Dear Daughters of Zion,
We know you are busy. You always are. But we couldn’t let this month go by without pointing out something we have noticed….. we all share one, great concern….. How can we ready ourselves and carry out the work of Zion in these Last Days?
Instilling the love of the gospel in our family is very difficult to do lately. There are many of us who live with sorrow because of the very personal ways that the adversary is striking us. We have all felt this sorrow to one degree or another, haven’t we?
It is interesting to note that the weekend of September 22-24th is going to be so centered on women. First of all, and most importantly, it is the weekend of our General Women’s Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. What a miraculous event! Women from all over the world, members of the church and non-members, will meet to get direction and strength from our leaders and a member of the First Presidency. There’s something powerful in gathering out the women of Zion to worship together!
Another gathering is happening this weekend…
The Mom’s March for America— is “a national gathering of mothers to shine the light on the powerful influence of mothers in our homes, communities, and nation; and raise the bar of decency, civility, and liberty in our culture. This is not a march walking down the street, shouting and carrying signs. This is a Cultural March; a celebration of the biggest cultural movement happening in America – the march that mothers make every day in their homes, neighborhoods, and businesses as they nurture their families, influence their communities and shape our nation.”
May I suggest reading the Declaration of Mothers. You will be inspired!
What an amazing gathering of mothers! And the best part is that we can participate from our very own homes!
“I believe that the moment we learn to unleash the full influence of converted, covenant-keeping women, the kingdom of God will change overnight.” -Sister Sheri Dew (Women and the Priesthood: What One Mormon Woman Believes (2013), 163
These two gatherings are not the only things happening this weekend…
Here’s a list of a few things to ponder……
– Important Jewish Holiday: The Feast of the Tabernacles, occurs on the 20th-22nd of September. In this Ensign article we read that The Feast of Tabernacles, “with its imagery of the blowing of trumpets, a call to regather and reawaken Israel. It is a time of renewal of true worship with new understanding.” The Feast of the Tabernacles occurs during the Jewish month of Elul. Elul is the month of repentance and re-turning to the Lord before the Day of Atonement. It’s interesting to note that the eclipse happened on the first day of Elul. The month of Elul ends with Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year.
“Christ and his prophets teach of a latter-day awakening and gathering of Israel—the beginning of their second and final harvest. And there are those who see Rosh Hashannah as prophetic of this event, though most of them see it only as prophecy of the gathering and renewal of Judah. Latter-day Saints believe in a larger gathering: the Jews to Israel and all of Israel to the gospel. Both gatherings have already begun. Coincidence or not, the gold plates, which in their translated form (the Book of Mormon) have spread throughout the world to begin to awaken and gather Israel, were delivered into the hands of Joseph Smith in the latter part of September, a time closely approximate to the beginning of the seventh month of the Jewish calendar. Coincidence or not, a statue of Moroni, their keeper and deliverer, now stands on temple spires, trumpet to his mouth, proclaiming to all Israel that it is time to awaken and gather.” Lenet Hadley Read (“Symbols of the Harvest”, Ensign, Jan. 1975)
– Signs in the Heavens: Remember John’s Prophecy in JST Revelations 12:1; “And there appeared a great sign in heaven, in the likeness of things on the earth; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars.” This “sign” is found when the constellation of Virgo is seen with the moon below her feet. Stars and planets also align to make up her crown. This same, celestial alignment previously occurred on the Feast of Trumpets in 2 B.C. and 1832. It will occur again on September 23, 2017. The sign in 2 B.C. is considered to have come the autumn before Christ was born. The sign in 1832 occurred right as Joseph Smith, under the direction of the Lord, organized the Kingdom of God on this earth. We may not know if there is any significance to this year’s sign. But it is definitely something to ponder.
– Many religions will be fasting this weekend. Think of how many people of faith will gather together in prayer and fasting! What power and grace will we see?
Sing and Rejoice!
“Sing and rejoice, O daughter of Zion: for, lo, I come, and I will dwell in the midst of thee, saith the Lord. And many nations shall be joined to the Lord in that day, and shall be my people: and I will dwell in the midst of thee, and thou shalt know that the Lord of hosts hath sent me unto thee.” (Zechariah 2:10-11)
We are not sure what the last of the last days will look like. It’s interesting that we are not fearful in spite of what is on the news. However, we are very keenly aware of the important role that the daughters of God will play in the winding down scene. Our homes must become sanctuaries, our arms must be outstretched with charity, and the words of God must always be on our lips. With this realization, we are even more grateful for the power of prayer and fasting as well as the peace of the temple. Can you imagine taking on this dispensation without it?
Dear Daughters of Zion, this coming weekend is obviously a time of gathering. Let’s each take upon ourselves the role of a gatherer in this last dispensation. As daughters of Zion, we can gather our families to the temples. We can invite our friends to join in prayer and fasting! We can reach out to our neighbors to rejoice together at Women’s Conference and at the Mom’s March. Together, we can petition the Lord for help in preparing ourselves and our children for the coming of the Lord. Can you imagine the power, blessings and joy that will result?
“Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee.” (Zechariah 9:9)
Jenny Baker, Michelle Boulter, JaKell Sullivan, Laureen Simper, Stephanie Gifford, Ai Eisenach, Alisa Ellis, Alyson Williams, Becky Foster, Emily Thornton, Jennifer Jensen, Julie Rae, Kristine Swarts, Kristine Wagner, Mandy Baker, Natalie Robison, Randi Gardner, Rhonda Hair, Shelby Rodgers, Susie Schnell, Wendi Mott, Antonia Ormston, Maggie Klaas, and the rest of the women of GatheringFamilies.com.