What we love most, we honor. What we think about and how we treat others has a direct influence and consequence when it comes to our relationship with our Heavenly Father and His son Jesus Christ. If we want to be close to God, we must believe in Him and trust that He knows what is best for us, and will help us every day of our lives. But there is action required on our part to bring to pass the blessings we desire at the hand of God.
Elder D. Todd Christofferson, of the quorum of the twelve apostles, has explained,
"Sadly, much of modern Christianity does not acknowledge that God makes any real demands on those who believe in Him, seeing Him rather as a butler 'who meets their needs when summoned' or a therapist whose role is to help people 'feel good about themselves.'
Our Heavenly Father is a God of high expectations. His expectations of us are expressed by His Son, Jesus Christ, in these words: 'I would that ye should be perfect even as I, or your Father who is in heaven is perfect.'
If we sincerely desire and strive to measure up to the high expectations of our Heavenly Father, He will ensure that we receive all the help we need, whether it be comforting, strengthening, or chastening."
God would not be God if He did not want the best for us, and did not allow us to use our agency to push past desires of the natural man that we might be close to Him. He gave us Jesus Christ to help us overcome, and He has reminded us through scripture and revelation that we were not destined to fail.
In the 37th chapter of Alma, contained in the Book of Mormon, there are three beautiful verses that teach, "O, remember, my son, and learn wisdom in thy youth; yea, learn in thy youth to keep the commandments of God.
Yea, and cry unto God for all thy support; yea, let all thy doings be unto the Lord, and whithersoever thou goest let it be in the Lord; yea, let the affections of thy heart be placed upon the Lord forever.
Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings, and he will direct thee for good; yea, when thou liest down at night lie down unto the Lord, that he may watch over you in your sleep; and when thou risest in the morning let thy heart be full of thanks unto God; and if ye do these things, ye shall be lifted up at the last day."
-Alma 37 vs. 35-37
I testify that God is real, and He answers prayers. His love and affection for us is beyond what we can imagine, and it is set. It does not change. Only our affections can be swayed and mislead. I pray that we will consider the affections of our hearts and how they affect our relationship with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. I pray that we will find more joy as we place Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father at the center of our lives and hearts. Remember to pray. Keep the commandments. You will find a new strength and a change of heart that didn't seem possible before.
Posted by Brooke Kamalu- Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
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