ONE || It is worth every sacrifice we are making, and will ever make, to hear Him. Our ability to communicate with our Father in Heaven will be our great tool for success in this life and our greatest weapon against the adversary. I know it is hard. I know the heavens can feel closed sometimes. But it is in those moments that our effort and consistency becomes evidence of our faith.
TWO || When we want to remember something, we often make every effort to keep that "thing" at the forefront of our minds by writing it down, telling someone else, repetition, leaving reminders for ourself, revisiting that thought at the beginning and end of our days. The same is required to keep God at top of our mind and close to our heart. If this effort is not made, history is proof—as told in the Book of Mormon time and time again—that we will see just how quick "the children of men do forget the Lord their God".
THREE || I've been so grateful to hear that messages I've shared on Instagram lately have really touched several of your hearts. I've had similar experiences with other uplifting accounts I follow—what a blessing of social media!! However, these spiritual boosts are not enough and we cannot rely on them to fuel our spiritual tank. It is passive consumption, and though there is nothing wrong with that, we must ALSO actively set aside sacred time to hear Him and make Him a priority in our lives.
"As we seek to be disciples of Jesus Christ, our efforts to hear Him need to be ever more intentional. It takes conscious and consistent effort to fill our daily lives with His words, His teachings, His truths . . . In those two words—“Hear Him”—God gives us the pattern for success, happiness, and joy in this life."
"It has never been more imperative to know how the Spirit speaks to you than right now. I renew my plea for you to do whatever it takes to increase your spiritual capacity to receive personal revelation."
THIS WEEK'S CHALLENGE
If the purpose of bookends is to hold up and support what is between them...how important are the bookends to our days? Every day we are faced with decisions, temptations, and sometimes even challenge or hardship. President Nelson said when we truly hear Him, we will know "how to move ahead with [our] life, what to do during times of crisis, and how to discern and avoid the temptations and the deceptions of the adversary."
Our challenge this week is to protect the "bookends" to our days and fill them with God's voice. Give Him the first thought and the last word. Determine when you will close your morning bookend and open your evening one, then decide how you will spend this time differently than the rest of your day. For example, my bookends will look like this:
Morning bookend | 7:00am (wake-up) - 8:00am Evening bookend | 9:00pm - 10:30pm (go to sleep)
And during that time, no phone and no computer. I have an iPhone and will use "downtime" to do this (an awesome tool if you haven't already tried it)! I'm also going to tell my husband so he can encourage me and keep me committed to my goal.
How do you feel? If it sounds hard, that's OKAY! You want there to be improvement and growth! Don't be overwhelmed like this has to be your new normal, do what works for YOU! Try it for 3 days, 5 days, all week, and see! The most important this to remember, you are setting a goal to DO, not DO PERFECTLY.