Wednesday, March 30, 2011

"Oh, we've got trouble..."

When I was growing up I loved listening to soundtracks from musicals.  Some of my all-time favorites include: Chess, Phantom of the Opera, Into the Woods, 1776, Singing in the Rain, and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.  Another one of my all-time personal favorites is Meredith Wilson's play The Music Man.  Earlier in the week one of my favorite songs from that play entitled "Ya Got Trouble" popped into my head.  In the song, Professor Harold Hill is explaining to the people how much trouble is caused by having a pool table in their comunity.  His main reason for making such a big deal about it is so that he can then proceed to get people to buy into his boy's band scheme.  After only a little time, Professor Hill has them wrapped around his finger just like he hoped.

As I was pondering on the message of the song and with upcoming General Conference, I realized that the prophets in a sense are doing the same thing Professor Hill was, only they are warning us of actual dangers and giving their warning voice to the world.  I have decided to share some of their messages since, "Oh we got trouble...With a capital "T" that rhymes with "P" [and "D"] that stands for [pornography, drugs, and debt]."

Pornography"Children are exploited, and their lives are severely damaged. The minds of youth become warped with false concepts. Continued exposure leads to addiction that is almost impossible to break. Men, so very many, find they cannot leave it alone. Their energies and their interests are consumed in their dead-end pursuit of this raw and sleazy fare...We are men of the priesthood. This is a most sacred and marvelous gift, worth more than all the dross of the world. But it will be amen to the effectiveness of that priesthood for anyone who engages in the practice of seeking out pornographic material."- President Gordon B. Hinckley, 2004

"Avoid any semblance of pornography. It is dangerous and addictive. If you continue to view pornography, your spirit will become desensitized and your conscience will erode." -President Thomas S. Monson, 1990

Drugs "I am impressed to speak out on a problem of deep concern—the worldwide epidemic of drug addiction...From an initial experiment thought to be trivial, a vicious cycle may follow. From trial comes a habit. From habit comes dependence. From dependence comes addiction. Its grasp is so gradual...But this problem is broader than hard drugs. Their use most often begins with cigarette smoking. Tobacco and alcoholic beverages contain addicting drugs. They lead the list in incidence and cost to society." -Elder Russel M. Nelson, 1988

"In discussing the demon of drugs, I include, of course, alcohol. Drugs impair our ability to think, to reason, and to make prudent and wise choices. Often they result in violence, child and wife abuse, and they can provoke conduct which brings pain and suffering to those who are innocent. “Just say no to drugs” is an effective statement of one’s determination." -President Thomas S. Monson, 2002

Debt: "All of these excesses affect us individually and undermine our family relationships. Of course some debt incurred for education, a modest home, or a basic automobile may be necessary to provide for a family. Unfortunately however, additional debt is incurred when we cannot control our wants and addictive impulses." -Elder Robert D. Hales, 2009

"We live in a time when borrowing is easy. We can purchase almost anything we could ever want just by using a credit card or obtaining a loan...The day of reckoning will come if we have continually lived beyond our means.My brothers and sisters, avoid the philosophy that yesterday’s luxuries have become today’s necessities. They aren’t necessities unless we make them so. Many enter into long-term debt only to find that changes occur: people become ill or incapacitated, companies fail or downsize, jobs are lost, natural disasters befall us. For many reasons, payments on large amounts of debt can no longer be made. Our debt becomes as a Damocles sword hanging over our heads and threatening to destroy us. I urge you to live within your means. One cannot spend more than one earns and remain solvent" -President Thomas S. Monson, 2006 

I know that as we hearken to the words of the Lord's modern day prophets and apostles, we will have peace and joy in our lives.  We can not always avoid the troubles we have around us, but we can prepare and do our best to resist Satan's temptations and repent when we err.   Let us more fully live the counsel given to us by the Lord's servants.

1 comment:

  1. I love these quotes. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt of their truthfulness. I am so grateful to have a prophet of the Lord to remind us of the most basic principles of life. Each general conference is filled with these gentle nudgings if we open our hearts to the Spirit of the Lord and listen.


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