Last week Benjamin came down for dinner and proudly announced, "Well, I've finally done it! I put holes in the knees of my Sunday pants!"
He's a little bit hard on clothes, this one.
To his commendation, Benjamin wore them nearly weekly for nearly a year. To his condemnation, they're the pants he so sneakily wore to go hiking in Grover when they were brand new.
In other Sunday news, Benjamin gave a talk in church the last week in May. He went up to the stand and stared down his rambunctious peers until they'd quieted down a bit and then he began reading his talk. He did a great job!
Tithing slips list many ways to give money to the church. You can give money to the missionary fund, the perpetual education fund, the temple patron assistance fund, and so on. About two weeks ago, the church sent out a message to say that we no longer need to send in money for the education fund or the temple fund because so many people had sent in money that we have enough!
We have a “culture of service” and generosity.
We won’t soon be asked to stop paying tithing, however, because tithing is a commandment from the Lord. Rather than showing our generosity, tithing helps us show that we have enough faith to keep the Lord’s commandments.
Elder Robert D. Hales said, “Tithing is a test of faith with eternal blessings.” President Nelson says that at first “it takes faith to tithe. Then the tithe payer develops more faith to the point that tithing becomes a ... privilege.”
Malachi 3:10 shows that tithing has been a commandment from ancient times. “Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse,” it says. “And...I will...open...the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.”
As we show our faith by paying tithing the Lord will bless us! I am glad we have prophets to teach us about tithing.
In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
This week Miriam gave a talk, which she wrote with only some light editing from me. She also delivered her talk fabulously:
My talk today is on repentance and forgiveness.
When you repent, you have to apologize, try to right the wrong, and pray for forgiveness from Heavenly Father.
A couple years ago, I had a five dollar bill. I hid it on my dresser thinking no one would find it. Unfortunately, my three-year old brother watched me hide it. In the morning it was gone. A while into the search, my dad looked in my brother’s money jar, and found it. Even though I was upset, it was easy to forgive him because that is what three year olds do. I learned that if I forgive I will also feel better.
Forgiveness is a commandment. The Lord said "I, the Lord, will forgive whom I will forgive, but of you it is required to forgive all men" (D&C 64:10). He also said, that if we forgive others their trespasses, our Heavenly Father will also forgive us (Matthew 6:14).
In the October 2009 general conference, Elder Neil L. Anderson gave a talk on repentance. He said, quote, “The Lord’s desire that we come unto Him and be wrapped in His arms is often a invitation to repent. Behold, he sendeth an invitation unto all... for the arms of mercy are extended towards them, and he saith: Repent, and I will receive you.’’ End of quote.
Heavenly Father is willing to forgive us and so we should also forgive others.
In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
It can be hard to get up in front of people—especially a large group of people—and deliver a message. Our primary here is pretty large. I helped out today and counted up kids. There were roughly 40 kids in junior primary! I can't remember how many kids were in senior primary (it seemed like there were fewer classes but the classes were larger in number than the junior primary classes).
Just as a note, these two kids are the first members of our family to speak in this ward! Somewhat traditionally, new families are asked to speak in sacrament meeting soon after they move in (so they can introduce themselves and whatnot). We know that it's a tradition in this ward for sure because several new families have moved in and have nearly immediately spoken in church. Our family was somehow overlooked and we haven't been asked to speak in sacrament meeting yet (knock on wood). We'll see how long we survive before we're called on...