave in Egypt. How did he become the successor of Moses, leading the children of Israel into the promised land? Certainly not by dwelling on his own weaknesses or lack of qualifications. Here is Elder Nielsen’s... Continue Reading →

His Hands Were Steady

Not long after the children of Israel escaped from the Egyptian army through the Red Sea, they confronted a new enemy. In a place called Rephidim, they were attacked by the Amalekites. God told Moses to stand on the top of a hill and hold up his rod—the same rod that he had held over... Continue Reading →

Responding to Difficult Callings

Callings can be intimidating. We may question our ability to fulfill the responsibilities. We may worry that others won't respond favorably to us. Moses expressed both of those concerns when God called him to deliver Israel from captivity. "Who am I," he asked, "that I should go unto Pharaoah, and that I should bring the... Continue Reading →

“Slow of Speech”

Enoch was shocked when God called him to preach the gospel. "Why is it," he asked, "that I have found favor in thy sight, and am but a lad, and all the people hate me; for I am slow of speech; wherefore am I thy servant?" (Moses 6:31). Communication effectiveness can't be measured, and it's easy to be hypercritical as... Continue Reading →

Keeping Our Estates

In the Epistle of Jude, the author provides several examples of groups of people who suffered as a result of distancing themselves from God. One of those examples is heavenly rather than earthly: The angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.Jude 1:6... Continue Reading →

Called and Chosen

Twice in the Gospel of Matthew, the Savior makes a distinction between being called or invited (kletoi in Greek) and being chosen or selected (eklektoi). "Many are called," He says, "but few are chosen" (Matthew 22:14; see also Matthew 22:16). Several Book of Mormon passages emphasize the principle that a person can be called without... Continue Reading →

In Their Stead

When Jesus was on the earth, He chose twelve apostles and commissioned them to help Him do His work. (See Matthew 10.) But following His resurrection and ascension, the apostles faced an administrative problem. One of their number, Judas Iscariot, had betrayed the Savior and had subsequently taken his own life. So they now numbered... Continue Reading →

“All These Things” – 3 Nephi 13:33

In the Sermon on the Mount, the Savior teaches a critical time-management principle using examples from nature: Birds find food without a lot of advance planning. Flowers look magnificent without focusing excessively on their own appearance. If God feeds and clothes them, then why do we dedicate so much time and energy to things outside... Continue Reading →

Gifts and Callings

We all have capabilities (gifts), and we all have opportunities to serve (callings). The apostle Paul encouraged the members of the church in Ancient Rome to be patient with their friends who were non-believers. Perhaps these friends were not currently using their gifts and fulfilling their callings, but "the gifts and calling of God are... Continue Reading →

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