Wednesday, May 22, 2019

President Joseph Fielding Smith on serving with love like the Savior

Joseph Fielding Smith (1876-1972) was the son of Joseph F. Smith, 6th president of the Church, and grandson of Hyrum Smith, brother of the Prophet Joseph. He was called as an apostle in 1910, and served as the 10th president of the Church from 1970 until his death in 1972 at age 95.
"Our Savior came into the world to teach us love for each other, and as that great lesson was made manifest through his great suffering and death that we might live, should we not express our love for our fellowmen by service rendered in their behalf? Should we not show our appreciation for the infinite service he rendered us, by giving service in his cause?
"The man who does only those things in the Church which concern himself alone will never reach exaltation. For instance, the man who is willing to pray, to pay his tithes and offerings, and to attend to the ordinary duties which concern his own personal life, and nothing more, will never reach the goal of perfection."
- Joseph Fielding Smith, Conference Report, Apr. 1968, 12

Among the greatest messages of the Savior's gospel, as taught during His earthly ministry, is the call to love others. That love is best manifest through service on their behalf. As we reach out to one another, we can demonstrate our appreciation to the Great Giver:

President Smith points out that an inward-focused interpretation of the Gospel has no power to save. If all a man does is comply with commandments and guidelines, attending to the "ordinary duties which concern his own personal life," he will have missed the mark and fallen short.

(Compilation and commentary by David Kenison, Orem, Utah, 2019)

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