Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Light the World

This December the Church and our Savior has invited us all to LIGHT THE WORLD with love and Christlike service. Jesus Christ spent his mortal life entirely in the service of others and fulfilling the will and design of His Father in Heaven.

This Christmas season, we have a chance to do meaningful acts of service that will light the world with the love of Christ. Please join us each day in drawing near to the Savior and bringing peace, joy, and love to all of Heavenly Father's Children.

To read more, and see the calendar of service events, please visit

Christ is the reason for Christmas. His works and life light the way.

First Presidency Christmas Devotional

The First Presidency invites Church members and their friends to participate in the First Presidency’s Christmas devotional broadcast on Sunday, December 4, 2016, at 6:00 p.m. (Mountain Standard Time).
The program, originating from the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, will include Christmas messages by General Authorities and General Officers of the Church.
The Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square will provide the music.
View live
The following options are available for viewing the live stream of devotional from anywhere in the world:
Various other stations and Internet sites throughout the world will also carry the devotional. Check local program listings for availability in your area.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Why Do We Need Organized Religion? Why Do We Need Christ's True Church?

Have you ever wondered what the purpose of church really is? Why can't we all just be good people with individual religious goals and beliefs? Many feel that there is no need to participate in organized religion at all. 

 Elder D. Todd Christofferson, a member of the quorum of the twelve apostles, teaches,

"I realize that there are those who consider themselves religious or spiritual and yet reject participation in a church or even the need for such an institution. Religious practice is for them purely personal. Yet the Church is the creation of Him in whom our spirituality is centered—Jesus Christ. It is worth pausing to consider why He chooses to use a church, His Church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, to carry out His and His Father’s work “to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.” 

In the Book of Mormon, in the sixth chapter of Moroni, verse four it reads,
"And after they had been received unto baptism, and were wrought upon and cleansed by the power of the Holy Ghost, they were numbered among the people of the church of Christ; and their names were taken, that they might be remembered and nourished by the good word of God, to keep them in the right way, to keep them continually watchful unto prayer, relying alone upon the merits of Christ, who was the author and the finisher of their faith."

Among the many reasons why Christ organized His church while he was on the earth, and once again in the latter-days, is for the members to lift and strengthen one another in the keeping of the commandments and taking the name of the Savior upon them in the sacred ordinance of baptism. This unity and strength is a strong defense against the adversary and his temptations. 

Elder Neil L. Maxwell declared, "random individual goodness is not enough in the fight against evil." 

We each child of God needs all of the safety, organization, priesthood, ordinances, sacrament, and constant nourishment by the good word of God that is provided in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 

I encourage you to read the following talks and resources on why we have the need for, and participation in Christ's true church, and how we can learn of that need by the power of the Holy Ghost. 

Elder Christofferson reminds us that, 
"In this discussion of the Church as the body of Christ, we must always bear in mind two things. One, we do not strive for conversion to the Church but to Christ and His gospel, a conversion that is facilitated by the Church. The Book of Mormon expresses it best when it says that the people “were converted unto the Lord, and were united unto the church of Christ. ” Two, we must remember that in the beginning, the Church was the family, and even today as separate institutions, the family and the Church serve and strengthen one another. Neither supplants the other, and certainly the Church, even at its best, cannot substitute for parents. The point of gospel teaching and priesthood ordinances administered by the Church is that families may qualify for eternal life."

I do know with certainty that I have been blessed beyond anything I could describe in this blog post or in words at all, by my full participation in and attendance to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Church is sacred because it is a place where we come to know our Savior. We learn how to return to Him, and how to follow Him here and now. I have felt His loving spirit as I have partaken of the Holy Sacrament. I invite you to attend if it is possible. I can testify that it will bless your life into the eternities to be united with the children of God. Jesus Christ lives and loves you. There is truth on the earth today and you can know it. 

-Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Articles of Faith Eleven and Twelve

Articles of Faith Eleven and Twelve work together to declare our claim on the importance of religious freedom as a significant part of using our power to act. As we protect these freedoms and act righteously on them, we are blessed to enjoy the spirit of our almighty Father and His Son.

Article of Faith Eleven: 

We claim the privilege of worshiping the Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may.

Article of Faith Twelve:

We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law. 

Elder L. Tom Perry, defines,

"The 11th and 12th articles profess our belief in religious liberty, tolerance, and agency. Agency is one of the great gifts of God to His children. It allows all men and women the right to choose for themselves and to earn their own individual salvation. Also declared is our belief in secular governments and “in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law” of the land."

There are many times in scripture where the Lord warns against the consequences of a people ripe in all manner of sin and iniquity. These evils threaten and eventually destroy the true freedom of God's children. God will not always uphold the promised blessings of a people or a land if there has been a retreat from truth and righteousness, and a turning to the designs and combinations of the devil. As the Eleventh Article of Faith teaches, it is a privilege to worship, turn to, and love our Father in Heaven. This is a privilege because it blesses us to see clearly, and to develop the relationship with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ that is necessary to inherit and qualify for eternal life. To restrict, demean, and pervert religious freedom for God's children is to jeopardize the receiving the greatest gifts of God.

-Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Monday, October 10, 2016

O How Great the Plan of Our God

Were you able to watch, listen to, or read General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints? If not, please visit and see what truths God has sent to you. The following message was given in the most recent General Conference by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, second counselor in the first presidency of the church. What a powerful message for our day.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

General Conference October 2016 Is for Everyone

Please Join Us for General Conference

All members of the Church are invited to participate in the 186th Semiannual General Conference.
The First Presidency, members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and other General Authorities and General Officers of the Church will deliver messages of inspiration and guidance in six sessions:
The general women’s session for sisters ages eight and older will be Saturday, September 24, at 6:00 p.m. (Mountain Daylight Time (MDT)).
The general priesthood session for priesthood holders will be Saturday, October 1, at 6:00 p.m. (MDT).
The general sessions for individuals and families will be Saturday and Sunday, October 1 and 2, at 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. (MDT).
Prepare for conference
Conference provides an opportunity to receive personal revelation as living prophets give counsel and direction. Asking questions can help you prepare for conference, increasing personal revelation while you watch.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Article of Faith Ten

Article of Faith Ten declares,

"We believe in the literal gathering of Israel and in the restoration of the Ten Tribes; that Zion (the New Jerusalem) will be built upon the American continent; that Christ will reign personally upon the earth; and, that the earth will be renewed and receive it's paradisiacal glory."

Elder L. Tom Perry, late member of the quorum of the twelve apostles, describes the importance of this doctrine this way, 
"Article 10 tells of our belief 'in the literal gathering of Israel,' that Zion will be built again and Christ will return and 'reign personally upon the earth.' It was in June of 1830 that Samuel Smith, the brother of the Prophet, embarked on the first missionary journey to proclaim the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon. Thus began the gathering of Zion. The word went forth from Mount Zion to the peoples of the earth that the gospel had been restored. Today the work of uniting our Father in Heaven’s children continues as we prepare for His ultimate return, for His millennial reign over the earth."

Jesus Christ will come again to reign personally on the earth. Just this truth alone fills me with hope, peace, and true joy. Each of us has a part in the "gathering" spoken of in this article of faith. First, we must come unto Christ ourselves, be baptized, and keep His commandments. But this is not all. We must receive every sacred ordinance necessary to qualify for eternal life, and share the gospel with others. We can each help prepare for the return of our Savior by helping others come unto Him, and do their part to build Zion once again on the earth. 

I know this is true. We must not wait until Christ comes again to worship Him, love Him, and fearlessly follow Him. We are enlisted now- today.  The gospel of Jesus Christ is true. Truth has been restored to the earth. We can confidently lay aside everything that "doth easily beset" us. (Alma 7:15, Book of Mormon) We must decide if we will enlist in this great gathering. I pray that we will come in faith. 

Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 

Sunday, September 4, 2016

The Narrow Way

There is a poem by American author, Robert Frost, entitled, God's Garden. I wanted to share it with you today because it's simple message has lately been on my mind. It brings to light the beauty of the narrow way back to our Heavenly Father and the careful confusion and distraction of the devil.

God's Garden
Robert Frost

God made a beauteous garden
With lovely flowers strown,
But one straight, narrow, pathway
That was not overgrown.
And to this beauteous garden
He brought mankind to live, 
And said, "To you, my children,
These lovely flowers I give.
Prune ye my vines and fig trees, 
With care my flowerets tend, 
But keep the pathway open,
Your home is at the end."

Then came another master,
Who did not love mankind, 
and planted on the pathway
Gold flowers for them to find. 
And mankind saw the bright flowers, 
That, glitt'ring in the sun, 
Quite hid the thorns of av'rice
That poison blood and bone;
And far off many wandered, 
And when life's night came on, 
They still were seeking gold flowers, 
Lost helpless and alone.

O, cease to heed the glamour
That blinds your foolish eyes, 
Look upward to the glitter 
Of stars in God's clear skies.  
Their ways are pure and harmless
And will not lead astray,
But aid your erring footsteps
To keep the narrow way.
And when the sun shines brightly
Tend flowers that God has given
And keep the pathway open
That leads you on to heaven. 

There are many times in scripture, particularly in the Book of Mormon, where the narrow path is defined as the path to eternal life with our Father in heaven, and his Son Jesus Christ. If we would obtain eternal life and true happiness, we must turn from all of the distractions of the adversary and feel the love that God has for us. He has sent His Son to help us. In the book of Jacob, Helaman, and 3Nephi, in the Book of Mormon there are verses that highlight the Narrow way. 

"Oh then, my beloved brethren, repent ye, and enter in at the strait gate, and continue in the way which is narrow, until ye shall obtain eternal life." 
                                                   Jacob 6:11

"Yea, we see that whosoever will may lay hold upon the word of God, which is quick and powerful, which shall divide asunder all the cunning and the snares and the wiles of the devil, and lead the man of Christ in a strait and narrow course across that everlasting gulf of misery which is prepared to engulf the wicked-"
                                                  Helaman 3:29

"And it came to pass that when Jesus had ended these sayings he said unto his disciples; Enter ye in at the strait gate; for strait is the gate, and narrow is the way that leads to life, and few there be that find it; but wide is the gate, and broad the way which leads to death, and many there be that travel therein, until the night cometh, wherein no man can work."
                                                   3 Nephi 27: 33

I can testify that the way is narrow, but it is so very beautiful and full of joy. It is a way of peace, and love. It is also not easy. It is not easy because it is worth it. Jesus Christ paved the way. You will find Him on the strait path. He is in every joy and in every sorrow. He is the giver of every good gift; Even the gift of eternal life. 

Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Monday, August 29, 2016

Affections of our Hearts

What we love most, we honor. What we think about and how we treat others has a direct influence and consequence when it comes to our relationship with our Heavenly Father and His son Jesus Christ. If we want to be close to God, we must believe in Him and trust that He knows what is best for us, and will help us every day of our lives. But there is action required on our part to bring to pass the blessings we desire at the hand of God.

Elder D. Todd Christofferson, of the quorum of the twelve apostles, has explained,

"Sadly, much of modern Christianity does not acknowledge that God makes any real demands on those who believe in Him, seeing Him rather as a butler 'who meets their needs when summoned' or a therapist whose role is to help people 'feel good about themselves.'

Our Heavenly Father is a God of high expectations. His expectations of us are expressed by His Son, Jesus Christ, in these words: 'I would that ye should be perfect even as I, or your Father who is in heaven is perfect.'

If we sincerely desire and strive to measure up to the high expectations of our Heavenly Father, He will ensure that we receive all the help we need, whether it be comforting, strengthening, or chastening."

God would not be God if He did not want the best for us, and did not allow us to use our agency to push past desires of the natural man that we might be close to Him. He gave us Jesus Christ to help us overcome, and He has reminded us through scripture and revelation that we were not destined to fail.

In the 37th chapter of  Alma, contained in the Book of Mormon, there are three beautiful verses that teach, "O, remember, my son, and learn wisdom in thy youth; yea, learn in thy youth to keep the commandments of God.
Yea, and cry unto God for all thy support; yea, let all thy doings be unto the Lord, and whithersoever thou goest let it be in the Lord; yea, let the affections of thy heart be placed upon the Lord forever.
Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings, and he will direct thee for good; yea, when thou liest down at night lie down unto the Lord, that he may watch over you in your sleep; and when thou risest in the morning let thy heart be full of thanks unto God; and if ye do these things, ye shall be lifted up at the last day."
                            -Alma 37 vs. 35-37

I testify that God is real, and He answers prayers. His love and affection for us is beyond what we can imagine, and it is set. It does not change. Only our affections can be swayed and mislead. I pray that we will consider the affections of our hearts and how they affect our relationship with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. I pray that we will find more joy as we place Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father at the center of our lives and hearts.  Remember to pray. Keep the commandments. You will find a new strength and a change of heart that didn't seem possible before.

Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Article of Faith Eight

Article of Faith Eight:

We believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly; We also believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God. 

A set of black leather-bound scriptures lying next to a red marking pencil on a gray surface.
The prophet Joseph Smith declared, "I told the brethren that the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man would get nearer to God by abiding its precepts, than by any other book. (History of the Church, 4:461.)"
The Book of Mormon and the Bible go hand in hand. From the beginning, church leaders have testified of the importance of the Bible, and of the Book of Mormon as another testament of Jesus Christ. 

I invite you to read the Book of Mormon, and pray to know of the pure truth it contains. It is truly the word of God, and above all it testifies of our Savior Jesus Christ. Staying close to this book and living the principles it contains, has changed everything for me and blessed me with guidance from above and a spirit in my life that brings peace when none can be found, and love when the definition has been all but lost in a world of confusion. 

When I am alone with the Book of Mormon and have a sincere prayer in my heart, I find in its pages the purest healing spirit and guidance. This is a book for every single day. This is a book for your questions. This is a book to find answers. This is a book of complete truth. This is a book that will bring you closer to God and His perfect Son. This is a book for all of God's children. 

-Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Articles of Faith Six, Seven, and Nine

The sixth, seventh, and ninth articles of faith outline the organizations, callings, importance of revelation, and some of the gifts or talents that exist to build the kingdom of God on earth and bring all to Christ. These three articles are related in nature, and expound on already established truths of the previous articles of faith. The eighth article of faith will be highlighted at a later time.

The sixth article of faith states, 

We believe in the same organization that existed in the primitive Church, namely apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, evangelists, and so forth. 

The seventh article of faith states, 

We believe in the gift of tongues, prophecy, revelation, visions, healing, interpretation of tongues, and so forth. 

The ninth article of faith states, 

We believe all that God has revealed, all that He does now reveal, and we believe that He will yet reveal many great and important things pertaining to the Kingdom of God.  

Elder L. Tom Perry clarified these articles of faith in this way,Building on the foundation established in the first five articles of faith, the sixth article tells us that an organization is necessary, and the same organization that existed in the primitive Church has been restored. The restored Church exists on the earth today, with the sacred power received through the restoration of the holy priesthood.
The seventh and ninth articles profess that the heavens are not closed, that God continues to reveal His will to mankind; as He has in the past, He does now in the present, and He will in the future. Spiritual gifts are received by mankind today, just as they were in days past."
These three articles are filled with beautiful blessings that are in full force on the earth today , and will always have the purpose of bringing Heavenly Father's children to Christ. God is so very generous with His children. They never need wonder if He has a plan laid out and in place wherein they can come unto Him and are provided with the organization, gifts, and revelations necessary to obtain and qualify for the gift of eternal life. 
Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 

Sunday, June 19, 2016

The Power of Fatherhood

There are many things I admire about my father. I could start to list them and I love to go on and on about the man he has chosen to be and how that has changed my life forever. But what I love the very most among these abundant admiral qualities, is his love of Jesus Christ and his devotion to my mother and our family.

In a recent talk, Elder D. Todd Christofferson, a member of the quorum of the twelve apostles in the church, declared, "As a Church, we believe in fathers. We believe in “the ideal of the man who puts his family first.” We believe that “by divine design, fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families.” We believe that in their complementary family duties, 'fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners.'We believe that far from being superfluous, fathers are unique and irreplaceable."

There is not a suitable substitute for the divine role and calling of fatherhood. God himself has made it known that, " This is my work and my glory to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man." (Moses 1:39) This is the exact work that the Savior Jesus Christ, and our Father in Heaven have called fathers to do while here in mortality. Fathers are leaders. Fathers are providers and protectors. Their daily sacrifice to work in support and care of their families is love in action.

Elder Christofferson goes on to say," For men, fatherhood exposes us to our own weaknesses and our need to improve. Fatherhood requires sacrifice, but it is a source of incomparable satisfaction, even joy. Again, the ultimate model is our Heavenly Father, who so loved us, His spirit children, that He gave us His Only Begotten Son for our salvation and exaltation. Jesus said, 'Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.' Fathers manifest that love as they lay down their lives day by day, laboring in the service and support of their families." 

A loving father knows that seeking for happiness outside of family life, is a wasted effort. True joy is found at home and the father can, and should be, the facilitator in leading his family to those places and principles of lasting happiness. Children need fathers. Wives need husbands. 

Elder Christofferson puts it this way,Perhaps the most essential of a father’s work is to turn the hearts of his children to their Heavenly Father. If by his example as well as his words a father can demonstrate what fidelity to God looks like in day-to-day living, that father will have given his children the key to peace in this life and eternal life in the world to come. A father who reads scripture to and with his children acquaints them with the voice of the Lord."

To all the fathers, I say, we need you. The problems in the world would all come to nothing 

if there was love at home given as only a father can give. Stay strong in this most important 

of roles and callings. God is pleased with your efforts to be there for your families and do

what only you can do.  

In every good thing the fathers of the world are emulating the very work of God. Yours is the work of eternity. 

Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Saturday, June 11, 2016

The Power to Choose

Within the Church of Jesus Christ we have a living prophet. The man called at this time is Thomas S. Monson. He leads and guides the church as directed by the Savior Jesus Christ.

In his most recent talk, at General Conference, President Monson talked about the power and essential nature and consequence of our choices. I wanted to share with you the last part of this talk.

President Monson teaches,

 "May we choose to build up within ourselves a great and powerful faith which will be our most effective defense against the designs of the adversary- a real faith, the kind of faith which will sustain us and will bolster our desire to choose the right. Without such faith, we go nowhere. With it, we can accomplish our goals.

Although it is imperative that we choose wisely, there are times when we will make foolish choices. The gift of repentance, provided by our Savior, enables us to correct our course settings, that we might return to the path which will lead us to that celestial glory we seek.

May we maintain the courage to defy the consensus. May we ever choose the harder right instead of the easier wrong. As we contemplate the decisions we make in our lives each day-whether to make this choice or that choice- if we choose Christ, we will have made the correct choice."

I have been thinking a lot lately about that "harder right" and have a personal desire to care more about what my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ think of me, rather than what the world and popular trend would persuade me to believe. As a child of God, I know that there is something far better in store for me, and for you, than what conformity to man's whim could ever provide. There is an eternal inheritance waiting if we are faithful in all things given to us at the hand of the Savior.

Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Our Greatest Commitment

An image of a couple combined with a quote by President Eyring: “There is no more important commitment … than marriage.”

We invite you to read The Family: A Proclamation to the World, and pray to ask God of  the truth it contains. I can testify that this document holds the keys to real happiness in this life and in all eternity. Living the doctrine in this document will change and bless every aspect of your life, and fill you with peace and the assurance of a Father in Heaven. 

Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Monday, May 16, 2016

Article of Faith Five

We want to get back on track highlighting the Articles of Faith, and hope if you have missed some of the previous posts on these articles, you will be able to benefit from the truths in these statements as you read and study their content. 

Article of faith five holds key information about proper authority and how sacred ordinances are performed correctly as revealed by God. 

Article of Faith Five:

We believe that a man must be called of God, by prophecy, and by the laying on of hands by those who are in authority, to preach the Gospel and administer in the ordinances thereof.

This article of faith is filled with safety. We are kept safe from deception when we participate and receive all necessary ordinances by proper authority. The laying on of hands refers to the sacred power of the priesthood. The source of priesthood power is God. It is to be administered by worthy males authorized to perform sacred ordinances such as baptism, and the confirming of the Holy Ghost that follows. This is just one example. 

Elder L. Tom Perry, a late member of the quorum of the twelve apostles, taught it this way, 

"We believe that from the very beginning the Lord established a plan for His children on earth. He would, in times and seasons, have the priesthood on earth to bless mankind with the authority to perform the sacred ordinances that would prove man’s obedience to His will. There were tests to be conducted as we progressed in each step towards achieving God’s greatest gift, the gift of life eternal. Fundamental, then, is having faith in His plan, in His law, to be clean and holy and to repent of our sins, and to partake of the sacred ordinance of baptism required for admission into His celestial kingdom. And after baptism to be given the great gift, that Comforter, to abide with us, to lead and guide and direct us as we progress through mortality—all of these done under the authority given to mankind from God. Each man who officiates can trace that authority directly back to the Lord Himself, who bestowed that right on mankind."

I hope this article of faith brings peace and hope to those wondering where they can put their trust when it comes to church leaders and their claims on privileges of administration. To me, this doctrine is another beautiful way God shows His love for us. He has revealed and organized proper application of His power on earth. He would not have His children tossed about with questions of authority and how to fully and properly receive the wonderful saving ordinances required for eternal life. There is a perfect way, and He has provided it. 

Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 

Sunday, May 8, 2016

For Motherhood

A few weekends ago, my family and I were coming home from a family vacation by car, and stopped in Las Vegas for something to eat. As we were coming out of the restaurant and walking to our car, two women, loaded with shopping bags, passed me and my five children. 
I overheard one of them say, "Ugh! That is WAY too many children." While the other started counting my little crew just to see how many I had. 

They didn't know  I overheard them, and they went on their way happy to be free of such a burden. After they had passed, I looked down at my little three year-old boy, who was holding my hand, and I couldn't stop smiling. My heart filled with joy. But at the same time, I felt a sadness within my heart that rippled for a while. I wanted to run back and hug those two women and tell them that motherhood was the greatest thing in my life and that nothing could touch nor destroy the joy that it brought to my soul. I wanted to bear my testimony to them of their divine nature and inheritance as daughters of God and women on this earth, and plead with them to hold on to the moral authority that was rightfully theirs, but that Satan wanted to destroy. 

But they were gone. 
And so it is with far too many around us as parenthood, and especially motherhood is devalued and even looked down upon in many respects. 

In the last general conference of the church, Elder Holland declared, "No love in mortality comes closer to approximating the pure love of Jesus Christ than the selfless love a devoted mother has for her child." 

Motherhood is given to and is endowed upon all of the daughters of God. To be a woman is to be a mother. Sister Sheri Dew, a former counselor in the general presidency of the Relief Society in the church, wisely taught, "When we understand the magnitude of motherhood, it becomes clear why prophets have been so protective of woman's most sacred role. While we tend to equate motherhood solely with maternity, in the Lord's language, the word mother has layers of meaning. Of all the words they could have chosen to define her role and her essence, both God the Father and Adam called Eve 'the mother of all living' and they did so before she ever bore a child. Like Eve, our motherhood began before we were born."

God gave to women the gift of nurturing. To nurture is to help grow. It is to selflessly love. There are not any words I could use here to adequately honor the endless and sacred sacrifice displayed by everyday women patiently mothering  children of all ages in every corner of the earth. 

Sister Julie B. Beck, one of the former General Relief Society Presidents of the church, testified, "The influence of righteous, conscientious, persistent, daily mothering is far more lasting, far more powerful, far more influential than any earthly position or institution invented by man."

As a mother of small children, I do know that there are some days when I am just sure that the only thing that might feel as worn down and raggedy as I do is my beat up diaper bag, and I am not sure how I am going to find the strength to last one more minute or make a meal or do another load of laundry or face another sleepless night. And when I start to wonder if any of the mundane things I do each day matter or not, one of my children will grab my face in their dirty little hands and tell me they love me. And I will catch them extending the love they felt at home to others. I have learned for myself that some of the very most important work I will ever do in mortality will be in a rocking chair with a child on my lap. 

Women serve, love, teach, lift, listen, and care in a divinely appointed and inherited way. As we celebrate all that is beautiful and eternal about motherhood, we are called upon to ponder the women in our lives who have set us on the right path, said endless prayers on our behalf, and sacrificed all they could to turn our hearts to goodness and Christ himself. 

 Elder Jeffery R. Holland quotes,
"A wonderful young mother recently wrote to me: 'How is it that a human being can love a child so deeply that you willingly give up a major portion of your freedom for it? How can mortal love be so strong that you voluntarily subject yourself to responsibility, vulnerability, anxiety, and heartache and just keep coming back for more of the same? What kind of mortal love can make you feel, once you have a child, that your life is never, ever your own again? Maternal love has to be divine. There is no other explanation for it. What mothers do is an essential element of Christ’s work. Knowing that should be enough to tell us the impact of such love will range between unbearable and transcendent, over and over again, until with the safety and salvation of the very last child on earth, we can [then] say with Jesus, ‘[Father!] I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do."'

What a blessing it is to have women in our lives who have a higher vision than what is just needed for today. Eternity is what is on their minds.  I end with this beautiful insight from Sister Marjorie Hinckley, wife of the fifteenth president of the church, when she declared, 
"I don't want to drive up to the pearly gates in a shiny sports car, wearing beautifully, tailored clothes, my hair expertly coiffed, and with long, perfectly manicured fingernails.
I want to drive up in a station wagon that has mud on the wheels from taking kids to scout camp.
I want to be there with a smudge of peanut butter on my shirt from making sandwiches for a sick neighbors children.
I want to be there with a little dirt under my fingernails from helping to weed someone's garden.
I want to be there with children's sticky kisses on my cheeks and the tears of a friend on my shoulder.
I want the Lord to know I was really here and that I really lived.” 

I know and testify that motherhood is the highest calling of women. To honor the sacred role of mother is to honor God. It is worth every effort, and changes and blesses lives for all eternity.

Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Power to Endure

The most beautiful part of the atonement of Jesus Christ is the power to be, have, feel, or do something that is otherwise completely beyond our own mortal reach. The strength to carry on is not created by mortal will, extreme displays of individual effort, or even respect for duty alone.

This strength is only possible because of Jesus Christ and his willingness to overcome and descend below all things that He might raise us up and fill the space completely between our greatest challenges and sins and our loving Heavenly Father. Because of this beautiful atonement, we are not called upon to solely carry the weight of every degree and type of burden in mortality. 

Is life simply to be endured with no purpose or help or spiritual and divine aid? No. Elder Jeffery R. Holland, a member of the quorum of the twelve apostles answered this question beautifully when he testified, 

Is that what life was meant to be? Is this the grand finale of the human experience? 
 Are we all just hanging in a cold canyon somewhere in an indifferent universe, each 

 of us searching for a toehold, each of us seeking for something to grip-with nothing
  but the feeling of sand sliding under our fingers, nothing to save us, nothing to hold 
 on to, much less anything to hold on to us? Is our only purpose in life an empty
existential exercise- simply to leap as high as we can, hang on for our prescribed three score years and ten, then fail and fall, and keep falling forever? The answer to  those questions is an unequivocal no! . . . That Atonement would achieve complete  victory over physical death, unconditionally granting resurrection to  every person who has been born, or ever will be born into this world. Mercifully it would also provide forgiveness for the personal sins of all, from Adam to the end of the world,conditioned upon the repentance and obedience to divine commandments. 

This is why we can endure. Life has beautiful meaning because Jesus Christ first loved us, and we gain the strength needed to make it through every sorrow and sin because He overcame and designed the perfect way to endure here on earth and enjoy eternal life with our Father in Heaven. Don't quit. Don't settle for holding on to just anything. Hold on to Christ. He is there. He loves you. Be determined to find God in your life. He has never left endurance through difficulty or anything else to man alone. 

"For God so loved the world, that he gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." 
                                            -John 3:16

I invite you to get on your knees in prayer and ask Heavenly Father to send the light of His perfect Son into your life. Let your heart always seek the Savior of the world and His Father, of whom He  testified and obeyed with exactness. I don't have to know you to be able to testify that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ love you. They love you with a perfect love. And the personal strength you need to endure is a direct and beautiful consequence of being a child of God, and having access to that perfect atonement and love every day of your life. 

Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 

Monday, April 25, 2016

Article of Faith Four

The blessing of having these Articles of Faith, in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is found within living the truths held by each individual declaration. Article of Faith number four defines the first principles and ordinances of the gospel. The first principle of the gospel is faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. 
Seeing everything in life through the light of faith in the Savior, gives substance and meaning to every life experience. When I am consciously seeking to develop my faith in Jesus Christ, I see and comprehend my divinity more clearly. I am not lost. I am not alone. I am not without purpose, and I am not without strength. Phillipians 4:13 testifies, "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." I believe "all things" includes participating and choosing the path Christ has outlined and lived Himself.

Each of the other principles and ordinances referenced in this Article of Faith give us basic direction concerning necessary choices in mortality for exhalation in eternity. 

Article of Faith Four:  
"We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: first, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; second,Repentance; third, Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost."

As I have participated and participate in these first principles and ordinances of the gospel, I have gained knowledge of where true happiness comes from. I have been given the courage to repent and try again each day. I have found solace and peace by the power of the Holy Ghost, and I have felt what strengthening my faith in the Savior can actually do for my soul. And that is beautiful to me. 

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Articles of Faith Two and Three

If you missed  the first post on the Articles of faith, take a look at last Monday's post. I mentioned that each Monday there will be another Article of Faith discussed. But today, I would like to share both Article of Faith two and Article of Faith three. The doctrine in these articles of faith are somewhat related, and shed important light on the principles discussed.  

Article of Faith Two:

We believe that men will be punished for their own sins, and not for Adam's transgression. 

As children of God, we are not held accountable for the sins of others, but are fully accountable for our own sins and choices under the gift of free agency given to us by our Father in Heaven. He knew that we would make mistakes and struggle with turning our hearts to Him, and in great mercy, He provided a Savior. This article of faith is the main reason why infant babies have no need of baptism. They are innocent and are blessed under the atonement of Jesus Christ until the age of accountability at eight years old. 

This is a great truth that God has given to His children today. We all come from Father Adam and Mother Eve, yet we are not tied to their transgression of partaking of the fruit in the Garden of Eden. And they will not answer for our sins. God expects us to learn of Him and His Son, Jesus Christ. Gaining this knowledge will bring to light the truth that each son or daughter of God must choose for themselves good or evil and whether they will allow the the grace of the Savior to have full sway in their lives. In connection with this, we have the third article of faith. 

Article of Faith Three:

We believe that through the atonement of Christ, all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the gospel.

Heavenly Father knew that his children would need a way to overcome sin, and he provided for this by sending His perfect and only begotten Son in the flesh to atone for our sins and, mark the one and only way by which we may return to live with our Father in Heaven again. We are not saved by baptism alone, or any other single event. We are saved by daily obeying the laws and ordinances within the gospel Christ has outlined, and applying the atonement of Jesus Christ daily by the works of faith. 

The atonement of Christ is the single most important event that has ever happened or will happen in the history of the world. This is the greatest act of love ever to be or to have been. 

Elder James E. Talmage, served as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve apostles in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from 1911 to 1933, and he described these principles this way,

 "The application of the atonement to individual transgression, whereby the sinner may obtain absolution through compliance with the laws and ordinances embodied in the gospel of Jesus Christ, is conclusively attested by scripture. Since forgiveness of sins can be secured in none other way, there being either in heaven or earth no name save that of Jesus Christ whereby salvation shall come unto the children of men, every soul stands in need of the Savior's mediation, since all are sinners. 'For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God,' said Paul of old, and John the apostle added his testimony in these words: 'If we say that we have no sin we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.' "

I testify that taking responsibility for our relationship with Christ, pleases our Father in Heaven. He gave us the greatest gift of all when he sent His Son to show us the way and change everything for the race of all mankind through the completion of the infinite atonement. For now, if nothing else written here speaks to you, I know that accepting the invitation to come unto Christ and allow the atonement to fill your life will be enough. 

Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 

A God of Miracles

What miracles have happened in your life today?  God is aware of us. He loves us. One of the greatest miracles made possible thr...