I feel certain that if, in our homes, parents will read from The Book of Mormon prayerfully and regularly, both by themselves and with their children, the spirit of that great book will come to permeate our homes and all who dwell therein. The spirit of reverence will increase; mutual respect and consideration for each other will grow. The spirit of contention will depart. Parents will counsel their children in greater love and wisdom. Children will be more responsive and submissive to the counsel of their parents. Righteousness will increase. Faith, hope, and charity - the pure love of Christ - will abound in our homes and lives, bringing in their wake peace, joy, and happiness.
- President Marion G. Romney

Friday, June 27, 2008

...That They Might Receive the Word with Joy...

Alma 16 recounts the fulfillment of Alma's prophecy to the Ammonihahites (I won't miss typing that word every day!) and the preaching of the Gospel among the Nephites.

*vs. 2, 9-11 -- the fulfillment of Alma's prophecy. What can we learn?

*vs. 4-8 -- God cared enough to answer this request for information. What can we learn from this? What about when it comes to voting this fall (but let's keep our discussion free of heated political debate ;))?

*vs. 13-14 -- How can we apply these verses?

*vs. 16-17 -- Is this happening today? Are we praying that it will? This reminds me of Alma 6:6.

*vs. 18-21 -- How does this compare to our day?

*Any other verses that struck you? Insights?

And I might be the last person in the world to discover this, but did you know you (as in NOT the publisher of the post) can have the comments emailed to you? You can. Just click the "email follow-up comments to..." box in the comment form before you hit publish and you'll get all the discussion emailed right to your inbox. How's that for technology? Thanks, Cheryl!


Pam said...

This Chapter just reminds me of how mindful our Father in Heaven is of what we need. He does what he says he will do, he helps us with every righteous desire. My favorite verse was 16;"the Lord did pour out his Spirit on all the face of the land to prepare the minds of the children of men, or to prepare their hearts to receive the word." This makes me want to be more worthy and attentive to the promptings of the spirit. By the way Julie if you are wondering who this comment is from, I am Stanton's cousin who lives in Lindon. Thanks to all of you for sharing your knowledge of the gospel.

Monica said...

I feel that vs 9-11 definitely can apply to our day. I look at the US and how we think that we are so grand and powerful and just the power of the world and yet terrorists were able to attack on 9/11 and many other instances. If we think we are indestructable (did I spell that right?) we are definitely open for being taken down.

I think we also need to remember to have a humble heart and to remember the Lord and remember that we are blessed because of everything HE has given us and He can take it all away if he desires to.

Mother of the Wild Boys said...

Before I knew about this blog, I had studied this chapter during my personal scripture study time. Verses 14, 16 & 17 stuck out to me during that time because I was to be sustained as a Relief Society teacher at church later that day. I felt that those verses were telling me what kind of teacher to be, and how I and my fellow RS sisters could be blessed for receiving the gospel messages. What a comfort!

Janelle said...

Alma 16 almost makes Alma 14 bearable.

vs. 9-11 "in one day it was left desolate" We are so vulnerable, it truly is by the mercy of an all powerful God that we are sustained day by day.

Zoram's asking of the Lord's input of how to save the captives was so relevent. He asked prior to making any plans or strategies. Sometimes we lay our entire lives out and are disappointed when things don't fall into place the way that WE planned. If we include the Lord in our planning sessions we may have a better shot at rescuing the captives in our own lives (including ourselves.) The captives could be our wayward siblings or children or our own familial dead who are waiting in the next life for us to find them and seal them to us. May we all be like the Nephites and find that not one soul was lost.

vs. 13, 14 In our mission the Mission Pres. designed a pamphlet for the members to practice sharing the gospel everywhere they go. So often when a nonmember asks about our weekend we tell them about our boatind excursion or a movie we saw. All to often we skip right past Sunday and say we had a great weekend. We are practicing making it easy for people to know our faith by including it in our regular conversations just like the church is part of who I am, like it is.

Vs. 16, 17 are so beautiful and just what I needed today. This is what we need to be praying for as a ward. L. Tom Perry just visited here and told our Stake President that each ward needs to be supplying the missionaries assigned to their ward 20 discussions a week. Currently our ward missionaries have 4 and I doubt if they are member referrals. I am currently praying for this outpouring of the spirit upon my own brother and his girlfriend because this is what I need! I need their hearts prepared and softened and I need to bear witness of the truth in joy. This has been the source of my fasting and temple attendance this week. I hope I will be prepared myself to speak openly and lovingly and to make invitations that will be accepted. It is my hope that slowly yet surely these blessings will come to pass and oh how my family's joy will be full! We have already seen some softening....

Similar thoughts to vs 20: I wish all of you were in my house when my ward scripture study did the Doctrine and Covenants. But here is my favorite quote by Lorenzo Snow speaking of those who will be living in Jackson County at the time of the meeting at Adam-Ondi-Ahman. "If you will not have seen the Lord Jesus at that time you may expect Him very soon, to see him, to eat and drink with Him, to shake hands with Him and to invite him to your houses as He was invited when He was here before." President Lorenzo Snow, Deseret News June 15, 1901 but taken from the Religion 324, 325 manual for institute courses.

It's quotes like that that make you pray as Alma did, "Would to God that it might be in my day."

Julie said...

Hi Pam! So glad to see you here! Keep coming back and commenting. I agree with verse 16 -- it is one of those beauties, isn't it?

I was really moved by verses 4-8. I've been really torn by this year's choices for presidential candidates and as I read this, the words of the first presidency message that is sent out every election year came immediately to mind -- that we should prayerfully consider each candidate and vote in accordance with the Spirit's promptings. If I can trust Him to answer other issues in my life, why not this very important one?
Also, Janelle, I loved your thoughts on these verses. The application in all areas of our lives would be really helpful.

vs. 13-14 -- Stanton was just sharing a talk with me from Elder Ballard about having a "Gospel Sharing Home." It was so perfect and perfectly in line with these verses. A home where people feel happy and comfortable being (he even specifically said not spotless clean or perfectly behaved at all times - whew!). A home where Gospel conversations come naturally. A home where people feel the Spirit of the Lord. I love that idea that we can exercise faith and that faith can be exercised by simply preparing a home where the Spirit can be felt. That takes faith, though, and especially faith to talk about our activities at Church as readily as we speak of everything else.

Monica -- amen to your second paragraph. The Ammonihahites certainly learned this lesson quickly, didn't they?

I really do hope that whenever and wherever I have opportunities to teach or bear testimony, the Spirit can be poured out abundantly. It feels that way as I learn from your comments and insights.