Tuesday, October 27, 2015

1 Nephi 14:1 Stumbling Blocks

The first verse in 1 Nephi 14 gives a powerful promise to the gentiles. I include myself as a gentile, which I define as someone who is outside the fold of God. But gentiles can come unto Christ, just like anyone else and have all the blessings of the gospel given to them. As a father and husband in todays world I feel like it is an uphill battle. I am starting from an outside place (just like a gentile), and doing my best to be included among the blessed people of God. 
Verse 1 says "If the gentiles shall hearken unto the Lamb of God in that day that he shall manifest himself unto them in word, and also in power, in very deed, unto the taking away of their stumbling blocks"
There are so many "stumbling blocks" in parenting and marriage. Some of them are personal such as my impatience and unrealistic expectations for my children. Some of them are external such as the ever lurking dangers of the internet, the constant desire for entertainment, and many secular views of the world.
But all of them can be taken away by hearkening unto the Lamb of God. Which for me, means following the teachings of Christ. The biggest stumbling block that I can think of I have already mentioned, my lack of patience. The hardest part about being patient is that you never get a break. In order to be successful at being patient you have to constantly be doing it. I need help with this so I am going to look for answers ("in word, and also in power, in very deed") among the teachings of Christ and apply them to my life.
Some teachings that already jump to my mind are Christ's charity for others. He loved those that persecuted him. I get angry when my kids misbehave, when I should instead correct and teach with love. What are some teachings of Christ that have helped remove your stumbling blocks?

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

1 Nephi 13: 1-10 - The great and abominable church

The desires of the world are selfish. The world seeks for money, power, clothes, status, and pride. The results of these desires are loneliness and misery. Nephi saw the manifestation of the world in the formation of a church. I do not see this church as an organization, and I think that is what makes it hard to identify at times. I often see myself aligning myself with this church when I make selfish decisions. As a father, I wonder how do I keep my children away from this church? How can I be a better example? How can I help my children recognize their own pride?
On the other side, the Church of Christ promotes unselfish love for all. Serving, thinking of others, and being humble are the desires of His church. The results of these desires are happiness. Children have many tendencies towards love and humility, but they also have tendencies towards the opposite. I find this especially pertinent towards my older children who have a hard time making decisions based on others, and tends to focus on immediate gratification.
I think one way I will try and help my children more is to look for opportunities to help others with them. When I served others as a child I always felt the spirit of love and joy, if they can feel that then maybe they will seek that feeling in their actions as well.