Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Elder Ronald A. Rasband on the power of willing obedience

Elder Ronald A. Rasband (born February 6, 1951) served as a Seventy beginning in 2000.  He was the senior president of the Seventy when he was called to the Quorum of Twelve Apostles in October 2015. This talk was given in a General Priesthood session of conference when he was serving as a Seventy.
"What are some ways we can fortify ourselves in troubled times, that we may be 'instruments in the hands of God to bring about this great work' (Alma 26:3)? Let’s look to the scriptures.
"We are obedient. The Lord commanded Father Lehi to send his sons back to Jerusalem to 'seek the records, and bring them down hither into the wilderness' (1 Ne 3:4). Lehi didn’t question; he didn’t wonder why or how. Nor did Nephi, who responded, 'I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded' (1 Ne 3:7).
"Do we act with the willing obedience of Nephi? Or are we more inclined to question God’s commands as did Nephi’s brothers, whose lack of faith eventually turned them away from the Lord? Obedience, exercised with 'holiness of heart' (D&C 46:7), is what the Lord asks of us."
- Ronald A. Rasband, "Build a Fortress of Spirituality and Protection," General Conference April 2019
Click here to read or listen to the full talk

As we work to "strengthen home and family" in troubled and challenging times, one of the greatest keys to our efforts of fortification is the simple, eternal concept of obedience. Our willingness to be humble followers of the Savior, striving in every way to live His commandments and instructions, will result in power and strength that we desperately need.

The concept of "willing obedience" is a subtle but important clarification as well. When we are grudging or questioning in every act of our lives, we will not obtain the same results:


Our love of the Savior and testimony of His work should make it easy to obey with "holiness of heart." I love the statement of President Ezra Taft Benson: "When obedience ceases to be an irritant and becomes our quest, in that moment God will endow us with power." (Quoted by Elder Donald L. Staheli, "Obedience—Life’s Great Challenge," General Conference April 1998)

(Compilation and commentary by David Kenison, Orem, Utah, 2019)

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