Nov 272015
 
That’s a quote from Pres. Joseph Fielding Smith, from today’s lesson.
What is he talking about there, Sisters?
Any guesses?
If you were there today, you probably know – But given that I’m writing this up mostly for the benefit of those who couldn’t be there, I’ll give you a hint with another quote from that lesson. 
“I think we all know that the blessings of the _________ are not confined to men alone. These blessings are also poured out upon our wives and daughters and upon all the faithful women of the Church.” 
That’s right, the PRIESTHOOD!
Some of you might remember how Sis. Wallace mentioned we’d be learning more about the Priesthood yet again this Sunday, and those of you who are totally on the ball probably studied the lesson this week.  You might have even done the “homework” she gave us… Or you might be a little more like me and completely forgot about it.  OOOPS!  No worries, though, whoever you are and however well you remember things, 
This lesson is for you, now!
Allow me to continue with the rest of the quote I started up there, regarding the universal blessings of the priesthood.
“I think we all know that the blessings of the priesthood are not confined to men alone. These blessings are also poured out upon our wives and daughters and upon all the faithful women of the Church. These good sisters can prepare themselves, by keeping the commandments and by serving in the Church, for the blessings of the house of the Lord. The Lord offers to his daughters every spiritual gift and blessing that can be obtained by his sons, for neither is the man without the woman, nor the woman without the man in the Lord.” 
I wish I could share with you the spirit present in the comments shared during class after that quote was read.  There is just a beautiful feeling of compassion, understanding, strength, and unity there.  We are all in different places and circumstances, but we all love the Gospel and want to help each other.
One sister talked about the scripture in the Doctrine and Covenants 121, telling us clearly the manner in which the priesthood should be exercised.  “…with love unfeigned…”
Here’s the longer excerpt from that section,
:41 No power or influence can or ought to be maintained by virtue of the priesthood, only by persuasion, by long-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned;
:42 By kindness, and pure knowledge, which shall greatly enlarge the soul without hypocrisy, and without guile—
:43 Reproving betimes with sharpness, when moved upon by the Holy Ghost; and then showing forth afterwards an increase of love toward him whom thou hast reproved, lest he esteem thee to be his enemy;
:44 That he may know that thy faithfulness is stronger than the cords of death.
From there another sister briefly referred to some of the turmoil over questions about women being ordained to offices in the priesthood, and I love what she said.
“We need less focus on WHO is ordained, 
and more focus & attention given to WHAT it is for!”
AMEN, Sister!
Would that we could all share with each other more of our faith and less of our doubts, and in doing so perhaps we will all find answers to the burning questions in our souls. There’s nothing wrong with questions — The Lord *wants* us to take our questions to Him — but sometimes when we change our questions or think of new ones, that will change our life, our perspective, and even give us the answers we need.
Sadly, I don’t have as much time to give you a blow-by-blow account like I did last week.  Our teacher once again split us up into groups and let us discuss some things amongst ourselves.  Each group took a few of the verses from D&C 84:33-44, and then we shared what we’d discussed.  It was a good opportunity to hear from the sisters around us, some of whom don’t often have the opportunity share their perspectives & thoughts during class.
I loved the experience of one sister who had served as a Stake Relief Society secretary in one of the other stakes here in Laie.  She would attend meetings for upwards of 8 hours on Sundays, never get that cherished Sunday nap, but wake up Monday refreshed and ready for the week.  The Sunday she got released from that calling, she came home from church… and took a 4 hour nap.  :)  (Blessings of renewing our bodies in the service of the Lord.  Yay!)
I also loved Sister Christensen’s tying in Visiting Teaching — Her last VT plug!  Wahh!  We’re going to miss you, Sis. C! — on the verse that talks about receiving the Lord’s servants.  As we do our Visiting Teaching, we are about His work, on His errand, and truly His servants in that capacity… Therefore, please, Sisters!, receive your visiting teachers and be available for them when they want to come visit you!  :)  
Again, wish I could elaborate a little longer for you, but hope this is good enough for now.  There is so much light and truth and inspiration available to us as we study the teachings of our Latter-Day prophets!  
Next week should be the next lesson in that same manual — 
Hope you can make it!

Source: L7 Relief Society

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