Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Perfection Pending

As we prepare to welcome a new year, many of us will make goals and resolutions about how we can change and become a little bit better in the coming year. I hope as we do this, we will keep in mind our ultimate goal...perfection.

In Matthew 5:48, the Savior commanded us, "Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect." Elder William H. Bennett taught that, "In these words Jesus challenges us to strive for excellence in all that we do -- to develop our talents and abilities -- and above all to live in accordance with His teachings." (Our Goal Is Perfection, Oct. 1976 General Conference). However, for many of us, the commandment to be perfect may feel daunting. In a talk entitled Perfection Pending in the October 1995 General Conference, Elder Russell M. Nelson taught:
We need not be dismayed if our earnest efforts toward perfection now seem so arduous and endless. Perfection is pending. It can come in full only after the Resurrection and only through the Lord. It awaits all who love him and keep his commandments.
On Sunday, we'll discuss Elder Nelson's teachings about how we can achieve perfection in mortality and work towards eternal perfection. We will talk about how we can strive for excellence and perfection in all that we do during the coming year, and how we can encourage and inspire those around us to do the same.

Monday, December 30, 2013

January 2014 Calendar

Another fresh new year is here . . .
Another year to live!
To banish worry, doubt, and fear,
To love and laugh and give!

This bright new year is given me
To live each day with zest . . .
To daily grow and try to be
My highest and my best!

I have the opportunity
Once more to right some wrongs,
To pray for peace, to plant a tree,
And sing more joyful songs!
-William Arthur Ward

Thursday, December 26, 2013

The Christmas Spirit

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

The Nativity

The Spirit of Christmas

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Come To Worship Him

Monday, December 23, 2013

And They Came With Haste

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Friday, December 20, 2013

For Peace at Home

"I bear testimony that living an obedient life, firmly rooted in the gospel of Jesus Christ, provides the greatest assurance for peace and refuge in our homes." Elder Scott reminds us of principles that help us center our homes on Jesus Christ. This conference talk inspires me with hope and gives me comfort. I look forward to sharing it with you this Sunday.

For Peace at Home, Elder Richard G. Scott, Ensign, May 2013

Alison Thorsen

And, Behold, Thou Shalt Conceive

Thursday, December 19, 2013

The Prince of Peace

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

How Christmas Began

Bread Pudding from RS Christmas Party

We loved seeing you all at our RS Christmas Party on December 3. We wanted to share with you the recipe for the delicious bread pudding we enjoyed for dessert. Yum!

8 slices French bread 
8 slices white bread
1 c craisins 
4 c whole milk
1 stick butter 
1 c sugar
4 eggs 
2 Tbs vanilla
1 tsp fresh nutmeg

1 c butter 
1 c sugar 
1 Tbs vanilla
1 c brown sugar 
1 c half/half 

Cut bread into bite size pieces. In a "Pam"ed 9x13 baking dish, layer bread and craisins. Melt butter, add the milk; pour over bread and let stand for 5-7 minutes. Mix sugar, eggs, vanilla and nutmeg to combine. Pour over bread mixture. With a knife, move the bread mixture aside to allow the egg mixture to be evenly distributed. Bake at 350 for 40-50 mins. In a sauce pan, mix all the sauce ingredients except for the vanilla. Bring to a simmer to dissolve the sugars. Remove from stove and add vanilla. Serve warm over pudding.

Monday, December 16, 2013

D4 Community Christmas Celebration - Thursday, Dec. 19

Please plan on bringing to share as a complement to this Ham dinner either your favorite Christmas:
Ham Sauce or
(in a serving size for 10)

Please RSVP to Sterling Neblett by Monday, December 16 (today!).

Also, please remember to participate in our service project and bring one or more of the following gifts for the RISD PTA Coat Closet:
K-4th Toiletry Kit
(soap, toothpaste, toothbrush, 2in1 shampoo/conditioner)
5-12th Boy's Toiletry Kit
(soap, deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrush, 2in1 shampoo/conditioner)
5-12th Girl's Toiletry Kit
(soap, deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrush, shampoo, conditioner)

Remember the Gifts

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Doing Good to Others

Lorenzo Snow Ch. 22

As Christians and members of the church we have been taught to live by the Golden Rule, that is to do unto others as we would have them do unto us. The Savior taught this to us perfectly through his humble example of service and love. We too as his disciples must learn how to give that same selfless service and unconditional love to those around us. The Lord has taught us that as we freely give of ourselves to others, we are in reality giving to him.

In Mosiah 2:17 we read:
"And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom; that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God."
As we celebrate this Christmas season, let us remember its true meaning; a celebration of not only the birth, but the life of our Savior, Jesus Christ.  What better way to honor him than to become more like him? The Christmas spirit of giving and service is alive in the hearts of men all around us. May we commune together this coming Sabbath day to learn how we can keep that spirit of giving and love with us throughout the Christmas season, and through the rest of our lives.

Jackie Black

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

A Feast of Carols - Rescheduled for Sunday, Dec. 15

Click to enlarge the invitation.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

What Shall We Give?

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Loving God More Than We Love the World

Lorenzo Snow Lesson #21

As Latter-day Saints, we have been blessed abundantly - some of it immediate, some of it has been over a period of time...but at the end of the day we are recipients of blessings whether spiritually or temporally. Why then do we at times struggle to love God more than we love the world?

In Matthew 6:19-24 we learn:
Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon the earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal... But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven... For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. ... No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
On Sunday we will learn of the lessons President Lorenzo Snow taught to some of the early Saints as they faced similar challenges as we do today. The Saints in Kirtland received remarkable blessings, but fell into the trap of temptation.

"The Latter-day Saints ought to be too far along in wisdom and intelligence to fall into the snares of this character. It does not pay. It will pay no man to turn his back upon these glorious principles and those things which have been received from the eternal worlds... Whatever temptation may come upon us or to which we are now exposed we should listen to the history of the past and not allow ourselves to be overcome..."

Let us each learn to seek the treasures of heaven and pray for humbling opportunities to show our love for our Heavenly Father as we discuss these principles from Lorenzo Snow's teachings in Lesson #21 this week in Relief Society.

Erin Hayes

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Real Joy