Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

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sparky
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Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by sparky » Wed May 03, 2023 8:05 am

So DW has been invited to speak, and the topic is "Building a life resilient to the adversary," or something like that. She doesn't mind the speaking part, but hates writing talks because she feels like she never knows what to say. Personally I think that's because deep down she doesn't actually believe most of this stuff and just can't admit it to herself, but that's just my guess.

Anyway, I'm decently good at writing talks and have helped her in the past, and I offered to do so again as a way of showing my support for her. My first inclination is to help her frame it as just generally how to overcome challenges and setbacks that are just part of everyone's life, and leave out the make-believe anthropomorphized "adversary." Coincidentally, I just finished reading the book The Stoic Challenge by the philosopher William Irvine, which is all about overcoming setbacks without losing your head. I could pull some thoughts/material from there.

Any of you NOMs have other ideas or suggestions on this topic? Or if anyone has access to ChatGPT, I would love to see what it puts out in response to a prompt of something like "write a latter-day Saint sacrament meeting talk about being resilient to the adversary, but do it from a secular perpective."

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Hagoth
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by Hagoth » Wed May 03, 2023 10:33 am

I, for one, am sick and tired of The Adversary boogeyman. It would be great if she could start with a redefinition of that word, as it applies to each of us individually. The best fit for The Adversary in my life, for instance, consists of 15 men in SLC.
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Just This Guy
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by Just This Guy » Thu May 04, 2023 5:05 am

Maybe something about how to spot lies in an argument so that you can known when you are being deceived? And then go into a summary of Carl Sagan's Baloney detection kit. Throw in a couple scriptures for good measure.
"The story so far: In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move." -- Douglas Adams

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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by nibbler » Thu May 04, 2023 5:24 am

I don't know how you feel about sticking to the topic but if I were asked to give a talk I'd speak on whatever subject I'd like to talk about and ignore the suggested topic.
We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.
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Just This Guy
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by Just This Guy » Thu May 04, 2023 8:14 am

You can always take the approach of they gave her the incorrect topic. A better topic to speak on is XYZ.
"The story so far: In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move." -- Douglas Adams

Cnsl1
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by Cnsl1 » Thu May 04, 2023 10:54 pm

How about talk on "building a life resilient to adversity"? You could specifically say that worrying about a boogeyman creates unnecessary anxiety and fear, but that adversity is a constant in life, and we can do several things that help build our resiliency when adversity strikes.

We can also understand that sometimes we create our own adversity, through procrastination, poor eating, fighting with one another, etc. We're obviously not perfect, but if we cut down on creating adversity for ourselves, life automatically gets a bit easier.

We can also take care of our bodies, minds, and spirit, so that we can better handle whatever happens. Social interaction, having family and friends we can be with helps. Exercise is medicine. Education--Learning new things gives us hits of dopamine. Diet-- eating right. And don't forget sleep. Those five things have been empirically demonstrated to help us feel better. Resiliency to adversity.

And it's my personal belief that the less you worry about "the adversary", which c'mon, is just a euphemism for SATAN or LUCIFER, the less important he becomes in your life. To the point that he kinda just disappears.

Good grief.. remember when we used to find Satan in Led Zeppelin records if you played them backwards?

Every good story needs a bad guy.

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sparky
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by sparky » Fri May 05, 2023 6:05 am

Cnsl1 wrote:
Thu May 04, 2023 10:54 pm
How about talk on "building a life resilient to adversity"? You could specifically say that worrying about a boogeyman creates unnecessary anxiety and fear, but that adversity is a constant in life, and we can do several things that help build our resiliency when adversity strikes.
This is exactly along the lines I was thinking. I think I'll suggest to her that she just intentionality misread the topic to exactly your phrase here. There's lots of solid research on effective strategies for building resilience, and that's the sort of talk I might even pay attention to at church.

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Red Ryder
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by Red Ryder » Fri May 12, 2023 10:32 am

sparky wrote:
Wed May 03, 2023 8:05 am
Or if anyone has access to ChatGPT, I would love to see what it puts out in response to a prompt of something like "write a latter-day Saint sacrament meeting talk about being resilient to the adversary, but do it from a secular perpective."
Here’s your chatGPT as you typed.
“Elder Chat G. TP” wrote: Dear brothers and sisters,

Today, I would like to talk about the importance of resilience in the face of adversity. As we navigate through life, we will inevitably face challenges and setbacks that test our resolve. But with resilience, we can overcome these challenges and emerge stronger than before.

Now, you might be wondering what this has to do with our secular lives. After all, we are here in church, and we usually talk about spiritual matters. But I believe that the principles of resilience can be applied to all aspects of our lives, including our secular pursuits.

Resilience is about being able to bounce back from setbacks, failures, and disappointments. It's about having the mental toughness to keep going even when things get tough. And in our secular lives, we need resilience more than ever.

Whether it's dealing with job loss, financial struggles, health issues, or relationship problems, we all face challenges that can shake us to our core. But if we have resilience, we can face these challenges head-on and come out on top.

So, what can we do to develop resilience in our secular lives? Here are a few ideas:

First, we can cultivate a growth mindset. This means viewing challenges as opportunities for growth and learning, rather than insurmountable obstacles. When we approach challenges with a growth mindset, we are more likely to persevere and find creative solutions.

Second, we can build a strong support network. Whether it's family, friends, or colleagues, having people in our lives who believe in us and support us can make all the difference. They can provide encouragement, guidance, and a listening ear when we need it most.

Finally, we can take care of ourselves. This means prioritizing our physical and emotional well-being. Eating well, exercising, getting enough sleep, and managing stress are all important factors in building resilience.

In conclusion, brothers and sisters, resilience is a valuable trait that can help us navigate the ups and downs of life. And while we may be here in church, the principles of resilience apply to all aspects of our lives, both spiritual and secular. So let us cultivate resilience, and may it help us overcome any adversity we may face. Thank you.
And for fun, here’s in the style of vanilla ice:
Alright stop, collaborate and listen
I'm here to talk about a crucial mission
Resilience, that's what we need
To keep on going when we're feeling beat

Yo, it's not just spiritual, it's secular too
Gotta stay strong in everything we do
Life throws challenges, but we gotta stay cool
Bounce back and be better, that's the rule

To be resilient, we need a growth mindset
Turn obstacles into opportunities, no time to fret
Believe in ourselves, and we'll get there yet
Keep pushing forward, no need to regret

Having a support network is also key
People who got our back, always ready to see
Friends, family, colleagues, all can agree
Together we'll conquer, and we'll be free

Take care of ourselves, that's important too
Eating healthy, working out, and resting too
Managing stress, and doing what we love to do
Building resilience, that's the goal, woo hoo!

So let's all be resilient, it's the way to go
Overcome adversity, let our confidence show
Believe in ourselves, and we'll glow and glow
Resilience is the answer, that's the flow.
“It always devolves to Pantaloons. Always.” ~ Fluffy

“I switched baristas” ~ Lady Gaga

“Those who do not move do not notice their chains.” ~Rosa Luxemburg

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Red Ryder
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by Red Ryder » Fri May 12, 2023 10:41 am

Or princess Bride
"Hello, my dear friends,

Today, I want to talk about a concept that is as timeless as true love: resilience. Much like our favorite characters in The Princess Bride, we all face challenges that can make us feel like we're caught in the Fire Swamp or facing the R.O.U.S. But with resilience, we can overcome these obstacles and come out victorious on the other side.

Resilience is about having the strength and courage to keep going when things get tough. It's about channeling your inner Westley, and never giving up on your quest. And just like Inigo Montoya, who spent his whole life seeking revenge, we too can stay focused on our goals and overcome any obstacle in our way.

To be resilient, we must have faith in ourselves, just like Buttercup had faith that Westley would come to rescue her. We must be willing to endure hardships and keep moving forward, even when it feels like we're stuck in the Pit of Despair.

And just like Fezzik, who used his strength to carry his friends through the Fire Swamp, we must be willing to seek help and support from those around us. Whether it's our friends, family, or even a wise old Miracle Max, we can draw strength from those who love and support us.

So my dear friends, let us be like the characters in The Princess Bride, and be resilient in the face of any challenge that comes our way. With a little bit of faith, endurance, and support from those around us, we can overcome any obstacle and live happily ever after."
“It always devolves to Pantaloons. Always.” ~ Fluffy

“I switched baristas” ~ Lady Gaga

“Those who do not move do not notice their chains.” ~Rosa Luxemburg

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moksha
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by moksha » Sat May 13, 2023 1:00 am

Red Ryder wrote:
Fri May 12, 2023 10:41 am
Or Princess Bride
Could you try that with Harry Potter and the Sorcerers Stone?
Good faith does not require evidence, but it also does not turn a blind eye to that evidence. Otherwise, it becomes misplaced faith.
-- Moksha

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Red Ryder
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by Red Ryder » Sun May 14, 2023 10:15 am

Dear fellow wizards and witches,

Today, I would like to speak to you about the importance of being resilient in the face of adversity, but I would like to approach it from a Harry Potter perspective.

As we all know, the wizarding world is not without its challenges. We face numerous obstacles, including dark wizards, magical creatures, and even the occasional rogue spell. But one thing we must always remember is that we have the power within us to be resilient, to overcome these challenges, and to emerge stronger on the other side.

The adversary we face can take many forms, from the physical threats posed by Voldemort and his followers, to the emotional toll of loss and grief. But with resilience, we can stand up to these challenges and fight back against the darkness.

So how can we build resilience in our lives as wizards and witches? Here are a few suggestions:

1. Embrace your strengths - Each of us has unique talents and abilities that we can use to our advantage. Whether it's our skill with charms, our ability to fly, or our knowledge of magical creatures, we can use these strengths to help us overcome challenges.

2. Learn from failure - In the wizarding world, we don't always get things right on the first try. But every failure is an opportunity to learn and grow. By approaching challenges with a growth mindset, we can use our failures as stepping stones to success.

3. Lean on your friends - Just as Harry, Ron, and Hermione rely on each other, we too can lean on our friends for support and encouragement. Together, we can face even the most daunting challenges.

4. Take care of yourself - As wizards and witches, we must also take care of our physical and mental health. This means getting enough sleep, eating well, and practicing self-care.

5. Stay true to your values - In the face of darkness, it can be tempting to give up or compromise our values. But by staying true to what we believe in, we can maintain our sense of purpose and direction, even in the darkest of times.

In conclusion, as wizards and witches, we must be resilient in the face of adversity. By embracing our strengths, learning from failure, leaning on our friends, taking care of ourselves, and staying true to our values, we can build the resilience we need to face whatever challenges come our way. Let us be strong, courageous, and resilient as we work to defend the wizarding world from the darkness. Thank you.
“It always devolves to Pantaloons. Always.” ~ Fluffy

“I switched baristas” ~ Lady Gaga

“Those who do not move do not notice their chains.” ~Rosa Luxemburg

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sparky
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by sparky » Mon May 15, 2023 6:24 am

Thanks, RR, this is what I was hoping for :lol: (Un?)fortunately DW didn't respond to the speaking invitation in time so they gave it to someone else, but she's bound to get asked again in a few weeks, so I may need the wisdom of ChatGPT again!

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Red Ryder
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by Red Ryder » Tue May 16, 2023 11:18 am

I’d just get up in sacrament meeting and type in a theme for a talk and read the chatgpt in real time.

Wouldnt that be hilarious?
“It always devolves to Pantaloons. Always.” ~ Fluffy

“I switched baristas” ~ Lady Gaga

“Those who do not move do not notice their chains.” ~Rosa Luxemburg

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Just This Guy
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by Just This Guy » Tue May 16, 2023 12:35 pm

Red Ryder wrote:
Tue May 16, 2023 11:18 am
I’d just get up in sacrament meeting and type in a theme for a talk and read the chatgpt in real time.
The sad part is most people probably wouldn't notice. Either they will zone out like they always do, or just assume any weird nonsense is just a person goofing their talk.
"The story so far: In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move." -- Douglas Adams

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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by Linked » Tue May 23, 2023 4:55 pm

This post reminded me of my kid's recent talk.

My oldest son just gave his first sacrament meeting talk on Sunday. He was really anxious after he accepted the invitation to speak and he demanded that we sit down and write the talk immediately. We tweaked it together to improve flow, add jokes, make it personal, and give it direction. He asked me to time him while he practiced it 3 times. Then he delivered a great talk on loving everyone, getting some laughs along the way.

One thing the church does right is the exposure to public speaking. The anxiety and preparation, figuring out what you have to say. Feeling the eyes on you and the nerves is a must-have experience. 10/10.
"I would write about life. Every person would be exactly as important as any other. All facts would also be given equal weightiness. Nothing would be left out. Let others bring order to chaos. I would bring chaos to order" - Kurt Vonnegut

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sparky
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by sparky » Wed May 31, 2023 7:08 am

It didn't take long, DW has been invited to give a talk again, and the topic this time is a doozy: something like "accessing the power of God through covenants." I'm sick to death of the phrase "covenant path" [shudder] and covenants in general, as they are magical thinking at best and authoritarian control mechanisms at worst. I don't know how to twist this one into something a regular non Mormon person would find useful, which is what I try to do. I'm at a loss, any ideas on how to turn this into a secular humanism talk?

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Linked
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by Linked » Thu Jun 01, 2023 4:28 pm

sparky wrote:
Wed May 31, 2023 7:08 am
accessing the power of God through covenants
Wow, that is a brutal topic for a nonbeliever. To get to a non-magical thinking talk you have to pretty much ignore every part of the topic.

Maybe you could pick covenants which are clearly helpful and share some stories about how to maximize the helpfulness. Kind of turn the covenants bit into a favorite commandment (since we kind of covenant to obey the commandments?), and then expound on it. Like being grateful, and you can share how a gratitude journal can increase your happiness based on numerous studies.

Good luck Sparky, that's a tough topic.
"I would write about life. Every person would be exactly as important as any other. All facts would also be given equal weightiness. Nothing would be left out. Let others bring order to chaos. I would bring chaos to order" - Kurt Vonnegut

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sparky
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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by sparky » Fri Jun 02, 2023 5:53 am

Linked wrote:
Thu Jun 01, 2023 4:28 pm
sparky wrote:
Wed May 31, 2023 7:08 am
accessing the power of God through covenants
Wow, that is a brutal topic for a nonbeliever. To get to a non-magical thinking talk you have to pretty much ignore every part of the topic.

Maybe you could pick covenants which are clearly helpful and share some stories about how to maximize the helpfulness. Kind of turn the covenants bit into a favorite commandment (since we kind of covenant to obey the commandments?), and then expound on it. Like being grateful, and you can share how a gratitude journal can increase your happiness based on numerous studies.

Good luck Sparky, that's a tough topic.
Thanks Linked, that's pretty much what it'll be. I think the baptism covenant as written in Mosiah Whatever is nice, the part about mourning with those who mourn and comforting those who need it, etc. I'll probably focus on that

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Re: Helping DW with a sacrament meeting talk

Post by wtfluff » Fri Jun 02, 2023 9:10 am

"I felt inspired to speak about..." [Insert whatever chosen topic here.]

If the dudes sitting on the stage who thing they are wizards get upset with your wife then, bonus: she may never get invited to speak again.
Faith does not give you the answers, it just stops you asking the questions. -Frater Ravus

IDKSAF -RubinHighlander

You can surrender without a prayer...

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