Hi Allie, I think the photo on Jim's forum is the default one because I didn't upload anything; but yes, I do have a website: www.nataliehunsaker.com. Please know I'm not leaving the discussion in anger...I just have so much to do! This has become too absorbing and just when I thought we were getting somewhere, it turned backward again. I'd still like to give you a big hug if we ever meet in person :)
Thank you for the invitation. Perhaps timing of this discussion will be better served when that which is familiar to us fails. I've been blessed to enjoy failure of what is familiar to me already. Prior to that I could not see and I could not hear -- I just couldn't. I now understand why he said, "What must I do to bring them out from under this condemnation." It isn't because we are not willing, we simply cannot see or hear. I hope the Lord has a back up plan that offers the opportunity for scales to fall as lovingly and patently as he has enabled me in these matters.
As a side note, I think it is interesting that Allie’s friend who is dirt poor received the answer that he received. It’s plausible. But I also believe that even if we are dirt poor, we can (like Nephi) do all things that the Lord has commanded us to do. Vaughn J. Featherstone said,
“I bear my humble witness to you that the great God of heaven will open doors and means in a way we never would have supposed, to help all those who truly want a years supply… All we have to do is to decide, commit to it, and then keep the commitment. Miracles will take place…” -Vaughn J. Featherstone (Ensign May 1976, pg. 116)
I just remembered, I think you sent me this quote. : )
As far as your question is concerned, "Where is the dividing line between being self-sufficient and trusting in the Lord?" I think of this quote by Joseph Smith,
"Let us cheerfully do all things that lie in our power; and then may we stand still, with the utmost assurance..."
Cheerfully doing all that lies within our power to be self-reliant qualifies us for assurance, for grace and for care beyond our own abilities. Only the Lord can say when your all is enough. I'd love to know what He says.
I can't seem to comment here either. Maybe I'll send it in two parts :)
I did want to post on Melody's comment--
This comes from the November Ensign of 1980. Ironically it is a talk given by Ezra Taft Benson about the importance of self-reliance and providing in the Lord's way (but I'll just quote the parts that pertain directly.) This affirms Allie’s advice. President Benson says,
"The counsel from Church authorities has been consistent over the years and is well summarized in these words:
'First, and above and beyond everything else, LET US LIVE RIGHTEOUSLY. …
'Let us avoid debt as we would avoid a plague; where we are now in debt, let us get out of debt; if not today, then tomorrow.
'Let us straitly and strictly live within our incomes, and save a little.
'Let every head of every household see to it that he has on hand enough food and clothing, and, where possible, fuel also, FOR AT LEAST a year ahead.' "
If you already have a year's supply of food, clothing and fuel, I think that Allie gives good advice to seek personal revelation regarding the matter. I don't think we can judge whether or not others are going to extremes since the counsel is to have AT LEAST a year's supply. Although I do agree that our preparations should not become our God. It would be a real test of faith to leave with only what we could carry--but it’s nothing I would put past the Lord.
It looks like this discussion has been closed, but I really liked your last post. I would love to get together with you even if Jim does not. You would be fun to talk to. Natalie is my sister, and I think we could have a good time. Call me. (801)756-6260