Thursday, September 27, 2007

Moroni 6

Determination to Serve Christ to the End

After we are baptized, we must endure to the end. We can never give up or forsake our commitments. Elder Hales gave a wonderful talk in the April 1998 General Conference. He said, “We learn to endure to the end by learning to finish our current responsibilities, and we simply continue doing it all of our lives. We cannot expect to learn endurance in our later years if we have developed the habit of quitting when things get difficult now.” (Robert D. Hales, “‘Behold, We Count Them Happy Which Endure’,” Ensign, May 1998, 75)

Nourished by the Good Word of God

If ever there were a scripture for fellowshipping and home teaching and visiting teaching, Moroni 6:4 would be it. The pattern for a new member entering the Gospel is for him to repent, be baptized, receive the Holy Ghost and then endure to the end. To help him endure to the end, the members must nourish him with the good word of God … in other words, he must have home teachers and he must be fellowshipped at church. By having the members help this new convert, the convert is kept in the right way and is watched. We as home and visiting teachers must exhort him or her to continually pray and study the scriptures. The bishop ought to extend the convert a calling to keep him or her active in the ward. President Hinckley’s 1999 talk discusses what we as members need to do (see Gordon B. Hinckley, “Find the Lambs, Feed the Sheep,” Ensign, May 1999, 104)

Manner of Conducting Meetings

In the days of the Nephites, meetings were conducted “after the manner of the workings of the Spirit.” (Moroni 6:9) If the Sprit directed them to sing, they would sing. If the Spirit directed them to preach, they would preach. Today our meetings are much more structured. But that does not mean the bishop or whoever is presiding over the meeting cannot call upon someone to bear testimony or to alter the course of the meeting.

I think the concept here is that we follow the Spirit in our meetings. This can apply to us individually when we are giving a talk or lesson. If we’ve prepared something but later during the lesson or talk we feel we should say it differently or to say something else or hold something back, then we should follow the promptings of the Spirit. I’ve had this happen to me many times. Something might pop into my head and it fits perfecting into what I’m trying to convey … so I’ll say it. We never know when someone will be touched by what we say.

In the last General Conference (April 2007), President Monson noted the following event while he was giving a talk, “During the message I delivered at general conference in October 1975, I felt prompted to direct my remarks to a little girl with long, blonde hair, who was seated in the balcony of this building. I called the attention of the audience to her and felt a freedom of expression which testified to me that this small girl needed the message I had in mind concerning the faith of another young lady.

“At the conclusion of the session, I returned to my office and found waiting for me a young child by the name of Misti White, together with her grandparents and an aunt. “As I greeted them, I recognized Misti as the one in the balcony to whom I had directed my remarks. I learned that as her eighth birthday approached, she was in a quandary concerning whether or not to be baptized. She felt she would like to be baptized, and her grandparents, with whom she lived, wanted her to be baptized, but her less-active mother suggested she wait until she was 18 years of age to make the decision. Misti had told her grandparents, “If we go to conference in Salt Lake City, maybe Heavenly Father will let me know what I should do.”

“Misti and her grandparents and her aunt had traveled from California to Salt Lake City for conference and were able to obtain seats in the Tabernacle for the Saturday afternoon session. This was where they were seated when my attention was drawn to Misti and my decision made to speak to her.

“As we continued our visit after the session, Misti’s grandmother said to me, “I think Misti has something she would like to tell you.” This sweet young girl said, “Brother Monson, while you were speaking in conference, you answered my question. I want to be baptized!”

“The family returned to California, and Misti was baptized and confirmed a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Through all the years since, Misti has remained true and faithful to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Fourteen years ago, it was my privilege to perform her temple marriage to a fine young man, and together they are rearing five beautiful children, with another one on the way.” (Thomas S. Monson, “Tabernacle Memories,” Ensign, May 2007, 41–42)

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