Welcome to the Talk Of The Week Club. I began this club as a way to share my love of learning and growing in the gospel of Jesus Christ through the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. My hope and desire is for you to learn and grow in your faith and love of the Savior, Jesus Christ. Each Thursday a new talk will be posted, come back, open your heart and mind, allow yourself to receive and I promise you will be spiritually fed.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Week 46: The Divine Gift of Gratitude

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A very fitting topic for this month and our upcoming holiday next week, Gratitude. The talk I featured today is from the most recent General Conference. I read it to my family last night and truly felt gratitude for this great man, President Thomas S. Monson. His simple way of story telling really helps to bring his message straight to one's heart. There were several quotes from this talk that I loved below is one of them.
"A grateful heart, then, comes through expressing gratitude to our Heavenly Father for His blessings and to those around us for all that they bring into our lives. This requires conscious effort—at least until we have truly learned and cultivated an attitude of gratitude. Often we feel grateful and intend to express our thanks but forget to do so or just don’t get around to it. Someone has said that “feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.”
I made a handout above as a reminder  to learn to cultivate an attitude of gratitude. I hope you can have a great Thanksgiving holiday and enjoy this message too.

MP3 Link

...My brothers and sisters, do we remember to give thanks for the blessings we receive? Sincerely giving thanks not only helps us recognize our blessings, but it also unlocks the doors of heaven and helps us feel God’s love.

My beloved friend President Gordon B. Hinckley said, “When you walk with gratitude, you do not walk with arrogance and conceit and egotism, you walk with a spirit of thanksgiving that is becoming to you and will bless your lives.”

In the book of Matthew in the Bible, we have another account of gratitude, this time as an expression from the Savior. As He traveled in the wilderness for three days, more than 4,000 people followed and traveled with Him. He took compassion on them, for they may not have eaten during the entire three days. His disciples, however, questioned, “Whence should we have so much bread in the wilderness, as to fill so great a multitude?” Like many of us, the disciples saw only what was lacking.

“And Jesus saith unto them, How many loaves have ye? And [the disciples] said, Seven, and a few little fishes.

“And [Jesus] commanded the multitude to sit down on the ground.

“And he took the seven loaves and the fishes, and gave thanks, and brake them, and gave to his disciples, and the disciples to the multitude.”

Notice that the Savior gave thanks for what they had—and a miracle followed: “And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the broken meat that was left seven baskets full.”

We have all experienced times when our focus is on what we lack rather than on our blessings. Said the Greek philosopher Epictetus, “He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.”

Read the complete talk HERE.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Week 45: For God Did Send Me

This week's talk is one I used for a talk I gave in my ward a few weeks ago. One of my favorite parts is the analogy of a puzzle and how our lives are just like one.

"Our lives are a little like a jigsaw puzzle. The Lord has the finished picture on the box, but we don’t. We can begin turning pieces over and putting in place the corners and edges that make up the framework already revealed to us through the words of prophets, ancient and modern. Then we might start to guess at how the middle pieces should go together. If we get our mind set on the picture we envision, we may completely miss the picture the Lord intends. Although we can do much to discover which pieces fit where, we need His guidance to complete the picture. As we work on the puzzle and struggle trying pieces together for a fit, He guides us as he helps us see a fit here or there that we hadn’t noticed before. Occasionally He will show us that an entire section of the puzzle fits at the top of the picture, not at the bottom as we had imagined. Then we keep working."

 I've had so many questions come up lately in my own mind. Questions like why are my finances not as blessed as so and so, why have I had to have so much struggle in my life, even why am I not famous yet! :) Today I had a very humbling experience as I went to a Single Mothers Seminar as a guest. As I listened to the stories of these dear single mothers I felt gently chastised and was humbly reminded of all that I DO have. My puzzle according to me was not fitting together well but God knew exactly how beautiful my puzzle was and tonight He showed me that I needed to rearrange some of my pieces or the way I thought about my life experiences to match the picture on the box He created for me.

I dare say we all go through moments like this, where we question our life's path. I can say that the Lord does answer our questions.  I know He sends each of us EXACTLY where we need to be, gives us exactly the challenges or blessings we need to DO the work or fill the empty spot in someone elses puzzle. I am so grateful for this knowledge and for all of you who have been a piece of my puzzle, completing the beauty and complexity of my life. I am also so grateful to have a loving Father in Heaven and Savior who are so patient with my stubborness and so gently encourage me to rearrange my puzzle pieces now and then.

All my love and prayers,


Read the Talk HERE

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Week 44: The Constitution--A Glorious Standard

This week's talk is "The Constitution--a Heavenly Banner" a devotional given by President Ezra Taft Benson 16 September 1986. I recently read this talk and felt there is much more I must do to follow a prophet of God. Here are a few points that especially impressed me. The following are quotes from President Benson:

The war that began in heaven over this issue (agency) is not yet over. The conflict continues on the battlefield of mortality. And one of Lucifer's primary strategies has been to restrict our agency through the power of earthly governments.

Freedom as we know it has been experienced by perhaps less than one percent of the human family.

In a revelation to the Prophet Joseph Smith, the Savior declared, "I established the Constitution of this land, by the hands of wise men whom I raised up unto this very purpose" (D&C 101:80). These were not ordinary men, but men chosen and held in reserve by the Lord for this very purpose.

The Lord approved the Constitution.

A constitution was therefore designed to limit government to certain enumerated functions, beyond which was tyranny.

"Our constitution," said John Adams (first vice-president and second president of the United States), "was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other."

In the Kirtland Temple dedicatory prayer, given on March 27, 1836, the Lord directed the Prophet Joseph to say: "May those principles, which were so honorably and nobly defended, namely, the Constitution of our land, by our fathers, be established forever" (D&C 109:54).

For the past two centuries, those who do not prize freedom have chipped away at every major clause of our Constitution until today we face a crisis of great dimensions.

We are fast approaching that moment prophesied by Joseph Smith when he said:

Even this Nation will be on the very verge of crumbling to pieces and tumbling to the ground and when the constitution is upon the brink of ruin this people will be the Staff up[on] which the Nation shall lean and they shall bear the constitution away from the very verge of destruction.

Will we be prepared?

Will we be among those who will "bear the Constitution away from the very verge of destruction"? If we desire to be numbered among those who will, here are some things we must do:

1. We must be righteous and moral. We must live the gospel principles--all of them.

2. We must learn the principles of the Constitution and then abide by its precepts. Have we read the Constitution and pondered it? Are we aware of its principles? Could we defend it? Can we recognize when a law is constitutionally unsound?

3. We must become involved in civic affairs.

4. We must make our influence felt by our vote, our letters, and our advice.

I have faith that the Constitution will be saved as prophesied by Joseph Smith. But it will not be saved in Washington. It will be saved by the citizens of this nation who love and cherish freedom. It will be saved by enlightened members of this Church--men and women who will subscribe to and abide by the principles of the Constitution.

We, the blessed beneficiaries, face difficult days in this beloved land, "a land which is choice above all other lands" (Ether 2:10). It may also cost us blood before we are through. It is my conviction, however, that when the Lord comes, the Stars and Stripes will be floating on the breeze over this people. May it be so, and may God give us the faith and the courage exhibited by those patriots who pledged their lives and fortunes that we might be free..." (End President Benson's quotes.)

I am grateful for Prophets of God and pray that each of us might step up to protect the Constitution.

Much love,

Read the article HERE