Christmas Music 2020: Starlight

In 2018, I did a series of posts about Christmas music. It was a fun activity for me and really helped me enjoy the Christmas season.

This year, more than ever we need the healing power of music. My mother passed away earlier this year, and I have not been able to listen to music since her passing without being sad. Someone shared this song with me recently, and I was able to listen without feeling sad about Mom’s passing and I’ve been able to listen to other music in the last few days and enjoy it without feeling her absence. I’m sharing it with our readers in the hope that it lifts someone up today.

If you have a favorite Christmas song let me know in the comments and I’ll share it in the coming weeks. Merry Christmas this year. We need it more than ever.

We should speak out against deadly, authoritarian lockdowns

“I desire that this land be a land of liberty, and every man may enjoy his rights and privileges alike.” — Mosiah 29:32

“The Lord commandeth you, when ye shall see these things come among you that ye shall awake to a sense of your awful situation, because of this secret combination which shall be among you; or wo be unto it, because of the blood of them who have been slain; for they cry from the dust for vengeance upon it, and also upon those who built it up.

 For it cometh to pass that whoso buildeth it up seeketh to overthrow the freedom of all lands, nations, and countries; and it bringeth to pass the destruction of all people, for it is built up by the devil, who is the father of all lies.” Ether 8: 24-25

“The power of government must have limits,” said Elder David A. Bednar in June 2020. “This time of restriction and confinement has confirmed for me that no freedom is more important than religious freedom. Protecting a person’s physical health from the coronavirus is, of course, important, but so is a person’s spiritual health. While believers and their religious organizations must be good citizens in a time of crisis, never again can we allow government officials to treat the exercise of religion as simply nonessential. Never again must the fundamental right to worship God be trivialized below the ability to buy gasoline.”

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Come Follow Me: Moroni 1-6

My blog post for Come Follow Me: Moroni 1-6


Excerpt:”Having wandered for almost 40 years, Moroni now comes to his third and final farewell.  In his first farewell, he shared the writings of his father, Mormon. In the second, he shared his abridgement of the Book of Ether. Now, he really has come to the end of his writings, and provides teachings in two major sections, with the first being dealt with in this lesson.  In this lesson, Moroni deals with important teachings regarding ordinances of the gospel.He notes in chapter one that the Lamanites are killing those Nephites, who will not deny the Christ.  This is 40 years after the destruction of the Nephites as a people. Obviously, Moroni is not exactly alone among the survivors. However, they are a continually dwindling group, and it seems that at this point, they are being actively searched for and destroyed.  Moroni must now be constantly on the move to preserve his life.”


http://joelsmonastery.blogspot.com/2020/11/come-follow-me-moroni-1-6.html

Thriving in the Storm

If ye are prepared, ye shall not fear. 1

So often, we think of preparedness in terms of food storage or standing in holy places. But today a friend forwarded a link to an article in the political journal, American Affairs. Natalie Gochnour’s article, “Utah’s Economic Exceptionalism,” picks up where Megan McArdle left off in her 2017 Bloomberg article “How Utah Keeps the American Dream Alive.”

Economic health is often assessed in terms of a monthly index produced by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, that combines four indicators of state economic health.

The economic index for the US and the vast majority of her states and territories has declined since the beginning of the COVID pandemic. For the US as a whole, the index has declined by 5.2 percent. Utah’s index has improved by 5.9 percent – notably the only US state to show an increase.

I’ve seen the cooperation and mutual care Ms. Gochnour describes on a smaller scale, within the family of my birth. I have eight siblings, and we have very different outlooks on life. Yet we share the hope that we will be family in the future, when we gather with our mother beyond the veil. This has caused us to work together in circumstances where other families have been torn apart. There is no index of thriving that measures the joy and peace our shared hope provides us, compared to peers who lack this shared hope. But in stressful circumstances affecting all of us, professionals exposed to a wide sample of families undergoing similar stress have commented on our mutual support and unity.

We can prepare by acquiring stores of food and supplies. We can also prepare by building trust and goodwill. By loving others as ourselves. By respecting one another and doing good to all.

Notes:

  1. D&C 38:30

#GiveThanks: The Miracle of the Flour

I’ve kind of hesitated to participate in the #givethanks challenge. Mostly because I hate doing whatever the crowd is doing, and I don’t want to be trite in my gratitude. I’ve been thinking about what I could share that’s not shallow.

In the early days of the pandemic and shut down, when the store shelves were really bare of everything, I was quite worried how to feed my family. With moving two years before, a broken foot, and then my husband and I both losing a parent in a short time period, I just had let our pantry and food storage get really low. Week after week there was no bread in our store and I was starting panic. With a food allergy kid anything that comes from a commercial bakery is going to be unsafe to eat. There are two kinds of commercially produced bread Kroger sells that my son can eat. I was also down to my very last bag of flour and half-jar of yeast, so even baking bread was going to be problematic.

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