Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Come, Join With Us by President Uchtdorf

This week, Guy has been very brave in inviting a friend to church, and I have been impressed as I've witnessed him praying for his friend by name at every prayer.  24 hours must've seemed like an eternity for him to wait for his friend's mother to text me her answer.  And she said "YES!"  

So, fresh off of Guy's missionary experience, this morning we revisited President Uchtdorf's talk "Come, Join With Us."

First, we asked the children why they think anyone would want to join our church?--which is really not "our church," but Christ's church

Their answers ranged from, "because it makes them happy," "because they can feel the Holy Ghost," and "because they want to do good."  They touched on some of President Uchtdorf's reasons: 1. Because they want to follow the Savior, 2. Because they want opportunities to exercise their faith by serving others, 3. Because they want the promised blessings of discipleship.

We then asked the children, who they thought might be welcome in Christ's church.  

Of course, they knew that everyone is welcome, but to facilitate a more in-depth discussion, we asked them to look through a stack of magazines and cut out pictures of people they think might be welcome in the church.  (Steve's idea!)

As we cut out pictures and glued them inside of "Christ's church," we talked about the photos.  We talked about how "There is room for everyone in Christ's church," even people who look different than we do, even people who do not keep all of the commandments yet as they'd hope, even people who might offend us or people struggling with their faith.

Sometimes people look at members of the church and say, "I don't fit in here, I'm too different, or I'm not good enough, or I have too many doubts."  

We talked about the fact that not one of us is perfect, but there is still room for each of us in Christ's church.   (Looking at the pictures below, you can see various scenarios that we discussed with our kids.  We talked about why each person would be welcome in our church and how we could be sure to demonstrate that there is indeed room for them here.)

We must always remember that there is room for all of God's children in His church, and that includes us.  We must not abandon our own faith, because of the actions or behavior of others.  And we must work to help others understand that there will always be room for them to "come, join with us."

Now, I just wanted to mention something that I read in Living in the Eleventh Hour, that I really liked.  The author Robert L. Millet was talking about The Book of Mormon prophesy about the "great and abominable church."  Quoting Elder B.H. Roberts, he writes, "All that makes for truth, for righteousness, is of God; it constitutes the kingdom of righteousness--the empire of Jehovah; and, in a certain sense at least, constitutes the Church of Christ."

He continues, "With the latter--the kingdom of righteousness--we have no warfare.  On the contrary both the spirit of the Lord's commandments to His servants and the dictates of right reason would suggest that we seek to enlarge this kingdom of righteousness both by recognizing such truths as it possesses and seeking the friendship and co-operation of the righteous men and women who constitute its membership."

In other words, all good men and women who are seeking to promote goodness in the world fall into this "empire" of Jehovah, and we need to recognize the truths that they employ in their lives and in their worship and seek to build co-operation and friendship with them...whether they Come, Join with Us, or not!  (With that said, Happy Ash Wednesday to my friends of other faiths!)

Here are our General Conference Review Lessons for the October 2013 Conference so far:

Angels to Watch over Us - President Eyring

Come, Join With Us - President Uchtdorf

The Key to Spiritual Protection - President Packer

The Articles of Faith - Elder Perry

Like a Broken Vessel - Elder Holland

Trust in the Lord - Elder Ballard

No Other Gods - Elder Oaks

Beware of Bondage - Elder Cook

Decisions for Eternity  - Elder Nelson

Repentance: The Hope-filled Path - Elder Scott

The Moral Force of Women - Elder Christofferson

Each Day is a Day of Decision - Elder Nelson

Windows, Priesthood & Tithing - Elder Bednar & Elder Andersen

"Oh, How We Need General Conference!" - Elder Hales


  1. You are amazing. I loved this post and I love the way you are training your children to love the ward and invite friends to church. Blessings and hugs for all!

    1. Thank you, LeAnn! I always appreciate your comments!

  2. like the inclusion of all good men and women...