Friday, September 21, 2018

President M. Russell Ballard on the power and blessing of unified service

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.
"The beehive symbol is found in both the interiors and exteriors of many of our temples. This podium where I stand is made from the wood of a walnut tree grown in President Gordon B. Hinckley’s backyard and is adorned with carved beehive images.
"All of this symbolism attests to one fact: great things are brought about and burdens are lightened through the efforts of many hands 'anxiously engaged in a good cause' (D&C 58:27). Imagine what the millions of Latter-day Saints could accomplish in the world if we functioned like a beehive in our focused, concentrated commitment to the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ.
"The Savior taught that the first and great commandment is:
"'Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. …
"'And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
"'On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.' (Matthew 22:37, 39–40).
"The Savior’s words are simple, yet their meaning is profound and deeply significant. We are to love God and to love and care for our neighbors as ourselves. Imagine what good we can do in the world if we all join together, united as followers of Christ, anxiously and busily responding to the needs of others and serving those around us—our families, our friends, our neighbors, our fellow citizens."
- M. Russell Ballard, "Be Anxiously Engaged," General Conference October 2012
Click here to read or listen to the full talk

The Savior's teachings invite us to love God and our fellowman. His example showed that we demonstrate love for one another through unselfish service. President Ballard built upon that thought to encourage greater efforts to serve those around us. Indeed, as our efforts to serve build upon one another, the combined blessing to humanity can become a marvelous thing:

The work of a single bee may seem relatively insignificant; but combined with hundreds and thousands of others who share a beehive, that work becomes profound and meaningful. If we maintain that vision, great things will come to pass through our efforts to serve and bless!

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

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