Hope for When a Loved One Leaves the Path

Wow! I’m rejoicing with family and friends about the overturning of Roe v. Wade, last Friday June 24th. The day of joy, however, was dimmed. One of my girlfriends expressed shock and disappointment that one of her adult children didn’t share the joy with her. This child left the covenant path a few years ago. After my friend texted the news to the child, the adult child replied negatively to the mom’s rejoicing.

This incident reminded me of sadness that comes when children don’t embrace parents’ values for the sanctity of life, and other sacred values. It reminds me of the sadness I feel for all the people I know, and even people I don’t know, who have left their parents’ teachings so much that they have left the covenant path. Great news though! That same day, I discovered a story in the Book of Mormon that greatly encouraged me about this, giving me hope!

I have read this story many times, but this time around, I noticed little details that I have never noticed before. I just love how when we read classics, including the scriptures, we can get different things out of them based on what’s going on in our lives. The Holy Spirit uses the scriptures to speak to us what God knows we need based on our current woulds and questions.

This story happens in Helaman 5. It shows that people who knew/know the truth, and then leave the path, can be converted and go back to the truth. What I just wrote is the short story. If you want the long story, keep reading!

In this story, told in Helaman 5, Lehi and Nephi, sons of Helaman, live in an extremely wicked city. They decide to leave their day jobs and start preaching. People don’t like this at all and cast them into prison for their preaching of Jesus Christ. Some people come to them in prison to kill them, but then fire comes down to surround them in prison, to protect them from getting taken to their death. Despite the fire surrounding them in prison, they do not burn up.

Then the prison walls shake. A cloud of darkness surrounds the people. The people inside the prison witnessing all of this are completely spooked. They want to run away in fear but they can’t because the cloud of darkness makes it so they can’t see where they are going. The soft voice of God comes to tell them to stop persecuting His servants, Lehi and Nephi, and to repent. The people stop. They hear things from the voice of God that are too marvelous to write down.

Then one man, Aminadab, is allowed to see the face of God through the cloud of darkness. He tells the people to turn and look through the cloud. The people see Nephi and Lehi and ask Aminadab what Nephi and Lehi are doing. He tells them that they are conversing with angels of God. He also tells the people to repent, and “cry unto the voice.” So then all the people pray to the voice, to God.

Then the earth stops shaking. Then all the people are encircled with fire, with Nephi and Lehi in the center. The people are filled with joy and the Holy Spirit. This rush of the Spirit causes them to speak marvelous things that aren’t recorded in this account.

A voice tells them that the joy comes from His “Well Beloved,” Jesus Christ. God tells them to go forth, doubting not and marveling not.

The people then go round about their city to tell people of their conversion. They tell the people what they heard and saw. This is what they do to “minister to the people.” Because of this ministering, most of the people are

  1. convinced to put away their weapons
  2. convinced to give up the hatred and traditions of their fathers and
  3. yield up their land to the Nephites

i just love this story because it gives me so much hope!

It shows that someone who left the covenant path, a Nephite dissenter, can come back. Amindab was a former Nephite. He “was a Nephite by birth, who had once belonged to the church of God but had dissented from them.” (Helaman 5:35)

He was with people who didn’t believe in God and didn’t recognize a spiritual experience. He, we can presume, because of his spiritual upbringing as a Nephite, could recognize what was going on when Nephi and Lehi were talking to angels. He was able to explain to this peers in darkness what was going on in the light. Because of Him, 300 people converted to Jesus. Although he had left the path, it was he who said to his peers, “You must repent, and cry unto the voice, even until ye shall have faith in Christ, who was taught unto you by Alma, and Amulek, and Zeezrom; and when ye shall do this, the cloud of darkness shall be removed from overshadowing you.” (Helaman 5:41)

That’s the power of the Holy Spirit!

Wow! This is amazing! Aminadab goes from being in a society where they are so wicked that they are ripe for destruction, with corrupt laws, to being someone who tells the people and cry unto God until they are filled with faith in Christ. That’s the power of God and the Holy Spirit! This gives me hope for dissenters of today.

God uses people in all places, as they repent, to lead even more people to the path. He can use his power to touch their hearts, draw upon their memories of what they learned while on the path, and use them to teach others and inspire them to get on the path.

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6/28/22 Tree of Life Mama’s Podcast of the Week: Angie’s Option on Holistic, Integrative Dentistry with Dr. Michelle Jorgensen, DDS

Photo Credit: livingwellwithdrmichelle.com

Continuing on with what I wrote about curing tooth decay over here, I’m sharing this podcast episode below.

It’s from Angie and Larry Law, of Angie’s Option GRM Podcast. You can listen to it here. It features Dr. Michelle Jorgensen, featured in the photo above.

You will learn all about:

-what does holistic dentistry mean?

-Angie’s story about being struck by lightning and

-Dr. Michelle’s story and how she got sick and then well. This caused her to stop using mercury fillings on patients.

-mercury poisoning

-the evils of root canals

-hidden dental infections and how they affect autoimmune issues

-airway issues due to smaller mouths and how they affect breathing and health

To connect with Dr Michelle:

livingwellwithdrmichelle.com

IG and FB: @livingwellwithdrmichelle and @totalcaredentalutah

For virtual consultations:

801-756-3737

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6/22 Tree of Life Mama’s Healing Story #1

I’ve heard from a few fellow members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints bemoaning that we don’t hear stories of miracle healing in church meetings like we used to. As members, we subscribe to Article of Faith #7 which says, “We believe in the gift of tongues, prophecies, revelation, vision, healing, interpretation of tongues, and so forth.” So with that belief, where are all the healing stories?

I am talking about healing that comes from faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and His power. Here is an article from the Church’s website about the history of spiritual healing.

Ever since I heard that lament from a friend, who quoted a family member, I have been noticing many stories of healing told in The Gospel Library app. I’m going to share them here as I find them. So here’s Healing Story #1.

This story, by a man named Albert Peters, involves a man who had been paralyzed for decades. Polio had caused this, 22 years before, rendering his limbs to be twisted. His name was Atiati. Missionaries of the Church found him and taught him the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. The gospel lit up his life. He started caring about himself and grooming himself. Whereas he had been unshaven and unkempt when the missionaries first found him, he paid someone to shave him and clean him up so he was wearing fresh clothes when the missionaries next met with him. He had a smile on his face and a will to live.

Atiati told the elders, ““I have waited for more than twenty years for someone to come and tell me that they have the true gospel of Christ. I want you to know that for over twenty years, I have done nothing but lie here and read the Bible. If what you tell me is really the true gospel of Christ, I will know and recognize it.”

As the elders taught this man the restored gospel of Jesus Christ, Atiati recognized it as the true gospel that he was looking for. When he expressed a desire to get baptized, the missionaries wondered how this would happen. Would they have to carry him to the baptism waters?

On the day of the baptism, people of little faith gathered around the baptism scene to tease and taunt the elders and Atiati. The elders carried him to the baptismal waters, but then Atiati said that this was the most important day of his life. He asked to be put down, because in his words, “I will not be carried to my salvation.” The teasing stopped as he pulled himself up on the railing and stood. Then he walked into the waters of baptism. This was a man who had had paralyzed, twisted limbs for over 20 years! After his baptism, he walked with a cane. Not only that, but he walked to his Sunday church meetings every week from 4 AM to the arrival time of 10 AM. That’s where the nearest church meetings were for him. That’s what I call a healing miracle! Amazing! He had the faith for his limbs to be healed and they were.

Read the whole story here.

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6/21/22 Tree of Life Mama’s Podcast of the Week: How to Plan Your Summer as a Homeschool Mom with Sarah Mackenzie of the Read Aloud Revival Podcast, #208

Ahh summer!

This is my favorite time of year! I’ve already had a several-days retreat with girlfriends, gone swimming, and planted most of my garden. I’m looking forward to so much more this summer! I don’t have any more vacation plans this summer so I’ll be enjoying summer offerings close to home.

I really enjoyed this recent podcast episode from Sarah Mackenzie, which you can listen to over here.

She gives all homeschool moms a “compass” in the form of a set of questions to guide your summer season. Why would you want a compass for summer? Or any season? So you can look back on your summer, or any season, with satisfaction. You may miss doing things you wanted to, but with a compass you will do the things that matter most.

Here is what matters most to me this summer:

Image Credit: boardgamegeek.com

-continuing with my #abookandagameaday. I’ve got a whole slew of new games to play! Like the ones pictured above and below. I’m also reading aloud my picture books from over here.

Image Credit: theboardgamefamily.com

-forestbathing with friends of mine and friends of my children

-tending to my garden with my children

-playing games with my adult children who will be visiting soon

-playing games and reading books with my two grandsons who will be visiting soon

-hiking with friends and family

-going thrifting with my adult daughter

I have a feeling that’s too long of a list. What is my “most important thing”? I’m pondering that. I’d love to hear what your most important thing is. Please comment below if you care to share.

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Signs of the Heavens and How it Affects You

I’m curious as to what you all think about this video. Allie Duzett teaches about some signs of the heavens, and what we can learn from them. Kudos to her for doing this all with a nursing baby!

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6/22 Tree of Life Mama’s Board Game of the Week: Everdell

Tree of Life Mama’s game of the week is Everdell! This game involves worker placement, card drafting, tableau building and resource management. If you love those mechanisms, you will probably love this game! On top of those mechanisms, you get a forest theme. It has four sets of meeples, which are animals: turtles, squirrels, mice, and hedgehogs. The hedgehogs and squirrels are so cute. The mice and turtles are just normal. Or whatever the word is for not cute but not ugly.

Anyway, here’s why I love the game:

  1. It teaches executive control/goal achieving. You are building a city in the forest with critters and buildings. You can have a maximum of 15 cards, which have either a building or a critter on them. You get victory points based on what you have built. Whoever has the most victory points at the end of the game wins.
  2. It teaches one to plan ahead with the harvest theme. It has certain cards that you get to “harvest” resources for when you go into spring and fall.
  3. It is fun to handle the resources: the transparent plastic resin pieces, the purple berries, the little twigs, and the pebbles. (I just wish the pebbles were not so flat so they looked like real pebbles.)
  4. It is so fun and satisfying to link the building with the right animal who lives there, which maximizes your investment. You use the resources to buy the building and then you can place the critter card for free in your city because it naturally goes to that building. For example, the shopkeeper goes with the general store, the chip sweep goes with the resin refinery, the historian goes to the clock tower, the husband and wife mice go with the farm, and the toad barge goes with the barge.
  5. It teaches one to manage resources wisely. You will get more points if you really stretch out each season by thinking logically and organizing your turns well. You will want to save the turns that use resources you have in your hand later, whereas it’s best to use your first turns of the season to claim the limited resources on the board (especially the pebbles).
  6. So, yeah, it teaches one to think logically.
  7. It’s a beautiful, lovely experience. It’s fun to build a resource-generating city and lovely, in the end, to look at the intricate city you built.
Photo Credit: amazon.com

If you want a completely immersive, joyful experience, play this game in the forest!

Two of my girlfriends and I did this recently. We went forest bathing with our kids. We had a lovely time! There’s something to be said with surrounding yourself with natural elements, the trees, the sky, the grass, so you can soak it all up. Then playing a game on top of that just filled my soul. I’d been through a very stressful week, so this was a much needed break.

The kids played in the stream while we three moms played the game. It took us four hours to play! That’s because I had to teach them how to play and coach them through the game. Yeah, this is not a game to play when you have just 30 minutes. The kids got bored in the forest before we did with the game. They were forced to go get more creative with the sticks, rocks, dirt, trees and water. One of them finally came and watched us. It’s good for kids to see parents doing things just for enjoyment.

Anyway, I give this game 5 out of 5 stars! It’s perfect for your summer gaming! Go play it in the forest and amplify the forest vibe! It also has some expansions that I look forward to getting, one of which is shown below.

So many games, so little time!

Photo Credit: amazon.com

If you want a thorough explanation of the game, watch below. Happy forest gaming!

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New Podcast I Love for Your Come, Follow Christ Study

Photo Credit: Unshaken YouTube Channel by Jared Halverson

I’m loving a new-to-me podcast to help with my Come, Follow Christ study. It’s called Unshaken, and it’s by Jared Halverson. The way he explains gospel principles is so amazing. The screenshot above shows what he calls The Samuel Principle. It’s basically this: When someone, or a group of people, under your stewardship, choose wrong, tell them why it’s wrong (“protest solemnly”) and show them in a kind way what will happen to them for choosing wrong (“shew them the manner”). Then stand aside and let them choose wrong. This is what Samuel had to do when the Israelites said they wanted a king instead of a judge.

Some of my friends and I discussed Jared’s video below this past week. It blew us all away! I highly encourage you to watch it.

I loved his talk above. So I was thrilled to find his podcast that it also in video format in YouTube. Like I said above, he explains the Samuel Principle. Then he explains how to apply that principle to a wayward child or relative in your life who choose to leave the covenant path. It’s a further exploration of the Law of Contraries. He presents the Law of Contraries in the video above. It’s all so fascinating!

Here’s more of what Part 1 of the 2 videos is about, along with other topics covered, along with their time stamp (copied and pasted from YouTube):

“Part 1 of a 2 part in-depth study of 1 Samuel 8-31, this half covering chapters 8-17 which include the stories of Samuel, Saul, and David & Goliath. This lesson focuses on honoring choices you don’t agree with, the call of Saul, sacrifice & obedience, true courage, the inward vs. the outward, lessons from David & Goliath, and more. Join Jared Halverson for your weekly Come Follow Me study of the Old Testament!”

0:00 Introduction

2:23 When a Loved One Makes a Choice You Don’t Agree With

26:00 The Samuel Principle

40:12 The Call of Saul

52:51 Saul Anointed & Transformed

1:05:02 Israel United, Rebuked, & Reassured

1:19:46 Saul Offers Sacrifice

1:26:24 No Smiths in Israel

1:33:20 Jonathan & the Philistine Garrison

1:53:44 To Obey Is Better than Sacrifice

2:15:39 Samuel Chooses David

2:31:09 David & Goliath

Now here’s Part 2:

For Part 2, again, here’s a description. It’s also copied and pasted from YouTube.

“This lesson focuses on love and envy, position or person, loving our enemies, forgiveness and the atonement (the story of Abigail is a must-learn!), the witch of Endor, and more. Join Jared Halverson for your weekly Come Follow Me study of the Old Testament!”

Here are the time stamps, courtesy of the show notes from YouTube:

0:00 Introduction

0:38 Jonathan’s Love & Saul’s Envy

33:45 Saul versus David

59:46 David Spares Saul’s Life

1:10:15 David & Abigail

1:33:27 David Spares Saul Again

1:42:23 The Witch of Endor

1:50:34 David among the Philistines

2:02:50 The End of Saul

2:07:27 Conclusion

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What I Learned from Deborah, Gideon and Samson in the Bible

Image Credit: Latter-day Media’s YouTube Channel

I loved learning about Deborah, Gideon, and Samson in this past week’s reading in the Bible for the Come, Follow Christ lesson from my church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

This video about the reading, below by Rhonda and Ferrell Pickering, was wonderful. I learned so much from it.

Here’s are a few gems of what I learned:

Deborah: how wonderful that we have her story in the Bible. The Bible doesn’t have many stories of women so we have to cherish each one when we get it. It’s just so cool that we have this example of Deborah, a prophetess. It’s cool that she sat under a palm tree to be available to whoever wanted to come talk to her and get counsel. I had never noticed that in the Bible before. I love what Heather shares about her over here.

Gideon: as I read about him this week, I wondered aloud to my children, “Why is his seeking for a sign from God OK when we are told we shouldn’t seek signs?”

As it says on this page, from an article in the Ensign:

Another significant aspect of the Lord’s signs has to do with seeking or asking for signs from the Lord. The scriptures contain stern warnings about the foolishness of asking for signs as dramatic proof from the Lord in order to believe in him. For example, the Savior repeatedly rebuked sign-seeking leaders, saying, ‘An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign’ (Matt. 12:39). Sherem and Korihor were smitten by the power of God when they said, “Show me a sign” (Jacob 7:13–15Alma 30:48–50).

My answer came in Rhonda and Ferrell’s video above. They say that it’s not OK to see a sign to confirm God’s existence. Then they say it’s OK to seek a sign to know the will of God, like Gideon did.

Samson: I finally realized the significance of Samson’s story as I talked about it with my children this week. It’s not his hair that gave him his strength. He got his strength from keeping covenants with God. When he broke those covenants, he lost his strength. It’s always important for us to remember that we are nothing without God. Our only strength comes from Him and keeping our covenants with Him.

This past week I’ve had an amazing thing happen that I’ve prayed for, for months. It’s a huge blessing that I’ve been looking forward to and pleading to God for. Of course I can’t prove it, but I believe that this blessing came to my family because we have kept our covenants. I am so grateful! It’s not to say that we won’t have bad things happen to us if we keep our covenants, but we will always have God’s strength to help us get through them, when we are faithful to our covenants.

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2022 Story #3 of an Ordinary and Heroic Mom: the Wife of a Porn Addict

Today’s story highlights an anonymous mom who dealt with her husband’s porn addiction. I’m posting this in honor of all moms out there who have to deal with this. Pornography is certainly like a tsunami wave flooding the earth. The good news is that our Savior Jesus Christ is stronger than any addiction, including porn addiction. Those who put their faith in Him and ask Him to help in the work to overcome the addiction can be sober. Those spouses who deal with a spouse as porn addict can have help too and feel the power of the grace of Jesus.

Please go here to read the story, first told from the husband’s perspective and then from the wife’s.

Here is a paragraph from the wife:

“Since Jim began the repentance process, his countenance has changed. He continues to be vigilant and avoids taking any risks. I’ve stopped wondering if a setback is around the corner. Our marriage is stronger than ever, and we continue to rely on the Lord. This great hardship has been transformed into a much needed blessing.”

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Amazing Truths About Why Modern People Get Sick– This Applies to Everyone

Did you know that about 100 years ago, people mostly died of infectious diseases? By contrast, what is the #1 killer of today, at least in America? Heart disease. What is the cause of heart disease? That’s been debated for decades. The common belief for a long time was that it is high cholesterol. That’s the belief that was taught to me during my high school and college ages, both through my formal schooling and the media. Thanks to the people at the Weston A. Price Foundation, I’ve learned that it’s not cholesterol, it’s too much sugar.

Now I’m hearing other voices saying this same thing, just in a different way, with more implications. Dr. Benjamin Bikman PhD has connected the dots even more to make a clearer picture of how many diseases of the modern age, not just heart disease, but dementia, Alzheimer’s, infertility, PCOS, even cancer and so much more, all come from too much insulin. What does too much insulin come from? From too much blood sugar, which comes from eating carbs, both complex and refined. Yes even too many whole grains. Watch above. It’s amazing that Dr. Bikman has shown that so many diseases come too much insulin. See chart below from his talk above. Wow, I didn’t know that stroke, low T (which I assume means low thyroid), osteoarthritis, and migraines came from too much insulin. This is amazing news that needs to be shouted from the rooftops! I knew body fat came from too much insulin and sugar but not all these other chronic diseases. So what is the solution? Eating a low carb/keto diet. See my post over here for all the nitty gritty details on that. That post is long so skip to the part, around halfway down, that says, “So…are you ready for some solutions?

You can also get Dr. Bikman’s book to learn more.

Image Credit: barnesandnoble.com

Then this book below will also help you in lowering insulin levels. Get it on scribd.com.

Image Credit: barnesandnoble.com

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