Tools at the Back of the Books

By Teresa Bruce

I don’t know if I ever thanked Sis. Parish for the tools she gave me in Sunday school. I don’t know if she pulled her gift straight from a church-approved lesson manual or as an aside in answer to needs she saw. I only know that, to this day, whenever I turn to the appendix …

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Find Your Lens: Book of Mormon Come, Follow Me 2020

By Emily Milner

I am delighted, excited, thrilled–practically giddy–about studying the Book of Mormon this year for Come, Follow Me. This is because I get to teach it this year in Gospel Doctrine. I’ve been anticipating this through two humbling years of teaching the Bible. While teaching the Bible, I felt like I needed to be far more …

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Book Review: The First Four Books of BYUS’s New Testament Commentary Series

By Karen Austin

BYU Studies has published four print books so far as part of their New Testament Commentary series. This series draws on an array of academic tools from fields such as archaeology, biblical studies, linguistics, and literary theory. Nevertheless, the interpretations stay anchored in LDS doctrine. Derek Gurr from BYU Studies explains the relationship between the …

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Not Every Shot Will be a Slam Dunk

By Jessie Christensen

I never thought I’d have a spiritual experience at a pep rally. Then I had an epiphany last month during a performance by the university’s dunk team. A group of athletes brought out several trampolines and mats, placed them just in front of the basketball hoops, turned on some heart-pumping music, and began doing tricks. …

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Resisting the Resolution Rabbit Hole

By Teresa Bruce

  I don’t do New Year’s resolutions. Scheduling self-improvement to the turn of the calendar feels as authentic (and as effective) as placing a stray calico, a rescue mutt, a diminutive owl, a fluffy rabbit, and a garden snake in my chain link–fenced backyard and saying, “Everybody, teach yourselves a few new tricks. I’ll see …

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Best way to serve this Christmas? Be your kindest self.

By Michelle Lehnardt

Since Thanksgiving, I’ve 1. deeply offended my husband 2. neglected to extend sympathy to a friend in need and 3. demanded too much from one of my dearest friends. I’m sure someone could add additional grievances to that list, but I feel badly enough about myself, so let’s just leave it be. As I was frantically texting apologies …

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Stand Back and Watch Me Work

By Catherine Arveseth

I stepped away as she lathered color across the canvas in long strokes, making a bright pattern of plaid-like lines. “I want the background to be colorful,” she said.

Sometimes I get in her business too much, try to direct her, ask too many questions.

I should just stand back and watch her work.

Eliza, my 11 year-old daughter, was asked to paint something for the cover of the primary program this year. Has your ward had their primary program? If so, maybe you remember the theme. I Know the Scriptures are True.

The copier in the office made a shuffling sound and a few minutes later I peeked in on her to find a scripture page ripped into pieces, scattered across the upper corner of her work.

“You ripped up some scriptures?” I asked. Slightly shocked at the sight. “It’s just a copy. I know what I’m doing Mom,” she replied with a tone that implied my ignorance, her confidence.

And she did. She painted a black book-backdrop for her scripture pieces then puzzled them together with gaps and uneven edges. “I want to paint things coming out of the pages,” she explained.

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Guest Post: Reading the Book of Mormon for the 23rd Time

 Nickel has a Ph D in Art History and enjoys teaching part time. She spends her free time practicing cello and violin with her two little girls and listening to her husband sing. She is blogging the Book of Mormon over at http://nickelonthenacle.blogspot.com/
For the past three years, I have nailed my New Year’s resolutions. I am about to finish reading the standard works in a single year for the third time. In terms of spiritual practices, reading the scriptures has always been my strong suit. Except this last time was much harder. I estimate that I’ve read the Book of Mormon 22 times. Church leaders say that each time you read the Book of Mormon, you notice new things. This was true the second, tenth and even fifteenth time, but it absolutely stopped being true by the 22nd reading. At 32, there is still a lifetime of Book of Mormon reading in front of me. How do I keep it interesting?

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Notebooks Anonymous

By Jennie LaFortune

Photo credit here. “Some things should happen on soft paper, not cold metal.” –Harper Lee Hi, my name is Jennie and I like notebooks.  A lot.  I mean if we want to get personal or just plain confessional, I have college notes bound by course on a shelf in a closet.  It’s a sickness. What …

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Read it your way

By Michelle Lehnardt

You’ve heard plenty of moving anecdotes about Pres. Hinckley’s August of 2005 challenge to read or reread The Book of Mormon by the end of the year. My story is a bit less inspiring.

We completed the final chapter, gathered our wild little tribe in a circle to pray and I asked, “What did you feel? What did you learn?”

My oldest son, with one sibling bellowing in his ear and another stomping on his toes answered, “I learned I don’t want to have so many kids when I grow up!”

The boys laughed, I cried and we forever changed our pattern of scripture study.

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