I love the Lord Jesus Christ and His Church, which has been restored to the earth in our day. I treasure the teachings of His holy life from newborn infant to resurrected man, Son of God.
As I have read from the pages of the Bible, in my mind’s eye I have watched Him as He “increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.”1 In my reading, I was there when He raised the dead. He healed the sick, fed the 5,000, brought comfort and hope and a process for peace into the world that He had created. He forgave those who mocked and tortured and crucified Him—for they knew not what they did. I saw the divine love and concern He had for His mother, though He suffered in supreme agony Himself. He overcame death so that we can too. He has prepared a place for us in heaven with our Eternal Father. He has taught us the plan for happiness and given us the vision of it and the hope to follow it. His was the ultimate life of sacrifice and a life of service to fulfill the plan of God His Father.
A Latter-day Saint woman who follows Christ’s example in her daily living begins to fulfill the plan of our Heavenly Father for her. By so doing she can be a powerful influence for good in today’s world and meet the challenges of mortality. I have known such women, and they have been a guiding light to me. The Latter-day Saint woman who follows Christ is a true Christian in the very best sense of the word. She is a woman of faith who trusts God and is confident and fearless.
A woman of faith trusts God and faces adversity with hope. She knows of His interest in her life. She knows that He knows her. She loves His words and drinks deeply of that living water. She is grateful for the prophet He has sent for these latter days, and she trusts his counsel and follows it, for she knows that by so doing she will find safety and peace. In prayer she seeks the kind, unfaltering guidance and help of a listening Heavenly Father. As she prays, she listens—allowing the communication to be two-way. She trusts that in His still and quiet way, He will lead her by the hand and give her answer to her prayers.2
A woman of faith is confident because she understands the divine plan of our Heavenly Father and her role to bless lives. She is confident that any sacrifice she makes is worth something in an eternal sense. She knows about sacrifice from knowing of the life of the Savior. She knows that her sacrifices may be small by comparison, but she knows that Heavenly Father understands and values what she does to strengthen her home and her family and the world in which she lives. Her confidence grows because she is virtuous and lovely and gracious, which is even better than beautiful. She has pure motives. She is loving and gentle and kind. The hearts of her husband and her children safely trust in her.3 And so do the children or youth or women that she has been called to teach, lead, serve, and love—they are drawn to her because of that special spirit that she radiates. It is the image of God that she has in her countenance that is appealing and important.4 She is confident that she is fashioning a character and a record of performance that will be invited to stand in the presence of her Heavenly Father. She will be able to do so with the sense that she fully belongs there, that she is known by Him and loved and valued and treasured forever and always.
A woman of faith is fearless. She fears no evil, for God is with her.5 There is no ambiguity, no uncertain trump in her life. She can live a principled life because she studies the doctrine and teachings of a perfect teacher, the Master. She is a noble example to all who know her. She is less than perfect, of course, not because she doesn’t have perfect principles or the perfect example in Christ, but because she is human. She stays away from the evil influence and the unclean thing, and if it encroaches on her territory, she is as a lioness protecting her cubs. A fearless woman of faith has the courage to talk with her children about practices which would destroy them. They not only hear her discuss her commitment, but they see her commitment in her daily living—in the way she dresses, what she reads and watches, how she spends her leisure time, what she loves and laughs at, whom she attracts, and how she acts at all times, in all things, and in all places. She has a certain style of her own that is attractive and joyful and bright and good. Our little girls and our young women can safely trust in her example. We pray that they too will be fearless as they seek out and promote that which is uplifting and happy and decent, for they are our future.
Thank heaven for women of faith in our lives. A woman of faith loves the Lord. She wants Him to know it by the life she lives, by the words she speaks, by the service she renders to His children, by her every action. She knows that He loves her even though she is imperfect and still trying to be better. She knows that when she does her very best, that it is enough, as President Hinckley has told us.6
A woman of faith is blessed by faithful men in her life who hold the priesthood of God and honor this privilege: her father, bishop, husband, brothers, sons. They value her and the divine gifts given by God to His daughter. They sustain and encourage, and they understand the great mission of her life as a woman. They love her; they bless her. They are in turn blessed by this woman of faith as they walk the path of life together. They know, as scripture teaches, that “two are better than one. … For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow.”7
I express my gratitude for wonderful women of faith, for great, noble men, and for my beloved family, who have lifted me up and inspired me throughout my life. They have been an especially great blessing as I have tried to fulfill the sacred errand from the Lord as the Young Women general president.
Dear brothers and sisters, please know of my love for you and my great gratitude to our Father in Heaven and His Beloved Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. I will honor and serve Them with all my heart forever and be thankful for the privilege. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.