The visiting teaching message for August is about living a consecrated life. I recently wrote notes to the sisters on my letter route, and I thought that I would share the message with my readers. I am using quotes from several members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as well as one from a former Relief Society leader of the importance of consecrating our lives and how to do it.
Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles spoke on this topic and gave a definition of consecration. “To consecrate is to set apart or dedicate something as sacred, devoted to holy purposes. True success in this life comes in consecrating our lives – that is, our time and choices – to God’s purposes.” (See D. Todd Christofferson, “Reflections on a Consecrated Life,” Ensign, Nov. 2010, 16.)
Elder Neal A. Maxwell (1926-2004) of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles enlarged on this meaning when he said, “We tend to think of consecration only as yielding up, when divinely directed, our material possessions. But ultimate consecration is the yielding up of oneself to God.” (See Neal A. Maxwell, “Consecrate Thy Performance,” Ensign, May 2002, 36.)
We can increase our faith in Jesus Christ and in His atoning sacrifice as we consecrate ourselves to the purposes of God. We can become holy step by step as we live a consecrated life.
Sister Carole M. Stephens, former First Counselor in the Relief Society General Presidency, quoted Elder Robert D. Hales and then shared her understanding of consecration.
“When we make and keep covenants, we are coming out of the world and into the kingdom of God.”
We are changed. We look different, and we act different. The things we listen to and read and say are different, and what we wear is different because we become daughters of God bound to Him by covenant. (See Carole M. Stephens, “Wide Awake to Our Duties,” Ensign, Nov. 2012, 115-16).
Consecration is the covenant God makes “with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people” (Jeremiah 31:33). We can bring our lives into harmony with God’s plan for us by living a consecrated life.