Saturday, June 6, 2015

"The Fall of Adam" A-6's Missionary Farewell Address

A-6 in front went first at Church followed by his older brother just back from Japan
This is the transcript of my youngest son's talk at church for his missionary farewell. He is off to the Ohio! Well, next Wednesday.

It is another family classic:


                   Japanese joke, just kidding I’m going to Ohio. Today I’m going to tell the story of “The Fall of Adam.” Many of you are probably pretty familiar with the layout of the generic attic. For those of you that are not, attics are, of course, located on the top of houses or sheds. Attics generally provide support for the roof, using either rafters or trusses to do such. Rafters are types of beams while trusses are triangular pieces of wood. So these rafters are laid out across the attic providing a place to walk if necessary and the safety to do so. The floor of an attic is usually made up of insulation dry wall and sheet rock and is certainly not intended to be walked on, for any reason. Ever. To get into the attic they either will have stairs leading up to it or pull down stairs, or a pull down ladder. You can usually see a section in the ceiling that has these pull down ladders.

This last August I accepted an invitation to go up to a lake house with some friends at Pine View Reservoir. The day started off great and we traveled safely to the house. We went back to the garage where we were going to stay, which had a big open space in the bottom and upstairs it had sort of a large loft. So we went up the stairs and claimed our sleeping corners and when suddenly one of my friends discovered a section in the ceiling that had a rope. So naturally he pulled on the rope and the ladder to the attic descended. Of the 5 or 6 of us that were standing there when he did this none of us had ever been in an attic before or known the invaluable information that I told you about just a second ago. So, looking for some adventure and excitement I climbed up into the attic. It was a large and spacious attic and I wanted to go down all the way to the end of it. Expecting my friends to come up with me, I decided that I would move over a little bit so that they could climb up the ladder and join me. So I stepped onto the sheet rock and the next thing I knew, I was looking up at the hole I had just fallen through.

Like the rafters, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints provides an opportunity for us to walk safely on a straight and narrow path. The straight and narrow path of the gospel of Jesus Christ, will lead us to eternal life. Lehi’s vision in 1Nephi 8:20 says “And I also beheld a strait and narrow path, which came along by the rod of iron, even to the tree by which I stood; and it also led by the head of the fountain, unto a large and spacious field, as if it had been a world.” It is later revealed to Nephi that the path leads to the fountain of living waters, or to the tree of life; which waters are a representation of the love of god; and He also beheld that the tree of life was a representation of the love of god. Speaking of the love of God Nephi said “It is the most desirable above all things.”

So how do we enter into the straight and narrow path? And how do we avoid falling? In Helaman 5:12 Nephi son of Helaman recounts his father’s words to him and his brother in verse 12 he says “And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall.” Our foundations need to be built on Christ in order to be protected from the attacks from the adversary. The ceiling to the attic that I stepped on was not a sure foundation and because of that I fell.

In order to build upon Christ’s foundation we need to have faith in him, repent, be baptized, receive the Holy Ghost, Humble ourselves as a little child, and endure to the end. In 3 Nephi 11 verse 39 tells us that “whoso buildeth upon this buildeth upon my rock, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against them.”

None of us are perfect, we all make mistakes. That is the beauty of the atonement. It is for us. In Matthew 11verses 28-30 Christ says “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Christ perfectly understands that we make mistakes. He wants us to repent and come unto him. Christ can repair holes in the ceilings or even in ourselves. In Isaiah 1:18 it says “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” He can heal our sorrows, our pains and our afflictions. He came into this world to do the will of the father, to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man. President Dieter F. Uchtdorf said in the October 2013 General conference that If you expect to find perfect people here, you will be disappointed. But if you seek the pure doctrine of Christ, the word of God “which healeth the wounded soul,”9 and the sanctifying influence of the Holy Ghost, then here you will find them. In this age of waning faith—in this age when so many feel distanced from heaven’s embrace—here you will find a people who yearn to know and draw closer to their Savior by serving God and fellowmen, just like you. Come, join with us!”

 “And now, my beloved brethren, after ye have gotten into this strait and narrow path, I would ask if all is done? Behold, I say unto you, Nay; for ye have not come thus far save it were by the word of Christ with unshaken faith in him, relying wholly upon the merits of him who is mighty to save. Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.”-2 Nephi 31:19-21 When I first entered the attic I was on the path but then I stepped off of it and that’s where my problems started. However, there were ways that I was able to overcome and reconcile my mistakes. When I fell through the attic my arm snagged on a piece of a metal grate leaving a very large tear in my skin. After  we called my dad and went to the Instacare in Bountiful, we took some of the makeshift bandages off of my arm, a towel, in which the doctor there said to me “We can’t treat that here!” What?! Is my arm about to fall off! Am I about to die?! That’s pretty much what was running through my head when they said that. That is what happens when we seek out other things that are not Christ. And that’s why we went to LDS hospital afterwards… Just kidding but we did go to LDS hospital because like Christ, it had all the resources and things that we needed to fix me up. We are taught to Look unto the Lord in every thought, to doubt not and fear not.

If I had known the information about the attics previously to going into the attics, I would not have stepped onto the sheet rock. That is why I am going onto a mission, to invite others to come unto Christ by helping them receive the restored gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and his atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end.


 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
 Surely he has borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows; yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.
 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.
11 And he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people.
 12 And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities.

 13 Now the Spirit knoweth all things; nevertheless the Son of God suffereth according to the flesh that he might take upon him the sins of his people, that he might blot out their transgressions according to the power of his deliverance; and now behold, this is the testimony which is in me.

From Alma 7 in the Book of Mormon.
To continue with his brother's homecoming talk, click here.

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