Precepts of Power

A blog on gospel, scriptural, and self-improvement topics for a Latter-day Saint audience

Four Ways to Turn Thanksgiving from a Holiday into a Holy Day

The origins of Thanksgiving are found in the 1621 feast shared by the Pilgrims and Native Americans. It also has origins in the Israelite Feast of Ingathering.

How Can I Trust the Bible When Its Origins Are So Complex?

By imagining how future generations might misinterpret the origins of modern texts, we can learn how to trust in the Bible despite its complex past.

No Calling Is Only Temporal: Stephen’s Example in Acts 6

Stephen did not limit his activities to the seemingly temporal aspects of his calling. Do we sometimes make that mistake when called to “logistical” roles?

How to Respond When We Feel that God Discriminates: Lessons from the Canaanite Woman of Matthew 15

Like the Canaanite woman, we may sometimes feel like second-class citizens in God’s eyes. But if we humbly submit to God’s will, we can still receive miracles.

7 Keys for Finding Abundance: Lessons from Jesus Feeding the 5,000

From the account of Jesus miraculously feeding the 5,000, we learn seven keys to unlocking an abundant mindset and lifestyle.

Why the SEC/Ensign Peak Advisors Settlement Doesn’t Trouble Me (or, Why I Don’t Mind that Christ’s Church Has Money)

Does the Ensign Peak Advisors / SEC ruling mean that the Church of Jesus Christ is a corrupt corporation that hordes wealth instead of helping the poor? No. Here’s why.

Esau Ended Up with the Birthright (Kind Of)

When we examine the full arc of Jacob and Esau’s story, Jacob’s underhanded obtaining of the blessing becomes a powerful polemic against strife and deceit.

Uruk: A Possible Historical Setting for the Tower of Babel

Does the Tower of Babel story recount an actual historical event? The city of Uruk in early Mesopotamian history bears striking parallels to this biblical tale.

Data: Use of Modern (Non-KJV) Bible Translations among Latter-day Saints

The results of a (very ad hoc) study I conducted on how often Latter-day Saints use non-KJV translations of the Bible, and the main reasons they do or do not.

The King James Version vs. Modern Bible Translations: Pros and Cons

Why is the King James Version (KJV) the official English Bible used by Latter-day Saints? What are its advantages? What are the advantages of supplementing it with a more modern translation? If I do, which modern translation should I use?

4 More Troubleshooting Questions for Prayer

Four self-assessment “troubleshooting” questions to ask ourselves when we’re petitioning the heavens with faith but seem to be getting no response.

Why We Need Angels in Addition to the Holy Ghost

The scriptures abound with promises that angels can attend us. But what role can angels play in our lives that the Holy Ghost doesn’t already fill?

Righteousness: It’s About Quality, Not Quantity

Sometimes we can feel overwhelmed by the many things we feel commanded to do. But God cares more about quality (who we are) than quantity (what we get done).

Prayer: A Troubleshooting Guide

When an appliance misfunctions, we troubleshoot it. This post offers a “troubleshooting guide” for some common reasons we fail to receive answers to prayers.

Developing the Technique of Prayer

When we fail to receive answers to our prayers, often the solution lies not in increasing our faith or desire, but in developing better technique.

The Power of Emotional Mindfulness

Emotional mindfulness is a prerequisite to taking responsibility for our emotions and developing full emotional self-control. But how do we develop it?

Goals as a Means, Not an End

The value of goals is not so much in achieving them, but in how the process of setting and striving for goals alters our behavior.

6 Reasons We Use Rituals in Our Everyday Lives

Did you know that birthday parties include rituals? And so do weddings, and Eagle court of honors? Our lives are full of secular rituals. Let’s explore why.

Why Ritual Is a Key Part of Worship

“Ritual.” We avoid or even shy away from the word, yet nearly all our acts of worship involve ritual. So what is ritual? Why do we use it, and how does it work?

Why We Fail to Master Basic Principles of Success

Isn’t it strange that we go through anywhere between 12 and 30 years of formal education, yet we fail to master the principles of success in the most basic areas of life?





Find value in my content? Get notified whenever I release a new article (1–2 emails a month):






Banner credit: Photo by Shogun via Pixabay.