Devotional

Longing for the Gathering

Written by Brother Jerry Valenti on Thursday, 17 January 2019. Posted in Devotional Hits 452

Longing for the Gathering

Today's article was originally published by the Student Support Program in July 2012. Click here to read the unabridged version.

Have you ever wondered why you bother going to Church?

Well, Hebrews 10:24-25 says, "And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching."

The above statement was included in a letter written by the Apostle Paul to the Hebrews about 2,000 years ago; however, it wouldn’t take much rewording to make it seem like it was written today. How about this?

God, Science, and You

Written by Brother AJ Dyer on Tuesday, 15 January 2019. Posted in Devotional Hits 481

God, Science, and You

Today's article was originally published by the Student Support Program in April 2014 and is geared toward high-schoolers and college students. Read the unabridged article here.

As many of you travel off to college (or you're already there) your faith will be challenged to the core, as mine was, by scientific pundits. Can God and science exist together? Can we as Christians use science to defend our faith? Let’s use some real examples and start the dialogue.

Freedom: The Victory Already Won

Written by Sister Zarella Mosqueda on Thursday, 10 January 2019. Posted in Devotional Hits 448

Freedom: The Victory Already Won

Today's article was originally published by the Student Support Program in July 2015. Read the unabridged version here.

“I wonder if my hair looks alright. Wait, did he just look over at me? I should have worn my other skirt to the seminar today, how could I possibly have forgotten? Did he just glance over at me again!?”

I’m not sure about you all, but I will be the first to admit that in the past I have asked myself these questions during a church function. I glance over to see if I can make eye contact with my friends, when instead I should be paying attention to the sermon during conference. I look down to make sure my new heels are spotless, when instead I should be caring less about my appearance and more about what work needs to be done during this YIA tour.

We are constantly bombarded with distractions that redirect our focus from our true purpose during these spiritual ventures to things we selfishly worry about day in and day out.

Image Is Everything

Written by Brother Cameron Staley on Tuesday, 08 January 2019. Posted in Devotional Hits 338

Image Is Everything

Today's article was originally published by the Student Support Program in November 2012. Click here to read the unabridged newsletter.

We care about what people think of us. It’s as simple as that. Even if you’ve heard someone (maybe even yourself) say, “I don’t care what people think about me,” deep down, we know that’s not true. It’s human nature.

We don’t realize it, but we are taught by society from the time we are little kids that there are few things as important as our personal image — you know — how others view us.

It’s all about us!

Who Stole the Cookie From the Cookie Jar?

Written by Brother Jon C. on Monday, 07 January 2019. Posted in Devotional Hits 410

Who Stole the Cookie From the Cookie Jar?

Today's article was originally published by the Student Support Program in November 2016. Click here to read the full newsletter.

When I was a little kid, my family had a Scooby-Doo themed cookie jar that almost always had some kind of delicious pastry in it; and let's just say that it was around this time that I learned to be very sneaky. I would wait until the TV volume was turned up, or sometimes make some other noise in the kitchen while trying to retrieve one (or more) of those mouthwatering baked goods.

Eventually, I got pretty confident until one day I was caught, and the Scooby-Doo cookie jar was no longer within my reach — literally.

Enjoy Being You

Written by Sister Cinthia Calvillo on Thursday, 03 January 2019. Posted in Devotional Hits 773

Enjoy Being You

Today's article was originally published by the Student Support Program in August 2017. Click here to read the full newsletter.

Today I want to share a bit of my experience with dealing with one of my own worst enemies: myself.
It sounds strange, to be at war with oneself, but it’s true. We are often the worst enemies of our soul when we let ourselves be discouraged or meander about our service to God and living in righteousness. Confused? You'll see what I mean.

I gave my life to Christ at age 16 and spent the next 10 years trying to change and become a different Cinthia. At this point, you may be thinking, are we not supposed to change when we come to Christ and become new creatures in Him?

My Best Friend

Written by Brother Ryan Lesperance on Thursday, 27 December 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 431

My Best Friend

Do you remember the name of your best friend in elementary school? I do…his name was Shawn. There are so many names that flood my mind when I think of my childhood friends. Shawn was my BEST friend. We were always together, and we talked about everything.

The neat thing about a best friend is you can only have one. Typically, you or I would protect that friendship, and it's not a sharing kinda thing. Shawn was my best friend, and I didn’t really share that friendship with anyone else. Over time, though, we began hanging out with different crowds and our “best” friendship slowly reduced to an acquaintance.

But, I’d love to tell you about my best friend since I was 15 years old, and I’m willing to share Him.

A Small Prompting

Written by Sister Mallory Batson on Thursday, 20 December 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 436

A Small Prompting

Have you ever had someone randomly pop into your head? Maybe it’s someone you haven’t seen in a while, or someone you haven’t even thought of in weeks, months, years. It could happen during your morning coffee or your bedtime prayers. Someone’s name comes to you, and you’re not sure why or what made you think of them.

It would be easy to brush it off and move on with your day, but what if there was a reason you thought of that person?

The Perfect Gift

Written by Sister Vicki Ali on Tuesday, 18 December 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 656

The Perfect Gift

"If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your Heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?" (Luke 11:13)

We are in the midst of the biggest gift-giving season of the year. Organized folks are most likely finished buying gifts for loved ones. Maybe you’re still searching for that elusive perfect gift to give someone.

What exactly is a perfect gift — either one we are expecting to receive or planning to give? Some try to treat others to something they can’t or won’t get for themselves. As givers, what joy it is to see pure delight in the recipient’s reaction.

I’ve also often heard advice from parents not wanting to over-indulge children, describing giving them three gifts during the holidays: 1) something a child needs (like a clothing item), 2) a book (to educate or grow the mind), and 3) something special they want.

Welcome to Our World: Christmas Playlist 2018

Written by Sister Erin Light on Tuesday, 11 December 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 325

Welcome to Our World: Christmas Playlist 2018

Often, when we think of Jesus Christ as a baby, we think of the manger scene and how nice it is and how exciting it must’ve been for them to be there on that holy night. We hear the stories of Mary and Joseph, how they traveled a difficult journey and Mary’s faith in what happened to her.

But it’s not too often that we think about God as a small baby. The lyrics in "Welcome to Our World" by Chris Rice are extremely touching.

“How I wish we would’ve known”...

Not many people welcomed Christ into the world. We expected a King, someone regal and large in presence. This song expresses the humbling realization of God coming down to take on flesh and blood for us. But He was essentially a stranger, unnoticed for so many years, until He comes into His own.

Genie in a Bottle

Written by Brother Richard Lowman on Thursday, 15 November 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 467

Genie in a Bottle

I find it interesting that we — and I really mean me — treat the Lord like a genie in a bottle sometimes. We go through a trial, and we want the Lord to immediately “fix it” and take the pain or discomfort away. Lately, I've had a pity party for myself. We've had some adversity. Here are some examples:

My wife, Gina, and I have started hosting a “Pasta and Passage” every other Sunday in our home after church service. We eat spaghetti and then study The Book of Mormon, chapter by chapter. The attendance has been pretty good, between 20 to 25 people regularly. I think it no coincidence that on three of these Sundays we've had our upstairs air conditioning go out. The A/C hasn’t gone out any other time, and on the Monday or Tuesday of the following week, the A/C has been repaired. With the A/C out, the upstairs temperature climbs to 90 degrees, and it makes it hard for the kids to go into the playroom so the adults can study. Coincidence? No. Satanic attack? Yes. Satan would've liked us to cancel. Cancel often enough, and people will lose interest.

Cane Pride

Written by Brother P. on Tuesday, 13 November 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 471

Cane Pride

Today's article is another installment in Brother P.'s column, "Lessons From the Nursing Home."

In the branch of The Church of Jesus Christ where I belong, we have a brother who calls his walking cane “Pride.” I am not exactly sure of his reasoning.

Maybe his pride is lost because he uses the cane now? Maybe it keeps him from using the walker, which could be a source of pride? Maybe “pride goeth before a fall.” (I guess I should have asked him.)

The Gift of Sight

Written by Sister Natalie Shawver on Tuesday, 06 November 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 402

The Gift of Sight

For the past seven years, I’ve had the opportunity to volunteer through my company’s philanthropic efforts at community vision screenings around Cincinnati. Our teams visit various schools around the city and check elementary children’s eyesight to determine if they need glasses. It’s a wonderful day spent away from my desk. Instead of writing, I’m helping to potentially give the gift of sight to a young child.

When each child walks through the door, we take the exam sheet and explain the vision screening test we’re about to do with them. They cover one eye and read the letters on the eye chart we point to. We record the score and repeat the process on the other eye.

Each child varies in what he or she can see — some read the letters without a single mistake; others pause and question if what they saw was correct. And some, unfortunately, have such a difficult time seeing the letters that they simply give up, and we move along to the next portion of the screening.

Swap Shoes With the People Who Irritate You

Written by Brother P. on Thursday, 01 November 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 465

Swap Shoes With the People Who Irritate You

Today's article is another installment in Brother P.'s column, "Lessons From the Nursing Home."

When working in the nursing home, I often hear the clinical staff complain about particular patients, and over the years I've noticed a few themes reoccur. One such complaint is regarding the patient with chronic respiratory (COPD) problems. Staff members complain that patients with difficulty breathing can be very rude with short, snappy answers, and they do not want to do anything.

Look Up

Written by Sister Colleen Moore on Tuesday, 30 October 2018. Posted in Devotional Hits 535

Look Up

Think back to when you were a young child. Did you ever have moments that you felt insecure? Not good enough? Compared yourself to others? Now, fast forward to where you are today. Has that changed? Or, do you still have those moments?

We can all relate. I believe we have each experienced that feeling at some point in life. Not just as a child either, but as adults too. Who do you think is whispering that thought into your heart and mind? That’s right, the evil one.

If you ever feel this way, then think about this...

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