Thursday, January 1, 2015

Jeffrey R. Holland on the start of a new year

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland (1940- ) has served as a member of the Quorum of Twelve since 1994.
"The start of a new year is the traditional time to take stock of our lives and see where we are going, measured against the backdrop of where we have been. I don't want to talk about New Year's resolutions, but I do want to talk about the past and the future, with an eye toward any time of transition and change in our lives--and those moments come virtually every day....
"You can remember just enough to avoid repeating the mistake, but then put the rest of it all on the dung heap Paul spoke of to the Philippians (3:7-12). Dismiss the destructive, and keep dismissing it until the beauty of the Atonement of Christ has revealed to you your bright future and the bright future of your family, your friends, and your neighbors. God doesn't care nearly as much about where you have been as He does about where you are and, with His help, where you are willing to go....
"This is an important matter to consider at the start of a new year--and every day ought to be the start of a new year and a new life. Such is the wonder of faith, repentance, and the miracle of the gospel of Jesus Christ....
"Faith is for the future. Faith builds on the past but never longs to stay there. Faith trusts that God has great things in store for each of us and that Christ truly is the 'high priest of good things to come' (Hebrews 9:11).
"Keep your eyes on your dreams, however distant and far away. Live to see the miracles of repentance and forgiveness, of trust and divine love that will transform your life today, tomorrow, and forever. That is a New Year's resolution I ask you to keep."
- Jeffrey R. Holland, "The Best is Yet to Be," BYU devotional given January 13, 2009; see Ensign, January 2010, pp. 22-27
Read the full talk here.
Today is January 1, 2015.  Elder Holland notes that "every day ought to be the start of a new year," but we tend to emphasize the accustomed calendar boundaries.  As I "take stock" of my life this morning, I appreciate Elder Holland's encouragement to learn from the past but not dwell on it, allowing the "beauty of the Atonement of Christ" to guide me to the future.

This profound excerpt ought to be engraven on every heart:

That's the New Year's resolution to focus on, keeping our eyes on our dreams and ensuring we are claiming "His help" as offered for every step.  And then, as promised, we will each witness "the miracles of repentance and forgiveness, of trust and divine love that will transform your life."

1 comment:

  1. I just used that very quote from Elder Holland in a talk last Sunday. I love it.


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