Thursday, August 21, 2014

Obedience Brings Blessings~ Choose The Right~

"The great test of life is to see whether we will hearken to and obey God's commands in the midst of the storms of life. It is not to endure storms, but to choose the right while they rage." - Pres. Henry B. Eyring~  | #obedience, #livingwatersbyleann
graphic by LeAnn
On a quest for Charity one vital virtue is Obedience and Submissiveness. Our Savior taught us to obey: "If ye love me, keep my commandments" (John 14:15), and "Come follow me."(Luke18:22). Our present day Prophet, President Thomas S. Monson stated: "Ofttimes the wisdom of God appears as foolishness to men, but the greatest single lesson we can learn in mortality is that, when God speaks and a man obeys, man will always be right. ("The Call of Duty," Ensign, May 1986, 37)
                                         Selective Obedience vs Spiritually Mature Obedience - Choose The Right~ | #obedience, #trust
Photo by Debbie @ It's All About Purple - graphic by LeAnn
Elder Robert D. Hales taught the following in a conference address entitled: "If Ye Love me, Keep My Commandments. " Using our agency to obey means choosing to "do what is right and letting the consequence follow." He further stated that at times we may use "selective obedience" claiming to love God and honor God while picking and choosing which of his commandments and teachings - and the teaching and counsel of His prophets - we will fully follow." 
He then discussed; "Spiritually mature obedience" the Savior's obedience." It is motivated by true love for Heavenly Father and His son. When we willingly obey, as our Savior did, we cherish the words of our Heavenly Father. (Ensign, May 2014, pg. 35)
As a mother and grandmother I have tried to teach my children to obey the commandments, follow the Prophet, obey and honor parents. I have explained that when you are obedient and follow rules you develop a trust relationship resulting in more freedom with increased choices. Some of my children have listened and can tell you they experienced additional privileges. On the other hand some, at times, chose to be less obedient and experienced the consequences of "time outs" and restriction of activities. Obedience = Trust = More Privileges and Freedom.  
Of course, as children we each experienced this learning process. 
The following childhood story by President Thomas S. Monson is a great example. 
The Wisdom of Being Obedient ~
Compete message entitled: Obedience Brings Blessings by Thomas S. Monson -
 (Ensign - May 2013)
One of my best friends during those carefree days in the canyon was Danny Larsen, whose family also owned a cabin at Vivian Park. Each day he and I roamed this boys' paradise, fishing in the stream and the river, collecting rocks and other treasures, hiking, climbing, and simply enjoying each minute of each hour of each day. 
One morning Danny and I decided we wanted to have a campfire that evening with all of our canyon friends. We just needed to clear an area in a nearby field where we could all gather. The June grass that covered the field had become dry and prickly, making the field unsuitable for our purposes. We began to pull at the tall grass, planning to clear a large, circular area. We tugged and yanked with all our might, but all we could get were small handfuls of the stubborn weeds. We knew this task would take the entire day, and already our energy and enthusiasm were waning. 
And then what I thought was the perfect solution came into my eight-year-old mind. I said to Danny, "All we need is to set these weeds on fire. We'll just burn a circle in the weeds!" He readily agreed, and I ran to our cabin to get a few matches. 
Lest any of you think that at the tender age of eight we were permitted to use matches, I want to make a clear that both Danny and I were forbidden to use them without adult supervision. Both of us had been warned repeatedly of the dangers of fire. However, I knew where my family kept the matches, and we needed to clear that field. Without so much as a second thought, I ran to our cabin and gabbed a few matchsticks, making certain no one was watching. I hid them quickly in one of  my pockets. 
Back to Danny I ran, excited that in my pocket I had the solution to our problem. I recall thinking that the fire would burn only as far as we wanted and then would somehow magically extinguish itself. 
I struck the match on a rock and set the parched June grass ablaze. It ignited as though it had been drenched in gasoline. At first Danny and I were thrilled as we watched the weeds disappear, but it soon became apparent that the fire was not about to go out on its own. We panicked as we realized there was nothing we could do to stop it. The menacing flames began to follow the wild grass up the mountainside, endangering the pine trees and everything else in their path. 
Finally we had no option but to run for help. Soon all available men and women at Vivian Park were dashing back and forth with wet burlap bags, beating the flames in an attempt to extinguish them. After several hours the last remaining embers were smothered. The ages-old pine trees had been saved, as had the homes the flames would eventually have reached. 
Danny and I learned several difficult but important lessons that day - not the least of which was the importance of obedience.
This story is now  a children's book that can be found here. 
"To obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams". (1 Samuel 15:22)
Prophets both ancient and modern have taught that strength and faith comes through obedience. Obedience is a virtue the leads us to the pure love of Christ; Charity~
I  know this to be true. 
#goodnessmatters - #sharegoodness

5 comments:

Christy Monson said...

Great message. Our mission president just talked about aligning ourselves with the Brethren. I love that concept. As I grow older I have become more obedient. Thanks for this reminder. I do love my Savior and want to be obedient. Hugs

It's a Wonderful Life said...

While we were at the Visitor Center in Independence MO, the sister giving the tour gave us some advice her mother used to give her. "Obedience brings blessings. Strict obedience brings miracles." I love this and have thought of it often.

Debbie said...

obedience is such a strong word for me, i think there is a "lighter" way to get this message across!!

i loved seeing junior here!!!

Grammy Staffy said...

What a lovely post with a great message.
Thanks for your kind words on my blog . Marli was my grand daughters best friend. This loss has been hard for our Loni and all who loved Marli. Hugs

Susan Anderson said...

I remember that story from conference a while back. It's a good one!

=)

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