I humbly request all readers of this to help me on my quest by sharing posts you like on social media. Commenting, too, is a double gift!
You see, I have something to say.
I have a testimony to bear.
I feel the sacred charge to be a vessel of our Heavenly Father’s love to all that I have in my reach.
Our Heavenly Father sent his Son to redeem us from our sins and to help us to understand his perfect and complete love. He knows each of us down to the (gray) roots of our hair and the (calloused) soles of our feet.
I’m reflecting today on what motivated some in the General Conference to shout their dissent when asked to show by raising hands whether or not they sustain the President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Thomas S. Monson and his counselors and the twelve apostles as prophets, seers and revelators.
One red rose on a bush of light pink roses. Some folks need to be different, and to stand out. I don’t know why they feel that way, but I can’t deny that they do.
I wonder if they had first listened to the messages that each of those men delivered during the conference if they would have felt inclined to shout out “opposed!”
I can’t imagine wanting to do such a thing. I feel a thrill of joy in the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ each time I have opportunity to acknowledge and sustain those called to minister to the Church.
I know that the Lord qualifies those he calls. But that doesn’t mean they no longer need the atonement of Christ to purge them of their sins. As I listen to their messages, they seem acutely aware of that need and overflow with love and gratitude to Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father for the opportunity they (and all mankind) have because of the Savior.
Bleeding hearts all in a row. We all have hidden sorrows and challenges that may not be apparent to others. When we offer mercy to others, we receive a promise to also obtain mercy.
I read online that the opposition was a planned response. I don’t know whether those involved have once numbered themselves among those who earnestly sustain the leaders of the Church. I don’t know how they have been hurt or disappointed, neglected or disenfranchised. I don’t know anything about them, not even their gender or nationality. But I do know that they are each as beloved and valued children of our Heavenly Father as those men they shouted their opposition toward. The pierced hand of Jesus is stretched out to them as surely as it is to me or anybody else, including the leaders of the Church.
Is the Lord angry with them? Have they locked themselves out of the kingdom of God?
God forbid. He knew their issues long before they made the plan to draw attention to themselves by shouting out in conference. He was not surprised. Elder Uchtdorf didn’t even seem surprised. Opposition is nothing new to the apostles. How many times were Peter, James, John, Paul, Joseph Smith Jeremiah, Nephi, and on and on, abused, beaten or martyred because of their public testimony of Jesus Christ? In fact, if there is no opposition, that would be a bad sign. If they are all prophets, then Satan will do all he can to diminish their influence. That’s the eternal nature of the battle for our souls.
I hope those that shouted their opposition during conference live to regret their action because of the huge target they’ve placed on their own chests. They’ll now be receiving meals, cookies, love notes, mowed lawns, weeded gardens, remembered birthdays and holidays, and kindnesses they never before imagined. I don’t think I know them personally, but I truly hope they who do know them will prove by their pure love and concern that members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are true and committed disciples of Jesus Christ; that discipleship of Christ is the defining characteristic of the body of Christ. We prove this by our love and kindness.
Of course, they need to repent of their sins. . .just like all the rest of us. They need to take upon themselves the name of Christ. . .just like all the rest of us. They need to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, visit the sick and minister to those in need, just like the rest of us. They must learn to selflessly serve others. . .just like the rest of us.
None of us get a free pass to exaltation. It doesn’t matter if you get your picture in the centerfold of the Ensign or the cover of the newspaper.
There are no resume’s required at the Pearly Gates. Fame, fortune, notoriety, public opinion, beauty, political correctness and talent are all as ashes at the judgment bar of God. He will merely measure our love and He and we will know that His judgments are just. We either have it or we don’t. I don’t believe there is suspense before judgment day. I believe that we will be given the ability to see ourselves accurately and will know our eternal place.
I hope that I can avoid being the cause of someone feeling like an outsider in the Church of Jesus Christ. I know I feel protective of those men and women who lead us, like most who do sustain them. But if we truly do sustain those leaders, we’ll take their counsel into our hearts and homes and make them part of us. We’ll allow ourselves to be led by them as by good shepherds who lead us to the Master Shepherd.
If we truly sustain them as prophets and revelators, we’ll take their words and be different than we were before. . .better disciples of Jesus Christ and more obedient children of our Loving Heavenly Father.