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I was Dear John’d

A friend was asking for experiences of those who waited for their missionaries, so I thought I’d share mine. I was Dear John’d. And it was one of the best things that happened to me. My then-girlfriend was surprisingly wise for her years. The day of my mission farewell, she and a big group of […]

Higher Education

This essay was originally featured as the winning selection in BYU Magazine’s 2004 essay contest, asking ‘how has a college education changed your life’? NO WAY, I thought, staring up at the mountain. How in the world are we supposed to climb this? They called it “The Chute”. I called it “one more reason to end this hiking […]

D&C Lesson 33: The Succession

“If the people want President Rigdon to lead them they may have him: but I say unto you that the Quorum of the Twelve have the keys of the kingdom of God in all the world. The Twelve are appointed by the finger of God. Here is Brigham, have his knees ever faltered? Have his […]

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D&C Lesson 32: The Martyrdom

  “Joseph Smith, the Prophet and Seer of the Lord, has done more, save Jesus only, for the salvation of men in this world, than any other man that ever lived in it. In the short space of twenty years, he has brought forth the Book of Mormon, which he translated by the gift and power of God, and has been […]

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Wilford Woodruff’s final days with Joseph Smith

“I remember the last speech that [Joseph Smith] ever gave us before his death. … He stood upon his feet some three hours. The room was filled as with consuming fire, his face was as clear as amber, and he was clothed upon by the power of God. He laid before us our duty. He […]

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Josiah Quincy, on visiting Nauvoo…

 “It is by no means improbable that some future text-book, for the use of generations yet unborn, will contain a question something like this: What historical American of the nineteenth century has exerted the most powerful influence upon the destinies of his countrymen? And it is by no means impossible that the answer to that […]

D&C Lesson 31: “Sealed for Time and Eternity”

The only lesson in D&C devoted to the most celebrated and complex relationship we can enter – marriage. What is the relationship between marriage now and union in the eternities? How has it changed over time, and how is it enhanced by additional celestial covenants introduced by Joseph Smith? And what are the guiding principles […]

Foundations of Stone

Originally shared in Sacrament Meeting, Laguna Creek 4th Ward, 5/18/13 In a far away corner of the Pacific, lies a dormant volcanic island, rimmed in cliffs and covered with jungle. In that jungle is a most peculiar switchgrass with wide blades that are long, flat, and thick with sap. When slowly heated the sap will […]

EFY 2013 – Firm in the Faith

  Had the wonderful opportunity to spend time with kids in Provo, UT 3A and Twin Falls, ID SAH sessions this year. Spent probably a good 6 months prior pondering what I should say. I think the most rewarding part of the experience is to meet kids afterwards and learn that they heard something they’d […]

Building one great talk out of another

  A young friend recently wrote the following: “My bishop asked me to give a talk based on John B Dickson’s talk, “Commitment to the Lord”. I’ve studied it, watched it, and read it several times but I’m having trouble actually converting it into a talk… (This is actually my first real talk, as I was inactive the […]

Conversation: “Are we justified in ‘hating’…?”

He wrote: “Are we justified in hating Satan? When Jesus tells us to love our enemies are there any exceptions? Should we hate or pity our fallen brother? Does he enjoy our hatred? Is he beyond the atonement or is the atonement truly infinite?” My response: “You know, I don’t really hate him. I’m annoyed […]

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