Friday, August 28, 2009

1 Nephi, Chapter 17

What I pulled from this chapter is that the commandments of God must be fulfilled and if we will just follow Him and do as he asks, He will provide a way.

There are many times that I think that I cannot do what the Lord has asked... it's just too hard, I don't have the time, I don't have the energy or the resources. But if I just follow Him and do my best, He will help me find a way to do what I should do.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

1 Nephi, Chapter 16

Haven't you always been curious what the Liahona looked like exactly? I have a picture in my own head, but I wonder how close it is to reality.

That's not really my scriptural pondering for the day, just something that came to mind as I was reading. ;)

But my thought to consider for today is about Laman and Lemuel. At the beginning of the chapter they humble themselves and are walking in righteousness, but by the end they are right back to being hardhearted and disobedient. I know a lot of times when I've read this story or talked about it in classes, everyone kind of shakes their head over Laman and Lemuel and wonders how they could go through this cycle again and again. But today it struck me that I go through that cycle again and again also. Maybe not to the extremes of Laman and Lemuel, but still.

I have things that I struggle to believe and to obey and sometimes I do really well and do all that I should be doing. Other times I fall down and feel hardhearted until I have to repent and start the cycle over again. And again. And again.

So I guess my lesson for today is to not be so judgemental of Laman and Lemuel when I read their stories. And to not be judgemental of people that I encounter in my everyday life... I may not approve of some of the things they do, but there's no telling where they are in this cycle. Given time, they may be the ones to help me when I fall down to the bottom of the cycle.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

1 Nephi, Chapter 14-15

There is a lot of profound content in these two chapters. They talk about Nephi's visions of all that will come to pass in the world and discuss the meaning of the symbols in the tree of life vision. Very important things.

And yet, as I was reading today, none of those things struck me the way one single verse did.

verse 8: "And I said unto them: Have ye inquired of the Lord?"

In this particular case, he's talking to his brothers who are trying to puzzle out the tree of life vision. But to me, it suddenly hit me that this is a question we should be asking every day. Each time we hit a roadblock or have a question or a worry... Have ye inquired of the Lord? Have you let Him help as you try to decide what is best? Have you turned to Him for advice or comfort?

I know that too often I forget that He is there for us in every little thing as well as the big things. I need to remember more often that whenever I have a concern or a problem, I should inquire of the Lord to help me find my way or just for comfort as I work through something.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

1 Nephi, Chapter 12-13

I read chapter 12 and just couldn't find anything uplifting to ponder in that chapter today. There's a lot of talk about wars and contention and other dark things. So I moved on and read chapter 13 as well. After a few more dark passages came the light that I was looking for.

Verse 36 says "...if they endure unto the end they shall be lifted up at the last day, and shall be saved in the everlasting kingdom of the Lamb; and whoso shall publish peace, yea, tidings of great joy, how beautiful upon the mountains shall they be."

If we hang on through the dark and depressing times and endure unto the end, we will be lifted up and have peace and great joy!

Friday, August 21, 2009

1 Nephi, Chapter 11

This chapter is where Nephi sees the vision that his father saw... he not only sees the rod of iron and the tree of life, but also many other things that have been and will be.

I can't imagine how overwhelming it must have been to see this vision. It brings home to me that Nephi was truly a prophet of God to be able to see all these things, make sense of them, and then be able to write about them for us to read and learn from all this time later.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

1 Nephi, Chapter 10

18 For he is the same yesterday, today, and forever... I like the reminder that God is unchanging.

To me this means that His promises are also unchanging... no matter what, if we keep our end of the promise, God will keep His.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

1 Nephi, Chapter 9

5 Wherefore, the Lord hath commanded me to make these plates for a wise purpose in him, which purpose I know not.

6 But the Lord knoweth all things from the beginning; wherefore, he prepareth a way to accomplish all his works among the children of men; for behold, he hath all power unto the fulfilling of all his words. And thus it is. Amen.

A reminder to me that sometimes we don't know why we're supposed to do the things the Lord asks us to do. But because the Lord knoweth all things from the beginning, He has a purpose and knows why we should do these things we ask. We need to have faith to do as we should do - in time, we will be able to see the Lord's purpose.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

1 Nephi, Chapter 8

Having grown up in the church, I have of course heard Lehi's dream about the tree of life many times. I kind of started skimming through this chapter, because I know the story of this vision. But as I was reading, my attention was caught by something that I haven't really thought much about before. Verse 21 says that there are "numberless concourses" of people starting out on the path to the tree. I can't even picture what a huge throng that would be. So many people starting out on the right path.

But along the way there are so many distractions that pull people away one by one, until by the end, the number of people actually making it to the tree is much smaller.

There are so many distractions in life that pull us away from what we should be doing. We need to pay close attention to where we are walking to be sure we are still on the path, gripping the iron rod.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

1 Nephi, Chapter 6-7

In Chapter 7, Laman & Lemuel and some of Ishmael's family rebel against Nephi and Lehi. And I know that it was wrong of them, and it was certainly wrong of them to try and kill Nephi, but at the same time, I feel some sympathy for them.

If you think about it, all of these people had a very comfortable life in Jerusalem. And suddenly that was all jerked away from them. Suddenly they found themselves living in the wilderness, doing without all the comforts and entertainments they were used to. It must have been very difficult to deal with. When I picture how I would feel in this situation, I think I would feel rebellious, too!

In spite of all they did to Nephi in the course of their rebellion, he forgave them freely, with great hopes that they would stay on the right path. A great example of how we should behave towards those who wrong us!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

1 Nephi, Chapter 5

This chapter talks a little about Lehi's geneology and how his lineage was recorded on the plates of brass. It's a reminder to me about the importance of doing my geneology research. I actually really enjoy researching my geneology. For a couple of months last year, Aaron and I were both really into it and spent hours each night researching. We found quite a few family names that needed temple work done and took those names to the temple.

I need to get back to spending time on my geneology research. I'm going to try and find one night a week that I could work on further research.

I also need to make a committment to get to the temple more often. We still have some temple cards for some family members who need to have endowments and/or sealings done and are just waiting on us. I need to get on the ball!

Monday, August 10, 2009

1 Nephi, Chapter 4

verse 34: Surely the Lord has commanded us to do this thing; and shall we not be diligent in keeping the commandments of the Lord?

Just a good reminder that we should listen to the Lord and do as we are told!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

1 Nephi, Chapter 3

1 Nephi 3:6 - "...thou shalt be favored of the Lord, because thou hast not murmured."

Something I need to remember more often is not to murmur... not just in about the gospel or church, but about life in general. I try to avoid this because I would rather be positive than negative. I have noticed that when I spend time with people who always look at the negative side or who are always complaining, it makes me unhappy. The bad attitude rubs off on me. I start to do the same thing. And that makes me even more unhappy. So if I can avoid murmuring, I'll be happier overall.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

1 Nephi, Chapter 2

Lehi had wealth and property and probably a very comfortable life until the Lord commanded him to go into the wilderness. And he did it. He didn't argue or negotiate or plead for more time to get ready. He just left everything behind and went with his family into the wilderness.

What an incredible example of obedience. The Lord spoke and he obeyed.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Starting with the Book of Mormon - 1 Nephi, Chapter 1

Probably one of the most recognized phrases in the church is the opening to this book: "I, Nephi, having been born of goodly parents..."

I want my children to be able to say that they were born of goodly parents. To me, that means that I need to be working to improve myself. Doing more to be a good mother, a good church member, and a good person overall.

A 2nd thing that struck me... Nephi talks about how he is making an account of the proceedings in his days. This reminds me of the importance of keeping journals for posterity. My blogs may be a non-traditional journaling method, but it works for me. I use them to make an account of the proceedings of my days!