Jul 20, 2014

Obedience- "If ye Love Me, Keep My Commandments" and Obedience through Our Faithfulness

One of the distinct themes of April's General Conference was Obedience.  
Elder Hales and also Elder Perry focused their talks on this theme, which is what we'll be discussing in our club meeting today.

Talk #1:
"If Ye Love Me, Keep My Commandments"
by Elder Robert D. Hales

Obedience Shows Love
"Because our Savior was obedient, He atoned for our sins, making possible our resurrection and preparing the way for us to return to our Heavenly Father, who knew we would make mistakes as we learned obedience in mortality.  When we obey, we accept His sacrifice."

"When we are baptized, we enter into a covenant with God that we will be obedient unto the end of our lives.  Each Sunday we renew that baptismal covenant by partaking of the sacrament and witnessing that we are willing to keep the commandments.  We seek forgiveness for any thoughts, feelings, or actions that are not in harmony with Heavenly Father's will.  As we repent by turning away from disobedience and by beginning to obey again, we show our love for Him."

Types of obedience:

Natural Man's Obedience - disobediently rejecting God's law in favor of our wisdom or our desires or even popularity.

Selective Obedience - claiming to love God and honor God while picking and choosing which of His commandments and teachings will be followed.

Spiritually Mature Obedience/The Savior's Obedience - motivated by true love for Heavenly Father and His Son.  This type of obedience "requires self-mastery, and brings confidence, eternal happiness, and a sense of fulfillment to us and, by example, to those around us; and it always includes a deep personal commitment to sustain priesthood leaders and follow their teachings and counsel."

I am currently reading a fictional series about the last days.  In these books, those who follow the prophet were spared and kept safe.  Those who chose to disobey because it was inconvenient, unfortunately, were not.

In a recent post by blogger Stephanie Nielson.  She talks about the importance of being obedient and following the prophet and to not compromise or justify our wrong choices.  She says, 
"It takes courage not compromise for God's approval."

"To rationalize disobedience does not change spiritual law or its consequences but leads to confusion, instability, wandering in strange paths, being lost, and grief.  As disciples of Christ, we have a sacred obligation to uphold His laws and commandments and the covenants which we take upon ourselves."

Obedience = Strength
"Obedience makes us stronger, capable of faithfully enduring tests and trials in the future."

Talk #2:
Obedience through Our Faithfulness
by Elder L. Tom Perry

Elder Perry used an analogy of horses to teach about Obedience.  He taught:
 "An obedient horse which is part of a well-trained team of horses needs little more than a gentle tug from the driver to do exactly what he wants it to do. This gentle tug is equivalent to the still, small voice with which the Lord speaks to us. Out of respect for our agency, it is never a strong, forceful tug."

The Spirit will always prompt us when we are veering off course. 

"Always be ready to receive that gentle tug of the Spirit. . .We must be sensitive to our spiritual bits.  Even with the slightest tug from the Master, we must be willing to completely alter our course.  To succeed in life, we must teach our spirit and body to work together in obedience to God's commandments."

Elder Perry also taught that 
obedience equals strength.  

"Strong, proactive obedience is anything but weak and passive.  It is the means by which we declare our faith in God and qualify ourselves to receive the powers in heaven."

We must have "an absolute faith in the driver of the team".  We must have believe that God knows what is best for us and has given us commandments to follow to help us become our best.

"I promise you that the blessings of eternal life are available to everyone who is faithful and obedient."


Next Week's Talk:
by Randall L. Ridd