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And, finding there was greater happiness and peace and rest for me, I sought for the blessings of the fathers, and the right whereunto I should be ordained to administer the same (Abraham, vs 2)

Monday, December 9, 2019

My ALS Journey: Life is not fair

I came across this from another ALS patient and felt it was good enough to adapt it into my own post. I haven't gotten to the point where I have lost all these functions yet but it's fast approaching. 

I certainly don't currently have this attitude most of the time but feel it's a good reminder. But my overall outlook is positive. Higher purpose is in all things we experience down in this world. 

Arms. Legs. Speech. 

You loose all of these to ALS. 
If only you could keep just ONE of these things. 

ARMS
If I still had use of the arms and hands there is so much that I could do! I could brush my teeth, feed myself, and scratch the itch on the top of my head. I could type without having to use my eyes, take pictures with my camera, and use my cell phone. Maybe I could even help to fold laundry. I could hug my family and friends. I could lift up my hands in worship.  

LEGS
If I still had use of my legs there is so much that I could do! I wouldn't need a power wheelchair. I could stand up, and get around the house with ease. I could get in and out of a car. I could go for a walk around the block. I could stroll along a beautiful, peaceful hiking trail. I could kneel down in prayer. 

SPEECH
If I still had use of my speech there is so much that I could do! Actually, I think that this will be the hardest for me to lose. It will take so much effort to say each word as it progresses. Most people cannot understand you most of the time. If I could still speak, then I could converse with friends. I could speak on the phone. I could talk and pray with my wife. I could teach and tell jokes to my kids. 

It would be so amazing just to have ONE of the things mentioned above. Why do I have to lose ALL of them? How do I deal with all of this? 
It isn't fair. 
It isn't fair! 
IT ISN'T FAIR!!! 
It isn't fair that... 
   -I have an amazing wife and children, but others live in families that are dysfunctional and abusive. 
   -I live in a safe place, but others live in war-torn countries surrounded by danger, violence, and death. 
   -To help me deal with ALS, I have or will eventually need a nice power wheelchair, an eye-gaze computer, a Trilogy breathing machine, a cough assist machine, PEG feeding tube when I'm unable to swallow, access to medications, and an amazing group of knowledgeable doctors, nurses and therapists, but others live with ALS in parts of the world where they have to suffer without any of these things. 

I. Am. Blessed.  

"For I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength." (Philippians 4:11-13)

Sunday, December 8, 2019

A Message to All: Part 9: My Living Will (Public)

Note: This series was inspired by my recent ALS diagnosis. See Part 1 intro. The conclusion to this series may or may not get posted. I'm leaving it open incase something comes to mind at a latter date if I'm still able. 

This will is an unofficial will because I know my wife will do what's best. It's meant to be more of a humorous post. And anything official should probably be private. Here are some things I would prefer but again my first priority is my wife and family and what would make their lives easier.

This may be a live document as I think of more things or add to it by editing it.

1) No crying at funeral allowed! (Joking 😁) 
2) Have a cheap funeral. Can bury me in a plywood box. Of course follow your heart too. That's always more important. Since I'm certain that won't happen. And beauty isn't a bad thing. Probably a better thing would be to have a real casket. I'm mostly joking about plywood and feel a proper burial is a better route. 
3) Have at least one member from my fellowship speak at my funeral. 
4) Be creative doesn't need to be all boring 😎😅 But also a time to grieve is good. 
5) Sing the song "a poor wayfaring man of grief" as it's one of my favorite about Christ. Verses 4-7 I've always liked too
6) Tell my kids I love them and my wife and they will conquer the world with or without me. #proud 
7) I prefer not to suffer needlessly. It's one of the curses of modern medicine. Especially if the only relief is constant 24/7 pain meds (like opiods or Morphine). 
8) Cocos movie should be the new slogan after a drive with my wife when first learning of diagnosis we heard it on pandora. "remember me though I have to say goodbye".
9) Part of creativity don't be quiet. Make it exciting like play some electronica music with Marshmellow lol. That's true reverence for me right there. Maybe for the viewing and or service. Shouting amen or other laughter energetic actions. 
10) I guess with our dogs old age we get to have a race to who dies sooner. 🐕🏃😎😁 A family joke of ours. Maybe it's time for me to finally loose, out living the dog. I told my wife it's time for me to be a looser. Now wife reminds me to 'Be a Looser'! Or better I'll be a winner and outlive them and hopefully the baby can walk before I loose my walking abilities. Another race worth winning! 
11) Must wear a t shirt and jeans to my funeral else kicked out 🤠🤠🤠 unless your a cowboy. In seriousness I want people to show up being themselves. Not dressing up due to cultural traditions or perceived standards. I want each person to be themselves, raw and unfiltered. What are you comfortable in? What do you wear on your days off? Just be you. God accepts us for who we are. 
12) I'd prefer that the Last speaker should be my wife. No concluding or residing remarks by others including one who is conducting or residing. Though I prefer a family member (including friends, siblings, parents, or wife) to reside or conduct it. Family is the only ones with authority in the home. 
13) Make an atmosphere that makes it so you never have to tell a child to be quiet, sit still, or stop being their true self. We're supposed to be as little children. Not making children be adults. Even if the speaker is harder to hear. Children is what brings us true joy in this life. They are the "joy in our works'. Its always been a desire for me for worshiping God but know it's hard to pay attention to speakers and want people to be able to as well. Something I've thought a lot about but don't really have answers either.
14) Tell alot of jokes 🐷🐿️
15) The graveyard down in Tucson looks overcrowded. People must be dying to get in there!

Thursday, November 21, 2019

A Message to All: Part 8: A Sorrowful Heart: Grief & Hope

Note: This series was inspired by my recent ALS diagnosis. See Part 1 intro.

This post is mostly about the mercy of God in speaking with me and sending signs or witnesseses the past few months. Both struggles of my heart and how the Lord continues to comfort me. I have felt to record these worries, doubts, and struggles at least partially.

When the lord speaks I have often found he will always send two or three witnesses. He will "speak in our hearts and minds". The second witness is also often the Holy Ghost speaking by the spirit, or rather confirming something spoken to you as well. These past few months I have received prayers, impressions, blessings, or ideas that come to mind. Each time something was said, God would impress someone, unrelated to the first, to say the same idea.

The lord tells us to never act in haste. Those with flowery imaginations (quoting Joseph) will never find out the ways of God. We need to take time to ponder and measure those impressions against the scriptures and character of God. Sometimes the lord will let you decide, staying silent, than only after the fact correct you if it's wrong. All these ways are to teach us, from good and evil.

The other day I was pondering some questions regarding my dreaded future and was thinking of discussing them. I didn't feel ready to discuss this yet. Than a few days later similar ideas in my mind were mentioned by a friend. Or when I was pondering my standing with God and was worried about the salvation of my soul as I had not been like Enos having his sins washed away and declared clean. Or declared as His Son. It's a wrestle with God I have had for many years now. Two separate people a day a part said they felt God say I should not be worried about my standing with God. 

Many people are only visited (ie second comforter) at the last days. I also had two people reminding me that and mentioned the example of Stephen being stoned to death or another experience showing the same idea. Also two others mentioned that they felt we or I should call upon God to minister to me. That in time, or the due time of the Lord, it would happen. Maybe that will be the day I die I do not know for many are ministered to at that time.

When first hearing of my diagnosis I often pondered the questions many ask. Why me? What did I do to deserve this? What sins did I refuse to forsake to bring it on? Did I fail to live up to the covenants I have received, just a year prior? Why is God torturing me? I had two people tell me unknown to each other an answer, without me asking for any advice. A sibling stated that this isn't a punishment to anyone. It's like the blind man when the Savior was asked whose fault it was he was born that way: the blind man or his parents. He responded neither. But that the powers of God could be manifest. And a friend added, ”the works of God being manifest through you.” Not exactly sure what that means but that through this trial, the works of God will be manifest. It felt to them that others will come to see and know the works of God through this.

Still to show the true weaknesses of my flesh I still doubt. I still wonder if some things that have been said to me were desires of their hearts, wishful thinking, or if it was Gods true will and desire. I told someone death is scary, but Christ is not. Christ gives hope, but the knowledge I have further gained of the afterlife, of His Resurrection, and how only those who have been sealed to the family of Abraham were resurrected from the spirit world has really morphed by views of the afterlife. The "righteous dead" were left to preach to those who refused to receive Christ until a later time when the hearts of the fathers are turned to the children and the children to those fathers in eternal glory. Its after all a desire of my heart for many years, desiring to be a greater follower of righteous and seeking the knowledge (or sealing) of the fathers as my blog slogan.

I told someone I should be satisfied with any progress made during this lifetime, even though I'm often an overachiever and want to "get it done" now, the Gospel plan does not work that way. Because what God offers affects the souls of all men.

When it has come to my spiritual journey I would not doubt many things when multiple witnesses were given, instead I would plant them and let the seed grow to determine if it was good or cast it out if it turned out it didn't. Though I did take time to ponder it out and make sure it was a proper source. When it comes to death and facing it head on I never imagined the struggles I would have. Nevertheless God and His Gospel offer's great hope. If it wasn't for a great family and children, I don't think it would be as hard as it has been. The thought of leaving them, this early in life's journey, is terrifying and saddening. I've shed many tears over the ordeal. 

I share this all to record my struggles and the hand of God in even this journey. Sometimes when we only post the positive it can put a false impression on someone. I do not know if healing is in the future. Sometimes I worry its not. If it is, I kind of feel it'll be like the blind man who did not know till he was healed. Christ came and at that time he was healed unforeseen. At least that's my impression of the story. It's hard to have that type of hope when in just 3 months I went from walking to limited hand use, thumbs can't open bottles or button most pants, and walking up and down stairs is now difficult. Barely hold my phone, lift hands above my head, or walking to bathroom is a longer distance for me now. It's one of the worst diseases man can have but at least I keep my mind. I am already miserable in some ways. Physically atleast. I prefer healing. I want it. But such a thing feels hopeless when answers keep allowing for the possibility of not being healed and as I'm often told plan for the worst hope for the best. 

I truly believe there is an offer for Zion, and many of the prophecies have already been fulfilled but there are many more yet to come which I would love to be a witness to. I would love to hold my children's hands through it as it'll be both terrible and great things alike. After someone told me they felt I didn't need to worry about my soul, I responded "I still doubt :), I doubt I'll connect to the family of Abraham, the father's as a living link, I know God doesn't views things that way but it's a desire of mine and want that I worry about. It's like having the opportunity to be in Zion while getting burned up. You might be OK but missed out on an opportunity". All the prophets in scriptures looked for the day Zion would be here. I desire to see the unfolding's. After having the desire I learned through one of my blessings it is one of my callings in life to reconnect to the father's even those in glory. That's the main ways God speaks to me is through planting righteous desires in my heart. 

At times my heart tells me there is still some things left for me to do here. Its not yet my time. But I don't know if its thoughts everyone faces or just personal wishes or an inkling of an impression as this is one I have not yet received witnesses of. In a blessing given to me I was told I was to record, or preserve like those did in the Book of Mormon, a record of some events. Maybe I have already done that, with this blog, or its things yet to remain, or sometimes the future can change. Nothing is static. 

Still all things are given for our good. There is a purpose behind all things we suffer in this world and it passes as if it were a dream. I am reminded of the saying below.

"The greatest among us cannot be trusted with the power of God, not yet anyway. The greatest among us is still in need of repentance. Every one of us should walk fearfully before God, not because God is not generous, but because what He offers can turn you into a devil. The only way to be prepared and not fall, is to realize the enormous peril you potentially present to the universe. Before you get in a position to enjoy the status God offers to us all, you need to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, exactly like Paul said. You need to purge, remove, and reprove"

Despite my doubts and wonderings, I don't doubt in the Gospel nor that Christ exists and has overcome it all. We are here to be added upon and to learn good from evil so that we may become like Christ.

Frozen 2: The Next Right Thing
Right after finishing this post I heard this song while watching the movie which mirrors my heart pretty closely. Even my wife turned to me and said this is for you. 

Song:
https://youtu.be/w6g1yQV0dIY

Lyrics:
Anna

I've seen dark before, but not like this
This is cold, this is empty, this is numb
The life I knew is over; the lights are out
Hello darkness: I'm ready to succumb

I follow you around (I always have)
But you've gone to a place I cannot find
This grief has a gravity, it pulls me down
But a tiny voice whispers in my mind

You are lost, hope is gone
But you must go on
And do the next right thing

Can there be a day beyond this night
I don't know anymore what is true
I can't find my direction; I'm all alone
The only star that guided me was you

How to rise from the floor
When it's not you I'm rising for

Just do the next right thing
Take a step, step again
It is all that I can to do
The next right thing

I won't look too far ahead
It's too much for me to take
But break it down to this next breath, this next step
This next choice is one that I can make

So I'll walk through this night
Stumbling blindly toward the light
And do the next right thing
And with the dawn what comes then?
When it's clear that everything will never be the same again
Then I'll make the choice to hear that voice
And do the next right thing

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

A Message to All: Part 7: My ALS Journey: Instagram

I have friends and family that like to get updates on my life. My wife and I created an instragram account to share that journey.

Follow me on Instagram! Username: thehunt_family
https://www.instagram.com/thehunt_family?r=nametag

Monday, November 11, 2019

A Message to All: Part 6: After Life: Progression

Note: This series was inspired by my recent ALS diagnosis. See Part 1 intro. 

In part 1 I mention progression between kingdoms and how that applies to the purpose of life along with Christ. Here is some more ramblings that I've come across as well or thought of. It's been on my mind so felt to put some incomplete thoughts on it here. It illustrates the importance of this life and using that time to come unto Christ. 

Time: Three Kingdoms
The Telestial World or the world which You now reside is here. Right Here. Also the Spirit world is here, right here. 

What separates us from God is Time.
Time does not exist with God.
Therefore ask yourself this.

This Telestial world when it becomes Zion becomes Terrestial.

When the Terrestrial World meets its measure of creation it will receive its Paradisaical glory (AOF 10) and become a "sea of glass" or a great Urim a Thummin (Celestial World).

If those places are here right now but only separated by Time and Time does not exist how are they all here? How is it that the Telestial world, the Terrestrial world, and the Celestial world are all here but separated by Time?

We distinguish between them by time frames. Telestial being now, Terrestrial being Millennial and then the Celestial being post-Millennial. Yet probably never stop to ponder how they are all here. And our parsing of it by reference to time seems oddly ill-fitted to the timelessness of the afterlife. (See e.g., Rev. 10: 6.) This is suggesting a much more complex afterlife, in which, literally the ascent is by degrees as you move upward

Joseph said it would be a great while beyond the grave to learn our salvation and exaltation. We will literally move up by degrees in our perfection. This goes along with Josephs teachings on Jacob's ladder and the 7 rungs to perfection.

Jacob's Ladder:
Joseph said that you had to start at the bottom of the ladder. There are 7 rungs that correspond to the 7 degrees of angels called out in D&C. (TC)  We need to focus on this life. Moving forward. In any event, whether we ascend to the next level or not, this earth life is extremely important for everyone who comes here.  These experiences on earth are important for everyone to progress, even if only a few get to a point to move up the ladder in this life.  The Lord has worlds without ends to accomplish it all. 

A Helix: DNA
For me there has been repeated reminders that the Lord's path is straight, and does not vary from side to side, nor is there any degree of changeablness for Him. BUT His "course" (that is the pathway we find ourselves on) is "one eternal round." Meaning we are in orbit, so to speak, around Him and His pathway. For us we move in an upward spiral sometimes facing in one direction and sometimes turned around in the opposite direction as we move upward along His path. We are here to be "added upon" and sometimes that process is so incremental, so slight, and so apparently limited that we can live a lifetime and only move a single step forward toward God. But for God, who is infinite and eternal, that fulfills His promise and even His expectations for most of mankind. 

We are here to experience the difference between light and dark, good and bad, and gain knowledge of good and evil. If a man lives without God in the world and his days are few and mean, he may nevertheless rejoice in eternity for what he gained by experience here. Even the abuse inflicted upon us can turn to God's glory if we return to Him better able to know the difference between good and evil.

The Gospel plan is infinite and holds out promise for every man and woman who ever lived and died. How great a step we gain in the few years of mortality allotted to us is not as important as the experience from which we are better able to discern between good and evil.

I have little hope for Zion, because that will require pure hearts, penitent and submissive men and women, and faith in Christ as a principal of action. But I have great hope for mankind. If all men's deeds were illuminated by the light of Christ we could all tell what errors we are making and return to the truth. That day will come. But here, in this darkened world, we are gaining experience.

Saturday, November 9, 2019

A Message to All: Part 5: Christ's Atonement

Note: This series was inspired by my recent ALS diagnosis. See Part 1 intro. 

Christ or the Messiah came among the Jews in the meridian of time that all might he drawn unto Him. Christ descended below all things that he may rise above it all so that we may also rise up if we will repent and show forth good fruits.

His life lived was the means to persuade others to believe unto him. He never controlled or coerced others to believe on Him yet those in authority felt threatened by Him. He awaits each of us only ever persuading and inviting us with gentleness and love unfeigned.

He led by example showing who, what, and how we are to worship. In His mortal ministry by healing the sick, raising the dead, giving sight to the blind, restoring hearing to the deaf, curing the leper, and ministering relief to others as he taught was but a prelude to what the Lord was now to do on the dark, oppressive night in Gethsemane. (See TC 161) By what he went through in Gethsemane by taking upon Himself the sins of the world he in return became the pro-type of the Saved man. For anything unlike Him cannot be saved (Lectures on Faith 3). The coming days of dying on the cross, burial, and resurrected 3 days later he was finally able to "finish his preparations" among the children of men. Where he can do a greater work which is the redemption of mankind.

the Lord reminds us. "Therefore I command you to repent — repent, lest I smite you by the rod of my mouth, and by my wrath, and by my anger, and your sufferings be sore — how sore you know not, how exquisite you know not, yea, how hard to bear you know not. For behold, I, God, have suffered these things for all, that they might not suffer if they would repent; But if they would not repent they must suffer even as I; which suffering caused myself, even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer both body and spirit — and would that I might not drink the bitter cup, and shrink — Nevertheless, glory be to the Father, and I partook and finished my preparations unto the children of men". (TC 4:5)

"As a result of what the Lord suffered, there is no condition — physical, spiritual, or mental — that he does not fully understand. He knows how to teach, comfort, succor, and direct any who come to Him seeking forgiveness and peace. This is why the prophet wrote: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. [Isa. 19:2] And again: Surely he hath 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. [Isa. 19:2] He obtained this knowledge by the things he suffered. He suffered that we might avoid sin by being obedient to His commandments. None of us need harm another, if we will follow Him. He knows fully the consequences of sin. He teaches His followers how to avoid sin." (TC 161:24)

He has gained the knowledge to succor all. He knows each of us and what we all need. He loves us so He gave His life. He is the savior of the world.

Believe His promise to come to you and comfort you, and take up His abode with you (John 9:8). Believe Him, because everybody is equally dependent upon Him for their hope of salvation. Never put your eternal salvation in the hands of anyone other than Jesus Christ, who paid to ransom you. Belief based upon the testimony or witness of another should never satisfy you. You should press forward and obtain your own witness of your Risen Lord. Move into action, grow beyond belief, act in conformity to the things He has asked you, and develop faith. Use that faith to develop knowledge of Him, then you will not be dependent upon anyone else for knowledge which will both save you and assure you eternal life.

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

A Message to All: Part 4: To My Fellowship Family

Note: This series was inspired by my recent ALS diagnosis. See Part 1 intro. 

What are Fellowships:
First since this is public let me explain what a Fellowship is. 

Fellowships were inspired for a way to mirror something in the heavens and structured in a way to allow the people who worship God to become as a family, to become as one, to take care of those who stand in need and to mourn with those that mourn. It's essentially home church. 

It is not a church but just a group of believers that wish to worship God in their own homes as the people did in New testament times. Loosely structured and free to do what each is felt led to do. No man above another. 

I've met many people on my spiritual path that I have bonded with and created intimate relationships with but there are only a few  that I have consistently fellowshipped with that I regard as my family. They don't replace my family for my immediate family is always my focus and love but they are those who seek to become as part of the family of God. They don't replace my blood family, brothers and sisters. 

I've known many of these people for 7 years. Zion can only be created by those who become the family of God. This is because unless you have that intimate relationship as "brothers and sisters and indeed" (TC 157) you can never arrive at where God is now. A hierarchical structure is Aaronic in nature. That's given to pour out destruction's and judgments upon the inhabitants of the Earth (Paraphrasing Joseph) and Melchizedek is given to extend blessings to the children of men however you have to follow the laws associated with a higher order in order to obtain those blessings. Even though Aaronic priesthood is a lesser priesthood, it is still given to offer repentance, baptism and the ministry of angels. Angels responsibilities are to declare repentance unto the children of men else there is no faith (LE Moroni 7) therefore if people follow this lower-order they can rise up to obtain the high order.

Aaronic is an association with men and an association with angels. Melchizedek is an association with God or Christ and God the Father. And by that association you are ministered with is the association you have (per the hyrum quote in Part1). Keep in mind some are not ministered to till their dying days like Stephen being stoned to death or Josephs brother who died early. 

Anytime something is based off an hierarchical structure you can know by that sign it is something of a lower order because the people couldn't come together in a way to become one. 

Enoch, who brought Zion, only calling we're told of was a teacher. That is because all people are to become equal therefore they must all take equal responsibility according to their strengths. But this has been explained elsewhere so I'll leave it at that.

To My Fellowship Family:
We have mourned together, we have cried together we have poured burdens upon each other because your burdens are my burdens and my burdens are your burdens. We seek to become one. 

You have brought me much comfort in these hard times. You've been there many times when I needed you. I have seen what tithing money that is used as originally intended for the poor can do to make all those "among us" as equals in both spiritual and temporal means so that the manifestations of the spirit may be given unrestrained.

Hundreds of thousands have been donated to take care of each other. You have shown me what the fruits of the gospel was meant to bring. Blessing single mothers to be able to take care of their families. 

I pray and hope that this people can bring again Zion and New Jerusalem temple which could occur in this generation. So few have succeeded that it may not for us as well. However I know we will gain experience through it all even if God decides to find another people.

If we do fail let it be not as those who went before but learn from their experiences paving the way for others to learn from and take a step further than towards God path. I love each and every one of you. I know each of you want to be there for me and have offered and devastated for the sad news. 

We know not what the future holds but I know the Lord will continue to guide us. And this generation will see some marvelous things along with great wickedness as the spirit of God continues to withdrawal from the wickedness of the world.

I know things can be hopeless at times seeing the imperfections of men but with God all things are possible. We can take the weak things of the world and make them strong. Don't ever loose that sense of humor. And the chillant personalities which each has in their own way. The path to God can be lonely at times but that humor really can bring great relief in times of distress. Its been a great relief to me.

Maybe I can visit with you from the other side assuming I'm allowed to 🤣. Of course my family and kids takes priority.

June 3, 2017: Provo Canyon Meetup:
I felt to post my journal entry from this day. Many of us, being in different states, met up in Provo Canyon. It was a great experience. I loved how we decided to draw sticks, like old testament times, to decide who was to bless the sacrament to help promote equality. The paragraphs below are from my journal. 

"My fellowship met up Provo canyon for a bon fire and to talk and to just meet up. We talked, had dinner, discussed signs and how nothing is random and how we should pay attention to them. Chatted about mundane things. It was a great time.

As we were preparing to leave the moon had a large halo around it. Pondering it while I drove home I asked two questions.

What does it represent? The halo represents God's work or ordinances among man and how the moon radiates a greater light and all those within the halo have accepted or heard gods words and are benefeiting from the light that imnates from the moon and outward (insde the halo). Only those within the halo receive benefit, those all could receive it if they wished, those who see it but not within it. 

The second question I don't remember word for word but it was something like, Why was it given? It was given as a sign to us of God's work with us or groups of people. It was a sign to our fellowship. I also noticed as I drove home, it could not be seen in SLC nor tooele county areas so the sign rested above provo canyon where we were staying."