Sunday, March 13, 2022

President Russell M. Nelson on Christlike service to others

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.
"Relationships with neighbors, friends, and associates will be enhanced as we approach them with 'the pure love of Christ' (Moro. 7:47). A desire to emulate the Lord provides powerful motivation for good. Our craving for compassion will cause us to act in accord with the Golden Rule (Matt. 7:12). By so doing, we will find joy in feeding the poor, clothing the naked, or doing volunteer work of worth.
"Service to neighbors takes on new stature when we first look to God. In the Church, when priesthood and auxiliary leaders face their congregations, quorums, and classes as would the Lord, they learn that it does not matter where they serve, but how. Position in the Church does not exalt anyone, but faithfulness does. On the other hand, aspiring to a visible position—striving to become a master rather than a servant—can destroy the spirit of the worker and the work....
"In rendering service to others, which way do we face? From the right or the left, we can only push or pull. We can lift only from a higher plane. To reach it we don't look sideways; we look up to our Master. Just as we must look to God to live well, so we must look to God to serve well."
- Russell M. Nelson, "Thou Shalt Have No Other Gods," General Conference April 1996
Click here to read or listen to the full talk

One of the greatest blessings and challenges of the Gospel vision of life is the call to love and serve one another. We emulate the Savior as we do so; and striving always to see those around us as He would see them facilitates that service. And the results are promised: "By so doing, we will find joy in feeding the poor, clothing the naked, or doing volunteer work of worth." It doesn't require a calling or position of leadership to serve in this way; only a desire to do the Lord's work faithfully.

I was grateful for President Nelson's assurance that as we "look to God" we will be better able to live, and better able to serve.

(Compilation and commentary by David Kenison, Orem, Utah, 2022)
December 26, 2016

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