Thursday, October 15, 2009

Our Perfect Example

Two weeks ago, my brother and his wife joined us for General Conference. It's a time when members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (and anyone else who cares to) join together to listen to our prophet, the apostles, and other church leaders give advice and counsel inspired by the Lord.

One of the main messages this time around that was most important to me was the testimony that each of us can receive revelation. That is, God will speak to us individually for our individual problems. This revelation comes most often as feelings of comfort or peace that help confirm a course of action, or things will stand out during my scripture reading I hadn't noticed before that seem to have a bearing on what I'm praying about. They particularly emphasized that parents have a right to receive revelation to help their children - that God wants to give us direction and help. It was a beautifully comforting message, and one that Joy and I have witnessed on a number of occasions in the last month.

Another of the main themes was that we should do anything we do out of love. President Henry B. Eyring, one of our prophet's two counselors, stood out to me particularly on that topic. You can find his talk "Our Perfect Example" in print, or as a video if you scroll down a bit.

As we strive to be like Jesus, he said, we need to "
pray unto the Father with all the energy of heart, that ye may be filled with this love" (Moroni 7:48). "Love is the motivating principle by which the Lord leads us along the way towards becoming like Him. ... The greatest joys and the greatest sorrows we experience are in family relationships. The joys come from putting the welfare of others above our own. That is what love is. And the sorrow comes primarily from selfishness, which is the absence of love. The ideal God holds for us is to form families in the way most likely to lead to happiness and away from sorrow."

He gave these words of counsel to couples: "Pray for the love which allows you to see the good in your companion. Pray for the love that makes weaknesses and mistakes seem small. Pray for the love to make your companion’s joy your own. Pray for the love to want to lessen the load and soften the sorrows of your companion." He also counseled about reaching out to wayward children, about how children can show love for parents, and about showing love for people not in our families.

He promised that as we would strive to be filled with love and give that love to others, we will feel the approval of Jesus and our Father more in our lives. We will have more peace and contentment in our lives.

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