We achieve that abundant life not by focusing on our own needs or on our own achievements but by becoming true disciples of Jesus Christ—by following in His ways and engaging in His work. We find the abundant life by forgetting ourselves and engaging in the great cause of Christ. And what is the cause of Christ? It is to believe in Him, love as He loved, and do as He did.
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He ministered to the powerless, the weak, and the friendless. He spent time with them; He spoke with them.
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He shared eternal truths that set people free spiritually as well as temporally. The healing hands of Jesus Christ reach out to all who seek Him. Of course, we must do more than merely have an intellectual understanding of the gospel for it to have this healing influence in our lives. We must incorporate it into our lives—make it a part of who we are and what we do. Believing God leads to faith in Him and developing trust in His word. Faith causes our hearts to grow in our love for God and others.
As that love grows, we are inspired to emulate the Savior as we continue our own great journey on the path of discipleship. It is not the aphorism that cures. It is the love of God that rescues, restores, and revives. Even when you think that you are not lovable, He reaches out to you. This very day—every day—He reaches out to you, desiring to heal you, to lift you up, and to replace the emptiness in your heart with an abiding joy.
Striving for Perfection
He desires to sweep away any darkness that clouds your life and fill it with the sacred and brilliant light of His unending glory. And it is my witness as an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ that all who come unto God—all who truly believe, love, and do —can experience the same. For some, the act of believing is difficult.
Sometimes our pride gets in the way. Perhaps we think that because we are intelligent, educated, or experienced, we simply cannot believe in God. And we begin to look at religion as foolish tradition. In my experience, belief is not so much like a painting we look at and admire and about which we discuss and theorize. It is more like a plow that we take into the fields and, by the sweat of our brow, create furrows in the earth that accept seeds and bear fruit that shall remain.
Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. The scriptures reveal that the more we love God and His children, the happier we become.
It is this endless compassion that allows us to more clearly see others for who they are. Through the lens of pure love, we see immortal beings of infinite potential and worth and beloved sons and daughters of Almighty God. Once we see through that lens, we cannot discount, disregard, or discriminate against anyone. We know that it requires repetitive practice to become good at anything.
It offers a place to practice living the way He taught and blessing others the way He did. As Church members, we are given callings, responsibilities, and opportunities to reach out in compassion and minister to others. Recently, the Church has placed a renewed emphasis on ministering, or serving or loving others. The World According to Jesus His Blueprint for the Best Possible World. This marvellously accessible book, full of down to earth practicality and refreshing wisdom, is a must for any discussion group or individual committed to a genuine, progressive vision of an enlightened humanity without borders that divide.
Lee , — Lee taught the importance of following the example of the Savior as we strive for perfection:. It is impossible for us here in mortality to come to that state of perfection of which the Master spoke, but in this life we lay the foundation on which we will build in eternity; therefore, we must make sure that our foundation is laid on truth, righteousness and faith.
The first essential I would name in order to qualify is: There must be awakened in the individual who would be taught or who would live perfectly an awareness of his needs. The rich young ruler did not need to be taught repentance from murder nor from murderous thoughts. He did not have to be schooled in how to repent from adultery, nor from stealing, lying, defrauding, or failing to honor his mother.
His need and his lack were to overcome his love for worldly things, his tendency to trust in riches. And then Jesus prescribed the effective remedy: Enos, the grandson of Lehi, tells of the wrestle he had before God, before he received a remission of his sins. We are not told what his sins were, but he apparently confessed them very freely. The poor in spirit, of course, means those who are spiritually needy, who feel so impoverished spiritually that they reach out with great yearning for help. The second essential for perfection that I would name is found in the conversation the Master had with Nicodemus.
He discerned as Nicodemus came to Him that he was seeking to have the answer to what many others had asked Him: And how is one born again? That is the same question that Enos asked.
And you remember the simple answer that came back: And many years pass away before he shall manifest himself in the flesh; wherefore, go to, thy faith hath made thee whole. Romney and I were sitting in the office one day when a young man came in. He was getting ready to go on a mission, and he had been interviewed in the usual way and had made confessions of certain transgressions of his youth.
How can I know that I have been forgiven? As we talked, Brother Romney said: And they all cried aloud with one voice, saying: O have mercy, and apply the atoning blood of Christ that we may receive forgiveness of our sins, and our hearts may be purified; for we believe in Jesus Christ , the Son of God, who created heaven and earth, and all things; who shall come down among the children of men.
And it came to pass that after they had spoken these words the Spirit of the Lord came upon them, and they were filled with joy, having received a remission of their sins, and having peace of conscience, because of the exceeding faith which they had in Jesus Christ. You cannot have a Christlike life … without being born again.
One would never be happy in the presence of the Holy One of Israel without this cleansing and purifying. And then finally the third essential: Spiritual certainty that is necessary to salvation must be preceded by a maximum of individual effort.