About Geoff B.

Geoff B has had three main careers. Some of them have overlapped. After attending Stanford University (class of 1985), he worked in journalism for several years until about 1992, when he took up his second career in telecommunications sales. In 1995, he took up his favorite and third career as father. Soon thereafter, Heavenly Father hit him over the head with a two-by-four (wielded by the Holy Ghost) and he woke up from a long sleep. Since then, he's been learning a lot about the Gospel. He still has a lot to learn. Geoff's held several Church callings: young men's president, high priest group leader, member of the bishopric, stake director of public affairs, media specialist for church public affairs, high councilman. He tries his best in his callings but usually falls short. Geoff has five children and lives in Colorado.

The dangers of mocking and pointing

26 And I also cast my eyes round about, and beheld, on the other side of the river of water, a great and spacious building; and it stood as it were in the air, high above the earth.

27 And it was filled with people, both old and young, both male and female; and their manner of dress was exceedingly fine; and they were in the attitude of mocking and pointing their fingers towards those who had come at and were partaking of the fruit.

28 And after they had tasted of the fruit they were ashamed, because of those that were scoffing at them; and they fell away into forbidden paths and were lost.

We just had many amazing sessions of General Conference in the last two weeks. And I did not fully realize how amazing they were until this Sunday when I went to fast and testimony meeting at my small-town ward in Colorado. The people in my ward are the salt of the Earth. They are wonderful, nice people who succeed in (mostly) shutting out the many negative things going on in the world. These people concentrate on their families, on their responsibilities, on their callings and on their testimonies.

Several of these good, guileless people used the wonder “ponderize” in their testimonies this Sunday. They said they have been inspired by the word “ponderize” to read the scriptures and memorize them and ponder what they say. Now if you read that word and laughed in a sarcastic, mocking way, you are part of the problem. Because of course that is what I did during Sacrament meeting: I laughed (to myself) at the word “ponderize” rather than immediately appreciate the fact that people actually are taking seriously the advice of people who speak at General Conference.

Why did I laugh? If you are connected to the internet and all of us sometimes cynical Mormons and ex-Mormons out there, you perhaps may have heard the mocking that took place because the son of Brother Durrant tried to commercialize the word “ponderize.” There is a lot of history there that I don’t want to repeat, but the bottom line is this: We should be more like the members of my ward. We should concentrate on the words of the people who speak at General Conference and not get caught up in the various world-created controversies. Satan’s trick is to encourage us to mock Church leaders rather than listen to what they say. Don’t fall for the trick.

With that in mind, I would like to link to Brother Durrant’s talk in the hopes that more people will read it and take in what he has to say.
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#LDSconf 185th General Conference, Sunday AM Session Live coverage

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A reminder that you can also get summaries of these talks here.

President Uchtdorf conducts.

President Monson presides.

Choir: “Redeemer of Israel.”

Invocation: (Did not catch his name. Sorry).

Choir: “If the Savior Stood Beside Me.”

President Monson

Saddened by the loss of three of our apostles. Returned to their heavenly home. Grateful for this examples. Heartfelt welcome to our new apostles. Well qualified to fill the positions to what they have been called.

“Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your father in heaven.”

“Be thou an example of the believers in word and in conversation.”

The second scriptures explains how we can accomplish the first. Our lives will shine for others to see if we do so.

1)Be a good example in word and in conversation. Avoid profanity. Avoid coarse comments. Let us speak to others with love and respect, ever keeping our language clean and avoiding comments that would wound and offend.

2)Charity. Pure love of Christ.

3)Example in spirit. Kindness and good will. A pure and loving spirit.

4)Faith. Faith and doubt cannot exist in one mind at the same time.

5)Be pure. Our bodies are a temple, and our minds should be kept free from things that would pollute. Purity will bring peace of mind.

Latter-day Saints will be different. We will stand out as we make choices regarding morality, choices that adhere to Gospel standards.

With help from our Heavenly Father, we can regain the light that will illuminate our path.

(President Monson gave a great testimony at the end of this talk, but appeared very weak at the end).

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#LDSconf 185th General Conference, Priesthood Session Live coverage

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President Eyring conducts, Pres. Monson presides

(A reminder that summaries can also be seen at this link).

Choir: fathers and sons in Orem, UT.

Choir sings “Let Zion in Her Beauty Rise.”

Invocation: Larry S. Kacher of the Seventy

Choir sings: “Jesus the Very Thought of Thee.”

Elder Neil Andersen

How does the Savior see your faith? Faith is not ethereal, does not fall upon us by chance. It is substance, the evidence of things not seen. Emits a spiritual light, and that light is discernible. Your faith is either growing stronger or becoming weaker. By the grace of Christ we will one day be saved by faith in His name. The future of your faith is not by chance, but by choice.

Brazilian young man, his mother died. His mother made him promise to take care of the family. He had to work and study and take care of three siblings. At age 23 he went on a mission even though he did not have any money. He did not have money for the mission, let alone for helping his family. His employer sent him extra income, he was able to go on a mission. Now, 20 years later, he recognizes that his faith did not come by chance, but by choice.

Using our mind without our heart will not bring spiritual answers. Jesus promised another comforter. Faith never demands an answer to every question, but seeks the courage to move forward, acknowledging, “I don’t know everything.” Concentrating on doubt weakens faith. “The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God.”

Questions about Joseph Smith have been around for many years. For now, give Bro. Joseph a break. In a future day, you will have more information. Born in poverty, he translated the Book of Mormon in 90 days. At age 38, he sealed his witness with his blood. I testify that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. Settle this in your mind and move forward.

BoM in 110 languages across the world. When was the last time you read the Book of Mormon from cover to cover? Read it again: it will increase your faith.

There are evil forces lurking in the darkness hoping to extinguish your faith. As you receive greater light and knowledge, your faith becomes settled and sure.

Told story about the death of a bishop and his wife and two children. Three other children left alive. Great faith shown on the part of the children left.

Faith is a choice, strengthen your faith. Your faith will allow you to stand with the ones you live in the presence of God.

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What do the world’s poor want?

For the last two years, the United Nations has been running a worldwide on-line poll asking the people of the world what their priorities are. The poll has more than 8 million answers, the vast majority from the world’s poorest countries. You can see the poll results here.

What do the world’s poor want? Overwhelmingly, they say they:

1)a good education
2)better healthcare
3)better job opportunities
4)an honest and responsive government.

What is last on the list (by far)? “Action taken on climate change.”

And when you start looking at the figures, it turns out that the poorer the country the least likely it is to want action taken on climate change. Even among the richest countries, climate change is only priority number 10 out of 16. Among women from the poorest countries, there is comparatively almost no support for taking action on climate change.

So, we must ask ourselves: why does the Pope and a group of mostly left-wing global elites want to impose policies on the world that the poor do not want? The poor are like most of us, i.e., they want a better life for themselves and their children. Why do so many out of touch know-it-alls think they can tell them what they should want?

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