Posted by: nmontague | March 25, 2016

The Ten Commandments

I finished reading Mosiah a couple weeks ago and it’s been on my mind. Here we have a book about being liberated from evil government. Seems appropriate considering the current political struggles in the nation and the current election cycle.

The key to the liberation of the people was inviting the people to Christ. As the people struggled against oppressive government they only became liberated as they turned to the Lord and chose to covenant with Him. When they failed to do that they continued struggling until they were brought down to the depths of humility.

In particular, we see the preaching of a prophet, Abinadi. A single man who went to his death for the sake of the truth. Despite not seeing the results, he had a tremendous effect on countless future generations.

In the midst of preaching the need for a Savior, Abinadi reviewed the Ten Commandments almost smack dab in the middle of the Book of Mosiah. In a book focused on liberation and Christ, what is the significance of spending time on the Ten Commandments? It just seems as though there is an important reason for it.

I’ve seen no evidence that God has revoked the Ten Commandments. And yet it seems more people are worried about whether the commandments are on display in a government building rather than whether they are etched in our hearts. Maybe the culture war should be focusing less on outward displays and more on inward changes.

Courts may remove prayer from schools but only we can remove it from our homes. Courts may remove the Ten Commandments from the courthouse but only we can remove them from our hearts.  If we pray in our homes and keep the Ten Commandments in our lives it won’t matter who wins an election whether it’s Democrat or Republican, whether it’s Cruz, Trump, Sanders, or Clinton.

I’m convinced that more consistent obedience to the Ten Commandments can help us know Christ and lead us to liberty because where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. So let’s make a commitment to do better in following the Ten Commandments and more. Change begins with us. Culture war is won and lost in our lives and families.

Posted by: nmontague | February 25, 2016

Anger and wisdom

The exit polls in South Carolina and Nevada have been showing that respondents are angry at the establishment in Washington. So the overwhelming response has been to support Trump. I continually hear that his election will really show them and shake things up. Doesn’t matter that he completely stands against everything we say we want in government and promises to keep doing the things we say we are angry about. This doesn’t make  sense to me.

This reminds me of people who riot for a cause out of anger and will destroy and vandalize their neighborhood so that people will listen to their grievances. Or worse act our in violence toward their neighbors. These actions out of anger don’t make sense and why would they? We aren’t using wisdom when we act out of anger.

Think about it. Have you ever been happy making a choice when angry? Have you ever looked back on a decision made in anger and said “Wow, that was a really wise decision.”

Most of the time we have to apologize for the incredibly stupid things we do when we are angry. So do we want to base our decision for president based off of the anger we feel? Or should we make a decision based off of principle and character?

I read a quote from Brigham Young the other day:

“WHEN the Supreme Ruler of the universe wishes to destroy a nation, he takes away their wisdom in the first place, and they become insensible to their own interests, and they are filled with wrath; they give way to their anger, and thus lay the foundation of their own destruction. To him who seeks to save, he gives wisdom, which enables any people, nation, or individual to lay the foundation for strength, increase, and power. When we look abroad upon the nations, we can see this truth verified; and when we look at home in our own nation, it is no less verified. We see that wisdom is actually departing from the lawgiver, and the knowledge and the discretion the judge possessed years ago have vanished. We discern that the very policy adopted by the nations to fortify them in strength is calculated to sap their foundations. The axe is laid at the root of the tree, and all nations are filling up the cup of their guilt.”

And that’s what I see. Angry people voting against their interests rather than using wisdom. It has me concerned. It’s still early in the primary season. If you read this and you are going to vote soon, make sure it’s a decision not based on anger. Otherwise we are going to have some difficult times ahead.

Posted by: nmontague | February 22, 2016

Reigniting the blog

I’ve been thinking about returning to my blogging. I’ve not done any for a while and it’s been on my mind to start up.

So I’m back. I’m not anyone special. I just feel I need to do my part to speak out on topics, issues, and events that interest me and use those opportunities to exhort us to be alittle better.

For any one familiar, you can see that I’ve changed the title. I’m calling it “light up the hill” in reference to Christ’s call to be a light on the hill. Something I believe we need to be now more than any time in history.


Posted by: nmontague | May 22, 2012

Bipartisan support for legalizing propaganda

Looks like this insert in the latest defense authoritation bill authorizes the government to use propaganda on American citizens.

The amendment would “strike the current ban on domestic dissemination” of propaganda material produced by the State Department and the independent Broadcasting Board of Governors, according to the summary of the law at the House Rules Committee’s official website.

This isn’t right. No matter who supports this in both parties, we should demand honesty from our government. We shouldnt give them the power to lie to us. Speak up. Demand honesty from our government. Bring this to people’s attention so we can kill this insert before it gets passed as a law.

It’s more important now than ever that we seek to make our lives honest. Truth cleaves unto truth. If we aren’t seeking the truth and living it, we will easily be decieved by lies. God will reveal the Truth to us, let us have faith enough to seek it and do what we can to prevent others from being decieved.

Posted by: nmontague | May 17, 2012

A Day of Humiliation, Fasting, and Prayer

Tomorrow, May 17, 2012 is going to be a day of humiliation, fasting and prayer. All are invited, and in fact, encouraged to particiapte regardless of religious background, denomination, or sect.

May 17th was chosen because the Second Continental Congress dedicated May 17, 1776 as a day of Humiliation, Fasting, and Prayer to seek a remission of their sins as individuals and as a nation. It was a day to draw closer to God and seek His guidance and seek the hand of Divine Providence in protecting their liberities from the British during the Revolutionary War. It was a day to unite together and make a covenant with God that He would be their God and they would be His people.

We live in a precarious day. Our Constitution and Republic are hanging by a thread.  If we want to restore the Constitution, our liberities, and the Republic to the glory that it’s previously had, we need to build on the same foundation that our Founders have. We have to have God on our side, and more importantly, we need to be on God’s side. Not because someone forces us to be. Or because some government wants us to be. Not because our parents were. But because God is good and because we make a choose to turn to Him and accept the invitation he always has open to us.

We are a proud society.  We need to turn back to humility or we risk being destroyed because pride comes before the fall. We need to look for ways to build humility in our lives. It’s vitally important if we are going to more forward with the work of restoring our values and culture.

This day involves Fasting. Christ mentioned that fasting and prayer as an important requirement for some miracles (Specificlly casting out some demons). There is power in fasting. Fasting involves voluntarily giving up food (and sometimes water as well) for a designated period of time. Combined with prayer it can be a powerful spiritual tool to strengthen ourselves and our connection with God. Gandhi used fasting to seek Divine aid in persuading his people to be non-violent.

Prayer is supplication before the Lord. It’s not just reading off a laundry list of things you want from God. But it’s the effort to bring our will in line with God’s will and recieve blessings God already wants to bless us with, but which are conditional upon asking for the blessings. It’s about communication with God. Not just us speaking to Him, but speaking with Him and recieving revelation when needed.

I invite as many people to unite and join in this day of humilitation, fasting, and prayer tomorrow as you are moved upon by the Holy Spirit. If you can’t fast for medical reasons, still seek the Lord in prayer and fasting. We need to make our lives right in the eyes of the Lord. Seek a remission of your sins. Even the little ones. Especially the little ones. There may only be a handful that will do this, but the Lord can do amazing things with just a few people.  “By small and simple things are great things brought to pass; and small means in many instances doth confound the wise” (Alma 37:6).

With the Lord’s help we can change the world. We can restore the Republic. We can unite as a people. And we start by changing ourselves and humbling ourselves.

Posted by: nmontague | May 10, 2012

It’s been a little over a year

I havent posted in quite a while. Im still contemplating a shift in what I want to talk about and format etc. I would like to be posting more in the near future though. Im working on the early stages of a few projects that Id like to share when I ever bring them to life. But things have been busy this past year with getting married and the arrival of our little daughter. I will try to share more soon.

Posted by: nmontague | October 6, 2011

Joseph Smith on Charity

I was reading Teachings of the Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith on charity. And I was just kind of inspired by the little things Joseph Smith and his wife Emma did to serve the Saints. I wanted to share those accounts.

First story:

Edwin Holden recalled: “In 1838, Joseph and some of the young men were playing various out-door games, among which was a game of ball. By and by they began to get weary. He saw it, and calling them together he said: ‘Let us build a log cabin.’ So off they went, Joseph and the young men, to build a log cabin for a widow woman. Such was Joseph’s way, always assisting in whatever he could.”

Seriously, how cool is that? Hang out with your friends and just decide to get them all go out and build a house for someone in need.

Second Story:

Lucy Mack Smith, the Prophet Joseph Smith’s mother, said of the time when the Saints were first settling in Commerce, Illinois, later called Nauvoo:“As the season advanced, the brethren who had settled here began to feel the effects of their hardships, which, joined to the unhealthiness of the climate, brought them down with agues and bilious fevers to such an extent that there were some whole families in which there was not one who was able to give another a drink of cold water or even to help themselves. Hyrum’s family were mostly sick. My youngest daughter, Lucy, was also very sick, and there were, in fact, but few of the inhabitants of the place who were well.

“Joseph and Emma had the sick brought to their house and took care of them there. And they continued to have them brought as fast as they were taken down until their house, which consisted of four rooms, was so crowded that they were under the necessity of spreading a tent in the yard for the reception of that part of the family who were still on their feet. Joseph and Emma devoted their whole time and attention to the care of the sick during this time of distress.”

And tell me, how many of us would do the same? I hope most of us. We should be willing to serve others like this. This is good and wholesome. It’s what Christ would want us to be doing. It would do more to help the poor, the sick, the afflicted then if we taxed everyone 100% of their money and just handed it out like crazy. Because this is true charity and service. Designed to uplift and bless others.

Third Story:

John L. Smith, the Prophet’s cousin, recalled the following incident that occurred in this same period of time: “The Prophet Joseph and cousin Hyrum, his brother, visited us. We were all sick but Mother with the fever and ague, and Father was out of his head the greatest part of the time. Joseph took the shoes from his feet when he saw our destitute condition and put them on Father’s feet, as he was barefoot, and rode home without any himself. He sent and took Father home to his house and saved his life and supplied us with many comforts so we recovered.”

How many of us would give someone the shoes off our feet or the shirt off our back? Isn’t this what we should all be doing? Cheerfully serving one another. Giving to those in need. Lifting them.

Fourth Story:

Elizabeth Ann Whitney recalled:“Early in the Spring of 1840 we went up to Commerce, as the upper portion of the city of Nauvoo continued to be called. We rented a house belonging to Hiram Kimball. … Here we were all sick with ague, chills and fever, and were only just barely able to crawl around and wait upon each other. Under these trying circumstances my ninth child was born. Joseph, upon visiting us and seeing our change of circumstances, urged us at once to come and share his accommodations. We felt the climate, the water, and the privations we were enduring could not much longer be borne; therefore we availed ourselves of this proposal and went to live in the Prophet Joseph’s yard in a small cottage; we soon recruited in health, and the children became more like themselves. My husband was employed in a store Joseph had built and fitted up with such goods as the people were in actual need of.

“One day while coming out of the house into the yard the remembrance of a prophecy Joseph Smith had made to me, while living in our house in Kirtland, flashed through my mind like an electric shock; it was this: that even as we had done by him, in opening our doors to him and his family when he was without a home; even so should we in the future be received by him into his house.”

A simple lesson here: We bless ourselves when we bless others. We get when we give.

Fifth story:

Mosiah L. Hancock reported the following experience that occurred in Nauvoo while he was a youth: “This summer [1841] I played my first game of ball with the Prophet. We took turns knocking and chasing the ball, and when the game was over the Prophet said, ‘Brethren, hitch up your teams,’ which we did, and we all drove to the woods. I drove our one-horse wagon standing on the front bolster, and Brother Joseph and father rode on the hounds behind [the bolster and houndsare structural parts of a wagon]. There were 39 teams in the group and we gathered wood until our wagons were loaded. When our wagon was loaded, Brother Joseph offered to pull sticks with anyone—and he pulled them all up one at a time—with anyone who wanted to compete with him.

“Afterwards, the Prophet sent the wagons out to different places of people who needed help; and he told them to cut the wood for the Saints who needed it. Everybody loved to do as the Prophet said, and even though we were sickly, and death was all around us, folks smiled and tried to cheer everyone up.”

Lesson: When our recreation time is over, it’s time to go serve others.

We need to be building communities where we serve on another like that. That is the attititude we should have as Saints. To quote the Prophet:

“I am your servant, and it is only through the Holy Ghost that I can do you good. … We do not present ourselves before you as anything but your humble servants, willing to spend and be spent in your service.”

And we should be humble servants who are willing to spend and be spent in your service and in Christ’s name.

Posted by: nmontague | August 11, 2011


I know I haven’t written much lately. I’ve actually been contemplating a new direction with the blog with some regular posting. I haven’t formulated everything yet. I’ll keep everyone updated.

Posted by: nmontague | June 30, 2011

Love those that hate you

I was catching up on what I missed the last two days and it looks like Glenn Beck and his family were harassed when they tried to watch a public movie in New York. You can find details about what happened here. Interestingly, one of the people who sat behind his family, Ms. Lindsey Piscitell, came out denying it. Unfortunately for her she also happened to be tweeting about the incident at the time. And before she had the opportunity to make her account private, her page was saved. To see what her page said, go here. To sum it up, her tweets don’t match up with her current story. In fact, someone responded to her suggesting that she and her group “”accidently” spill something on him” and/or “kick him in the mouth”. Which is why it’s safe to conclude that she is being less than honest about the bottle of wine being “accicdently” spilled on his wife or the attempts to kick him in the head.

Now this behavior is completely rude. It’s uncivil. And completely unnecessary. Why on earth should anyone harass/attack another person, and more importantly his family, simply for disagreeing about politics or some other idea? This makes so little sense to me. And covering it up by lying about it? Why?

Despite all this, Glenn wasn’t telling the story to make himself or his family look like victims. He was trying to teach his listeners these two principles:

1) Have courage to be who you are even when you are surounded by people who disagree and may even hate you.

2) Love those that hate you, even when it’s tough.

Unfortunately, I think this entire lesson was lost upon many of his viewers. Yes. Ms. Piscitell, her friends, and the other New Yorkers who acted this way were wrong. They were uncivil, rude, and full of emnity. But there is no reason to react back at her and them the same exact way. Glenn’s trying to show you that you need to love those that oppose you and even hate you and then you go out and hate what these people did to Glenn calling them all sorts of horrible things and saying all sorts of horrible things when Glenn hasn’t and is telling you to do the exact opposite with them and anyone else who may be like them. If Glenn and is family is working to love them, why should the rest of us who were not the targets of this be angry and full of hate? Shouldn’t we be joining with Glenn is saying prayers for them and loving them as ourselves?

I was reading Matthew 24 last week and one of the versus in particular hit me.

“And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.” (Matthew 24:12)

Now, I’ve always found it that verse interesting. It’s placed in the chapter where Christ is talking about Signs of when the Temple would be destroyed in 70AD and Signs of His Second Coming. Why is this significant for the Second coming? I’ve been pondering it a bit and I think I have one idea. Alot of people will perish because they have lost the ability to love. In order to get through the last days before Christ’s coming, those that are faithful will have to band together. They will have to rely on one another. That can only happen if we have love for one another. If we don’t band together, if we don’t love one another, then many, possibly even ourselves, will perish.

Christ has long taught us to love our enemies. He told us we need to turn the other cheek. In otherwords, that we need to love our fellow man so much that we would rather suffer violence be done to ourselves than to hurt them.

Glenn is a flawed man. He is the first to admit that. But what he is trying to teach us in loving those that hate us transcends any flaw he or us might have. We need to actually get the point he was trying to have us get instead of getting angry, and hating those that have harassed him. Love them.  Pray for them. Even if we don’t change them, we end up changing ourselves. And that’s just as important for us, for our families, and for the world at large.

Posted by: nmontague | June 28, 2011

The problem and potential of flash mobs

Flash mobs are becoming a problem in the news lately. A Flash mob is a group of people organized through telecommunications, social media, or viral emails who assemble suddenly to do something. Traditionally, this “something” has been an unusual or pointless act mostly for entertainment of those involved. It’s popular among the rising generation. Unfortunately, lately the news has been reportng about flash mobs that have gone from pointless to dangerous and just plain wrong.

Take this DC Flash mob for example. This is one example of Flash mobs turning to theft and looting. There have been reports elsewhere in the Country recently such as Las Vegas, Illinois, and Philadelphia. Basically large groups of people rush a store take what they want off the shelf and run out before the store has time to react. Because of the sheer numbers involved and the speed in which they are in and out it’s difficult to capture them. These mobs are costing businesses thousands in merchandise and damanges.

In Philadelphia, in particular Flash mobs are becoming violent. This is just random pointless violence. Random in where they show up. Random in when they show up. The randomness of it all is what makes it so difficult to stop.

So is that what is being taught to the rising generation. (I’m starting to feel like an old man with the way I talk). The fact kind of activity is quickly turning into a very visible sign of evil and corruption in our society. But does it have to be?

Perhaps, those who want to be good examples and shine a light on the good in society can use the flash mob to do it too. Why not react with Flash mobs of kindness? Flash mobs of service? use the same communication mediums to randomly do something good for your neighbors?

Or how about flash mobs of missionary work? You set up a time and send it around to get people to share the Gospel with a random person.

Or a flash mob of prayer. Where people can randomly gather together and start praying in public for those around them?

Evil is really good at organizing itself. It’s time those who want to do good do the same. It’s time to stop making excuses and take action.

Just a few thoughts for this evening.

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