Friday, April 16, 2021

Elder Neil L. Andersen on finding faith in the passing of loved ones

Elder Neil L. Andersen (born August 9, 1951) served as a Seventy beginning in 1993, and was called to the Quorum of Twelve Apostles in 2009.
"Each of us has been affected by the worldwide pandemic, as family and friends have unexpectedly moved beyond mortality....

"The Lord has said, 'Thou shalt live together in love, insomuch that thou shalt weep for the loss of them that die.' (D&C 42:45)

"While we weep, we also rejoice in the glorious Resurrection of our Savior. Because of Him, our loved ones and friends continue their eternal journey. As President Joseph F. Smith explained: 'We can not forget them; we do not cease to love them. … They have advanced; we are advancing; we are growing as they have grown.' President Russell M. Nelson said, 'Our tears of sorrow … turn to tears of anticipation.'"

- Neil L. Andersen, "The Personal Journey of a Child of God," General Conference April 2021 Saturday morning

During the COVID-19 pandemic, most of us have lost people who are close to us, or at least with whom we're acquainted. Elder Andersen helps us ponder how our knowledge and understanding of God's eternal plan for us enables us to deal with losses.

Weeping is a part of loss. President Nelson said, "Moreover, we can’t fully appreciate joyful reunions later without tearful separations now. The only way to take sorrow out of death is to take love out of life." ("Doors of Death," Conference April 1992.)  But hope and confidence can accompany the sorrow of loss. Having an  understanding of the doctrine of the Resurrection of the Savior, and a testimony of its power, will bless us as we learn to move forward.

(Compilation and commentary by David Kenison, Orem, Utah, 2020)

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