My own spiritual journey and recovery has shown what true masculinity is all about. The character and integrity. Finding joy, since happiness requires right circumstances, means to come to a place of experiencing life - regardless of the good, bad, and those ugly moments.
The Symbolism of the Tower of Babel
The invitation for us to place our faith in Christ, repent and seek forgiveness for our sins and trespasses, and willingly to deny ourselves and lose our lives for the sake of Christ is an invitation to enter into sacred covenants through those true ordinances of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
“Noah Found Grace in the Eyes of the Lord”
Through Noah - there will come a brief period of rest from all that which bore wickedness. Through Christ, we come to find everlasting peace and rest from the carnal mind and vain imaginations of our own hearts.
The Lord’s Spirit Shall Not Always Strive with Man
Thus, to have the Lord's Spirit strive with us means that we are willing to allow the Holy Spirit to rule over our hearts and minds. To judge us and guide us into those moral truths of our Heavenly Father. It is therefore to this end that we understand how the Holy Spirit is limited to how long it will strive with us - as we make our sojourn and pilgrimage through this mortal existence.
The Gospel of Christ – Our Spiritual Refuge
Noah and his family were saved of (or through) water from the spiritual decay and immorality surrounding them. The flood destroying the old life in order to bring about a newness of life. It is the very nature and covenant of our baptism.
Hearken Unto God and Heed Him
By reading and studying through the scriptures, listening to those ordained by our Heavenly Father, teaching these things unto our families and others - we are to also engage in meaningful and sincere prayer. Through prayer and fasting, we are able to become conquerors and overcome Satan and those who uphold the work of the adversary (D&C 10:5).
Christ Shall Return in Glory
Christ will come and dwell on earth in righteousness. Today, we are asked to prepare our hearts and our minds to be ready when that day shall come. And it will come as a thief in the night (2 Peter 3:10). For us - we look toward the peace and the glory of His return.
Our Heavenly Father Weeps for Us
When we weep, our Heavenly Father weeps with us. When we mourn, He mourns with us. Yet, because of our moral agency, we fall short. This is expressed by the Apostle Paul to the Christians in Ephesus when he wrote and grieve not the Holy Spirit of God (Ephesians 4:30). This grieving is a deep sorrow and mourning. Such as what Enoch observed.
Being of One Heart and Mind
Individually, we are obligated to seek after God and His Kingdom. Collectively - as faithful believers in Jesus Christ - we are to follow Paul’s counsel to exhort one another (Hebrews 3:13).
All Humanity is Called to Repentance
It is only when we are faithful to the basic principle doctrine of Christ that we are able to call others unto repentance and forgiveness. Meaning, we ought to give ourselves over to walking in forgiveness and repentance daily. Otherwise, we are merely criticizing, judging, and condemning others while ignoring the transgressions and sins in our own life (Matthew 7:1-3, 5).
Day 23 – Growing from Faith to Faith
Our faith starts out small and seems quite insignificant. Yet it has a powerful potential to grow and develop into something that is formidable. This is evidenced with the contrast that such faith can move mountains. In other words - as we cultivate our faith in Jesus Christ. Nurture it from its germination. Cultivate it as it grows and maintain its active growth. Our faith becomes powerful enough to influence and change the course of our lives.
“Am I My Brother’s Keeper?”
Today, many possess the spirit of Cain and say with grave arrogance am I my brother’s keeper? Unfortunately, many who possess such an attitude and spirit of haughtiness are those who claim to be followers of Christ. How are we able to love God with all our heart, mind, and strength when we turn ourselves from the suffering of others? To love God also means we are to love others as we love ourselves.
The Acceptable Sacrifice Before God
Our journey through the Old Testament will reveal many symbolisms and foreshadowing that point us toward the nature, purpose, mission, and ministry of Jesus Christ. Yet nothing compares to the very rich and deep symbolism we find within the story of Cain and Abel’s sacrifice and offering before God. In Genesis, we simply find that Abel’s offering, and sacrifice was acceptable before God. However, Cain’s was not. In Moses 5:16-41, we come to understand the nature between the two sacrifices and offerings brought forth.
Day 21 – Protecting Our Faith and Testimony in Jesus Christ and the Gospel
Our Testimony is the armor of God the Apostle Paul references in Ephesians 6:11-17 (See also, D&C 27:15-18). And it is vital to our faith, our progress toward maturing in our faith, and going forward with meaning and purpose.
“In the Similitude of My Only Begotten Son”
Obedience merely means we are placing our faith and trust in God’s will and desire for us and our own lives. We walk by faith and not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7). It is by this faith that Adam and Eve offered up sacrifices unto God as they worshipped and called upon His name. To this end - the Angel came and revealed unto them that this was in similitude of the sacrifice Jesus Christ will provide to answer the ends of the Law and fulfill the plan of salvation.
Day 20 – Recap and Assessing your Progress and Spiritual Journey
Let us take a moment to reflect on the past few days of our journey to see where we are at and how far we may have come.
Adam Clothed with Mortality
Yes, we are clothed with mortality. Yet, as we come to faith in Jesus Christ and commit our lives over to living the principal truths of the Gospel of
Day 19 – Restoring Broken Fellowships
The reality is that restoring broken relationships, to be reconciled with others, is quite a difficult task for us to undertake. Yet, it is significantly important to the Gospel of Jesus Christ that we are humble, sincere, contrite, and motivated by the spirit and love of God to go forth with faith and purpose to seek reconciliation.
The Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil
In Word: The Tree of Life is symbolism of the Plan of Salvation. The love of God who is Jesus Christ. The Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil is the representation of moral agency. It stands in opposition to the tree of life. It represents mortality. Adam and Eve remained in a state of spiritual existence. A state of innocence. A state of perfect union and harmony. Yet, to bring about the reality of the Plan of Salvation - humanity needed to make a choice. That choice led to the temptation and partaking of the forbidden fruit. The Tree of Life represented immortality and eternal life. The Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil represented mortality and moral agency. All that encompasses human liberty and freedom of choice comes suffering, adversity, and sorrow. Yet, our Heavenly Father has prepared a way for us to overcome and endure temptation (1 Corinthians 10:13).
Day 17 – Fellow Travelers and Authentic Fellowship
The call for us to go forward with faith and purpose is also a call for us to gather in small groups. This is the reason for Sunday school classes, weeknight youth activities, scripture study groups like those for single adults studying the Old Testament. Men gathering together in fellowship. Women gathering together in fellowship. Doing so, we experience the presence of Christ because when we are gathered in His name - he is there in the midst with us (Matthew 18:20).
Day 15 – Engage in Meaningful Service and Ministry
Charity is the heart and soul of service and ministry. Without compassion and mercy, no other spiritual gifts have any purpose or meaning - not even our own faith in God. The Apostle concludes that there are three important things in our lives: Faith, Hope, and Charity. His conclusion is that Charity is the greatest of the three.
Day 14 – When God Seems Distant
The scriptures constantly teach us that we are to do two things. They also teach us two fundamental truths. First, we are to seek him continually. Despite what is going on, no matter the situation, the fears, the worries, the doubts, and the anxieties, we are to seek him. Second, we are to wait patiently. Listen attentively, tune in, and continue to walk in those truths and commandments we are to keep. And the first truth is that our answers come in the Lord's due time and not ours. The second fundamental truth is that this is where our faith in God rests.
The Divine and Covenantal Order of Marriage
Through Adam, we have the priestly authority and fatherhood of God. Through Eve, we have the divine attributes of Motherhood. Together, Adam and Eve became the representatives of Heavenly Parents. And this is evident in the unifying of man and woman in their specific gender roles as Husband and Wife.
Day 13 – Engage in Meaningful and Mindful Worship
Meaningful and mindful worship begins when we are authentic and accurate in our attitude toward Heavenly Father. He is pleased by our thoughtfulness toward Him. Reflecting on his nature, desiring to become more like Christ, sanctified and holy. We are called to be holy as he is holy, perfect as he is perfect, and through Christ, we are perfected unto God.
“And Man Became a Living Soul”
We are fashioned with eternal spiritual bodies. It is then that our Heavenly Father breathes into our mortal bodies the breath of life so that we become a living soul. Scripture also declares unto us the promise that those who come to faith in Jesus Christ - by the miracle and gift of the infinite atonement - will have a new heart and spirit (Ezekiel 36:26)
My Question – My Being
Again, the phrase appears in my mind, lingering like an unwanted specter. To be or not to be; that is the question. My soul groans and cries out - What is the answer? Only silence. The barren desert appears again. The warmth from the day lingers in the twilight hours. Long after the sun descended over the horizon. Only the moon glows against the velvet canopy of sky. Stars blinking in chorus for some cosmic audience. The desert wind becomes a cold talon. The desert's friend is loneliness.
“And It Was Good”
After all that our Heavenly Father, and Jesus Christ, have accomplished - they saw that it was good. This is something we are incapable of imagining. The sweet harmony, beauty, unity, and the way all things worked together in peace. Such beautiful perfection was very good. We also have a difficult time understanding the Holy Goodness of our Heavenly Father. The goodness in His creating each one of us after His own image and likeness. The goodness in His plan of happiness for each one of us through our Savior Jesus Christ. The goodness of revealing Himself through all
Day 10 – The Heart of Our Worship
The very heart of worship is our complete willingness to not only surrender our life and will over to God; but that we are willing and able to submit to seek His will and good pleasure for our lives. This is what is meant when the savior taught that if we lose our lives for His sake - we shall find it and there will a life of abundance
“Without Form and Void – Empty and Desolate”
Today, we may feel empty, without form and void - meaningless, unassuming, empty, and desolate. However, the power of creation reveals unto us the magnificent power our Heavenly Father has in taking something that is unorganized, unassuming, and creating something magnificent and beautiful. Through the plan of salvation, we are to become creators in building
Day 9 – Bringing Glory Through Our Obedience
The enticing of the spirit of God or the spirit of the adversary is constant and consistent. Over time, we learn how to choose one over the other. If we choose the right, we are putting on the righteousness of Christ and patterning our lives after his.
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