Posted by: 2thdocbob | 18 October 2020

Anxiously Engaged

IW

We have returned to High Council speaking assignments again, after an 8 month pause. Although we are not yet allowed to meet in person, it was a joy to meet with my fellow saints in the Rancho San Bernardino Ward today. I also deeply appreciate Michael Rowley’s sharing his talents as an interpreter for me. The Spirit can communicate in any language, but it makes a difference when you can hear the gospel preached in your native tongue.

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My dear brothers and sisters, it is a privilege to join with you today. I wish we could all meet together in the chapel, but I know we will be able to do that soon. I never thought that technology would be such a blessing to us.

I bring you the love and greetings from President Johnson and his Counselors. They are all good men; they are men of God.

I express my love for you as well. I am grateful for your kindness and friendship, and I miss being with you.

I hope you were able to watch or listen to General Conference two weeks ago. The messages were powerful and inspiring. Some of the messages were answers to my prayers. As I listen to General Conference, I try to pay attention to what the Lord wants me to do, and then try to do it.

I have been assigned to speak on Doctrine & Covenants 58:27-29. These verses, and the entire Section tie in well with many of the conference talks we just heard. Remember that the sections in the Doctrine & Covenants are revelations, given to the prophet Joseph Smith and others. When this revelation was given, the members of the Church were very interested in establishing Zion.

The Lord revealed that there would be “a supper of the house of the Lord, well prepared, unto which all nations shall be invited. …

“And after that cometh the day of my power; then shall the poor, the lame, and the blind, and the deaf, come in unto the marriage of the Lamb, and partake of the supper of the Lord, prepared for the great day to come.” (D&C 58:9, 11)

The supper of the Lord refers specifically to the sacrament. But in these verses, it also refers to temple covenants that we make with our Heavenly Father. Notice that he says that all nations shall be invited. What did President Nelson tell us? “God does not love one race more than another. … He invites all to come unto Him, ‘black and white, bond and free, male and female’ (2 Nephi 26:33).”

President Ballard reminded us in Conference that after we have prayed, we must stand up and serve our brothers and sisters. Elder Godoy reminded us that we can be angels to those who need our help. We need to show God’s love to all hi Children.

Now let me read the verses I am speaking of:

27 “Verily I say, men should be anxiously engaged in a good cause, and do many things of their own free will, and bring to pass much righteousness;

28 “For the power is in them, wherein they are agents unto themselves. And inasmuch as men do good they shall in nowise lose their reward.

29 But he that doeth not anything until he is commanded, and receiveth a commandment with doubtful heart, and keepeth it with slothfulness, the same is damned.” (D&C 58:27-29)

What does it mean to be anxiously engaged? It means to be actively involved in the work we must do. Heavenly Father has asked us to choose to serve him. He will not force us to do anything. He wants us to choose to serve him and to bless the lives of his children. I heard that message repeatedly during General Conference.

Most of the speakers invited us to “bring to pass much righteousness.”

How do we do that?

We start by serving our brothers and sisters. I have seen you do that. My wife and I were touched when we saw the beautiful masks the sisters made earlier this year. Placing a verse of scripture in each mask made it a Christlike gift. I am sure that hearts were touched by this service. Thank you for your example to the rest of the Stake.

We bring righteousness to pass as we minister to each other. Ministering has been very important this year because we have been separated from each other. We do not need an assignment to minister. We just need to follow the Spirit. An inspired phone call or text can be very important to someone who is having a difficult time.

When I see a member of my ward at the store, I try to turn it into a ministering visit. I try to ask the right questions. When I go to 7-11 for a soda, I often see a sister from our ward going for sodas. We have had good visits, and I can check on her husband, who is not well. I am not their ministering brother, but we have both been blessed by these encounters.

I know that many of you are marvelous cooks. You could always drop off some food to someone. No one can say no to that.

We can bring righteousness to pass as we do family history research. We can prepare names for temple ordinances, even though the temple is not open. But maybe if Heavenly Father sees us preparing names to take to the temple, he will allow the temple to open sooner. If you have internet at home, you could invite a brother or sister who does not have internet to your home and help them with their family history. But remember your masks!

When we pray for opportunities to serve, the Spirit will direct us. When you feel a prompting to serve, act on it. Pay close attention to promptings about our young people. They need to know that Heavenly Father has not forgotten them. They are at risk during these difficult times. They need to feel your love and your spirit. Their souls are precious. It doesn’t matter if you are called to work with the youth or children. We all know at least one young person. Let them know they are important in God’s eyes.

My father-in-law was a contractor. I worked for him when I was in school. He would say many times “Do something, even if it is wrong!” He knew that that the Lord expects us to be agents unto ourselves, and that being busy will protect us from trouble.

In verse 29, the Lord instructs us not to wait, but to do something now. He wants us to take initiative. If we choose to act, the Spirit will guide our steps, like he did with Nephi, who said, “I was led by the Spirit, not knowing beforehand the things which I should do.” (1 Nephi 4:6) The Spirit will guide us so that we don’t do wrong. We can always rely on the Lord to bless us when we try to do his work.

Y ahora, hermanos y hermanas, trataré de compartir mi testimonio sin notas.

Yo sé que Dios vive. Él es nuestro Padre Celestial, y él nos ama.

Jesucristo es nuestro Salvador y Redentor. Él murió para nosotros.

Yo sé que Russell M. Nelson es nuestro profeta viviente hoy.

Y yo sé que El Libro de Mormón es la palabra de Dios.

En el nombre sagrado de Jesucristo, amen.

I have tried to make it a point to bear my testimony in Spanish at the close of a sermon in Rancho San Bernardino Ward. It is an expression of my love for the members of that wonderful ward.


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