Sunday, April 1, 2012


Scriptures which make me ponder:

Mosiah 27:14 And again, the angel said: Behold, the Lord hath heard the prayers of his people, and also the prayers of his servant, Alma, who is thy father; for he has prayed with much faith concerning thee that thou mightest be brought to the knowledge of the truth; therefore, for this purpose have I come to convince thee of the power and authority of God, that the prayers of his servants might be answered according to their faith.

Query: How much influence do my prayers, even if they be pure, have over the choices and actions of another?

2 Corinthians 1:24 Not for that we have dominion over your faith, but are helpers of your joy: for by faith ye stand.

Query: Am I ever capable of dominating your faith by my faith?
Doctrine and Covenants 101:78 That every man may act in doctrine and principle pertaining to futurity, according to the moral agency which I have given unto him, that every man may be accountable for his own sins in the day of judgment.

Query: If accountability is individual, then is not agency likewise an independent action?

Proverbs 15:29 The Lord is far from the wicked: but he heareth the prayer of the righteous.

Query: Who is in greater need of the assistance of the Lord than those who have strayed?

Philippians 3:9 And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:

Query: Is my faith limited by the limits of my mortal understandings?

Moses 7:32 The Lord said unto Enoch: Behold these thy brethren; they are the workmanship of mine own hands, and I gave unto them their knowledge, in the day I created them; and in the Garden of Eden, gave I unto man his agency;

Query: Is any man capable of changing or removing that which the Lord has given?

Helaman 10:5 And now, because thou hast done this with such unwearyingness, behold, I will bless thee forever; and I will make thee mighty in word and in deed, in faith and in works; yea, even that all things shall be done unto thee according to thy word, for thou shalt not ask that which is contrary to my will.

Query: How does one guarantee that they will never ask anything which is contrary to the Lord’s will?

Alma 32:21 And now as I said concerning faith—faith is not to have a perfect knowledge of things; therefore if ye have faith ye hope for things which are not seen, which are true.

Query: As long as we see through the glass darkly can our faith expand beyond a hope of true things not seen?

Doctrine and Covenants 37:4 Behold, here is wisdom, and let every man choose for himself until I come.

Query: Is it wisdom to choose for oneself or do we also need to choose wisely?


Prayer is a demonstration of our faith – Prayer is a way to show our love and devotion to Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus the Christ – Petitions in prayer are most correct when guided by the Holy Spirit – Holy Spirit guided prayers on behalf of others are a demonstration of our trust in God – Gratitude poured out in prayer is the sincerest form of worship – We have been given prayer that we might feel of His presence and momentarily escape Home sickness while in mortality

Faith during mortality is seldom complete –Incomplete faith is a blessing which keeps one striving throughout the stages of their existence – Faith in God is never completely subdued by stupidity of our choices – Every act of sincere faith is recognized by our Loving Father – We should constantly be on guard that we never do anything which might dim the light glowing from the candle of another’s faith – Faith like every living, growing thing needs frequent and proper attention

Agency is an important key to individual growth – No mortal is given the right to remove or override the agency of another – One of the deadliest temptations of the adversary is to convince us that we should usurp the agency of another – The subtleties of ways in which we strive to dominate one another is a monstrous trap which few escape – We will all experience to one degree or another both the blessings and the cursings which accompany the privileges of our agency


  1. This was truly inspired. I have been really frustrated this week with my daughter's boyfriend who set a baptismal date and is now having doubts, i.e. afraid of his mother's reaction, etc. I was so upset to hear that he didn't watch conference yesterday, and missed Dallin Oaks talk. Thank you so much for reminding me that I need to honor agency.

    Have a wonderful Sunday!

    Keeping you in my prayers praying for good health for you.

    Kindest regards,

    Tracy Drivas

  2. Another outstanding thought.....

    Tom Borgquist

  3. Very Nice Bill and thank you for all the thought and prayer you put into these thoughts each week. I hope you are feeling better and say hi to your wife for me!

    Thanks again
    Renee Lehman

  4. What I Heard you say :)
    Mosiah 27:14 We are convinced of Gods power, through prayer's power.
    Mosiah 27,2Corin 1, Phil 3, Heleman 10, Alma 32: You see faith as an essential ingredient. What is prayer without faith? Words?
    Proverbs 15: God hears the righteous. but since,
    Phil 3:19: and Mathew 19:17: there is none good but one!!! Yet we hope to be heard!
    Moses 7:32: It was by God's design that we were created as we are, with our limitations. The purpose of man after all is to suffer.
    Heleman 10:5: We ask only that God's will be done. To ask otherwise is to contradict the principle of faith!
    Alma 32:21: We have no idea what faith really is, but we have hope, and we attribute that as faith. In the end, greater than these is ....
    D&C 347:4: A mantra to live by: Choose for yourself. But pray, pray pray. Pray without ceasing ... that your choices will (forget your righteousness, Proverbs) but without useless appeal to merit, by grace alone be guided by his all-knowing, all-powerful invisible hand.
    Blessings will follow, but they may or may not be apparent to the one who receives God's grace through prayer. Sometimes that takes faith, true, whatever it is. :)

    Paul Maddox

  5. Bill,
    I know how trying it must be for someone such as you, dead serious about serious things, to have to separate out the tongue in cheek chaff from sparse wheat when you take your valuable time to read my responses to your thoughts. I seem to slip back and forth indiscriminately from seriousness to satire like a Jekyll and Hyde, but I would hope without the malice. But my point really is that I do it with about as much lack of containment. It's to your credit that you are able to endure. But maybe not an indication of your wisdom??? I have often thought when getting ready to send a response to your thoughts of just letting you off the hook entirely. But then, I look forward to your missives.

    And hope to remain Open,

    Paul Maddox

  6. I especially enjoyed reading your "thoughts" on agency. It is of utmost importance that we guard against anyone wanting to take away our right to choose for ourselves. A battle was fought in the pre-existence over this very thing and I see a "portent of stormy weather ahead for us" (as Pres. Hinckley predicted) and if we are to survive these times that we are living in then we must make correct choices that will bring us eventually back into the presence of our God. Choices ~~ that is what we fought for as we exercised our right of agency in the pre-existence and that is why we are here and have a body and Satan does not!

    Carla Johnson