Obedience, Service Are Marks of True Disciples, Elder Johnson Teaches

  • 07 October, 2012

“As we repent of our sins and strive to do what He would have us do and serve our fellowmen as He would serve them, we will inevitably become more like Him. Becoming like Him and being one with Him is the ultimate goal and objective, and essentially the very definition of true discipleship.” —Elder Daniel L. Johnson of the Seventy

Making the covenant to be a disciple of Christ is the beginning of a lifelong process and the path is not always easy, said Elder Daniel L. Johnson in the closing session of general conference.

“As we repent of our sins and strive to do what He would have us do and serve our fellowmen as He would serve them, we will inevitably become more like Him. Becoming like Him and being one with Him is the ultimate goal and objective, and essentially the very definition of true discipleship.”

Offering a story about true discipleship, Elder Johnson spoke of a group of Saints in Northern Mexico. One late night in March, a snowstorm threatened the crops in the community. Through the night and early morning, every effort was made to save at least part of the fruit crop. To no avail, the crops were all destroyed.

Elder Johnson received a letter from a member of the community there, John Hatch, first counselor in the presidency of the Colonia Juarez Chihuahua Temple. The letter explained that despite losing their crops and working all night, 38 people came and participated in a temple session the next morning. Brother Hatch said in the letter, “It was an uplifting morning for us, and we thanked Heavenly Father for good people who do their duty, no matter what happens.”

Most of those who lost their fruit crop were able to plant alternative crops for the season. One young family had no additional land to plant crops, said Elder Johnson. “Others in the community, seeing the dire situation of this brother and acting on their own initiative and expense, arranged for a piece of property, used their own equipment to prepare the land and provided the chili plants for him to plant.”

Elder Johnson asked, “Why would members come to the temple after staying up all night? Why would they share their precious resources to help another in desperate need when they, themselves, were in such dire financial straits?” Elder Johnson then said, “If you understand what it means to be a disciple of Jesus Christ, then you will know the answer.”

Elder Johnson concluded by saying, “Discipleship is all about doing and becoming. Ultimately, it is by total submission to His will that helps us become as our Savior is. Again, becoming like Him and being one with Him is the ultimate goal and objective, and essentially the very definition of true discipleship.”