President Russell M. Nelson, president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and prophet of the Lord, attended our ward today with his wife Wendy and with Elder Randall K. Bennett and his wife Shelley. It was a sacred moment to sit on the stand with him and to receive instruction and teachings from them all.
As he began his remarks to us today at the close of our meeting, President Nelson said, “Now, you all have come here today wondering what the President of the Church is going to say that will change my life.” He was not wrong. You could feel a longing, a desire of the people in the congregation, a thirst to hear what the Lord’s prophet had to say that would bless our lives. And he delivered abundantly.
He gave us two thoughts to consider, two passages of scripture – one from the Bible and one from the Book of Mormon – that if followed would change our lives. The first is Matthew 6:33:
“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”
He also quoted the Joseph Smith translation of that same passage:
“Wherefore, seek not the things of this world but seek ye first to build up the kingdom of God, and to establish his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.”
Among the suggestions that he made for how this might look for our lives was the suggestion that a student (anyone really) who had received a calling should spend his or her time first in addressing the needs of the calling and then the Lord would bless him or her in their other endeavors – namely their school work.
The second he said can be found somewhere around 32 times in the Book of Mormon. I’m quoting only one of them here:
“And behold, all that he requires of you is to keep his commandments; and he has promised you that if ye would keep his commandments ye should prosper in the land.”
In these two passages of scripture, President Nelson suggested to us that by putting God’s kingdom and seeking to build it up ahead of all other concerns we might have and by keeping the commandments with exactness our lives would change dramatically and we would find and receive all the guidance and blessings we could hope to receive from God our Heavenly Father.
These words are true. I have already experienced them in my life and I know that by putting the kingdom and concerns of God ahead of all other concerns we might have He will bless us with all the things we stand in need of in this life. I also know that keeping the commandments of God brings prosperity and the abundant blessings of God in our lives. This too I have experienced over a lifetime of learning to serve God with all my heart, might, mind, and strength. Because of President Nelson’s visit to us today I feel envigorated and a renewed commitment and determination to find the rust in my life which is keeping me from serving as I ought and clean it off so that my priorities can be straight and that by serving Him I can accomplish much righteousness and receive all the blessings God has in store for those who serve and honor Him.