Elder Dallin H. Oaks teaches that the best way to live the gospel is through consistent, dedicated effort.
In 1952, Illinois governor Adlai E. Stevenson gave a speech in which he said patriotism “is not short, frenzied outbursts of emotion, but the tranquil and steady dedication of a lifetime.” Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles applies Stevenson’s words to living the gospel in his 2005 CES Fireside titled “The Dedication of a Lifetime.”
Elder Oaks says we should live the gospel completely and steadfastly. It might be difficult to live a balanced life when so many worldly things call for our attention. However, according to Elder Oaks, we should diligently focus on what is most important and have faith in the Lord’s plan.
“So what does it mean to obey the commandments, to keep our covenants, and to serve the Lord with ‘the tranquil and steady dedication of a lifetime’?” Elder Oaks asks. “It means to be a 100 percent Latter-day Saint, 100 percent of the time.”
Elder Oaks warns against extremism in religious practice, such as focusing too much on one facet of the gospel or sacrificing so much that we have nothing left to give. When our worship becomes frantic or unbalanced, he says, we miss out on important experiences and blessings, and we don’t progress in the way the Lord would want.
Above all, Elder Oaks asks us to dedicate our lives to the Lord by deliberately moving forward and becoming better. “Don’t wait for happiness to be thrust upon you. Seek it out in service and learning. Make a life for yourself. And trust in the Lord.”
—Jennifer Johnson, Mormon Insights
Photo courtesy of www.morguefile.com.