“It is time to give ourselves to the Master and allow Him to lead us into fruitful fields where we can enrich a world filled with darkness and misery,” said Sister Mary Ellen Smoot, Relief Society general president. “Each of us, no matter who we are, no matter where we serve, must arise and make the most of each opportunity that comes. We must follow the counsel given by the Lord and His servants and make our homes houses of prayer and havens of security and safety. We can and must deepen our faith by increasing our obedience and sacrifice” (“Rejoice, Daughters of Zion,” Ensign, Nov. 1999, 94).
Sometimes it may seem difficult to rise above the world to that level of righteousness. But as we strive to “take unto [ourselves] the whole armour of God,” we will “be able to withstand in the evil day” (Eph. 6:13).
President N. Eldon Tanner (1898–1982), First Counselor in the First Presidency, observed that “those who are clothed in such armor, which means keeping all the commandments of God, are able to withstand the adversary.”
He continued: “Are we studying the scriptures so that we can increase our knowledge and faith and testimony regarding the gospel? … Are we honest and truthful in our dealings? Do we keep the Sabbath day holy? Do we observe the Word of Wisdom? Do we pay an honest tithing? … Are we virtuous and clean and pure in heart and mind and deed?
“Do we fight against the evils around us … ? Do we have the courage to stand up for our convictions? Can we truly say we are not ashamed of the gospel of Christ? Do we live peaceably with our neighbors and avoid gossip and backbiting and spreading unfounded rumors? Do we truly love our neighbors as ourselves?
“If we can answer yes to these questions, then we will have on the whole armor of God, which will protect us from harm and preserve us from our enemies” (“‘Put on the Whole Armor of God,’” Ensign, May 1979, 44, 46).
Lucile Johnson of the Timpanogos Park First Ward, Orem Utah North Stake, now in her 80s, learned early in life to don her spiritual “armor” at the beginning of each day. She remembers “arising early in the morning, before my husband and children were up. I found that kneeling in the stillness of my living room, I could begin pleading with our Father for my needs for that day. This brought me great peace, and I learned that He was my helper and protector. Then I would open my scriptures and partake of their inspiration and guidance. Each morning, before I began whatever I had to do—alone, with little children or teenagers, or with my husband in the military and off to war—I knew I would be equal to it.
“That is why I believe in taking the time in the quiet of the early morning hours to study and pray. You will begin your day with a renewing of your spirit. Then you will be truly ready for whatever might come that day.”