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Saturday, December 10, 2011

An Aware God

Christmas can be a stressful time of year.  Shopping for presents, setting up the decorations, buying those ever-so-cherished ugly sweaters, making the hot cocoa, and shoveling the snow can almost make one forget how aware the Father and the Son actually are of all that we think, do, and say.

President Joseph Smith taught that "the Great Parent of the universe looks upon the whole of the human family with a fatherly care and paternal regard; He views them as His offspring" (History of the Church 4:595).  Additionally the Prophet taught, "God sees the secret springs of human action, and knows the hearts of all living" (History of the Church 1:317).  So, as the offspring of Deity, one's actions, thoughts, and words are known of the Great Jehovah.  If we wish to know our standing before God, we need only ask Him in humble prayer, and He will answer.  To the downtrodden soul who thinks their efforts in preaching the Gospel of the Redeemer go unheeded by others, we have the words of the Lord to Nephi III in the Book of Mormon: "as [Nephi] was thus pondering in his heart, behold, a voice came unto him saying: Blessed art thou, Nephi, for those things which thou hast done; for I have beheld how thou hast with unwearyingness declared the word, which I have given unto thee, unto this people.  And thou hast not feared them, and hast not sought thine own life, but hast sought my will, and to keep my commandments" (Helaman 10:3-4).  As the scriptures teach us to liken them unto our own lives, this is sufficient to show God is aware of our efforts (even unheeded by others) to preach His Word.

The Lord Christ has borne these fears upon His shoulders before us.  All He asks is for us to put our fears, doubts, and troubled upon His back.  Saith He, "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light" (Matt. 11:28-30).

The world's current Prophet, President Thomas S. Monson, testified on 4 December 2011, 

As we face the temptations of our times, the confusion of choice, the embarrassment of error, the pursuit of perfection, our Heavenly Father is there to listen, to love, to inspire.  Our Father to whom we earnestly pray is not an ethereal substance or a mysterious and incomprehensible being.  Rather, He has eyes with which to view our actions, lips with which to speak to us, ears to hear our plea and a heart to understand our love" (Teachings of Thomas S. Monson, p. 260).

I know God is acutely aware of all our actions, and stands with outstretched arms to receive us and help us if we will but ask.  We Latter-day Saints are a lot better than we think we are.  We can always do better, it is true, but we must not beat ourselves up because of our lack of perfection, for only One is called Perfect.  He will help us when we ask, and is ever aware of our righteous actions, thoughts, and desires.  In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

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