Sunday, May 30, 2021

May 24-30: D&C 58-59

This lesson covers revelations given in Jackson County, Missouri. 

Many of us don't appreciate the significance of Independence, Missouri, in the early 1800s. It was the key point for travel westward. 

In retrospect, it's easy to see how powerful it would have been for the Saints to establish Zion here. Everyone traveling west would have passed through here and learned about the Restoration.

As the lesson manual points out, though, the early Saints had a lot of work to do. They Lord didn't ask them to come to Zion. He needed them to build Zion.

Just like today.

Which is why I post on my HowtoZion blog.


Louis and Clark traveled through the Independence area in June, 1804. Today, you can visit the Lewis and Clark Historic Point at Kaw Point, which is at the confluence of the Kansas and Missouri Rivers in Kansas City, not far from Independence.

The Oregon Trail began at Independence Landing, where people disembarked from the steamboats after arriving from St. Louis. 

People traveled over the Oregon Trail by foot or on horseback from about 1811 to 1840. In 1836, a wagon trail was organized in Independence. The trail had been cleared to Fort Hall in Idaho. 

An excellent interactive map helps clarify the locations of these events in Church history. 

Click on this link:

When I read sections 58-59, and I think of the Lord's desire for the Saints to build Zion there, I think of Elder Uchtdorf's talk in the October 2020 General Conference titled "God Will Do Something Unimaginable."

How many times in the early years of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints did the Saints despair and wonder if God had forgotten them? But through persecutions, perils, and threats of extermination, the Lord God of Israel had something else in mind for His little flock. Something unimaginable.

What do we learn from these examples—and the hundreds of others in the scriptures?

What is needed during times of crisis is calm and clear-headed trust.

How do we do this?

We face the facts and return to the fundamentals, to the basic gospel principles, to what matters most.
You strengthen your private religious behavior—like prayer and scripture study and keeping God’s commandments. You make the decisions based on best proven practices.

Focus on the things you can do and not on the things you cannot do.

My dear friends, my beloved brothers and sisters, God will watch over and shepherd you during these times of uncertainty and fear. 

He knows you. He hears your pleas. He is faithful and dependable. He will fulfill His promises.

God has something unimaginable in mind for you personally and the Church collectively—a marvelous work and a wonder.

Section 59 was given shortly after the land was consecrated for the future temple in Independence. Here are some photos I've taken in Independence that give a sense of what it's like now. We'll discuss these in more detail in future weeks.

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