Friday, October 21, 2016

Ronald A. Rasband on remembering personal sacred experiences

Elder Ronald A. Rasband (b. 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.
"It is important to remember the powerful counsel found in Deuteronomy: 'Keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life: but teach them thy sons, and thy sons’ sons.' (Deuteronomy 4:9; emphasis added.)
"Generations are affected by the choices we make. Share your testimony with your family; encourage them to remember how they felt when they recognized the Spirit in their lives and to record those feelings in journals and personal histories so that their own words may, when needed, bring to their remembrance how good the Lord has been to them....
"Never forget, question, or ignore personal, sacred spiritual experiences. The adversary’s design is to distract us from spiritual witnesses, while the Lord’s desire is to enlighten and engage us in His work."
- Ronald A. Rasband, "Lest Thou Forget," General Conference, October 2016
Click here to read or hear the complete talk

We are continually reminded in the scriptures and modern teachings that we should remember. It is only by building on the things we've learned, felt, and experienced that we can continue to grow and progress. When we stop remembering the lessons and feelings of our previous experiences, at best we have to start over; at worst, we second-guess and refocus into other directions or patterns.

Another blessing Elder Rasband suggests is that we can pass on our lessons to others. As we share our testimonies and experiences with those we love, they are blessed by our remembering. And we can help them remember their own spiritual encounters.

It is sometimes tempting to second-guess or reinterpret our experiences and insights from the past. Elder Rasband warns us of this tendency. "Never forget, question, or ignore personal, sacred spiritual experiences." Each of those actions has its own consequences, and if we allow the adversary to push us in those directions, we can lose ground rapidly. How important it is to stay firmly planted on the Rock of the Redeemer, to remember the past, and to be continually building and growing in the present!

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