Sunday, April 25, 2021

President Russell M. Nelson on making home a sacred place

President Russell M. Nelson (born Sept 9, 1924) was an internationally-renowned heart surgeon when he was called to serve as a member of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles in 1984. He became president of that quorum on July 15, 2015. Following the death of President Monson, he was set apart as president of the Church on January 14, 2018.
"You may feel that there is still more you need to do to make your home truly a sanctuary of faith. If so, please do it! If you are married, counsel with your wife as your equal partner in this crucial work. There are few pursuits more important than this. Between now and the time the Lord comes again, we all need our homes to be places of serenity and security.

"Attitudes and actions that invite the Spirit will increase the holiness of your home. Equally certain is the fact that holiness will vanish if there is anything in your behavior or environment that offends the Holy Spirit, for then 'the heavens withdraw themselves' (D&C 121:37).

"Have you ever wondered why the Lord wants us to make our homes the center of gospel learning and gospel living? It is not just to prepare us for, and help us through, a pandemic. Present restrictions on gathering will eventually end. However, your commitment to make your home your primary sanctuary of faith should never end. As faith and holiness decrease in this fallen world, your need for holy places will increase. I urge you to continue to make your home a truly holy place 'and be not moved' (D&C 87:8, emphasis added) from that essential goal."

- Russell M. Nelson, "What We Are Learning and Will Never Forget," General Conference April 2021, Priesthood session

Addressing the Priesthood session of the April 2021 conference, President Nelson talked about the challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic and the impacts it has had on people throughout the world. So many of those impacts are negative, but President Nelson pointed out that there have been, or should have been, many positive aspects as well. He pointed out several ways those benefits came, including the blessing of helping us recognize our homes as "the center of faith and worship" in our lives. That is definitely not a new message; but during this time, we've seen and felt the power of sacred ordinances at home and the blessing of personal worship.

So President Nelson encouraged us to continue to do all we can to build that feeling of holiness in our homes:

The growth and spirit won't come on their own; we must invite the Spirit through our "attitudes and actions" and avoid anything that would detract from that sacredness. President Nelson reminded us that even when conditions return to "normal," our efforts to create sacred sanctuaries must never fade; the need will continue to grow as there is a decline in faith in the world.

(Compilation and commentary by David Kenison, Orem, Utah, 2021)

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