Love--the Essence of the Gospel

I love Thomas S. Monson and I am thankful for this inspiring talk! At the close of his talk he said: "May we begin now, this very day, to express love to all of God’s children, whether they be our family members, our friends, mere acquaintances, or total strangers. As we arise each morning, let us determine to respond with love and kindness to whatever might come our way." I am grateful for his prophetic guidance. I know as we follow his counsel we will bring joy to others and find joy ourselves. I am thankful for the direction of our true living prophet Thomas S. Monson! He always inspires me to reach higher and become better!:)


Artwork by Breana Glasson

The Measure

The measure of success is not found in awards or fame,
Not found in grades from school work or the performance that you gave.
Not found in your appearance, or the place that you call home,
Not found in the number of friends that call you on your phone.
At last when we reach our judgement day and we stand before the bar,
We will face the reality of who we really are.
Not surrounded by distractions, status or wealth,
But surrounded by holy prophets who steadfastly lived well.
There in that moment we will know what measure is sure,
A heart that sought to do God's will, a heart made new and pure.
Then success will be measured by the quiet actions of men,
We will stand accountable for all we should have been.
No one will ask about trophies, scholarships, or degrees,
They will ask of the hungry soul that God would have us feed.
The state of our success will be found in what we gave,
Not in what we had as lived through mortal days.
The measure of a man is found within his heart,
Judge carefully my friend and seek to do your part.
For with what measure you mete it will be measured to you again,
The portion you gave others, will be yours in the end.

Poem written by Michelene Galsson

Service!

This is an amazing talk that teaches the importance of charity beautifully! In this talk Steven E. Snow of the Seventy said: "Service requires unselfishness, sharing, and giving. My wife and I learned a valuable lesson during our time of service in Africa. We were assigned to a district conference in Jinja, Uganda. Early Saturday morning before our meetings began, we took the opportunity to tour a new chapel in the area. As we arrived at the building, we were greeted by a young boy of three to four years of age. He had come to the Church grounds to see what was going on. Struck by his broad smile, Sister Snow reached in her purse and handed him a wrapped piece of hard butterscotch candy. He was delighted. We spent a few minutes touring the chapel before returning outside. We were met by more than a dozen smiling children, who each wanted to meet the new neighborhood candy lady. Phyllis was heartbroken, as she had given the boy her last piece of candy. She disappointedly gestured to the children there was no more. The small boy who initially greeted us then handed the candy back to Sister Snow, gesturing for her to unwrap it. With a heavy heart, Phyllis did so, fully expecting the boy to pop the butterscotch candy into his mouth in full view of his envious friends. Instead, to our great surprise, he went to each of his friends, who stuck out their tongues and received one delicious lick of the butterscotch candy. The young boy continued around the circle, occasionally taking his own lick, until the candy was gone." The example of the young boy in this story is one we should all follow. We should each want good for others. We should want to share and lift our fellow men.

Don't Laugh At Me

This song teaches an important message. Some not only refuse to give but actually choose to add to the suffering of others by gossiping, laughing and delighting in their suffering. This is the opposite of the great commandment to love our neighbor. The Savior made the outcome of such cruelty clear. In Matthew chapter 25 we read:" Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not. Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee? Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me." The consequence of cruelty and selfishness is to be separate from our Savior.

I love that everyone in this music video changed and that we got see the outcome of charity. It is beautiful to see the happiness and joy that filled each heart as charity guided their actions. The outcome of charity is also found in Matthew chapter 25: "Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me." I testify that our acts of charity and love bring a smile of joy to our Savior's face. I testify that the path of charity leads to the reward of eternal life, which is the greatest gift!

I chose to close this blog with a picture from A Christmas Carol because it serves as a good reminder to live a life of charity. In this scene Marley says; "I wear the chain I forged in life! I made it link by link and yard by yard! I gartered it on of my own free will and by my own free will, I wore it! In life, my spirit never rose beyond the limits of our money-changing holes! Now I am doomed to wander without rest or peace, with incessant torture and remorse!"

We have the gift of agency, we can forge a life of love and build up those around us; rather than forging a chain of regret and remorse. I pray each of us will remember that: "with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again." May we measure a full portion of charity to every hungry soul; that when our Savior returns He may call us disciple and friend!