“As Many as I Love, I Rebuke and Chasten” D. Todd Christofferson Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles The very experience of enduring chastening can refine us and prepare us for greater spiritual privileges. Our Heavenly Father is a God of high expectations. His expectations for us are expressed by His Son, Jesus Christ, in these words: “I would that ye should be perfect even as I, or your Father who is in heaven is perfect” ( 3 Nephi 12:48 ). He proposes to make us holy so that we may “abide a celestial glory” ( D&C 88:22 ) and “dwell in his presence” ( Moses 6:57 ). He knows what is required, and so, to make our transformation possible, He provides His commandments and covenants, the gift of the Holy Ghost, and most important, the Atonement and Resurrection of His Beloved Son. In all of this, God’s purpose is that we, His children, may be able to experience ultimate joy, to be with Him eternally, and to become even as He is. Some years ago Elder Dallin H. Oaks explained: “The Fin
"[The] test [of life] is part of the purpose God had for us in the Creation. "The Prophet Joseph Smith gave us the Lord's description of the test we face. Our Heavenly Father created the world with His Son, Jesus Christ. We have these words to tell us about the purpose of the Creation: 'We will go down, for there is space there, and we will take of these materials, and we will make an earth whereon these may dwell; And we will prove them herewith, to see if they will do all things whatsoever the Lord their God shall command them' (Abraham 3:24-25). "So, the great test of life is to see whether we will hearken to and obey God's commands in the midst of the storms of life. It is not to endure storms, but to choose the right while they rage. And the tragedy of life is to fail in that test and so fail to qualify to return in glory to our heavenly home." Henry B. Eyring , "Spiritual Preparedness: Start Early and Be Steady," Ensign, Nov. 2005, 3
By President Gordon B. Hinckley Gordon B. Hinckley, "“If Ye Be Willing and Obedient”", Liahona , June 1995, 3 Some time ago I stood in Trafalgar Square in London and looked up at the statue of Lord Nelson. At the base of the column are his words uttered on the morning of the Battle of Trafalgar: “England expects every man to do his duty.” Lord Nelson was killed on that historic day in 1805, as were many others; but England was saved as a nation, and Britain became an empire. The image of duty and obedience has been seriously tarnished since that time. This condition is not exactly new; it is as old as human history. Isaiah declared to ancient Israel: “If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land: “But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it” ( Isa. 1:19–20 ). I recall sitting in the Salt Lake Tabernacle when I was 14 or 15—up in the balcony right behind the clock—and hearing President Heber J.
On 28 July 1847, four days after his arrival in that valley, Brigham Young stood upon the spot where now rises the magnificent Salt Lake Temple and exclaimed to his companions: "Here [we will build] the Temple of our God!" (James H. Anderson, "The Salt Lake Temple," Contributor [The Young Men's Mutual Improvement Associations of Zion], no. 6, April 1893, p. 243). Its grounds would cover an eighth of a square mile, and it would be built to stand through eternity. Who cares about the money or stone or timber or glass or gold they don't have? So what that seeds are not even planted and the Saints are yet without homes? Why worry that crickets will soon be coming--and so will the United States Army? They just marched forth and broke ground for the most massive, permanent, inspiring edifice they could conceive. And they would spend forty years of their lives trying to complete it. The work seemed ill-fated from the start. The excavation for the basement
Genuine hope is urgently needed in order to be more loving even as the love of many waxes cold; more merciful, even when misunderstood or misrepresented; more holy, even as the world ripens in iniquity; more courteous and patient in a coarsening and curt world; and more full of heartfelt hope, even when other men’s hearts fail them. Whatever our particular furrow, we are to ‘plow in hope,’ without looking back or letting yesterday hold tomorrow hostage (1 Cor. 9:10). Neal A. Maxwell , "Brightness of Hope,"Ensign, Nov. 1994, 3
"We believe in being virtuous. This may have nothing whatever to do with sexual morality; that is covered by the word chaste. V irtuous, in this case, I believe, means having strength—the strength to do whatever needs doing. Great virtue comes in doing well and consistently the everyday, often rather tedious tasks of life. Blaise Pascal said that 'the strength of a man’s virtue should not be measured by his special exertions, but by his habitual acts' ( Pensées ). Your virtue will be attained through deliberate practice of those things that bring strength and purity to your life—such things as prayer; consistent study of the scriptures; timely payment of your financial obligations, especially an honest tithe; careful adherence to the law of health, which we call the Word of Wisdom; and faithful observance of all the commandments of God. These and other goodly practices performed on a habitual basis will yield great virtue." Gordon B. Hinckely, " True to t
"Brothers and sisters, whatever your distress, please don't give up and please don't yield to fear. I have always been touched that as his son was departing for his mission to England, Brother Bryant S. Hinckley gave young Gordon a farewell embrace and then slipped him a handwritten note with just five words taken from the fifth chapter of Mark: 'Be not afraid, only believe.'(Mark 5:36 ). I think also of that night when Christ rushed to the aid of His frightened disciples, walking as He did on the water to get to them, calling out, 'It is I; be not afraid.' Peter exclaimed, 'Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water.' Christ's answer to him was as it always is every time: ' Come,' He said. Instantly, as was his nature, Peter sprang over the vessel's side and into the troubled waters. While his eyes were fixed upon the Lord, the wind could toss his hair and the spray could drench his robes, but all was well—he