Be One with the Prophet


F. Burton Howard

My brothers and sisters, I am deeply grateful for the love and confidence of the First Presidency, and for the sustaining vote of this conference that has brought me here before you at this time. I love the Lord and I love his work.

At the risk of being unduly personal, I would like to tell you how I feel about the gospel. I love it, not compelled by lack of choice or circumstance nor by the uncritical adoption of patterns commanded from afar; not manipulated, but acting consciously, constructively, purposely, giving a freewill offering of the heart. I want to be involved in the Lord’s work—humbly, totally, positively, and honestly; neither subordinating my soul to nor seeking dominion over others, but being freely one with those who are his, sharing and caring, thankful to be a part of the work wherever it may be, not to escape aloneness nor to fill life with self-deceptive activity, but rather knowingly and willingly doing what must be done; a grateful fellow servant, supporting, building, loving, lending heart and breath to a great cause.

I want to stand firm and fearless, not weakening—for weakness implies pressure from without—but radiating strength and charity truly from within; offensively—not defensively—enthusiastically, sweetly, faithfully, everlasting in harmony with the Lord. May we all become one with him and his prophet and bring harmony into the work that we are in charge of, wherever that may be, in whatever land, I pray for each of us, and most especially for me, as I acknowledge my weaknesses and stand before you to accept this great calling. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.