Saturday, August 27, 2011

Rambling on the Road to Chicago

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to visit the Chicago Temple. En route, in an effort to get my head in the right place for temple attendance, I tried to listen to some appropriate talks and such on my iPod.

(I should warn you now - this post is a bit long; a 3-hour drive leaves lots of room for thoughts to ramble!)

First, I listened to an interview with Virginia Hinckley Pearce. This was episode #30 of the program Conversations, on The Mormon Channel.

Sister Pearce first came on my radar back in 1994, when she spoke at the General Young Women Meeting.  Her discussion of faith was clear and simple, and I've never forgotten it. She said
Faith means that I really believe that:
  • Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ live, and they are in charge of this world.
  • They know me.
  • They love me.
  • They have a plan for my future.
  • I will obey the commandments, work hard, and trust in their plan. Sooner or later, everything will be okay.
Next, I listened to a BYU Speech, by Russell T. Osguthorpe (and let’s admit it: that is a cool name!), What If Love Were Our Only Motive? 

Again, there was nothing new or earthshaking in his talk – just the idea that love really can motivate everything we do. He said, it possible to do everything we do out of love? Is it possible to study because we love the Lord and His children? Is it possible to be motivated by love when we take a test, read a chapter in a textbook, complete an assignment, or answer a question in class? Is it possible to love someone who has wronged us? Can love be our only motive?

...The Savior’s earthly ministry was a time of teaching, a time of miracles. He established His Church on the earth. He called the Twelve to become leaders in the Church. He taught everyone who would listen. He healed the sick and raised the dead. And why did He do all these things? He had only one motive—love. His message to us is that we need to be good and do good, but we need to do it for the right reason. This is precisely why the two greatest commandments are the greatest: “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind” and “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Matthew 22:37–39). The motive means everything.
Then, I listened to some music, including “Someday He Will Come,” written by Tyler Castleton and Staci Peters, and performed by Felicia Sorensen. I’ll share some of the lyrics (even though, without the music, they are a bit limp and incomplete):
When He comes the world will melt away
Earthly things will slip right through our hands
Leaving just our hearts to stand before Him
Just our lives to speak for what we’ve done
What we’ve become

I will speak of Him with every breath
I will seek His spirit all my days
Everything I am I will surrender
Just to know him when this life is done
When he comes
These lyrics always remind me of the time when Aaron was teaching Lamoni’s father, and the king prayed  “if thou art God, wilt thou make thyself known unto me, and I will give away all my sins to know thee, and that I may be raised from the dead, and be saved at the last day” (Alma 22:18).

I listened to all this, and let my thoughts wander, and considered my efforts in these areas. It is so hard to be consistent, to always do what I know I should do. These are things I know for a certainty. The challenge is remembering them, and remembering to act according to what I know.

I thought of what President Kimball once said,
When you look in the dictionary for the most important word, do you know what it is? It could be remember. Because all of you have made covenants - you know what to do and you know how to do it - our greatest need is to remember. That is why everyone goes to sacrament meeting every Sabbath day - to take the sacrament and listen to the priests pray that 'they may always remember him and keep his commandments which he has given them.' Remember is the word. Remember is the program.
(Spencer W. Kimball, "Circles of Exaltation," Address to Seminary and Institute Personnel, BYU, June 28, 1968.)
Attending the temple helps me remember, so that at least for a short while, I’m moving in the right direction again.

It is Good.


  1. Outstanding post. I listed to the Virginia Hinckley Pearce interview this week, too, and I was really impressed. And I thing Brother Osguthorpe (do we call him "President if he's president of the general Sunday School? I don't know) is terrific -- I've been reading about him this week, too.

    And someone cited that President Kimball quote in our HP group last week or the week before.

    I feel like we're living in parallel universes... :-)

  2. Paul - Parallel universes? That's a bit scary!

    BTW, did you read Virginia Pearce's book "A Heart Like His?" I need to read it again, but I think it addressed thoughts along the lines of your recent post, and opening our hearts...

  3. I have not read it, but didn't she discuss it in her recent interview? I think so, and I think I had a similar thought.

  4. You are right, she did discuss it in the interview. It made me want to reread the book, which of course requires finding a copy. came through, and I ordered a cheap copy there...