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The crucial test of life (Packer)

"We want our children and their children to know that the choice in life is not between fame and obscurity, nor is the choice of life between wealth and poverty.  The choice is between good and evil, and that is a very different matter indeed.   When we finally understand this lesson, thereafter our happiness will not be determined by material things.  We may be happy without them or successful in spite of them.  Wealth and prominence do not always come from having earned them.  Our worth is not measured by renown or by what we own...Our lives are made up of thousands of everyday choices.  Over the years these little choices will bundle together and show clearly what we value.  The crucial test of life, I repeat, does not center in the choice between fame and obscurity, nor between wealth and poverty.  The greatest decision of life is between good and evil."  President Boyd K. Packer, October 1980 GC

Each of us has some control over finding joy (Truman G. Madsen)

“For it is not chance but choice that is involved here. Each of us has some control over finding joy. To paraphrase Elder Marion D. Hanks: “No matter how we live, there will be pain in this world. But misery is optional.” Think about it. Christ is against selfishness and sin – not because He is the giant spoilsport, but the other way around. He is against sin and selfishness because He is against despondency and melancholy and morbidity. He is against the shrinking of our capacity for fulfillment. On this He is the world’s leading expert. He knows. As the book of Hebrews has it, “For the joy that was set before him [He] endured the cross” (Hebrews 12:2). Whose joy did He envision? Ours. He saw beyond our sins and stupidities and our clumsy mistakes. He knows what we have within us to become. And having paid the awful price in blood, He is entitled to alert us to reality. This changes the kinds of questions we ask of life. Instead of “What’s in it for me?” we ask, “What’s in it for tho

a personal citadel

Each good man has in himself a quiet place wherein he lives however torn seemingly by the passions of the world. That is his citadel, which must be kept inviolate against assaults. That quiet place must be founded upon a rock and the rock must be a belief, a fervent and passionate belief, in the existence of the ultimate good, and a willingness to put forth his strength against the ultimate evil. -Dr. Foster Kennedy

The Race

THE RACE I "Quit! Give up! You're beaten!" They shout at me and plead. "There's just too much against you now. This time you can't succeed!" And as I start to hang my head In front of failure's face My downward fall is broken by The memory of a race. And hope refills my weakened will As I recall that scene For just the thought of that short race Rejuvenates my being. II A children's race; young boys, young men How I remember it well. Excitement, sure! But also fear. It wasn't hard to tell. They all lined up, so full of hope Each thought to win that race. Or tie for first, or it not that At least take second place. And fathers watched from off the side Each cheering for his son And each boy hoped to show his dad That he would be the one. The whistle blew and off they went Young hearts and hopes afire To win and be the hero there Was each young boy's desire. And one boy in particular Whose

Walking in the light, wisdom and power of God

The man who so walks in the light and wisdom and power of God, will at the last, by the very force of association, make the light and wisdom and power of God his own—weaving those bright rays into a chain divine, linking himself forever to God and God to him. This [is] the sum of Messiah’s mystic words, “Thou, Father, in me, and I in thee”—beyond this human greatness cannot achieve. B. H. Roberts, “Brigham Young: A Character Sketch,”  Improvement Era,  June 1903, 574.

Two precious gifts

Life offers you two precious gifts—one is time, the other freedom of choice, the freedom to buy with your time what you will. You are free to exchange your allotment of time for thrills. You may trade it for base desires. You may invest it in greed…Yours is the freedom to choose. But these are no bargains, for in them you find no lasting satisfaction. Every day, every hour, every minute of your span of mortal years must sometime be accounted for. And it is in  this  life that you walk by faith and prove yourself able to choose good over evil, right over wrong, enduring happiness over mere amusement. And your eternal reward will be according to your choosing. A prophet of God has said: "Men are that they might have joy"—a joy that includes a fullness of life, a life dedicated to service, to love and harmony in the home, and the fruits of honest toil—an acceptance of the Gospel of Jesus Christ—of its requirements and commandments. Only in these will you find true happines