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LESSON FOUR - Contention Drives Away the Spirit

"The Lord "doth not dwell in unholy temples," and neither does His Spirit"(Alma 7:21)

Purpose

To help any willing couple to bring and sustain the power of the Spirit in their home.
Doctrine
The devil teaches us to have the "spirit of contention" (3 Nephi 11:29) he seeks to drive the Spirit away by stirring up the hearts of the children of men in anger one against another.
As we pray earnestly, we will receive an increased influence from the Spirit.
Having the Spirit in our home should be the goal of every Latter-Day couple. When our home is an environment where the Spirit of the Lord dwells we are on the path that leads to eternal life. Many couples want the Spirit in their home, but don't know what to change differently to feel the Spirit's power more frequently. Others may know helpful things to do but lack the motivation. This lesson is designed to help any willing couple to bring and sustain the power of the Spirit in their home.

SECTION ONE

Focusing on improving ourselves, not trying to change our spouse - an Expression of Love featuring Richard G. Scott

President Benson said: "Pride is manifest in the spirit of contention."

"Essentially, pride is a 'my will' rather than 'thy will' approach to life. The opposite of pride is humbleness, meekness, submissiveness (see Alma 13:28), or teachableness.

"In the early days of the restored church, the Lord warned two of its prominent members about pride. To Oliver Cowdery, He said, 'Beware of pride, lest thou shouldst enter into temptation.' (D&C 23:1). To Emma Smith, He said, "Continue in the spirit of meekness, and beware of pride.' (D&C 25:14).

"Thou shalt not be proud in thy heart," the Lord warns us. (D&C 42:40) "Humble yourselves before God," says the Book of Mormon. (Mosiah 4:10)...

"Was it not through pride that the devil became the devil? Christ wanted to serve. The devil wanted to rule. Christ wanted to bring men to where He was. The devil wanted to be above men."

"Christ removed self as the force in His perfect life. It was not my will, but thine be done..."

"With pride, there are many curses. With humility, there come many blessings. For example, 'Be thou humble; and the Lord thy God shall lead thee by the hand, and give thee answer to thy prayers.' (D&C 112:10.) The humble will 'be made strong, and blessed from on high, and receive knowledge.' (D&C 1:28.) The Lord is 'merciful unto those who confess their sins with humble hearts.' (D&C 61:2.)"

(Ezra Taft Benson, "Cleansing the Inner Vessel," Ensign, May 1986, 4).

When seeking to improve our situations we are often tempted to try and change those around us. The only person that we can change is ourselves and then as a result others change because of our example.

Questions for Introspection(record your thoughts in a journal or some other place where you can refer back to it):
  1. Why is trying to change others not conducive to the Spirit?
  2. What can I do to build up my spouse and encourage with love?