My theme and testimony
By Gondor44646
4/25/2013 10:48:45 AM
Hello my friends... I recently gave a talk to my ward, and I feel inspired to share it with you guys too... Some of you have known me for awhile. I have been on LDSAR since I was 17 years old. I've spent the majority of my life with an addiction to masturbation and pornography. I am in a state of recovery. I love you guys. I will be leaving soon, I have been called to serve a mission for the church. I pray that the spirit will reveal to you what my theme is about, and that it may help you in your life. It is also the central theme as to what I am about to be doing.

I have always wanted to serve a mission for the church, but I was never ready until now. Why? Why would a guy like me put down everything I have for a chance to serve God. What about this church inspires so many people to truly become saints in the latter days? Where did we come from, where are we going, why are we here?

Everybody has to gain their own testimony. Rather you believe or don't believe, this eternal truth exist there is a good and a bad, a path that will lead you to ultimate happiness and a path that will lead you to disaster. Notice how I did not say sadness, unfortunately there is a full range of emotions and feelings that are a part of this life, but the ultimate path in the eternities is your choice always.

We are living in a fallen world, we are not guilty of Adam's transgression but we certainly feel its effects. God knew we would need help. All have sinned and have fallen short of the glory of God. All of us have weakness given to us so that it may become our strength through Christ. When I was young I was very naive, I thought this world was just peachy perfect. I see the young men and sisters in school, I'm not trying to be cynical, but you can see it in the world. There is the Natural man, or the spiritual man.

The adversary will seek to use your weakness to destroy you, to kill you. Physical or spiritually I think he is happy to make you miserable no matter what. He's a liar, a deceiver, the ultimate evil troll. (a troll being an internet term to those who will try to provoke you for no other reason other than to see you screech in pain.)

I have felt the sting of the adversary, and the darkness and the confusion that comes from the natural man and the carnal mind. When I got older suddenly the world was not peachy keen. There is a battleground for your happiness, temporal and eternal, and the world is going in every direction.

24 And there came generation upon generation; and Enoch was high and lifted up, even in the bosom of the Father, and of the Son of Man; and behold, the power of Satan was upon all the face of the earth.
25 And he saw angels descending out of heaven; and he heard a loud voice saying: Wo, wo be unto the inhabitants of the earth.
26 And he beheld Satan; and he had a great chain in his hand, and it veiled the whole face of the earth with darkness; and he looked up and laughed, and his angels rejoiced.
(Pearl of Great Price | Moses 7:24–26)

Where is our hope? What is our hope? When there is no purpose in life known to a man, he is left to his own finite temporal existence, where only chaos and fear occur.

5 But remember that he that persists in his own carnal nature, and goes on in the ways of sin and rebellion against God, remaineth in his fallen state and the devil hath all power over him. Therefore he is as though there was no redemption made, being an enemy to God; and also is the devil an enemy to God.
Mosiah 16:5?

Wickedness never was happiness... and my only hope was that I could be happy and clean again. I was not happy then. I felt like Alma the younger when he was being herald up by the memory of his many sins, in agony, and the very thought of being in the presence of God scared him. It scared me. The world, the devil, and the carnal mind is trying to destroy us... You hear it every time somebody gives a talk... It is what it is, I did not experience hope until I finally read The Book Of Mormon for myself.

At first I did not understand God's grace and his atonement. I did not understand how repentance and grace worked. I did the math, (Mathew 18:21, 22) (70 x 7 = 490) (I'm doomed) Unfortunately I was tempted to be one of those to stand by the cross and to say that it was not good enough. How incredibly sad. I will always love what a beloved sister told me when I was depressed. “Get off the cross we need the wood.”

Brothers and Sisters, I know we have said this over and over again. But Jesus Christ is the way. The Atonement is our hope. The divine law of justice has been satisfied through the infinite sacrifice of Jesus Christ. He is the promised Messiah, the Savior of the world. He is our mediator to the Father. The Mediator. We go through him. He has asked us to repent. To Change. To be born again. However you want to call it, he is the perfect example.

We must repent. I'm pretty sure we all know what repentance is, but just in case I would like to recite my ABC's, I will always love what the Elders taught me. (A. B. C. D. E. F.)
(Acknowledge what you did was wrong, Be Sorry have Godly sorrow, Confess, Don't do it again. Ever. Forgive and Forget. And make restitution when possible.)

Repentance has a different purpose, we are not trying to pay back the infinite dollar bill. We our not trying to bypass Jesus. Sin natural puts us at a lower level, the lowest degree. Repentance implies change, changing to God can be difficult. You don't have to suffer in order to be forgiven, you have to suffer in order to change, you have to change in order to be forgiven. You will not feel comfortable in the presences of God if you have not taken the time to repent. You will not want to be there. You will choose to leave.

I love Brad Wilcox's talk “His Grace is sufficient.” I've said it before I'll say it again. Heaven will not be heaven, unless you choice to be heavenly. We will not be saved in our sins, but through Christ we will be saved from our sins. It is silly to say that a person has faith in Christ and chooses not to repent. It's like saying school will make me smart, and then you don't go to school. Or to tell your wife, I believe... I love you. (show me that you love me) (if you love me keep my commandments)

So how do we change then? Again I'm pretty sure I've used up that (70 x 7)... Let me tell you of an experience that I had in prayer which is very similar to what was spoken in our last general conference. One night when I was in despair I made a special effort to write my prayer to God kneeling by my bedside. I told him how horrible I felt, and how evil and bad that I am. I started to slow down and cry. I started to beg that Jesus Christ would save me from my sadness, similar to Alma the younger.

At that very moment I fell by my bedside. It was not a vision but it was brought to my mind. I could see myself as a toddler, trying to learn how to walk. I could feel God's love surround me, and all my pain and frustration was taken away. We are children of God, his literal offspring. God's mercy, love and patience was confirmed to me that night.

Do we get mad at a toddler that is trying to learn how to walk, or are we upset when a kid is using training wheels because he is not ready to ride a bike. I suppose it is true that a toddler that gives up at walking does prevent further progress, but how does it get to that point. We can not believe Satan's lies, he will do anything. Anything. To stop you from walking. He will tell you that you've failed, he will say it is too hard, he will say you do not need to. He will say your not good enough, that father doesn't love you. He will try to puff you up to think that your way of walking is better than your fathers way.


Part 2 (final part)    
"Anything that invites to do good and to believe in Christ is of God, everything else is a lie from the devil, if it does not help you repent then it is the devil trying to trick you. Brothers and Sisters, we have to keep going. Perfection is the Goal but progress is the way. The Lord will forgive whom he will forgive. And the Lord is merciful. We need to repent. Every day, every week, it is the highlight of the sacrament, which is the most important thing we do each week.

We can not partake of the sacrament unworthily. Can you lie to God and get away with it? As sad as it is to mock God you are only hurting yourself by partaking unworthily. Who do you really hurt in the end when you cheat on a test? This is for you, and your chance to be right with God.

We need to fallow God's commandments, he is a God of order and not of confusion. Faith, Repentance, Baptism, Holy Ghost, Endure.

Repentance is not a bad thing. When we read the doctrine and covenants we find that Joseph Smith had to repent several times. We need to support each other when we are going through the repentance processes. The race is not against each other, but it is against sin. We need to fear God more than man. And we ought not to condemn one another on our path of repentance. But to be filled with God's love continually, and to see God's children as they may become.

Brothers and sisters... I love you... This is the set of scriptures that I always read whenever I am feeling down. (This is my old Bishops fault by the way) I've read this several times to you, but I absolutely love it. This is Nephi's Psalm, 2nd Nephi Chapter 4 I'm going to try to read it fast so I do not cry.

16 Behold, my soul delighteth in the things of the Lord; and my heart pondereth continually upon the things which I have seen and heard.
17 Nevertheless, notwithstanding the great goodness of the Lord, in showing me his great and marvelous works, my heart exclaimeth: O wretched man that I am! Yea, my heart sorroweth because of my flesh; my soul grieveth because of mine iniquities.
18 I am encompassed about, because of the temptations and the sins which do so easily beset me.
19 And when I desire to rejoice, my heart groaneth because of my sins; nevertheless, I know in whom I have trusted.
20 My God hath been my support; he hath led me through mine afflictions in the wilderness; and he hath preserved me upon the waters of the great deep.
21 He hath filled me with his love, even unto the consuming of my flesh.
22 He hath confounded mine enemies, unto the causing of them to quake before me.
23 Behold, he hath heard my cry by day, and he hath given me knowledge by visions in the night-time.
24 And by day have I waxed bold in mighty prayer before him; yea, my voice have I sent up on high; and angels came down and ministered unto me.
25 And upon the wings of his Spirit hath my body been carried away upon exceedingly high mountains. And mine eyes have beheld great things, yea, even too great for man; therefore I was bidden that I should not write them.
26 O then, if I have seen so great things, if the Lord in his condescension unto the children of men hath visited men in so much mercy, why should my heart weep and my soul linger in the valley of sorrow, and my flesh waste away, and my strength slacken, because of mine afflictions?
27 And why should I yield to sin, because of my flesh? Yea, why should I give way to temptations, that the evil one have place in my heart to destroy my peace and afflict my soul? Why am I angry because of mine enemy?
28 Awake, my soul! No longer droop in sin. Rejoice, O my heart, and give place no more for the enemy of my soul.
29 Do not anger again because of mine enemies. Do not slacken my strength because of mine afflictions.
30 Rejoice, O my heart, and cry unto the Lord, and say: O Lord, I will praise thee forever; yea, my soul will rejoice in thee, my God, and the rock of my salvation.
31 O Lord, wilt thou redeem my soul? Wilt thou deliver me out of the hands of mine enemies? Wilt thou make me that I may shake at the appearance of sin?
32 May the gates of hell be shut continually before me, because that my heart is broken and my spirit is contrite! O Lord, wilt thou not shut the gates of thy righteousness before me, that I may walk in the path of the low valley, that I may be strict in the plain road!
33 O Lord, wilt thou encircle me around in the robe of thy righteousness! O Lord, wilt thou make a way for mine escape before mine enemies! Wilt thou make my path straight before me! Wilt thou not place a stumbling block in my way—but that thou wouldst clear my way before me, and hedge not up my way, but the ways of mine enemy.
34 O Lord, I have trusted in thee, and I will trust in thee forever. I will not put my trust in the arm of flesh; for I know that cursed is he that putteth his trust in the arm of flesh. Yea, cursed is he that putteth his trust in man or maketh flesh his arm.
35 Yea, I know that God will give liberally to him that asketh. Yea, my God will give me, if I ask not amiss; therefore I will lift up my voice unto thee; yea, I will cry unto thee, my God, the rock of my righteousness. Behold, my voice shall forever ascend up unto thee, my rock and mine everlasting God. Amen.
(Book of Mormon | 2 Nephi 4:16–35)

I'm going to go on a mission now. (“Brethren, the world is in need of your help. There are feet to steady, hands to grasp, minds to enourage, hearts to inspire, and souls to save.” (President Monson)) I'm going to invite everybody I see to repent and come unto Christ and read The Book Of Mormon. I hope and pray that there will be a certain people that will feel the spirit of the Lord through me. I am not perfect, but I am willing.

I had dream, and I don't know if this means anything... but I was in a school room it looked like... with my old institute instructors, there was a friend in the class I could not recognize but I knew him. He started to contend with me for some reason with words that can't physical be uttered but I understood what he was saying, and it was at first contention, and I spoke back in the like matter to try to reason with him, when finally I turned to him and spoke bearing my testimony and telling him that I knew no other church that has brought me closer to my Savior and my God than this one. It was impossible for me to deny that feeling. By there fruits ye shall know them. We both started to cry, he shock his head up and down and the dream faded away.

“We don't ask any people to throw away any good they have got; we only ask them to come and get more.” - Joseph Smith

22 Brethren, shall we not go on in so great a cause? Go forward and not backward. Courage, brethren; and on, on to the victory!
(Doctrine and Covenants 128:22?)?

I know this Church is True, I know that Joseph Smith is a prophet of God, I know The Book of Mormon is true, I know we must repent... I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen."
posted at 10:49:51 on April 25, 2013 by Gondor44646
"Nice talk. Best of luck on your mission. I had a mb/prn issue before my mission and was able to keep it under control while on my mission. In fact, I never though about it at all."
posted at 11:17:23 on April 25, 2013 by stayingclean
"You have come a long way. Wow! You worked for that humility my friend. I know you paid for your testimony with a lot of tears. May God take you the rest of the way. Good luck on your mission. I am so happy for you.
Remember, if you get knocked down, just get back up and keep moving."
posted at 23:56:02 on April 25, 2013 by Anonymous

Add a Comment:

***Anonymous User***     (login above to post UN-anonymously)

"By emulating the Master, who endured temptations but “gave no heed unto them,” we, too, can live in a world filled with temptations “such as [are] common to man”. Of course Jesus noticed the tremendous temptations that came to him, but He did not process and reprocess them. Instead, He rejected them promptly. If we entertain temptations, soon they begin entertaining us! Turning these unwanted lodgers away at the doorstep of the mind is one way of giving “no heed.” Besides, these would-be lodgers are actually barbarians who, if admitted, can be evicted only with great trauma."

— Neal A. Maxwell

General Conference May 1987