My name is Elder Kyle Rasmussen. I'm a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. The message of the Church is one of joy and happiness. This message has given me this great joy and happiness in my life and now I want to share that same joy with everyone else. I know it can bless everyone's life and that Jesus Christ is our Lord and Savior.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Mediator


 I remember watching this movie in Sunday School when I was a kid.    Somehow it's always stuck with me and has left a lasting impression in my life.  It helps me really understand how necessary the Atonement of our Lord and Savior really is.  It helps me really understand how much He love us.  he wasn't required to pay the debt for us, He wasn't forced to do anything.  Everything He did was all voluntary, because He Loves us!!  

How wonderful it is that we have been given such a marvelous opportunity to be forgiven of all our mistakes.  Although there is more to the Atonement then this simple parable, it's real.  Our Savior lives and loves each and everyone of us.  His Sacrifice enables us to be cleansed from our sins and all the guilt and shame that accompanies them.  Because of Him, we can return to live again with our Father in Heaven.  We still have to do our part, but as the Mediator said "It will be possible."  I know this to be true.  I love my Savior and I know that He loves me and died for me so that I can return to live with Him and my Heavenly Father some day.

"For we labor diligently to write, to persuade our children, and also our brethren, to believe in Christ, and to be reconciled to God; for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all that we can do." - 2nd Nephi 25:23

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Faith + Effort = Sucess!!

This equation is something that my dad taught me ever since I was a kid.  I remember distinctly him teaching a lesson on this to me and a group of friends in church one day.  But as I've been growing up and starting my own life I've really learned how true this equation is in any aspect of our life, including our spirituality.

The scriptures, including the Book of Mormon, tell us stories of individuals who often times encounter problems and need help solving them.  One such example in the Book of Mormon is one of my favorite and I love sharing it.

The Brother of Jared (Ether 2 & 3)

So just a quick back story.  The story of the Brother of Jared starts when they are building the tower of Babel.  The Lord confounds the languages but the Brother of Jared, his family, his brother and his family, gathered themselves together and plead with the Lord to not confound their language and they could still understand each other.  The Lord answered their prayers and He lead them through the wilderness to the sea so they could journey to the promised land.  They were commanded to build ships which they did.  However there were some problems with the design of the ships that were apparent after their completions.  So the Brother of Jared went up and prayed to the Lord for guidance on how to fix these problems.  Here are the 3 problems they faced (Ether 2:19)
  1. Can't breath
  2. Can't steer
  3. Can't see
So the Lord gives him some guidance as to how to fix these problems. 

First one He says "Behold, thou shalt make a hole in the top, and also in the bottom; and when thou shalt suffer for air thou shalt unstop the hole and receive air.  And if it be so that the water come in upon thee, behold, ye shall stop the hole, that ye may not perish in the flood." (Ether 2:20)

The second problem He says "Nevertheless, I will bring you up again out of the depths of the sea; for the winds have gone forth out of my mouth, and also the rains and the floods have I sent forth.  And behold, I prepare you against these things; for ye cannot cross this great deep save I prepare you against the waves of the sea, and the winds which have gone forth, and the floods which shall come." (Ether 2:24-25

But the third problem the Lord says "What will ye that I should do that ye may have light in your vessels?" (Ether 2:23)

So the Brother of Jared has to solve a problem, which is to provide light in his ships without using fire or windows (Ether 2:23-24).  How is he going to find success in solving this problem?  He applies Faith + Effort = Success.

 The Brother of Jared goes out and starts to put forth effort.  The scriptures say that he ""did molten out of a rock sixteen small stones; and they were white and clear, even as transparent glass; and he did carry them in his hands upon the top of the mount, and cried again unto the Lord."  I'm no expert on glass or metal work, but I do know that there is a lot of effort involved.  The Brother of Jared didn't just grab a couple rocks off the ground, he made them!!  He had to go and gather the materials, make a furnace and bellows, get everything hot enough, and work with all those materials to make very pure and beautiful stones.  He put forth a lot of effort.

Then he exercised his faith.  He then went up and asked the Lord if He could touch the stones with His finger to make them shine.  This was the solution the Brother of Jared developed to solve the problem.  Not only that, he put forth the effort to make it work.  Now he had enough faith to ask the Lord if He could help finish the job.  What courage and what faith he had to ask the Lord for this favor.  

Long story short, the Brother of Jared had his prayer answered.  The Lord touched the stones and they shined, giving light to the vessels.  Not only that, the Brother of Jared was able to see the finger of the Lord.  And because of that faith that developed in him he was able to see all of the Lord and was shown everything, because of his faith.  Wow, what an experience!

The Brother of Jared applied two simple things.  He had the faith and he exercised it, and then he put forth the effort that he was capable of.  Because of this, he was shown marvelous things and was blessed with success.  I know this simple equation to be true.  I see it all throughout the scriptures.  Not only that I've applied it in my own life.  I know that if we have the faith and do our part, the Lord will take care of the rest and we will be blessed with success.  That's how the Atonement works really.  If we have faith in Christ, do all that we can, then Christ takes care of the rest and we are blessed with remission of our sins and the opportunity to live with God again.  I know this to be true.  I know the gospel to be true.  I know that Jesus Christ lives and His Atonement is real.  I know this to be true and I hope this will be of some help to someone.  I love Him with all my heart!!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

What Got Me On A Mission

It was April of 2011 during General Conference, an entire Church wide meeting broadcast from Salt Lake City.  It's held on the first weekend of April and October each year and has a total of four general session and a priesthood session on Saturday evening.  I was home from school that weekend and with my dad at the meeting house watching the broadcast of the priesthood session.  Lots of things were on in my life and my mind was in many different places.  College was one of my main concerns but another thought was lurking in the back of my head.  My 19th birthday was coming up in July and the opportunity was before me to apply and submit my application to become a missionary.  The plan to serve a mission was always there ever since I was a kid.  But now that the time actually was coming I was a bit concerned.  I was very anxious and nervous about the whole prospect of becoming a missionary.  It would require a great deal of sacrifice including two years away from home, family, school, and possible career opportunities.  I wasn't sure I was ready or strong enough to handle those sacrifices and even handle the stresses of missionary life.

General Conference at the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, UT
So all these things are going through my head as the priesthood session starts.  The first speaker was Elder Neil L. Anderson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and his talk w
as entitled "Preparing the World for the Second Coming".  It was as if he was speaking to me throughout that whole time.  He talked of our priesthood duty to serve missions and the sacrifices we have to make.  But he also talked about the reward of serving a mission.  Not in terms of worldly rewards, but eternal rewards.

He talked about the example of Sid Going, a young man who gave up a lifetime opportunity to serve a mission.  He wouldn't trade that experience for anything.  The blessing of bringing others into the gospel outweighed anything he or anybody could imagine.  It took me a while to really soak that in when I heard his story.  However from that talk I knew that God wanted me to serve a mission.  So here I am now, serving my Father in Heaven by serving His children and my brothers and sisters.  It's taken me some time to really understand why I want to serve a mission, but I've learned this much.  That the blessings of the gospel are real and the ultimate outcome of living the restored gospel is happiness.  That's always the end result, pure joy and happiness that only God and Jesus Christ can give us.  I don't want to keep all that joy to myself, it's just to much.  I want to share it with others.  It's taken me some time to learn this lesson but now I feel my Savior's love and want others too as well.  I know this Church is true, that our Savior lives, that Joseph Smith was His prophet in these last days, that the Book of Mormon testifies of Him and helps us understand even more about Him.  As I said before, this gospel and church bring nothing but joy into my life.  This is why I serve, because I love others and love my Heavenly Father and my Savior Jesus Christ.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The Nauvoo Temple

Nauvoo, IL Temple
The Nauvoo Temple is another temple that I have such a love for.  The story of it's construction and the sacrifice the early saints made in it's completion really inspires me.  My grandparents served their missions in Nauvoo and as a kid I got to go to Nauvoo.  I was only 10 years old at the time and the newly rebuilt temple had not been dedicated yet, but it's exterior was complete and it was amazing to look at, especially as the sun set over the Mississippi River.  So here's a little background information so I can share a how cool this temple is.
Original Nauvoo Temple

Original Nauvoo Temple

Soon after the saints found refuge from persecution in Missouri, the Lord soon required of them to build a temple in the city of Nauvoo, Illinois.  The announcement came in August 1840.  Construction began February 18th, 1841 with the laying of the cornerstone on April 6th, 1841.  The temple was built from light grey limestone quarried from nearby locations.  The saints made great sacrifices to build the temple despite growing persecution.  Eventually this persecution lead to the death of the Prophet Joseph Smith and his brother Hyrum on June 27, 1844 in Carthage, Illinois.  However the saints did all they could to finish the temple before having to leave.  Most of the saints left Nauvoo to go west in February, 1846 but stayed till it was finished and dedicated on 30 April 1846.

Nauvoo Temple on  Fire
On October 8 or 9 1848, the interior of the temple was destroyed by an arson fire.  And in 1850 tornado force winds toppled one of the remaining walls, leaving the remaining stone walls unstable and eventually were torn down in interest of safety.

 New Nauvoo Temple!

After the temple walls were burned and destroyed, there was nothing left except an empty lot and a few stones here and there.  During the period between 1937 and 1962, the Church was able to purchase the empty lot on which the temple stood.  In 1999 President Gordon B. Hinckley announced that the Nauvoo temple would be rebuilt!  It was completed in 2002 and was dedicated between 27–30 June 2002 by Gordon B. Hinckley.

Temples are such amazing places.  You feel the Spirit so strongly and you learn so much about God and Jesus Christ.  For some reason, the Nauvoo temple is so special to me.  The early saints made so many sacrifices to build it and now today their sacrifice wasn't in vain.  I know the Church is true and that Jesus Christ lives and guides this church today.  I hope someday we all can have a chance to enter into God's house and feel of His love that permeates every square inch of each of His holy temples.

More Pictures of the Nauvoo Temple!

Nauvoo Temple Creation Room

Nauvoo Temple Celestial Room
Nauvoo Temple Assembly Room