23 Comments

Gun Ownership and the American Psyche

minutemanI have a few things to say about the debate over gun control. I probably won’t add much to the conversation, but I am moved to speak because of a conversation I had with a friend that we met while we were on our mission in Paris.  My friend has a completely different outlook on society and government, having grown up in New Zealand.  In a few discussions with her I have come to realize that there is something unique about the American psyche when compared to the rest of the world.  I think for people to understand the American attitude towards gun control, it is necessary to understand why Americans are different than the rest of the world.  Before I proceed, I want to make it perfectly clear that I am an American, and that even though I present the following principles somewhat from a third party perspective, I don’t disown them.  They do not represent my personal ideal, but I recognize them as being necessitated by the same compromise that inspired the constitution – the compromise between the principles of Zion and the terrestrial principles of this world.

In seeking this understanding of the American psyche as it pertains to gun control, I think we can keep it simple – the case stands largely on 3 legs.  We need to start with our history, and I think we really only need focus on two high points in that history – two of the three legs.  First, the United States was born of probably the most significant armed revolution in the history or the world.  This revolution would not have been possible if not for the arms held by the citizens. Following the revolution, when the U.S. Constitution was adopted, it included many safeguards against the oppression of liberty on the part of the government.  Then, when the Bill of Rights, the first 10 amendments to the Constitution, was formed very soon after, the second of these amendments stated the following:

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

The intent of this amendment is clearly, in my mind, based on the belief that, if the citizenry is armed, the government will be restrained in its tendency toward repression of the people, and that at no time should that right to bear arms – whatever arms they choose – be restricted in any manner whatsoever.

The other point of history – the second leg – that I think is critical to understanding the American attitude toward gun ownership is World War II.  There is little debate, especially among Americans (and we are talking about the American attitudes), that, during World War II, the United States saved the world from the totalitarian regimes of Germany, Italy, Japan and Russia.  The reason this is so significant is that in each of these countries, the citizenry was disarmed before the offending regime took over (although perhaps less so in Japan – where I don’t think the citizenry was ever “armed” – the armed class was already in existence).  The result was that tens of millions of lives were destroyed by these regimes, not only as a result of the war, but also of the genocide that was inflicted on the countries’ own populace.  Therefore, from the American point of view, these countries fell subject to their totalitarian regimes at least partly because of gun control measures, and then proceeded to threaten the whole world with their evil designs.  The cost in lives and resources was staggering.  The world was changed forever.

As the third point, I would introduce a principle that I think most Americans understand based on intuition and experience, even if they reject the confirmation that came through the Prophet of the Restoration, Joseph Smith. In 1838, Joseph Smith received a revelation from Jesus Christ that states this principle with great eloquence:

We have learned by sad experience that it is the nature and disposition of almost all men, as soon as they get a little authority, as they suppose, they will immediately begin to exercise unrighteous dominion.  D&C 121:39

When we combine the two lessons learned from our history with this truth about the nature of men, non-Americans might better understand why Americans believe that gun ownership is the only thing that stands between them and the unrelenting nature of men to seek after power and control over other men.  They also have a deeply ingrained memory of and appreciation for the many who have sacrificed and died preserving national and individual liberty from the persistent onslaught of this nature and its destructive result.

Many who argue for gun control say that they only want to control assault weapons – but this same fear of man’s tendency toward control suggests to us that once such controls have been put in place, there will be nothing to stop the gradually increasing encroachments until all gun ownership is illegal.  There are already cities within the US where such is the case.  According to the text and, I believe, the spirit of the second amendment mentioned above, we have already violated the constitution.  In other words, in my mind, “shall not be infringed” means no control at all!

Having stated these basic premises upon which the American attitude concerning gun control is built, I would like to look briefly at the basic arguments for both sides.  Gun control advocates claim that in countries where guns are outlawed, gun deaths have gone down and that if guns are outlawed, anyone owning a gun is a criminal.  Guns will therefore be more conspicuous and harder to get, and there will be less likelihood that a crazed individual will go “postal” and kill a bunch of people.  My friend pleads emotionally that if lives can be saved, we have the moral duty to set aside our “fear of government” and surrender our guns willingly.  It is difficult to argue with that.  Every life is precious and of infinite value, and it is easy to justify that sacrificing gun ownership is well worth the lives that will be saved.  The counter argument, in my mind, goes something like this:

Liberty comes with a price, and sometimes that price is high.  Sometimes it even includes horrendous results at the hands of people abusing that liberty.  However, surrendering individual liberty to protect ourselves against those who do not use it responsibly is not the answer.

Governmental authority is, by its very nature, based on force.

If guns are denied the common citizen, the result will undeniably be that there are two groups of people – those who have guns (the government), and those who do not (the citizenry); those who can protect themselves and those who cannot; those who use force, and those who cannot.

When this happens, the second group is subject to the benevolence of the first group for their safety – a benevolence that we have already established is not guaranteed (re: D&C 121:39).

Therefore, the only protection that the individual or the citizenry have against the evils of conspiring (or insane) men is either force or divine intervention.  This will always be true until Christ returns and establishes His Kingdom on the earth; when the government shall be upon his shoulders.  As much as Americans like to talk about being a religious country, they as a whole have nowhere near enough faith to simply allow the Lord to protect them from the unrighteous use of force; from those who would exercise unrighteous dominion in all spheres of human existence.  In the absence of faith sufficient to rely totally on the Lord, they put their faith in their guns largely as a symbol – not only of their ability to protect themselves, but of their overall commitment to liberty itself.

It is obvious that handguns, rifles and shotguns, even the evil AR-15 are never going to be effective against tanks, bombs, and jet fighters, should the government choose to exercise their power against its own citizenry. I suggest therefore that, realistically, our protection against any future oppression of government is the honor of the individual soldier in the military. I further suggest that the spirit of independence and self-sufficiency that imbues the American soul, that is so ingrained in those who haven’t yet surrendered to the “take care of me” attitude that seems to be growing every day among people the world over, is the same spirit and honor that would inspire the military, the individual soldier, to stop short of subjugating their fellow citizens – to mutiny before they would so egregiously violate the rights of their fellow citizens.  I maintain that, if Americans were to surrender the symbol of that spirit – their firearms – they would eventually lose the spirit entirely, and in doing so they would somehow surrender the last true bastion of protection in the world against tyranny.  Liberty would become a gift of the nanny state rather than a God-given right!

Imagine with me a world where the only entity that has the ability to exercise force is the government; a world where the government is run by men who we know have it in their very nature to “exercise unrighteous dominion” as soon as they get a little authority, and where the citizens of this world are totally reliant upon the benevolence of those who are able to exercise this force.  This, my friends, is Satan’s world.  I therefore propose that gun ownership in America is not so much about countering force with force as it is about countering “the evil designs of conspiring men” with an unconquerable belief that liberty is God-given, and therefore priceless.  I have come to realize that this gun control battle is not only an American fight, it is a fight for the whole world.  We Americans seem to be standing alone, declaring before the rest of the world that if we surrender our guns, we have surrendered the fight – not only for the liberty of nations, but for individual liberty.  I am left to conclude that gun ownership stands somehow as the final deterrent against Satan winning the battle for the agency of man.  Tragically, those who have died recently are casualties not only at the hand of citizens gone insane, but of the eternal war for the agency of man.  I lay their deaths at Satan’s feet.  He is the source of this evil.  The answer, however, is not to submit to his insidious plan, but to recognize the evil behind it, and battle the evil itself, whether it be with equal force, with words of education, understanding,  and love, or with divine intervention.  Increased gun control is a short-term solution that will ultimately cost more lives and souls than all the mass murderers throughout our history.

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23 comments on “Gun Ownership and the American Psyche

  1. Scott
    Let me first thank you for your thoughts/comments, in a world of increasing negativity, your comments force me to stop and ponder my feelings which ultimately strengthens my own testimony….. Thank you.
    Your latest piece, “Gun Ownership………” couldn’t have come at a better time, I echo your comments and hope others recognize the importance of this topic
    Merry Christmas
    Jeff

  2. Well said Scott…

  3. I wonder if the spirits of the Nephites watch us as our judges become as their s at the end of the nephites rule. Today i see a nation that was spoken of as satan now controls this Government? Yet the people carry on. i see as this noose is tightened that more and more people are drawn into common everyday brotherhood.
    i view mankind through his path. most of which is. Violence. it is his calling card Yet even when faced with his mortality its as if he cant or dont understand his limits. so therefore in every moment of his day he resists that which he doesnt understand nor agrees to. His resistence toward God makes me shake my head and remember a thought of what is after the mortality of man.
    Today we are beset by a satanic rule that is totally pervasive yet in America these words are premiere to any tyranny which may befall him. these words? ” Resistence is victory and victory is mans destiny.”

  4. “As much as Americans like to talk about being a religious country, they as a whole have nowhere near enough faith to simply allow the Lord to protect them from the unrighteous use of force;”

    You moron. The Lord only protects those who protect themselves. He’s only promised to help us after we’ve done “all we can do.” The children of Israel had to walk to the water’s edge before the Lord would save them. The Son’s of Helaman were protected, but only after they went into battle with arms. The brother of Jared had to have faith that the Lord would illuminate his stones, but he still had to come up with the idea and gather them. In contrast, the Anti-Nephi-Lehies refused to take up arms because they didn’t want to fall back into their old ways. They were saved in the next life for their choice, but they were slaughtered in this one. The Lord MAY choose to save you. But if he does and you haven’t done all you can do to save your own life, it would have more to do with His plan for you than your unwavering faith in Him.

    “Those who haven’t yet surrendered to the ‘take care of me’ attitude.”

    Yet that’s exactly what you’re advocating. See point #1.

    I don’t love guns. But what you’re talking about is stupidity. If you want to be a blogger, I applaud you. In general, you did a good job. But be responsible–and DO YOUR RESEARCH. You could really get people hurt filling their heads with this garbage. And part of the responsibility for that would fall to YOU.

    https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2010/04/healing-the-sick?lang=eng This ought to get you started:

    “The use of medical science is not at odds with our prayers of faith and our reliance on priesthood blessings. When a person requested a priesthood blessing, Brigham Young would ask, “Have you used any remedies?” To those who said no because “we wish the Elders to lay hands upon us, and we have faith that we shall be healed,” President Young replied: “That is very inconsistent according to my faith. If we are sick, and ask the Lord to heal us, and to do all for us that is necessary to be done, according to my understanding of the Gospel of salvation, I might as well ask the Lord to cause my wheat and corn to grow, without my plowing the ground and casting in the seed. It appears consistent to me to apply every remedy that comes within the range of my knowledge, and [then] to ask my Father in Heaven … to sanctify that application to the healing of my body.”

    • Joe,

      I approved your comment, but your words lost much of their credibility with me when you resorted to name calling. Such actions are juvenile at best, and are highly degrading to you. You are entitled to your opinions, and I to mine, but I hope you can learn to express disagreement in a more constructive manner.

    • I am not sure what you are saying Joe. You call Scott names and try to demean and dismiss him for pointing out that protecting gun rights in America is a good idea? Or are you upset with him for pointing out that America has less faith than it should? You say the Lord only protects those who protect themselves, but that is not always true. Sure He wants us to do our part in anything, but that doesn’t mean he can’t or won’t bless His faithful servants in whatever way He sees fit. You seem to be putting a restriction on God Himself, that He cannot protect someone purely because they have faith in Him. Not all of the Anti-Nephi Lehis were slaughtered, the Lord softened the hearts of many of the would-be killers and they laid down their arms.

      Scott is defending our right to bear arms. Perhaps you should do some research of your own…

  5. I Like your thoughts and cogent arguments and take exception to only one… It seems to me that your analysis Re: the American military is somewhat flawed.

    The American Military will probably sit this out (at least a majority of them) – although the UN or the 100k strong “Civilian Force” (gang-bangers… most like) Obama wants will more than likely be deployed – and none of those (including our Army) have a prayer against a risen people. If just 3% of Armed Americans fight that is 2.4 Million shooters 10x the number of trigger-pullers in our military. Look at the IRA or the Taliban or the Serbs or Chechens… if all those toys were so bad-ass why have we not won in Afghanistan or Iraq… why did Bosnia not result in a win? It will never be about the tanks or the helos or ADA or any of that (that would all be helpful – but not necessary) it will be about who controls the FOOD, WATER, & POWER (Logistics & Strategy; not Hardware and rarely Tactics).

    Never fear the American People have more firepower than the ENTIRE Chinese Army. 😉

    Study:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_K._Van_Riper
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Millennium_Challenge_2002
    http://www.appleseedinfo.org/
    http://www.awg.army.mil/
    http://smallwarsjournal.com/

    Remember the two best Generals of the Revolutionary War II were civilians with no previous military training – Ben Grierson and N. B. Forrest.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benjamin_Grierson
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nathan_Bedford_Forrest
    as was Nathaniel Greene of Revolutionary War I

    Also remember City People vs country folk are always dominated by high kill ratios…
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Winter_war

    All in all a good paper ~ with the caveat on the Military… no matter who fights against Americans, Liberty & the Lord they will fall… just a matter of time and blood…

    End the Empire; Restore the Republic ~ by any means necessary!

    • WOW, Scott – your comment is filled with things that make me smile. Your points about the firepower of the American Citizenry are very interesting – the numbers certainly don’t lie and your examples of the guerrilla wars are great. I find them encouraging, and I think I may try to scrape up the money to go get one of the last remaining AR-15’s in Utah. I like your suggestion that the military would “sit this one out”.

      I loved your reference to the Revolutionary War II. At first, I was going, “Wait – Nathan Bedford Forrest was a Civil War General, not Revolutionary war! Is this guy a loon?”. Then I realized what you meant. BTW – I have a friend here in Salt Lake City who tells me that her ancestor, General Forrest, had really bad hemorrhoids – very ironic, of course, for a cavalry officer. I did not recall hearing of General Grierson – even though I have read a lot on the civil war. However, after reading the Wikipedia link you provided, I do remember somewhat reading about the campaign during the Vicksburg siege. Why is it that the Civil War is so fascinating? I was consumed with it for like 3 years – reading everything I could get my hands on, and just loving it.

      Anyway – thanks for the input. That really does put things in a light that I had not considered. Til next time.

      Scott

  6. You’re right. Calling you a moron was harsh. Your words were foolish, nothing more. Dangerous, but only foolish. I apologize for using such harsh language.

    Take it from a national award-winning columnist–your influence is wider than you realize. You have a responsibility to those who would look to you for wisdom. Above all else, you are obligated to give them one thing–the truth. Anything less, is poison.

    I also didn’t give you enough credit. Your article is not just “good,” it’s “very good.” You should continue sharing your talent with the world.

    You don’t have to publish this. You can take down my other comment too. My intent was not to ridicule you in public. My intent is only to chastize you. The fact that you published my comment in the first place evidences an intellectual honesty on your part–a trait in all-to-short supply these days. As long as you get the message, I don’t care who else sees it.

    Good luck. And keep writing. You have a lot to offer, so long what you’re offering is the truth.

    “Joe”

    • Great, Joe. Now let’s discuss your objections. My main intent in the quote about American’s not having the faith to allow the Lord to protect them was to dismiss that as an option, leaving us to deal with the fact that we need to take responsibility to protect ourselves. I personally have an ideal – I wish I had the faith to uphold it – to allow the Lord to protect me. In my article, “I Will Buy Up Armies and Navies”, I quoted D&C 98:22-38 where the Lord counsels us to allow Him to fight our battles, but justifies us after our enemy has come against us 3 times. Also, even though we have little detail of the story of Enoch – the only account we have of a Zion society under attack (the account of the Post Resurrection Nephites doesn’t speak of any type of war until AFTER they began to apostatize) tells us that they WERE threatened, but that Enoch HIMSELF turned back the enemy. Those are two significant sources of the IDEAL that we should allow the Lord to protect us. That said, my main reason was to dismiss the idea as unrealistic for the purposes of this particular article.

      You also objected to my reference to those who had succumbed to the nanny state, and apparently you felt like those people are in the same category as those who would ask the Lord to fight their battles. I categorically reject that argument. First, it takes GREAT faith to not fight back. You mention the Anti-Lehi-Nephis as an example. (I also have written an article about them). They did not ask the Lord to fight their battles because they were lazy and co-dependent, but because they were so committed to the gospel. If I were to allow the Lord to protect me against aggression, it would be because I had great faith, but to do so would go against every instinct that I have, and I personally don’t think I have the faith to do so (as I already mentioned). This in no way implies that I do not try to be self-sufficient, caring for my family and any others that my surplus allows. My reliance on the Lord is only activated when it comes to countering aggression with aggression, and I choose the high road of passive resistance. On the other hand, the nanny-state people that I was referring to have learned that if they sit on their butts the state will take care of them in all things – their security, their food, their housing, etc.

      So – I may need to take responsibility for not making my position more clear, but I hope that once you understand what I meant to say, you will agree that we are actually pretty much in agreement.

      All of that said, I, too, must switch gears here and thank you for your compliments and encouragement. I was quite taken aback, but am very appreciative. Take care, and have a very Merry Christmas.

  7. “So – I may need to take responsibility for not making my position more clear, but I hope that once you understand what I meant to say, you will agree that we are actually pretty much in agreement.”

    Unfortunately, we are not. What you are talking about is not doctrine. Period. The doctrine from the brethren is clear and unequivocal–we are expected to do all we can do in order for the Lord to help us. No discussion.

    In D&C 98:22-38, the Lord is speaking metaphorically about about when we are wronged. He’s talking about being stolen from, being born false witness against, falsely imprisoned etc, etc, etc. He’s talking about the “battles” of life. He’s also talking about going on the offensive, not defending yourself. When we are being physically attacked, when our lands, lives and families are threatened IN THE MOMENT, you are expected to fight and protect yourself. If someone breaks into your home at night and tries to harm your family, you are expected to pray like crazy and fight back like crazy at the same time. If you have to kill the intruder to get him to stop, you must. If you just stand there and pray, God won’t help you. The Gospel is a plan of self-sufficiency whenever possible, and reliance on the Lord only for the things we cannot do on our own. “Zion society: or no, the same rules apply. The Lord will fight your battles off the battlefield–and He may keep the battle from coming to you or ever developing. But if it comes to your doorstep, you are expected to do your part to defend your life and your liberty. If you don’t prepare yourself to do it, you are doing nothing less than tempting God.

    The Lord will (almost) never stand in the way of the agency of others, no matter how much faith you have. It would run completely counter to His plan. The post-resurrection Nephites didn’t have any wars because their commitment to the gospel was such they became a peaceful people, not because the Lord was (directly) protecting them from invaders. And Enoch may have driven off an entire army, but I guarantee the people of the city were expected to stand behind him and be prepared to do their part if he had not.

    If others wish to harm you, God will likely let them take their shot. It violates the law of agency for him to do otherwise, and it retards His plan. If you just pray and don’t take any action when something bad is about to happen, you or someone you love is going to die.

    You are expected to do all you can before the Lord will help you.

    I repeat, you are expected to do all you can do before the Lord will help you. Even in an “Zion” society.

    Anything less is foolishness, false doctrine, and it’s dangerous to perpetuate that belief in others. Cursory research of the brethren’s talks shows the same. That’s what I chastized you about to begin with: If you are going blog on religious topics (or any topic), you must do your research into official interpretations (or facts) first. Anything less is immoral, and irresponsible.

    Read the quote again above. Its message is clear: Faith without works is dead. There is no room in that quote to infer anything else. You are expected to do all you can, including physically protecting yourself and being prepared to physically protect yourself, before the Lord will help you. The righteous man who sows his crops, plants his fields, waters his harvest, helps it grow, and then has a tornado wipe it out so there is not enough food for winter is in a position to get help from the Lord. The righteous man who sits on his porch waiting for the Lord to leave food on his doorstep will starve to death–even in a “ZIon” society. In point of fact, the second man would never be allowed into a “Zion” society, as his behavior violates the laws of God. The same goes for people who are prepared and willing to protect themselves, and those who are not.

    Good luck. And take care.

    Joe

  8. …and Merry Christmas 🙂

  9. You’re right.  Calling you a moron was harsh.  Your words were foolish, nothing more.  Dangerous, but only foolish. My apologies for using such harsh language.

    Take it from a national award-winning columnist–your influence is wider than you realize.  You have a responsibility to those who would look to you for wisdom.  Above all else, you are obligated to give them one thing–the truth.  Anything less, is poison.

    I also didn’t give you enough credit.  Your article is not just “good,” it’s “very good.”  You should continue sharing your talent with the world.

    You don’t have to publish this.  You can take down my other comment too.  I don’t care.  The fact that you published my comment in the first place evidences an intellectual honesty on your part–a trait in all-to-short supply these days.  My intent is not to ridicule you in public.  My intent is only to chastize you.  As long as you get the message, I don’t care who else sees it.

    Good luck.  And keep writing.  You have a lot to offer, as long what you’re offering is the truth.  

    “Joe”      

  10. Scott,

    Excellent article. I want to use it as a basis for a much needed family home evening about the concepts of the 2nd Amendment and what my children need to understand as the those in the world increasingly try to convince us (on emotional appeal) that it is “for all our good” to give up our rights in order to prevent such things as the recent school tragedy. You made excellent points…all of which I agree with. I think you covered the issues well and stated things very clearly. Great guideline for me to use in trying to teach others (especially my own children) some of the fundamental principles regarding the topic.

    Karen

  11. D&C 98:14-48 lays things out pretty clearly as far as I am concerned. I think you are in the right on this, Scott. Joe is quick to call “false doctrine” as he steps very close to discounting the power and grace of the Atonement altogether. Faith without works does not mean abandon faith to works, it means prove our faith BY our works. To my mind it’s the ultimate goal of all Saints to have the faith to do as commanded in D&C 98. Would that we all could “renounce war, and proclaim peace”. God has, in fact, promised to fight our battles for us, and I am with you, Scott, in desiring to be faithful enough to let Him do so. I don’t know if in practice I would be able to lay down and let my family perish by the sword, but I think that is what you are getting at Scott. Since we are unlikely to do so, we must be prepared for the violent alternatives.

    To Joe: For an “award-winning” columnist, you certainly are free with insults and name calling. I think you included “foolish”, “immoral”, “irresponsible”, “moron” and “stupid”. Wow. I am pretty sure that the Doctrine and Covenants is still relevant, and as such, those willing to aspire to an ideal where we are forgiving to a fault and willing to lay down our weapons of war (we all know who wants us to use weapons against each other) should be lauded and looked up to, not insulted and bullied in a comment section.

    Great article Scott, don’t back away from it, you are on point!

  12. Thanks for your support, Zak. I stated my case, both in the article and in my response to Zak. I’m not backing off – I just didn’t see any reason to continue to argue. You certainly do echo my point – you certainly do understand what I was trying to say.

  13. I have been reading a lot of Scriptures, near death experiences, people’s visions and dreams about the last days that are upon us. I realized that no matter who on this earth has the biggest guns, missiles, bombs, etc., God has bigger weapons, and He is unleashing them on the earth as we speak: floods, tornadoes, fires, earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanoes, famines, extremes of cold and heat, and plagues of every kind. The angels carrying the vials have already begun pouring them out on the earth. I had a dream where I saw an angel in a white lab coat mixing up potions, then putting some vials of these potions in a little carrier, then walking out the door with them. His exit with the vials coincided with my husband’s death, which occurred on March 31st, 2010. The day he died there was an extremely fierce and unexpected winter storm, which was preceded the day before by a sandstorm the likes of which I have NEVER seen in the SL valley. Since that day, the incidences of extreme weather and other natural phenomena have increased dramatically, the last really big event being Super Storm Sandy, with much more to come. God will fight our battles if we pray continually for His help and rescue. And we must fight daily here on earth to protect and preserve our freedoms and liberty and our families, both spiritually and physically, until Jesus comes to take the government on His shoulder. He is coming soon!

    • Thanks for your comments, Claudette. I wonder at the degree to which we who consider ourselves the “humble followers of Christ” are being protected. You have obviously endured the loss of your husband almost 3 years ago. I had a dream the other night where Diana and I were in a white hallway – the walls were somehow protective. They, the walls became angels. I didn’t see the angels in the dream, but I had the knowledge that they were angels. Then I was told that these angels were there to protect our family – all those who chose their protection. Unfortunately, most of our family does not choose that.

      Diana has often said, “I wish Christ would just hurry and come”, to which I invariable respond something to the effect of “be careful what you ask for”. The tribulations are prophesied to be horrible. I don’t think they’re here yet, at least not in full force – I think there is much worse to come (but then….you said that, didn’t you). They key, of course, as you say, is that we are constantly seeking His will, and then that we are willing to be obedient. Question for you……is there a gathering taking place – a gathering of the humble followers, of those who would build Zion? A gathering of those who are looking beyond the milk of Sunday School lessons for the mysteries and blessings of the gospel?

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