Monday, May 31, 2021

President Henry B. Eyring on wise use of time

President Henry B. Eyring (1933- ) served in the Presiding Bishopric from 1985-1992, as a Seventy from 1992-1995, then was called to the Quorum of Twelve Apostles. He has served in the First Presidency since 2007. When this address was given at BYU in 1986, he was serving as a counselor in the Presiding Bishopric.
"Even a moment's reflection will help you see that the problem of using your time well is not a problem of the mind but of the heart. It will only yield to a change in the very way we feel about time. The value of time must change for us. And then the way we think about it will change, naturally and wisely....
"I've come to understand something that happened to me in my early teens. I was in a hurry when I felt, not heard, a voice, an impression, which I knew then was from God. It was close to these words: 'Someday, when you know who you really are, you will be sorry that you didn't use your time better.' I thought then that the impression was odd, since I thought I was using my time pretty well and I thought I knew who I was. Now, years later, I am beginning to know who I am—and who you are—and why we will be so sorry if we do not invest our time well.
"You will develop your ability to invest your precious time well by gaining three confidences. First, you must gain confidence that God keeps his promises. Second, you must gain God's confidence that you will always keep the promises, not that you choose to make, but that he asks you to make. And third, you must help others gain confidence that God keeps his promises.
"You can gain confidence that God keeps his promises by trying them. That's why I so appreciate those commandments to which God has attached an explicit promise. I see those commandments as school masters. And I try to put them high on my list of things to do, because I know their value for changing my heart and building my power to invest my time."
- Henry B. Eyring, "Child of Promise," fireside address at BYU, May 4, 1986; see New Era, August 1993, p. 4
Click here to read the full talk

President Eyring always gets right to the core. In our very busy lives, "the problem of using your time well is not a problem of the mind but of the heart." It's not just a matter of making the intellectual choices, the decisions or plans or schedules.  It's a matter of making sure your heart is in the right place first. The "value of time" must be understood. Then the rest will follow!

I appreciate the distinction between "using time" and "investing time." The impression from Pres. Eyring's youth relates to this principle.

So then the key is to "develop your ability to invest your precious time" in the proper ways.

As our relationship with God develops and deepens, we not only have a greater desire to do His will, but also feel more of His guidance and influence.

But I especially appreciate the insight in the final paragraph of this excerpt — how we go about changing our heart and building faith and power.

(Compilation and commentary by David Kenison, Orem, Utah, 2021)
March 17, 2015

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