Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Harold B. Lee on living daily with a spirit of thankfulness

President Harold B. Lee (1899-1973) was called to the Quorum of Twelve Apostles in 1941. He served as a counselor in the First Presidency from 1970-1972, then as Church president from July 1972 until his passing less than 18 months later in December 1973.
"I once listened to a young girl's heartwarming testimony. Her father was afflicted with what the doctors had pronounced was an incurable malady. To his wife one morning, this stricken father, after a night of pain and suffering, had said with great feeling, 'I am so thankful today.' 'For what?' she asked. He replied, 'For God's giving me the privilege of one more day with you.'
"I would desire with all my heart that all would likewise thank God for one more day! For what? For the opportunity to take care of some unfinished business; to repent; to right some wrongs; to influence for good some wayward child; to reach out to someone who cries for help—in short, to thank God for one more day to prepare to meet God.
"Don't try to live too many days ahead. Seek for strength to attend to the problems of today."
- Harold B. Lee, CR, 3 October 1970, 117; Stand Ye in Holy Places p. 239

This is a tender message. It's often in the times of extremity that pure and noble emotions are expressed, as in the story shared by President Lee. A stricken man discovers real gratitude for each new day as he recognizes what the gifts and opportunities each new day presents. With the understanding that his days are limited, each day becomes precious.

But of course, each of us has limited days, and we should each live in that kind of gratitude, thanking God and showing true love and appreciation to those around us. "Don't try to live too many days ahead" — I love that sentiment!


  1. Life is precious. Do what needs to be done and some. Be an Angel...this is your Devine right.

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