Elder Clark and I are happy to be with you for this worldwide devotional.
I want to share with you some thoughts that are close to my heart that I hope will also be meaningful to you.
First, I want to express love: I have come to have a special feeling in my heart for the young adults of the Church. You are in the stage of your lives when you are making critical decisions—pursuing your education, seeking employment, serving missions, dating, getting married, and starting families. I have felt and witnessed the mighty power you have for good as you make and keep sacred covenants and as you seek the will of the Lord in making these decisions. You are amazing! And you are loved by the Lord. I know that.
I also want to share with you my testimony and some words of encouragement. I want you to know that I know that God is our living Father in Heaven. I know that He gave us the plan of salvation and that marvelous gift of His Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Redeemer. I know that the Prophet Joseph Smith is the prophet of the dispensation of the fulness of times. I know that Christ will come again and that we need to be prepared for that coming.
How do we prepare for such a monumental event? It can feel overwhelming! There is so much to do! I would like to offer encouragement and hope in two principles that will help us be prepared: repentance and charity.
President Monson taught us in general conference last October: “Essential to the plan is our Savior, Jesus Christ. Without His atoning sacrifice, all would be lost. It is not enough, however, merely to believe in Him and His mission. We need to work and learn, search and pray, repent and improve.”1
We must repent. And what a blessing that is! Through the Atonement and power of Jesus Christ, we can overcome every weakness, pain, sorrow, and sin. I have learned that while repentance is often about stopping something you are doing, it may also be about something you need to start doing that you haven’t been doing.
One of the most important things we need to start doing as part of repentance is to serve other people. It is in serving others, working side by side with the Lord, and experiencing His pure love that we come to really know the Savior. I saw the power of the love that comes in serving others in a sacrament meeting just a month ago.
I entered the chapel with a friend of mine who stopped to greet one of the little girls in her Primary class. During the meeting my friend was sustained as the new stake Relief Society president. The little girl she had greeted on our way into the chapel turned around and looked back at my friend, her teacher. That sweet girl knew her teacher would be released and began to cry. She rushed over to the end of the bench and buried her head on her mother’s shoulder! I looked over at my friend, the new stake Relief Society president, and I saw her break into tears as well! That testament of love was powerful for me. I felt my own tears begin to form. I was witnessing the gift of the pure love of Christ that comes from the Savior to His true followers as they serve in His kingdom.
In Moroni chapter 7, Mormon teaches us:
“Wherefore, my beloved brethren, if ye have not charity, ye are nothing, for charity never faileth. Wherefore, cleave unto charity, which is the greatest of all, for all things must fail—
“But charity is the pure love of Christ, and it endureth forever.”2
My dear brothers and sisters, I pray that each one of us will act with faith in Jesus Christ to turn to Him, repent of our sins, and serve Him with all of our hearts. I know that if we do this, we will, in fact, become His true followers. And if we “pray unto the Father with all of the energy of heart, that [we] may be filled with [His] love,”3 I know we will have greater faith, greater hope, and feel greater love—even the pure love of Christ. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
© 2017 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved. English approval: 3/17. Translation approval: 3/17. Translation of “Repentance and Charity.” Language. PD60003848 xxx