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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Cody's Farewell Talk
Approximately 74 B.C. here in what is now known as the Americas,  A man of God named Alma was preaching unto the poor and afflicted among his people about how to obtain faith in the gospel, and develop testimonies of their own. His analogy comparing the gospel of Christ to a seed has survived into this day and age.  And what a fitting description that is.
 Later, after the life and death of Christ, the apostle Paul wrote an epistle to the Ephesians. In his words, he compared The Lord to an object known as a cornerstone. Again, this comparison is very enlightening, and helps us to understand what Christ’s role is in our lives.
 Crystals and snowflakes are among some of the most wondrous and beautiful things found in nature, their architecture unique, and yet uniform. Structure formed seemingly spontaneously in a world of general chaos.
 Legos are also some of the most wondrous and awesome things in the world, and are capable of compiling into some of the coolest things ever witnessed by the eyes of man. Not to mention, I don’t think anyone can create a neater toy, with only plastic and pure imagination as the starting ingredients at hand…  I’ll find a way to fit that last comment in here somewhere…
 Of all the questions humanity as a whole has pondered, among some the most questioned are possibly: “How can I develop a greater testimony and faith?” And “Where did that remote get to?” For today, I’m going to focus on that first one, as the other may never be answered in this lifetime.
  Has anyone ever caught themselves thinking something along these lines? “I wish I had a testimony like brother or sister so and so.” “Choosing the right sure would be easier if I knew for sure it wasn’t wrong.” “Do I really believe in the Book of Mormon?” Or, “I’m not sure if I really do believe in the church, I’ve just always gone with my parents.” I have great news for those of you who have concerns similar to those, or any involving desires for greater faith and testimonies.
            Building materials are available this very day to build up your faith and strengthen the foundation of your testimony. These building blocks of testimony and faith will fit any one’s needs, and secure any doubts you may have. You too can have the resolution of Nephi, and it’s absolutely free to obtain! If you’re worried about delivery of these goods, there’s no need. They aren’t physical objects at all, and they’re readily available at any moment. You just need to choose when to apply them.
 On this subject, I can’t imagine a better recourse than the words that Alma spoke concerning the matter of faith, and how to obtain it. READ ALMA 32:26-32
 Alma shows us the building blocks we need for a greater testimony, and how to apply them to our lives. You must act. You just have to! You can listen to everybody around you say that the novel that just came out is absolutely spectacular, but you won’t know for yourself until you make the effort to pick up its pages and read it yourself. Interestingly, there is a promise in The Book of Mormon stating this same principal! If you desire faith in the book, read it! Then kneel in sincere prayer, asking if its contents are true. This promise says that if you do, it will be made known to you that the Book IS true!  You can test every part of Christ’s gospel, and once you have, you will have testimony yourself if its divinity.
 If you want a testimony of the commandments, test them! Keep them, and see if blessings do not come into your life for doing so. Do you need more faith in the concept of tithing? Pay it! Even when everything seems contrary to you doing so, test these gospel doctrines, because that is the only way it will become doctrine to YOU. 
 Use it or lose it is a law of nature. This saying can apply to many aspects of your every day life. Possibly the easiest aspect to apply it to is that of your muscles. If you don’t use them on a regular basis, they will atrophy away at a surprisingly rapid rate. This can be said of your faith and testimony as well that you have obtained for yourself. If you do not act upon the promptings of the Holy Ghost, you will find his promptings and council will come to you less consistently. If you do not act upon the faith you obtain, and apply it to your life, you will find it has less and less meaning to you.
 But every part of the gospel of Christ would be meaningless if it were not for one vital component, and that would be Jesus Christ himself. All testimony, all faith, and devotion and belief should be built upon the sure foundation of Christ. Paul said of Christ: “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the Saints, and of the dhousehold of God; And are built upon the foundation of the aapostles and bprophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief ccorner stone, In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord:”
            How wonderful that Christ was compared to a cornerstone. The significance of that saying grows if you understand the importance of this object. The cornerstones of a building mark the corners of the foundation for a masonry structure to be erected. The key significance of the cornerstone, is that its placement determined the placement of the entire structure, as all of the walls are built off of the first stone.
            This concept can also be applied to the world of crystals and snowflakes. These perfect formations that continually expand and grow are not capable of forming on their own. Crystals need a surface to form upon, whether that is a smaller crystal called a seed, or a rough surface. Snowflakes do not appear out of thin air, but fist must grow on a piece 

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