Thursday, May 3, 2018

President Russell M. Nelson on learning tolerance and understanding

President Russell M. Nelson (born Sept 9, 1924) was an internationally-renowned heart surgeon when he was called to serve as a member of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles in 1984. He became president of that quorum on July 15, 2015. Following the death of President Monson, he was set apart as president of the Church on January 14, 2018.
"How different our world would be if all parents would apply this inspired instruction from the Book of Mormon: 'Ye will not suffer your children... that they transgress the laws of God, and fight and quarrel one with another....
"'But ye will teach them to walk in the ways of truth and soberness; ye will teach them to love one another, and to serve one another.' (Mosiah 4:14–15; see also Rom. 12:18.)
"If such training occurred, children and parents around this globe would join in singing, 'Fill our hearts with sweet forgiving; Teach us tolerance and love.' (Hymns, 1985, no. 172.) Men and women would respect their neighbors and the beliefs held sacred by them. No longer would ethnic jokes and cultural slurs be acceptable. The tongue of the tolerant speaks no guile."
- Russell M. Nelson, "Teach Us Tolerance and Love," General Conference, April 1994
Click here to read or listen to the full talk

In today's world, we see many signs of fading tolerance and understanding. So much suspicion exists instead; such a lack of trust and faith in others. How important that we learn to be aware and cautious, but loving and tolerant as well!  And to teach these qualities to our children and youth:

President Nelson points out that a good sign of this spirit of tolerance, or its lack, might lie in how we treat others who have beliefs that are different from our own—particularly "the beliefs held sacred by them." Earlier in this talk, he states this:
"I marvel at the inspiration of the Prophet Joseph Smith when he penned the eleventh article of faith: 'We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may.' [A of F 1:11]"

That's a wonderful, Christlike spirit to cultivate.

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

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