Very few people like change. Changes are not comfortable. But nothing is more sure and guaranteed in this life than change. It happens to us all. Change is coming to this website. Unfortunately, I can’t tell you exactly how that will be seen. Allow me to explain.
For the last 9.5 years I have committed myself to writing weekly commentary on whatever it was the Church was studying at the time. During this last decade I have written a book of commentary on the Gospel Principles course, and several years worth of Priesthood and Relief Society lessons on the Teachings of the Prophets. I have written several years worth of Sunday School commentary of the weekly lessons for the entire Standard Works. And this month I finish writing my fourth year of commentary for Come, Follow Me.
As we enter a second round of Come, Follow Me, I find myself feeling pressured. Perhaps it is because my mother keeps asking me when I am going to run out of things to say. So far I have written more than a thousand articles. Frankly, I amaze myself each time I come up with something new to say. Many of my writings were given to me in the dead of night. I would wake up already mentally writing the article, so I would get up and go commit it to paper then go back to bed. Yes, many nights with very little sleep.
Many of my articles and commentaries have been compiled into books available on this website (gospelstudy.us). Many of them still need to be compiled. I have already published a two-volume set for the New Testament from Come, Follow Me, the original year of its debut. I’m now working on compiling and publishing the other three years into their respective volumes.
Unfortunately, each year has begun with an inward expectation that I would provide at least as much or more information and discussion than the manual we were studying from. For example, the New Testament Come, Follow Me lessons had to be split into two books. The one volume version was so big it looked like a Biology textbook from college. Each of the current volumes are more than 400 pages. And that is just for the New Testament, which is a small book.
The pressure I am feeling is that I don’t know if I will be able to keep up with quite that level of personal expectation. I know you probably don’t care how much I write. This is a very personal thing. But just in case there is anyone out there who depends on my weekly contributions to their studies, I feel like I should explain why I am changing my own expectations this coming year.
I still plan on writing for the Come, Follow Me lessons. I just don’t expect that I will be writing a book’s worth each year from here on out. With that emotional weight lifted from my shoulders, I expect one of two things to happen. Either I will branch out and write about other topics that occur to me to write about or I will actually write more on the Come, Follow Me lessons than I ever have. Time will tell.
My favorite general topic in the gospel is the plan of salvation, how it works, and how the parts work together to promote our happiness and success. I have already written one book on the plan of salvation. I think I would like to rewrite it in an expanded form. But that is for a future day.
I hope you will be patient with me while I explore where I belong in this world. The Lord has blessed me with the ability to explain things and simplify things, even complicated things. If I stop writing I will be held accountable for squandering that talent. Besides, I love to write. If you are willing to return to this site, I will have something for you to read, and all of it will be uplifting and useful. I promise. If you have questions you would like me to consider for articles or short answers, please ask them. I read every comment I receive, whether on Facebook or in the comments section of the articles on the website. I also answer everyone who sends me an email with a question. Thank you for reading and searching this site. There is a lot of great material here for talks, study, and general understanding. I hope to see you around in the coming years.
Kelly P. Merrill