Wednesday, December 14, 2016

The Red Haired Doll, talk given Dec 20, 2020

A friend told me that on the way to work he thought: in the last while I have had my car totaled, two relatives die and then Covid came along. Suddenly a voice came to his mind: What do you want? Then he began a list of things he wanted but after a while he couldn't decide. Then the voice said, "Get back to me."

The following story is told by Ella Enslow, a teacher in 1935 in a very poor area:

At Christmas time many of out own thoughts turn to gifts or presents. If you could have anything what would you choose.

In the 1980's a friend of mine won a car on The Price is Right. He had a bright smile on his face when this was revealed. Today he is in the spirit world and the car probably has no value.

The greatest gift is given by Heavenly Father and is called Eternal Life.

Eternal life is the quality of life which God himself enjoys.

D&C 14:7 And, if you keep my commandments and endure to the end you shall ha ve eternal life, which gift is the greatest of all the gifts of God..

But how do we know if we are on track for this gift?

Bruce R. McConkie answers that question in this way:

Everyone in the Church who is on the straight and narrow path, who is striving and struggling and desiring to do what is right, though is far from perfect in this life; if he passes out of this life while he's on the straight and narrow, he's going to go on to eternal reward in his Father's kingdom. We don't need to get a complex or get a feeling that you have to be perfect to be saved. You don't. There's only been one perfect person, and that's the Lord Jesus, but in order to be saved in the Kingdom of God and in order to pass the test of mortality, what you have to do is get on the straight and narrow path--thus charting a course leading to eternal life--and then, being on that path, pass out of this life in full fellowship. I'm not saying that you don't have to keep the commandments. I'm saying you don't have to be perfect to be saved. If you did, no one would be saved. The way it operates is this: you get on the path that's named the "straight and narrow." You do it by entering the gate of repentance and baptism. The straight and narrow path leads from the gate of repentance and baptism, a very great distance, to a reward that's called eternal life. If you're on that path and pressing forward, and you die, you'll never get off the path. There is no such thing as falling off the straight and narrow path in the life to come, and the reason is that this life is the time that is given to men to prepare for eternity. 

Now is the time and the day of your salvation, so if you're working zealously in this life--though you haven't fully overcome the world and you haven't done all you hoped you might do--you're still going to be saved. You don't have to do what Jacob said, "Go beyond the mark." You don't have to live a life that's truer than true. You don't have to have an excessive zeal that becomes fanatical and becomes unbalancing. What you have to do is stay in the mainstream of the Church and live as upright and decent people live in the Church--keeping the commandments, paying your tithing, serving in the organizations of the Church, loving the Lord, staying on the straight and narrow path. If you're on that path when death comes--because this is the time and the day appointed, this the probationary estate--you'll never fall off from it, and, for all practical purposes, your calling and election is made sure.

("The Probationary Test of Mortality," Address given at Univ. of Utah, Jan. 10, 1982, p. 11; See JD 1:6)