Prayer, Scripture Study, and Fasting

Over the last several years I have found myself praying less, studying the scriptures less, and fasting not at all. In years past I have considered myself a man of prayer, one who prayed often and fervently. Not so much lately. I feel like I am in a precarious position, in great danger actually. I am nearing the end of my life as all of us are, but at sixty-seven years of age I am nearer than many. Does my dwindling in the matters of prayer, scripture study and fasting mean that I am failing to “endure to the end?” I would be mortified if I were to lose my exaltation after a lifetime of devotion and service. Keeping the commandments has never come easily to me. Walking the straight line has been difficult all these years. It would be a shame to fail after so many years of effort.

How can I motivate myself to the levels of prayer, scriptures study and fasting that were once such an integral part of my life, so many years ago?

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4 Responses to Prayer, Scripture Study, and Fasting

  1. AMOS ADEDEJI MOSES says:

    I NEED MORE HELP ABOUT FASTING AND PRAYER

  2. Miguel Angel Tinoco ROD-TREE-JESSE says:

    Zion, June 6, 2012

    Brother, are you a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saint or a lukewarm member of the church in LA ODDYSEY which translated means, the Church of Uncertainty? In other words, you state is the same state of the Saints in the Church of the LAODICEANS.

    Either the fire is out or you have no oil in your lamp Old Man. With all due respect, Elder, I think you should be mortified and fear and tremble as you think you should fear. And the sooner you begin to fear and tremble the better. Be assured that on this day the LORD that loves you will choose your fears to kindle that fire again in you. For it is written:

    I also will choose their delusions, and will bring their fears upon them; because when I called, none did answer; when I spake, they did not hear: but they did evil before mine eyes, and chose that in which I delighted not.

    (Old Testament | Isaiah 66:4)

    Now before the LORD finds out what to do with you, as a brother and fellow servant, I need to war you and forewarn you. And I want to use all the tact and love or care I can to persuade you to remember again your duty to God. I will not give you soft answers though. I will not adulate you and be condescending in the least with you as I would, for I will not speak as a brother or friend but as a Priest.

    In order to kindle your fire again you need to speedily repent in dust and ashes Old Man or you will be trimmed or cut off. You already confessed that you are failing to do your prayers and so forth. That is a good start. Now finish up the process of repentance, for failure to pray with faith is a reprehensible offense before God that needs to be cleared before the Bishop. Remember how the brother of Jared was severely rebuked for failing to call upon the LORD. Inevitably, if you are fearing or feeling somewhat guilty it is only because one way or another you have yielded to temptation. Wihotu prayer we mut all fall. Remember that the Nephites were commanded to pray even when the LORD was present in their midst. You need to search your soul and check where and when you begun to backslide. Now if you find my words hard, that is good. It is my intention to pierce you with the truth. And if I do, that means that there is something worldly or unclean in you and it better be, for if not, the devil has already got a great hold of you.

    Therefore let the church take heed and pray always, lest they fall into temptation;

    (Doctrine and Covenants | Section 20:33)

    And visit the house of each member, and exhort them to pray vocally and in secret and attend to all family duties.

    (Doctrine and Covenants | Section 20:47)

    And a commandment I give unto them—that he that observeth not his prayers before the Lord in the season thereof, let him be had in remembrance before the judge of my people.

    (Doctrine and Covenants | Section 68:33)

    I thought before today that there were only two ways latter day saints can fall away, which are, as noted in D&C 93, Disobedience to the commandments and adherence to incorrect traditionalism. I think that you need to set your own house in order. But now that I think about it, there is also a third and also a fourth way to fall away from grace.

    Every spirit of man was innocent in the beginning; and God having redeemed man from the fall, men became again, in their infant state, innocent before God. And that wicked one cometh and taketh away light and truth, through disobedience, from the children of men, and because of the tradition of their fathers. But I have commanded you to bring up your children in light and truth.

    (Doctrine and Covenants | Section 93:38 – 40)

    The third is ceasing to grow up or as you may said it, failure or ceasing to persevere in good works. And the fourth is to break and to forsake the oath of the priesthood altogether, which forsaking altogether I very much doubt it is your case. That will not only strip you away from your exaltation, but will condemn you without forgiveness like the sons of Eli, Ophni and Phineas.

    And this is according to the oath and covenant which belongeth to the priesthood. Therefore, all those who receive the priesthood, receive this oath and covenant of my Father, which he cannot break, neither can it be moved. But whoso breaketh this covenant after he hath received it, and altogether turneth therefrom, shall not have forgiveness of sins in this world nor in the world to come.

    (Doctrine and Covenants | Section 84:39 – 41)

    Nevertheless, I do not judge you, but the scriptures do. By the moment I finishing reading your concern, the words of Ezekiel in Chapter 33 came speedily to my mind which say:

    Therefore, thou son of man, say unto the children of thy people, The righteousness of the righteous shall not deliver him in the day of his transgression: as for the wickedness of the wicked, he shall not fall thereby in the day that he turneth from his wickedness; neither shall the righteous be able to live for his righteousness in the day that he sinneth.

    When I shall say to the righteous, that he shall surely live; if he trust to his own righteousness, and commit iniquity, all his righteousnesses shall not be remembered; but for his iniquity that he hath committed, he shall die for it.

    Again, when I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; if he turn from his sin, and do that which is lawful and right; If the wicked restore the pledge, give again that he had robbed, walk in the statutes of life, without committing iniquity; he shall surely live, he shall not die. None of his sins that he hath committed shall be mentioned unto him: he hath done that which is lawful and right; he shall surely live.

    Yet the children of thy people say, The way of the Lord is not equal: but as for them, their way is not equal.

    When the righteous turneth from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, he shall even die thereby. But if the wicked turn from his wickedness, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall live thereby. Yet ye say, The way of the Lord is not equal. O ye house of Israel, I will judge you every one after his ways.

    (Old Testament | Ezekiel 33:12 – 20)

    Now, the LORD only corrects or disciplines those he loves. And I have no doubt in my heart that you need to repent as if you were to be taken away tomorrow. And I think I can help you kindle that fire. If you have read the scriptures, you may have skipped the nasty ones, or the ones where the LORD calls his people, transgressors from the womb, treacherous, unfaithful, miserable naked, poor and blind. When I read them, they were not speaking about you, but about me. And when you read them, if you do, they are not speaking about me or your neighbor but about you. Now, If they move you to deeper repentance, then you are in the right path, if not, then you are as stone cold as marble under the sea. That means that you need great help/ Please apply all scriptures to you such as these:

    HEARKEN and hear this, O house of Jacob, who are called by the name of Israel, and are come forth out of the waters of Judah, or out of the waters of baptism, who swear by the name of the Lord, and make mention of the God of Israel, yet they swear not in truth nor in righteousness. Nevertheless, they call themselves of the holy city, but they do not stay themselves upon the God of Israel, who is the Lord of Hosts; yea, the Lord of Hosts is his name. Behold, I have declared the former things from the beginning; and they went forth out of my mouth, and I showed them. I did show them suddenly. And I did it because I knew that thou art obstinate, and thy neck is an iron sinew, and thy brow brass; And I have even from the beginning declared to thee; before it came to pass I showed them thee; and I showed them for fear lest thou shouldst say—Mine idol hath done them, and my graven image, and my molten image hath commanded them.

    Thou hast seen and heard all this; and will ye not declare them? And that I have showed thee new things from this time, even hidden things, and thou didst not know them. They are created now, and not from the beginning, even before the day when thou heardest them not they were declared unto thee, lest thou shouldst say—Behold I knew them. Yea, and thou heardest not; yea, thou knewest not; yea, from that time thine ear was not opened; for I knew that thou wouldst deal very treacherously, and wast called a transgressor from the womb.

    (Book of Mormon | 1 Nephi 20:1 – 8)

    And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

    I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

    (New Testament | Revelation 3:14 – 22)

    I hope I have not only put a little oil in your spiritual lamp, but that I have caused enough sparks to cause you kindle a fire in your heart. And if not, there is more where that came from. I AM is only doing what I AM would like others to do for him. A good gardener trims his precious trees and/or prepares the terrain for his olives to bring up the proper fruit. Unfortunately, as the prophets and the scriptures make manifest, the ax is already laid at the base of every three. And every tree that does not bring forth fruit meet for repentance will he hewn down and cast into the fire, from whence no traveler ever returns.

    What the LORD say unto one he says unto all.

    These things I say humbly for your benefit and for the honor and glory of God. And I do it as one having authority in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

    Attentively, from an unworthy servant it he hands of Christ

    THE IRON ROD

    Scribe

    Miguel Ángel Tinoco ROD-TREE-JESSE

  3. An excellent question John. Sometimes I also find myself slipping in these matters.

    I remember though what President Spencer W. Kimball stated many years ago now:

    “I find that when I get casual in my relationships with divinity and when it seems that no divine ear is listening and no divine voice is speaking, that I am far, far away. If I immerse myself in the scriptures the distance narrows and spirituality returns.”

    I have certainly found this to be true. Whenever I find myself slipping, or getting too casual with spiritual things, I turn to the scriptures and ALWAYS, no matter how far away I seem to be, get spiritually in tune once again.

    • Miguel Angel Tinoco ROD-TREE-JESSE says:

      Zion, June 6, 2012

      We are in the latter-days, even at or past the eleventh hour. I need not to remind you of the parable of the ten virgins, which applies hereunto. Wherefore gird up your loins lest ye be found among the wicked.

      Steven Montgomery, beloved brethren and friends, do not put out the fire of the spirit as old grandpa above. I am saying it to move him to jealousy for his own soul and you too. What can we do to make him, you and even I, if needs be, feel like Nephi and Paul? Do all you think that Nephi and Paul were wrecked or wretched, poor, blind and miserable as they claim?

      I believe that they felt like that for two reasons, first they did not forget their captivity and the trials they had in the wilderness. This kept them fired up in mighty prayer unto the LORD and always engaged in a good cause. As a restful their corrupt or mortal bodies got closer and closer to holiness and deity.

      For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.

      (New Testament | Romans 7:22 – 25)

      Behold, my soul delighteth in the things of the Lord; and my heart pondereth continually upon the things which I have seen and heard. 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. I am encompassed about, because of the temptations and the sins which do so easily beset me. And when I desire to rejoice, my heart groaneth because of my sins; nevertheless, I know in whom I have trusted.

      (Book of Mormon | 2 Nephi 4:16 – 19)

      And it continues to be my humble opinion that the closer we get to God the more evident is the contrast between THE Lord’s Holiness and US or our mortal corruption and weaknesses. It is because our iniquities are reflected back in the light of Christ as with a mirror. Nephi felt naturally corrupt and dirty, not because he was wicked, but because being in the constant presence of God, the Holy Ghost and angels, he paired himself and saw his mortal corruption. And having been close to God’s holiness it hurt him deeply. Had not he been a priest after the order of Melchizedek he would have withered lie meat on an oven. He only felt free from that miserable pain, when he built a temple and received his own washings and anointing and his own endowment. Before that, he was pretty much the walking temple and that made him feel wretched as Moses when he said something like, NOW I KNOW THAT MAN IS NOTHIG, A THING I NEVER BEFORE CONSIDERED or though possible.

      This is why we renew our baptismal covenants often at church. But we also need to visit the door of the tabernacle in the temple of our God often to wash and sanctify ourselves and to also renew our priesthood, our endowment and sealing covenants. Many finish their missions early and they are subject to walk unprotected or even naked and that is when they are stripped from light and truth. We need to do temple work often to renew our authority and power. Some abuse their priesthood authority amen or may have indulged in unrighteous dominion at one point and not know it that they may have been stripped from their power or authority or said amen to their priesthood. This is why temples are built, so we are perfected going there grace by grace until the perfect day by labors of love for others that need them, without which we cannot be perfect. And at the same time we renew our duty to God and priesthood commitments when we go thru the whole nine yards or the entire process from baptism to washings, anointing, endowments and sealings at the mountain of the Lords’ house. Therefore, if you are feeling a little lukewarm or even cold, get closer to power even if it wretches your soul until you feel no more pain as you get once again lit up in celestial burnings. And when you are lit up in the omnipresent fire of God, he will send you to missions where no man has gone before; and as I you will bear witness that even hell feels frozen cold.

      I went in the spirit to the land of fire or the Patagonia to a lower hell or spiritual prison a few days ago to visit a dear friend of mine who is from Argentina, where there is a church and the gospel is now being preached to them. My friend is a very prominent lawyer and/or prosecutor by profession. But my friend also has a job in the market and kitchens of the Bishop’s Store House. I know because I have been there twice. And the place feels frozen cold. I suspect they cook meat and eat dinosaur flesh for I saw there a big bone with fresh flesh hanging from it. I only thought that my dog would have an eternal feast chewing one of those. In one occasion I went to help get meat from a big freezer and I was given a single rib that was at least twice as tall as I am. The bone was fresh and it had some red meat in it. But I was so hot in the spirit that my friend deceased fled from my presence; and the bone roasted pretty well done in my presence or when I handled it. I must have been fired or full of the Holy Ghost as Nephi when he got mad at his brothers for refusing to help him build a ship. Now, what I am saying with many words the LORD is also saying in fewer ones in an encoded language.

      Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.

      As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

      (New Testament | Revelation 3:17 – 22)

      For verily, verily, I say unto you that ye are called to lift up your voices as with the sound of a trump, to declare my gospel unto a crooked and perverse generation. For behold, the field is white already to harvest; and it is the eleventh hour, and the last time that I shall call laborers into my vineyard. And my vineyard has become corrupted every whit; and there is none which doeth good save it be a few; and they err in many instances because of priestcrafts, all having corrupt minds. And verily, verily, I say unto you, that this church have I established and called forth out of the wilderness. And even so will I gather mine elect from the four quarters of the earth, even as many as will believe in me, and hearken unto my voice.

      Yea, verily, verily, I say unto you, that the field is white already to harvest; wherefore, thrust in your sickles, and reap with all your might, mind, and strength.Open your mouths and they shall be filled, and you shall become even as Nephi of old, who journeyed from Jerusalem in the wilderness. Yea, open your mouths and spare not, and you shall be laden with sheaves upon your backs, for lo, I am with you. Yea, open your mouths and they shall be filled, saying: Repent, repent, and prepare ye the way of the Lord, and make his paths straight; for the kingdom of heaven is at hand; Yea, repent and be baptized, every one of you, for a remission of your sins; yea, be baptized even by water, and then cometh the baptism of fire and of the Holy Ghost.

      Behold, verily, verily, I say unto you, this is my gospel; and remember that they shall have faith in me or they can in nowise be saved;And upon this rock I will build my church; yea, upon this rock ye are built, and if ye continue, the gates of hell shall not prevail against you.And ye shall remember the church articles and covenants to keep them.And whoso having faith you shall confirm in my church, by the laying on of the hands, and I will bestow the gift of the Holy Ghost upon them.And the Book of Mormon and the holy scriptures are given of me for your instruction; and the power of my Spirit quickeneth all things. Wherefore, be faithful, praying always, having your lamps trimmed and burning, and oil with you, that you may be ready at the coming of the Bridegroom For behold, verily, verily, I say unto you, that I come quickly. Even so. Amen.

      (Doctrine and Covenants | Section 33:2 – 18)

      Now, the truth cannot be plainer, gird up your loins, lest the LORD or the groom finds up seating on our lees. The laborers of the vineyard are few and the field of the harvest is white already to harvest. Only filled or fired up with the Holy Ghost we can administer the gospel as the LORD and his prophets did. If we are prepared we will not fear. I exhort you and admonish you to forsake the world, enhance your gifts and preach liberty to the captives and the dead in this world and/or on the other side of the veil. Many of our brethren are suffering, bleeding and perishing in ignorance, not even knowing who their enemy is. This is why I am here, to lift you up and to awake you from the slumber. To be continually engaged in a good cause without being compelled to do so. And if you do blessed are you. And if not, prepare for I have heard a great consummation decreed upon the whole earth. And the righteous shall barely escape.

      And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the LORD, that there shall be the noise of a cry from the fish gate, and an howling from the second, and a great crashing from the hills. Howl, ye inhabitants of Maktesh, for all the merchant people are cut down; all they that bear silver are cut off.
      And it shall come to pass at that time, that I will search Jerusalem with candles, and punish the men that are settled on their lees: that say in their heart, The LORD will not do good, neither will he do evil.

      Therefore their goods shall become a booty, and their houses a desolation: they shall also build houses, but not inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, but not drink the wine thereof.

      The great day of the LORD is near, it is near, and hasteth greatly, even the voice of the day of the LORD: the mighty man shall cry there bitterly. That day is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of wasteness and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness, A day of the trumpet and alarm against the fenced cities, and against the high towers. And I will bring distress upon men, that they shall walk like blind men, because they have sinned against the LORD: and their blood shall be poured out as dust, and their flesh as the dung. Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the LORD’s wrath; but the whole land shall be devoured by the fire of his jealousy: for he shall make even a speedy riddance of all them that dwell in the land.

      (Old Testament | Zephaniah 1:10 – 18)

      What the Lord says to one he says unto all.

      These things I say with proper authority in the sacred name of Jesus Christ Amen.

      Attentively Yours from an unworthy servant in the hands of Christ

      GAZELEM

      Scribe

      Miguel Angel Tinoco ROD-TREE-JESSEE

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