Author Archive: tomirvine999

SCMC Devotional, April 25, 2018

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The Great & Spacious Building

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Kirton McConkie Building
50 E S Temple #400, Salt Lake City, UT 84111

How much tithing funds have been paid to the Kirton McConkie law firm over the years?

Alma 10

[12] And now, when Amulek had spoken these words the people began to be astonished, seeing there was more than one witness who testified of the things whereof they were accused, and also of the things which were to come, according to the spirit of prophecy which was in them.

[13] Nevertheless, there were some among them who thought to question them, that by their cunning devices they might catch them in their words, that they might find witness against them, that they might deliver them to their judges that they might be judged according to the law, and that they might be slain or cast into prison, according to the crime which they could make appear or witness against them.

[14] Now it was those men who sought to destroy them, who were lawyers, who were hired or appointed by the people to administer the law at their times of trials, or at the trials of the crimes of the people before the judges.

[15] Now these lawyers were learned in all the arts and cunning of the people; and this was to enable them that they might be skilful in their profession.

[16] And it came to pass that they began to question Amulek, that thereby they might make him cross his words, or contradict the words which he should speak.

[17] Now they knew not that Amulek could know of their designs. But it came to pass as they began to question him, he perceived their thoughts, and he said unto them: O ye wicked and perverse generation, ye lawyers and hypocrites, for ye are laying the foundation of the devil; for ye are laying traps and snares to catch the holy ones of God.

[18] Ye are laying plans to pervert the ways of the righteous, and to bring down the wrath of God upon your heads, even to the utter destruction of this people.

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How many tithing dollars are being paid to David Jordan of Stoel Rives Law Firm for the McKenna Denson case?

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When leaders abdicate their moral agency to their lawyers, they forfeit their moral authority.

– Tom Irvine

On Apologizing…

From a Judeo-Chrisitian perspective…

1. Say that your are sorry
2. Make amends
3. Ask for forgiveness
4. Take steps to make sure it never happens again

Here is what institutions, high-profile politicians and celebrities actually do…

1. Lawyer-up
2. Shame the victim
3. Offer a cash settlement to “make it go away”
4. Require that the victim sign an NDA

I am very saddened that my church has chosen the second method to deal with those who have been abused by its leaders.

When leaders abdicate their moral agency to their lawyers, they greatly diminish their moral authority.

– Tom Irvine

Empathy Training for LDS Church Leaders

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LDS Church Handbook of Instructions

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This is troubling on so many levels.  Church doctrine is often open to interpretation.  Sometimes general authorities contradict one another or even their own selves.

Compare and contrast Elder Bruce R. McConkie’s talk “Our Relationship with the Lord” with his hymn “I Believe in Christ.”

Policies and even doctrines can change, such as whether black men can receive the priesthood, and whether a man needs multiple wives in order to achieve the highest exaltation.

I currently home teach a good brother who has formally joined another church.  He is friendly and appreciates home teaching visits.

I do not advocate same-sex marriage, rather I am neutral.   But is it really worse in God’s eyes than attempted murder or rape?

– Tom Irvine

SCMC Devotional, March 9, 2018

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SCMC Devotional, March 7, 2018

Scripture warnings about fault-finding…

They search out iniquities; they accomplish a diligent search: both the inward thought of every one of them, and the heart, is deep.   (Psalms 64:6)

He that is void of wisdom despiseth his neighbour: but a man of understanding holdeth his peace.  (Proverbs 11:12)

Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.  (Matthew 7:1-5)

For I am afraid that when I come I may not find you as I want you to be, and you may not find me as you want me to be. I fear that there may be discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, slander, gossip, arrogance and disorder.  (2 Corinthians 2:20)

Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.  (Ephesian 4:29)

If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain.  (James 1:26)

These are murmurers, complainers, walking after their own lusts; and their mouth speaketh great swelling words, having men’s persons in admiration because of advantage.   (Jude 1:16)

– Tom Irvine

 

 

 

SCMC Devotional, March 4, 2018

JJDewey

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What do you notice in people?
The Practice:  See the good in others.
Why?

Many interactions these days have a kind of bumper-car quality to them. At work, at home, on the telephone, via email: we sort of bounce off of each other while we exchange information, smile or frown, and move on. How often do we actually take the extra few seconds to get a sense of what’s inside other people – especially their good qualities?

In fact, because of what scientists call the brain’s “negativity bias”, we’re most likely to notice the bad qualities in others rather than the good ones: the things that worry or annoy us, or make us critical.

Unfortunately, if you feel surrounded by lots of bad or at best neutral qualities in others, and only a sprinkling of dimly-sensed good ones, then you naturally feel less supported, less safe, and less inclined to be generous or pursue your dreams. Plus, in a circular way, when another person gets the feeling that you don’t really see much that’s good in him or her, that person is less likely to take the time to see much that’s good in you.

Seeing the good in others is thus a simple but very powerful way to feel happier and more confident, and become more loving and more productive in the world.

– Rick Hanson, Ph.D.

SCMC Devotional, December 22, 2017

Some of the most incredible people I know voted for Donald Trump, and some of the most incredible people I know voted for Hillary Clinton. The people that I know that voted for Trump are not racist, misogynistic, or hateful, and the people that voted for Hillary Clinton are not hateful and intolerable. If you are someone who woke up this morning and is going to start seeing people as who they voted for, and not as the person you have always known them to be, then you are what is wrong with America. I will never think any less of any person who has different views than me, because some of the most beautiful, inspirational people I know will disagree with what I believe all day long, but at the end of the day they are still that beautiful inspirational person I have always known them as. Don’t think less of people because some of their beliefs don’t align with yours, and don’t lose quality people in your life because you choose hate over love.

Tips for Enduring Unrighteous Dominion

Anyone who has done anything consequential—whether good, bad, ugly, or worse—has been criticized. Sometimes for things they deserved to be and sometimes not. Everyone from Mother Teresa to Winston Churchill has had to face, and face down, opposition in the public, the press, and even among the people closest to them. They’ve had their names dragged through the mud, their motives questioned, their methods scrutinized.
And yet, all of these people found ways through the noise. They found ways to manage their reactions and responses, to discipline themselves to continue to press on.
We talk about thick skin. Marcus Aurelius called it “tranquility.” It was, as he put it, “The tranquility that comes when you stop caring what they say. Or think, or do. Only what you do.”

That’s what we can control: what you do. You can’t control what they think, say, criticize you for, call you out on, or look down on.

So if you take heat today—deservedly or not—just remember it doesn’t matter what they say (you choose whether you care about that or not). It only matters what you do.

– Daily Stoic