Saturday, August 29, 2015

Is It Ever Too late?

As many people do, I went through a time where I fell away from God. I did not fall in a sense of turning against the church and my beliefs and actively fighting. But I 
fell in the sense of not following the commandments as I should. I fell into sin and addiction. I allowed myself to slack off from my daily scripture study and personal prayer, to the point where it was rare if I ever looked at the scriptures or even said a prayer. After many months. I felt the darkness. I didn't see it at first. But when I realized how far I had gone.... once I realized what I had done... I asked.... "Is it too late?" "Have I fallen too far?"

As a missionary I taught people about the mercy of God and the Atonement of Jesus Christ. I read the scriptures with them, testified to them of God's love. I loved them and assured them that if they repented, that they could overcome their sins and be able to change for the better. Now, I know how they felt.... dark, alone, unsure, afraid, guilty. These are the feeling we feel, not only because of sin, but because of other trials that we may go through. We can see these things in the lives of other and ask.... "Is it too late?" "Am too far gone?" "Can I ever be happy again?"

When we go through these times, we feel as Alma did. "... racked with eternal torment, for my soul was harrowed up to the greatest degree and racked with all my sins." (Alma 36:12)

As a young missionary, struggling with the scars of past transgression, I turned to the scriptures. I began to religiously study the Atonement of Jesus Christ. I began to study everything I could about how I could apply the Atonement to myself. I listened to talks explaining the Plan of Mercy that God himself created for us. I learned for myself that it is through Grace that we are saved.

These are just a few of the scriptures that I myself find comforting. 


 "My son, peace be unto thy soul; thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment;
And then, if thou endure it well, God shall exalt thee on high; thou shalt triumph over all thy foes." (D&C 121:7-8)



"Behold, doth he cry unto any, saying: Depart from me? Behold, I say unto you, Nay; but he saith: Come unto me all ye ends of the earth, buy milk and honey, without money and without price." (2 Nephi 26:25)


"And now, the plan of mercy could not be brought about except an atonement should be made; therefore God himself atoneth for the sins of the world, to bring about the plan of mercy, to appease the demands of justice, that God might be a perfect, just God, and a merciful God also." (Alma 42:15)



"Listen to him who is the advocate with the Father, who is pleading your cause before him—
 Saying: Father, behold the sufferings and death of him who did no sin, in whom thou wast well pleased; behold the blood of thy Son which was shed, the blood of him whom thou gavest that thyself might be glorified;
 Wherefore, Father, spare these my brethren that believe on my name, that they may come unto me and have everlasting life."(D&C 43:3-5)



 "O all ye that are spared because ye were more righteous than they, will ye not now return unto me, and repent of your sins, and be converted, that I may heal you?" (3 Nephi 9:13)


"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." (Ether 12:27)


"And now my beloved brethren, I have said these things unto you that I might awaken you to a sense of your duty to God, that ye may walk blameless before him, that ye may walk after the holy order of God, after which ye have been received.
 And now I would that ye should be humble, and be submissive and gentle; easy to be entreated; full of patience and long-suffering; being temperate in all things; being diligent in keeping the commandments of God at all times; asking for whatsoever things ye stand in need, both spiritual and temporal; always returning thanks unto God for whatsoever things ye do receive."(Alma 7:22-23)



"O that ye would awake; awake from a deep sleep, yea, even from the sleep of hell, and shake off the awful chains by which ye are bound, which are the chains which bind the children of men, that they are carried away captive down to the eternal gulf of misery and woe."
"Awake, my sons; put on the armor of righteousness. Shake off the chains with which ye are bound, and come forth out of obscurity, and arise from the dust."(2 Nephi 1:13,23)


The trials we go through leave scars. My friend recently told me, the scars are not there to haunt us, they are not there to punish us, but they are there to remind us that all wounds can be healed. We are wounded and are in need of a physician. Christ tells us that wemust return to Him and repent... so that He can heal us. Thats all He asks. He has bleed for you. He died for you. He pleads to the Father for you. And all He asks in return is for us to do our best, and come back to Him.

I know that through Jesus Christ, IT IS NEVER TOO LATE! No matter how far we fall, no matter what we do. He is waiting for us to come back. He will help us climb out of the pit and return to where we need to be. He will heal the wounds and mend the scars. He will help us feel joy and relief.


"The Son of Man hath descended below them all. Art thou greater than he?" (D&C 122:8)



Thursday, August 20, 2015

Upcoming Posts

Hello everyone. It has been awhile since I posted anything, however I am still working on my future posts! Next week will be "Is It Ever Too Late?"

Then hopefully I will be able to answer and post "Why The Book of Mormon?"

As always, if you have a question you wish to ask, please go to the Q&A tab, or feel free to email me at ryanpearl50@yahoo.com. Thank you

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Does God Speak to Man?





Does God really speak to man? Will He continue to speak? This question has been presented to me many times on my mission. In The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, we believe in personal revelation and prophets and apostles whom God speaks to today. People have said




God is

Dead!




or

We 

             don't need

Him 
to tell us anything!


          I heard that
God said
everything .....  He was going to tell us,


                       or

everything we need is in the Bible.




I researched this topic and found many scriptures that explain.


God does speak! He has spoken to man since He created us! We can see His words written in the
God speaks to prophets, they then write down and teach how word
scriptures, these are the words of life and we can learn so much from them. God gives His word unto many nations, and He does not give all his word to one. God said:
 "Wherefore murmur ye, because that ye shall receive more of my word? Know ye not that the testimony of two nations is a witness unto you that I am God, that I remember one nation like unto another? Wherefore, I speak the same words unto one nation like unto another. And when the two nations shall run together the testimony of the two nations shall run together also. And I do this that I may prove unto many that I am the same yesterday, today, and forever; and that I speak forth my words according to mine own pleasure. And because that I have spoken one word ye need not suppose that I cannot speak another; for my work is not yet finished; neither shall it be until the end of man, neither from that time henceforth and forever. Wherefore, because that ye have a Bible ye need not suppose that it contains all my words; neither need ye suppose that I have not caused more to be written." (2 Nephi 29:8-10)


The scriptures come together to testify of His love and of His commandments. They show us the Plan of Salvation, and they testify of Christ. A single witness cannot stand fully on its own. In every nation where people worship God, there was a prophet sent. The prophets were the mouthpiece of God. God would teach the prophet what to say and the prophet would then teach the people! God has always revealed His laws to prophets like Abraham, Moses, Elijah, Jeremiah in the middle east, but when their were people in the Americas that believed as well, He sent prophets like Nephi, Alma and Heleman.

"Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets." (Amos 3:7) God blesses all people who believe in him. The Nephites in the Book of Mormon had their own prophets and their own scriptures. Peter said: "Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons: But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him. And he commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God to be the Judge of quick and dead. To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins." (Acts 10:34-35, 42-43)

 Following the words of Peter, God said that He will speak unto all nations: "For behold, I shall speak unto the Jews and they shall write it; and I shall also speak unto the Nephites and they shall write it; and I shall also speak unto the other tribes of the house of Israel, which I have led away, and they shall write it; and I shall also speak unto all nations of the earth and they shall write it." (2 Nephi 29:12) 

But does God speak today? Well if we follow what He has said in Malachi, "For I am the Lord, I change not;" (Malachi 3:6)

 "For I know that God is not a partial God, neither a changeable being; but he is unchangeable from all eternity to all eternity." (Moroni 8:18) 

"Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever." (Hebrews 13:8)

 If He spoke to men in the days of Moses and Abraham and Jeremiah, and He does not change, and He is not a "partial" God(Being our God today and vanish tomorrow), then would it not be possible for him to speak to men today? Some say God is dead and that he doesn't speak to anyone anymore. Some say that when Christ died on the cross and said "it is finished" and he died, that it was the end of Gods dealings with men. 



This scripture says otherwise.

"And now, O all ye that have imagined up unto yourselves a god who can do no miracles, I would ask
of you,...Has the end come yet? Behold I say unto you, Nay; and God has not ceased to be a God of miracles. Behold, are not the things that God hath wrought marvelous in our eyes?.. Who shall say that it was not a miracle that by his word the heaven and the earth should be; and by the power of his word man was created of the dust of the earth; and by the power of his word have miracles been wrought? And who shall say that Jesus Christ did not do many mighty miracles? And there were many mighty miracles wrought by the hands of the apostles. And if there were miracles wrought then, why has God ceased to be a God of miracles and yet be an unchangeable Being? And behold, I say unto you he changeth not; if so he would cease to be God; and he ceaseth not to be God, and is a God of miracles. And the reason why he ceaseth to do miracles among the children of men is because that they dwindle in unbelief, and depart from the right way, and know not the God in whom they should trust." (Mormon 9:15-20)


"And again I speak unto you who deny the revelations of God, and say that they are done away, that there are no revelations, nor prophecies, nor gifts, nor healing, nor speaking with tongues, and the interpretation of tongues; Behold I say unto you, he that denieth these things knoweth not the gospel of Christ; yea, he has not read the scriptures; if so, he does not understand them." (Mormon 9:7-8) God speaks to men on earth today! He leads his church with his own voice once again heard through a Prophet of God.


Well my friends, the purpose of this post, is to help us understand that:





Remember in 2 Nephi 29 he said "And I do this that I may prove unto many that I am the same yesterday, today, and forever; and that I speak forth my words according to mine own pleasure...for my work is not yet finished; neither shall it be until the end of man, neither from that time henceforth and forever." He gives us proof so we can know as we sincerely search and ask for the answer. His work is not finished, neither will it be done until the end of time. I know that to be true in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Whats Your Question of the Soul?

"How do I know my question of the soul?" Here is a good check, if you could sit down and ask God one question, what would it be?

If you have a question and want to ask it then you can comment on our Q&A tab and ask your question!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The Love of God


The love of God
What is the love of God? This is the question that I have asked. We hear, "God is love" but what does that mean?

There are many different types of love. There is brotherly love, romantic love, loving a friend, etc. But most of them don't really apply. I believe there is a love just for God. A Godly love. I will call it Charity because that is the "pure love of Christ"(Moroni 7:47). This is the greatest kind of love. In our modern world, charity is usually somthing we do to help someone, such as giving money or food. Or a place where we can donate things and they give it to people.
But how do the scriptures define it?

"4 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;
7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
8 Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away."
(1 Corinthians 13:4-8)

Now this is Paul's definition
. But I want to use it as our base for the Love of God. To really understand the love of God, we need to look at how he shows his love. On a few earlier posts, we went over the Plan of Salvation. I want to go over God's plan again, because it truly shows his love.
 Remember that we lived with God as his children. We were happy and we loved Him. He told us about a plan where we could become even more happy and have true joy through all eternity. The plan is for us to come to earth and receive bodies. These bodies would give us the ability to experience pain, pleasure, sadness, joy, and many other things. We can learn and grow and become better. But with this life would come challenges. This life would not be easy and we will make mistakes. Because of our mistakes, we have become separated from God and we are powerless to return on our own. But with that, there was one chosen from the beginning to come and save us! Jesus Christ is the Son of God. He suffered and died so that we can be forgiven of our sins and be able to return to God. 

"16 ¶For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved."
(John 3:16-17)

After this when we pass away, we dwell in the spirit world for a time until the time of resurrection and judgement.
God has creates this perfect plan so that we can be happy for eternity! Think of someone you love a lot, maybe a spouse, a child, sibling, parent, etc. What would you be willing to do to help them be happy? Do you know what God did?



Look all around you, the Table or computer you are at, the trees and grass outside


 Look at the Sky above as the sun rises
 Think of the time you went camping and the beauty of the forest

Look at the flowers.
















I love to look at the sky at night and see the stars! Its amazing. Billions of stars and planets to surround them! He created them all!! And that is just so we can look at and study and ponder. Think of what He has done for you. 

That is God's love, it is unconditional and it is beyond our comprehension.
I know God lives and that He loves us. 

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Next Week: What Is The Love of God?

One question I have thought of lately is, what is the love of God? What does this entail? How does this effect me? How can this help me in life? This is the post I will be working on this weekend.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

What Are God's Rules About Sexual Relations?

I was given this question: Why don't we talk about sexuality more openly in the LDS church?
 I took this question and have come with my understanding and my feelings, and I want to work on another question as well. What are God's rules about sexual relations?

 In the LDS Church, from my experience, there is always a sense of reluctance to talk about the law of chastity and our sexuality. Why? I am sure there are many reasons. It could be that we feel that if we talk too much about it, it will be embarrassing, people feel it is inappropriate. There is a time and a place for these talks and in many cases, it is only discussed once a year, if that. The more advanced classes do not talk about the law of chastity in a way of whats ok and whats not because that would be talked about in the lower classes. Then in the lower classes such as the Young Men and Young Women classes, it is an awkward subject that people don't feel comfortable talking about. It is definitely a subject that should be established with all people, but in many cases, people feel like they can't be open and ask questions about it. This is why the brethren have given us the law of chastity pamphlets, etc. It is not a secret subject, and it should be discussed occasionally just to answer questions or as a refresher. That's what I hope to do here.
This is what I have seen, but as I said, there are many reasons why people may not talk about it. But the best way to discuss this is to lay it down on the table and say what it is.

The world today is under the impression that sex before marriage is ok, and that as long as you love someone, it is no different than if you were married to them. This is wrong. The lord said through His prophet Alma that sexual sin is more serious than any other sin except murder denying the Holy Ghost. (Alma 39:3-5)


There are a few scriptures where God dictates the guidelines of sexual interaction.

Exodus 20:14 He clearly states "Thou shalt not commit adultery" and the bible does not distinguish between adultery and fornication. They are both included in this law. This means no sexual relations before marriage, and complete fidelity to your spouse within marriage.


Matthew 5:28 "But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart." This adds controlling your thoughts to the law. Thinking about doing one of the included acts above with someone is breaking this law. 

Also in 3 Nephi 12:29-30 He adds "Behold, I give unto you a commandment, that ye suffer none of these things to enter into your heart; For it is better that ye should deny yourselves of these things, wherein ye will take up your cross, than that ye should be cast into hell." This scripture helps more as we think what else may fall into this category of lusting. two more things I can think of is pornography and masturbation. Both of which are things that if not caused by lust, they certainly will cause us to lust. To clarify what pornography is, it is anything we view, read, or listen to that depicts or describes the human body or sexual conduct in a way that can arouse sexual feelings. This is spiritually killing and highly addictive to both men and women. STAY AWAY FROM IT.

Ephesians 5:3-5 "But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks. For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God." This scripture clearly states that fornication is wrong, coveting is wrong(lusting after another). Don't joke about these kind of things, and don't tell other people that breaking this law is ok in any form.

Genesis 3:7 "And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons." Simply stated. Be modest, don't wear clothing that is revealing or sexually suggestive. This includes short shorts and skirts, clothing that is too tight or doesn't cover the stomach. "In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array;" (1Timothy 2:9)
Of course this does include men. Wear your shirt, don't be sloppy, look nice. 

Leviticus 18:22-23 "Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination. Neither shalt thou
lie with any beast to defile thyself therewith: neither shall any woman stand before a beast to lie down thereto: it is confusion." Clearly stated that sexual relations are between a man and a women. Anything else is not of God.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20  " What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s." Remember that your body is a gift from God. Treat it with respect. Don't defile your body for self pleasure or even for others pleasure. Cloth your body to show your respect and love for God and do what He asks. Also, respect others peoples body in the same way you want yours respected. And if you are unsure if an action or thought is not in line with this commandment, ask God.

To sum up the law of chastity, we do this... Draw a Ginger Bread Man.... Now draw cloths on him.
This is my Ginger Bread Man
 The Law of Chastity is do not:
1. Think about
2. Talk about
3. Touch
4. Look at
5. or Uncover
...what is under the clothing. This includes yourself and other people, men or women.
Simple.


I know that in this world, this is something few people understand or care about. It is something that many people feel is an old law that doesn't apply anymore. God still cares, God still loves us, God still wants us to use His gift in the boundaries He has set. As usual, I invite you to pray to know if this is true and to learn for yourself if this really is a commandment of God.

I personally know it is and I gave seen the fruit. I have felt the spirit more, I have felt better about myself, I respect others more, I feel closer to God, I feel more love for others. There are many more blessings and I know that God will give you if you live the law of chastity.
I say this in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.