Tuesday, December 6, 2016

I, Nephi: Scripture Study Part 1


Today I'd just like to tell you how
grateful I am for the scriptures
and other words of the prophets.
I know that as we take 
time to read and study
them daily that we can learn
and grow and find answers
to any questions we may have!

The Word and On My Heart
My first pen almost made it all the way through 1 Nephi!

If you've been following me here for a while,
you probably remember back this spring
when I decided that I was going to do 
something a little different in
my study of the scriptures.
I had gotten stuck in my studies
because I was feeling like it had to 
look a certain way, but I made the 
choice to do something that felt
like it would work for me.

I decided to copy down the
Book of Mormon as I read it.
I also used this study guide,
which I've loved!
So my typical study session
would start with me copying down 
verses or chapters of scripture
that went together in the study guide.
Then I would study that section of scripture
and fill out/doodle about what I was learning.
It has been a very slow process,
but I have learned so much!
Also, I've read the Book of Mormon
many times throughout my life.
This time I felt like I got so
much more out of my studies.
I'm just getting started with 2 Nephi,
and I'd like to share with you
three things I learned/was reminded of
while doing my study of 1 Nephi.


1 Nephi 3:7
"And it came to pass that I, Nephi,
said unto my father: I will go and 
do the things which the Lord hath
commanded, for I know that he
given no commandments unto
the children of men, save he
shall prepare a way for them
that they may accomplish the
thing which he commandeth them."

This scripture is probably one of the
most known scriptures in 
the Church of Jesus Christ of 
Latter-day Saints.
I've read it and memorized it
many, many times,
but somehow I don't remember
something very interesting
in 1 Nephi.
Nephi actually says in many other
verses that if the Lord gives us
a commandment He'll have
a way prepared for us to 
accomplish it.

Thinking back on my life,
I know that I've definitely 
experienced this.
Sometimes what I was being asked
to do was not easy.
Sometimes I didn't know how 
I was going to do it.
But I chose to press on and
trust that Heavenly Father had
a way for me to accomplish it.
In the end I think one of the
biggest things I learned was
that it wasn't usually about 
what I accomplished in the
end; it was about what I learned
in the doing of it.
It's about the journey,
not necessarily about
where I was going.


1 Nephi 15:11
"Do ye not remember the things
which the Lord hath said?--If
ye will not harden your hearts,
and ask me in faith, believing
that ye shall receive, with
diligence in keeping my 
commandments, surely these
things shall be made known unto you."

Have you ever been like me
and wanted answers, but
got tired of asking and not
getting answers?
I hope I'm not the only one.
I loved this verse of scripture
because it gave me a formula
for receiving answers from the Lord:
Diligence in keeping the commandments is
a huge part of receiving answers!
Back in the days of stage coaches
there was a stage coach named Diligence.
It was a high speed non-stopping coach.
Diligence is constant and earnest effort
to accomplish something.
Sometimes while waiting for answers
I get impatient and forget to be diligent.
But when I return to being constant and
earnest and NON-STOPPING
in keeping the commandments,
I receive the answers that I'm looking for
or I realize that the answers have come,
just not in the way I expected the to come.


1 Nephi 16:28-29
"And it came to pass that I, Nephi,
beheld the pointers which were
in the ball, that they did work according
to the faith and diligence and
 heed which we did give unto them.
And there was also written upon 
them a new writing, which was 
plain to be read, which did give us 
understanding concerning the ways 
of the Lord; and it was written 
and changed from time to time, 
 according to the faith and diligence 
and heed which we gave unto it.  
And thus we see that by small means 
the Lord can bring about great things."

I love this last scripture for so many reasons!
First we get another formula for receiving answers:
Faith+Diligence+Heed=Answers from Our Liahonas
First I believe that we each have
different although similar things
that are our personal Liahonas.
They are the things that point
us where the Lord would like us
to go and things that teach 
us of the Lord's ways and commandments.
Some of my own personal Liahonas are
-my scriptures
-my Patriarchal Blessing
-Prophets and Apostles
-General Conference
-Priesthood leaders
-Church leaders and teachers
-the Holy Ghost.

Each of these don't really help me find
answers unless I have faith in God,  
give heed to/do/live what I learn,
and be diligent in keeping
the commandments of God.

The next thing I love about this scripture
is when it talks about how the writing
on the pointers was changed from time to time.
I definitely find that when I'm studying 
the same verse for the umpteenth time
what I learn from it can be different
than what I learned the last time I studied it.
I think that's one of the best things
about studying the scriptures!

The last thing I love about this scripture
(okay not the last thing, but the last thing I'm going to share:0)
is when it says, "And thus we see that by small means
the Lord can bring about great things."
It's a good reminder to me that even though
I might feel small in the big old world,
the Lord can use me to bring about
great things!

I'm excited about all that I will
continue to learn on my scripture
studying journey!
Remember that your scripture
study can look however it works
for you. Don't compare it to
what other people do.
Just find what works for you
and do it. 
You'll learn so much
more than you can 
possibly imagine!