Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf on the joy of the path of discipleship

Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf (born November 6, 1940) served as a Seventy from 1994-2004, when he was called as a member of the Quorum of Twelve.  He served as second counselor in the First Presidency from 2008 to 2018.
"May I suggest that discipleship begins with three simple words:
"Believe, love, and do.
"Believing God leads to faith in Him and developing trust in His word. Faith causes our hearts to grow in our love for God and others. As that love grows, we are inspired to emulate the Savior as we continue our own great journey on the path of discipleship.
"'But,' you say, 'that seems a bit simplistic. Life’s problems, certainly my problems, are far too complex for such a simple prescription. You can’t cure Weltschmerz with three simple words: Believe, love, do.'
"It is not the aphorism that cures. It is the love of God that rescues, restores, and revives.
"God knows you. You are His child. He loves you.
"Even when you think that you are not lovable, He reaches out to you.
"This very day—every day—He reaches out to you, desiring to heal you, to lift you up, and to replace the emptiness in your heart with an abiding joy. He desires to sweep away any darkness that clouds your life and fill it with the sacred and brilliant light of His unending glory.
"I have experienced this for myself.
"And it is my witness as an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ that all who come unto God—all who truly believe, love, and do—can experience the same."
- Dieter F. Uchtdorf, "Believe, Love, Do," General Conference October 2018
Click here to read or listen to the full talk

This was the central theme of Elder Uchtdorf's message in the most recent General Conference. His three steps summarize the process of becoming disciples of Jesus Christ, as we first believe in His message, then develop the love that He feels for His children, and finally do the things He would do.

The second half of the excerpt above is equally timely, describing what can happen as we embark on that path of discipleship. In the midst of our challenges and discouragements, we sometimes forget the crucial, eternal truth that God loves us, and continues always to reach out to us with the desire to heal and strengthen. Through Him, the dark clouds of life can be swept away and our lives filled "with the sacred and brilliant light of His unending glory." What a marvelous promise that is!

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

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