Age adjustments, phone calls and answered prayers

Anyone who follows me on Twitter (@LDSTroy) or my blog knows that I love to tweet during General Conference (#LDSConf). I admit, with some nerdy embarrassment, that I have been a part of the #TwitterStake since its beginning. Not only is it a way for me to take notes but I get to see everyone else’s notes. There are more “notes” than anyone could ever read but at the very least, it keeps me awake and alert through all of conference.

So when Conference started and President Thomas S. Monson offered his opening remarks, I was listening and tweeting – for a few seconds. When his comments switched to missionary work and the age adjustment for both young men (18) and young women (19), I was stunned.

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The Spirit communicates with more than tears.

A few fast Sundays ago, a full-time missionary assigned to our ward bore his testimony or witness of the Savior and restoration of His Church. His was a heartfelt declaration of his love for the Gospel, Jesus Christ, his missionary companion and the members of the ward. He attempted to explain the feelings he has when he feels the Spirit. He struggled to describe the experience and finally said that, for him, it felt like when he played sports only a thousand times better.

One of the struggles persons of faith have is describing for others how they feel the Spirit. It is like describing the taste of salt – you just can’t find the appropriate words. Read more of this post

Looking for Planets Through a Microscope

Credit: NASA, ESA, STScI, J. Hester and P. Scowen (Arizona State University)

In the film version of John Steinbeck’s Cannery Row, the main character, a marine biologist, finds his prize microscope broken and unusable. The responsible parties, a band of well-intentioned but uneducated, down-on-their-luck citizens, order a new microscope from a catalog.  On the day of its arrival, the band throws a party to surprise the biologist with the brand new, state-of-the-art microscope. When the gift is revealed, he is surprised indeed. They had purchased a telescope instead of a microscope; great for viewing stars and planets, not for viewing the cells of marine life. (Cannery Row. Dir. David S. Ward. Perf. Nick Nolte and Debra Winger. MGM 1982)

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Prayer, Spiritual Knowledge and a “Bye” week-end.

Another unique practice within the Mormon culture is “Stake Conference”. Its roots are based in the scriptures. Jesus Christ himself teaches His disciples to “meet together oft.” (3 Nephi 18:22) Twice a year, a “Stake” (a group of 8-12 Mormon congregations) meets together to receive counsel and instruction from local and General church leadership.

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