Saturday, April 7, 2018

President M. Russell Ballard on faith in God's help as we serve

President M. Russell Ballard (born October 8, 1928) was called as a Seventy in 1976, and has served as a member of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles since 1985. He became acting president of the Twelve in January 2018.
"Given the reality of our human weaknesses and shortcomings, how do we move forward in supporting and sustaining each other? It begins with faith—real, sincere faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Faith in the Savior is the first principle of the doctrine and gospel of Christ....
"If we have faith as small as a mustard seed, the Lord can help us remove the mountains of discouragement and doubt in the tasks ahead of us as we serve with God’s children, including family members, Church members, and those who are not yet members of the Church.
"Brothers and sisters, life can be filled with faith, joy, happiness, hope, and love when we exercise the smallest amount of real faith in Christ—even a mustard seed of faith."
- M. Russell Ballard, "Precious Gifts from God," General Conference April 2018
Click here to read or listen to the full talk

President Ballard's talk was the first one given after the sustainings at the beginning of conference on Saturday morning, well before Sunday's announcements of the emphasis on "ministering." But the theme of service to others and reaching out in love was strong in his message too in anticipation of that coming change. President Ballard described our innate weakness and hesitancy to do all we should, but emphasized the power that can come to do good as we exercise faith in Jesus Christ:

The key is not that faith makes the tasks easier or makes them go away; but that He can "remove the mountains of discouragement and doubt" that prevent us from serving well. That's a greater need, and a greater blessing, than we sometimes realize! The resulting promise of "faith, joy, happiness, hope, and love" that can fill our life is a remarkable one. We would be wise to find, develop, and expand that kind of faith in our lives.

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

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