Besides For the Strength of Youth, the Church distribution centers have other materials that can help you remember Church standards. The centers have posters, Young Men and Young Women manuals and supplementary materials to go with them, pictures of the Savior and the prophets, and Church music, among other things. You can visit the distribution center nearest to you or log on to the Online Distribution Center at www.ldscatalog.com for more ideas.
“Now may I make a recommendation? Develop discipline of self so that, more and more, you do not have to decide and redecide what you will do when you are confronted with the same temptation time and time again. You need only to decide some things once. How great a blessing it is to be free of agonizing over and over again regarding a temptation. To do such is time-consuming and very risky.
“There are some things Latter-day Saints do and other things we just don’t do. The sooner you take a stand, the taller you will be!” (President Kimball Speaks Out, 1981, 94).
—President Spencer W. Kimball (1895–1985)
Karl G. Maeser was the first president of Brigham Young University. Born in Saxony, Germany, in 1828, he was the first member to be baptized into the restored Church there. In 1860, when Dr. Maeser and his family moved to Utah, he became the private tutor to Brigham Young’s family. Sixteen years later, Brigham Young called Dr. Maeser to organize the Brigham Young Academy.
Not only was Karl G. Maeser known for his intelligence and teaching skills; he was also known for his humility and honesty. In his first address to the new Brigham Young Academy he said, “I have been asked what I mean by word of honor. I will tell you. Place me behind prison walls—walls of stone ever so high, ever so thick, reaching ever so far into the ground—there is a possibility that in some way or another I may be able to escape; but stand me on the floor and draw a chalk line around me and have me give my word of honor never to cross it. Can I get out of that circle? No, never! I’d die first!” (quoted in Emerson West, Vital Quotations, 1968, 167).
Ever wondered why we use the word standards? Why not just call them rules?
Centuries ago, a standard was called “the king’s standard.” The king’s standard was a point of reunion for his army and the place where he gave his commands. It was some kind of noticeable object, usually a banner, carried on a pole so all the army could see it and rally to it.
Using the king’s standard as a rallying point for orders led to the word standard, meaning something stationary or fixed, something upheld for its permanent value. The Oxford English Dictionary says a standard is an exemplar of correctness or perfection.
Many countries have an agency where standards of time, weight, and measure are kept. There, the accuracy of clocks, scales, and other devices can be checked. In a similar way, For the Strength of Youth tells us Church standards are “guidelines given to help you measure your conduct.”
Our standards today come from a heavenly king. It is His standard we uphold when we keep the standards of the Church; they are more than just rules. And just as standard things have definite value, so does the counsel of the prophets about dating, media, morality, and all the other standards found in For the Strength of Youth and in the scriptures.
When you hold your heavenly standard high for all to see, others can rally to you for the strength that comes from living the standards of the Church.