Friday, June 14, 2019

President Heber C. Kimball on prayers and works

President Heber C. Kimball (June 14, 1801-1868) was a member of the first Quorum of Twelve Apostles ordained in this dispensation in 1835. He served as first counselor to Brigham Young from 1847 until his death in 1868 at age 67. He was the grandfather of Spencer W. Kimball, who became an apostle in 1943 and served as president of the Church from 1973-1985. His great-great-grandson, Quentin L. Cook, currently serves as an apostle.
"What good do your prayers do, when your works do not correspond? Men may talk about praying, and exhort the people to pray; and if you do not live in a manner to fulfill your prayers, what do they avail you? Faith is dead without works, just as much as my body is dead without my spirit. When my spirit leaves my body, my body is dead; but put them together, and they make a soul—a spirit in a tabernacle. What is the use of our professing to be Saints, unless we live our religion? By our faithfulness and by our good works we shall obtain knowledge."
- Heber C. Kimball, remarks delivered at the Bowery, Great Salt Lake City, July 12, 1857; see Journal of Discourses 5:28
Click here to read the full talk

Thought-provoking question: "What good do your prayers do, when your works do not correspond?" One purpose of prayer is to change our hearts, which will result in changed actions and behavior. If that does not happen, the prayers are as empty words.

We must not only pray, but "live in a manner to fulfill [our] prayers." Our actions are critical along with our feelings and sentiments. Our lives must reflect our spiritual commitments and longings!

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

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