Declaration of Independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. - That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Bear One Another's Burdens

            Alma, an ancient American prophet, taught the values of a true follower of Jesus Christ. As the people gathered together to listen to the teachings of Christ, Alma said to them:

9 And it came to pass that he said unto them: Behold, here are the waters of Mormon (for thus were they called) and now, as ye are desirous to come into the fold of God, and to be called his people, and are willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light;

10 Yea, and are willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort, and to stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that ye may be in, even unto death, that ye may be redeemed of God, and be numbered with those of the first resurrection, that ye may have eternal life – (Book of Mormon – Another Testament of Jesus Christ, Mosiah 18:9-10

            All who are baptized members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have accepted Alma’s charge in verse 9 to “bear one another’s burdens.” Since we are under covenant to help each other, Alma shares a few ways that we can follow his counsel: “mourn with those who mourn,” comfort those in need, and share the good word of God.

            The prophet of God today, President Thomas S. Monson, says the same thing as Alma, but he uses a few different words. “We are surrounded by those in need of our attention, our encouragement, our support, our comfort, our kindness. We are the Lord’s hands here upon the earth, with the mandate to serve and to lift His children. He is dependent upon each of us” (“Serve the Lord with Love,” Liahona, Feb. 2014, 4). 

            President Henry B. Eyring, First Counselor in the First Presidency, reviews the commitments expressed by Alma. He then explains how we can follow the counsel of Alma and President Monson.

A great change began in your heart when you came into the Church. You made a covenant, and you received a promise that began changing your very nature. …

… You promised that you would help the Lord make [others’] burdens light and be comforted. You were given the power to help lighten those loads when you received the gift of the Holy Ghost” (“The Comforter,Liahona, May 2015, 18).

            President Eyring tells us that the Gift of the Holy Ghost is given to all baptized people who are confirmed as members of the Church. It is the power of the Holy Ghost that enables us to keep all the commandments. Sister Jean B. Bingham, Relief Society General President, adds other details.

We want to use the light of the gospel to see others as the Savior does – with compassion, hope, and charity. The day will come when we will have a complete understanding of others’ hearts and will be grateful to have mercy extended to us – just as we extend charitable thoughts and words to others. …

Our obligation and privilege is to embrace improvement in everyone as we strive to become more like our Savior” (“I Will Bring the Light of the Gospel into My Home,” Liahona, Nov. 2016, 6, 8). 

            As we keep our baptismal covenant to “bear one another’s burdens” and do so with the power of the Holy, we prepare ourselves to make temple covenants. As become aware of the healing power of Jesus Christ as we keep our covenants and help others. Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles taught:

Considering the incomprehensible cost of the Crucifixion and Atonement, I promise you He is not going to turn His back on us now. When He says to the poor in spirit, “Come unto me,” He means He knows the way out and He knows the way up. He knows it because He has walked it. He knows the way because He is the way” (“Broken Things to Mend,” Liahona, May 2006, 71). 

            As members of the Church we are under covenant with God to help His children. As part of that covenant God send the Holy Ghost to help us complete His work. As we go forward with compassion, hope, and charity, He will help us.

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