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Hi I'm Betty Barney Lester

I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I was raised on a farm in eastern Arizona where my five siblings and I learned the value of hard work, honesty, dependability, integrity, and believing in God. I earned a BS from Brigham Young University and an MS from Arizona State University and became a business teacher. As my family increased, I chose to be a stay at home mom and substitute school teacher. I am the mother of three daughters, two sons, and ten grandchildren. When I was 35, I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis which changed my life. I was always very athletic and had to give up participating in sports. I have had periods of severe pain but with the help of good doctors and modern medicine, I have been able to live a fairly normal life and be active. I have travelled all over the world. In 2005 at the age of 68, my husband succumbed to cancer. In fact I lost my husband, mother and father all within one year. As a widow, my home half of the year is in Eagar in the White Mountains of Arizona and the other half in Mesa. My days are spent managing seven rentals, making my yard and home beautiful, quilting, scrap booking, visiting my family and friends, traveling the world, reading the scriptures and serving in my church. I served two family history missions for my church. Family history is one of my greatest passions and I serve at the Mesa Family History Center two shifts a week the months I am in Mesa. I am grateful to live in such a wonderful world where I have so many amazing friends and family.

Why I am a Mormon

I was very fortunate to be born into a Mormon family--But that’s not why I’m a Mormon. I was never forced to go to church and I definitely was not brainwashed. I chose to be a Mormon from a very early age and have always stayed true to its precepts. The older I get, the more I read and ponder the Bible and Book of Mormon, the more I know they testify of the same things and one is a witness of the other. Jesus is our savior and his atonement makes it possible for us to repent and fix the things we can’t fix ourselves. I believe this is the same church that existed in Jesus' day with Priesthood, prophets, temples, ordinances for the dead, and revelation. This is the dispensation of the fullness of times with the restoration of all things. There is good in all religions, but I have what they have and more. Joseph Smith did see God the Father and his son Jesus Christ and was the one chosen to start this great work of the restoration of all things. He was martyred for this cause. He could have bolted and run because the price he paid was high—but he didn't even though he was persecuted, ridiculed, falsely accused and imprisoned his whole life. He knew and he knew that God knew and he dare not deny. His enemies thought Mormonism would go away with his death, but it only got stronger and now fills the whole earth. The world in general is not interested in religion, but Mormonism has the answers to all of life’s deepest spiritual questions. I have seen modern miracles, felt the burning in my bosom, had prayers answered, practiced a proven law of health, received blessings too numerous to mention which has given me a wonderful life, much of which I owe to my membership in the LDS Church. Why would I not want to be a Mormon? It is my life. I don’t fully understand everything, but I have all I need to know and I believe it with all my heart. I know that I can return to my heavenly home when I complete my mission on earth. My faith gets me through the hard times.

How I live my faith

How do I practice my religion—by being steadfast and trying to live it every day. I am far from perfect, but perfection is my desire and goal. I try to set a good example of a disciple of Jesus Christ. I ask myself often “What would He do?” and then I try to do it. I pray almost every day to be able to be worthy to receive the promptings of the Holy Ghost. God knows what we need but He wants us to pray to Him and ask for the blessings we need. I have had trials and adversity in my life, but I have tried to grow and learn something from these experiences. I don’t like to call them “trials or adversity” because I think life is an adventure and we should savor all of life’s tests and score as high as we can. Sometimes I have said, “Whatever I’m supposed to learn from this, I hope I can learn it soon!” I want to be kind and love and respect all people. God will forgive who he will, but of us it is required to forgive all. As we forgive so we will be forgiven. I am very independent and try to stay out of debt and provide for me and my family. I try to be of service to my fellowman and to allow them to serve me when I need it. I am so grateful to belong to a “ward family.”. I try to be honest and trustworthy. I try to attend the temple as often as I can for that enables me to put off worldly things and feel closer to God which in turn helps me to live an honorable life. I would like to be like Alma when he said “O that I were an angel, and could have the wish of mine heart, that I might go forth and speak with the trump of God, with a voice to shake the earth, and cry repentance unto every people!”