Monday, February 26, 2018

Elder Richard G. Scott on strength and fortification through faithful service

Elder Richard G. Scott (1928-2015) served as a Seventy from 1977-1988, when he was called to the Quorum of Twelve Apostles.  He passed away in September 2015 at the age of 86.
"Father in Heaven has provided us tools that help to build the fortifications between our vulnerabilities and our faithfulness. Consider the following suggestions:
"Make covenants and receive ordinances for yourself. Then steadily and consistently work to provide ordinances in the temple for your own ancestors.
"Share the gospel with nonmember or less-active family members or friends. Sharing these truths can bring a renewed enthusiasm into your life.
"Serve faithfully in all Church callings, especially home teaching and visiting teaching assignments. Don’t be just a 15-minutes-a-month home or visiting teacher. Rather, reach out to each individual member of the family. Get to know them personally. Be a real friend. Through acts of kindness, show them how very much you care for each of them.
"Most important, serve the members of your own family. Make the spiritual development of your spouse and children a very high priority. Be attentive to the things you can do to help each one. Give freely of your time and attention.
"In each of these suggestions, there is a common theme: fill your life with service to others. As you lose your life in the service of Father in Heaven’s children, Satan’s temptations lose power in your life.
"Because your Father in Heaven loves you profoundly, the Atonement of Jesus Christ makes that strength possible. Isn’t it wonderful? Many of you have felt the burden of poor choices, and each of you can feel the elevating power of the Lord’s forgiveness, mercy, and strength."
- Richard G. Scott, "Personal Strength through the Atonement of Jesus Christ," General Conference October 2013
Click here to read or listen to the full article

It's an interesting concept, the idea of "fortifications between our vulnerabilities and our faithfulness." In areas where we feel strong and faithful, there may still be attacks—there almost certainly will be attacks! And so we build fortifications to safeguard ourselves. Elder Scott suggests the kind of fortifications that will make a difference: covenants and ordinances, sharing the gospel, serving in callings, serving family members. As we give to ourselves and to others in these ways, we are continually strengthened.

The true fortification, the greatest strength comes as a gift from God as we continue to serve and grow. The forgiveness and power offered to us through His Atonement will be the crucial blessing needed to survive in this world, and receive the fulness of the blessings He has promised to us.

(Compilation and commentary by David Kenison, Orem, Utah, 2018)

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