Pam Musil gives five suggestions to help make permanent change a part of your life. Her knowledge of dance greatly influences her advice.
May we learn how to learn by the Spirit; may we choose and decide in time how best to prepare for eternity; may we offer global experience and training to contribute to every nation, kindred, and tongue; and may we seek and rejoice in spiritual strengthening.
Obviously we cannot completely control the events that come at us daily, but we can indeed control the worthwhileness of those events. We worship an omniscient God and know that “all things wherewith you have been afflicted shall work together for your good, and to my name’s glory, saith the Lord.”
Whether you are aware of it or not, there is someone around you whose life has been altered by sexual violence. Being “an example of the believers,” living a life of kindness and compassion, keeping your covenant “to mourn with those that mourn,” and serving others can all have powerful effects on those around you. Please do not underestimate the influence of diligent obedience, daily worship, and active service. You can do much good in a general way without realizing how the Spirit is working through you to bless the lives of others.
Agency and responsibility are inseparably connected. You cannot avoid responsibility without also diminishing agency. Mercy and justice are also inseparable. You cannot deny the Lord’s justice without also impeding His mercy. Oh, how Satan loves to divide complementary principles and laugh at the resulting devastation!
The family proclamation could not be more clear about the consequences of choices inconsistent with the Father’s plan. It unequivocally proclaims: "We warn that the disintegration of the family will bring upon individuals, communities, and nations the calamities foretold by ancient and modern prophets."
Have you ever been absorbed by a project? Have you ever been driven internally by a goal you wished to accomplish? I believe that when we exercise our agency to learn, grow, and accomplish good in this world and when we apply “the principles of righteousness,” our influence will naturally increase.
As important as choices are—such as what to major in, what career path to take, where to live, and where to send the kids to school—the choices you make regarding the type of person you want to be are, in my opinion, more important and will help you make those very important decisions regarding the direction you choose for your life and your family.
How could we become like the Savior if we did not have agency to make those choices? By using our agency to choose the right, we begin to put on the divine nature—to pattern our lives after His. We find peace, happiness, and freedom as we make right choices.
In our fast-paced world, we are sometimes impatient for His plan to unfold. Popular culture tells us, “Get a life.” My advice to all of us is, “Get an eternal life.” By making right choices today, tomorrow, and for the rest of our time on earth, that eternal goal means the most to us.
Well-meaning people may honestly disagree with my interpretation of how the universe is put together. Agency allows and requires this possibility. But for me, as I noted above, science is faith affirming because I choose to believe, and everything else follows.
We cannot look to the law to save us when we have broken the law. We need a Savior, a Mediator who can overcome the effects of our sins and errors so that they are not necessarily fatal. It is because of the Atonement of Christ that we can recover from bad choices and be justified under the law as if we had not sinned.
What is relevant to you today? A few weeks ago I attended a young single adult ward in Washington, D.C., where I met Dean Magleby for the first time. As we came here this morning, I was a little apprehensive about this assignment until I was able to see some of you whom I have known: some of our missionaries—well, many of our missionaries; those of you we have visited…
A well-worn and much-loved poem by Robert Frost introduces the subject. You may know the work, or perhaps you have heard only the oft-quoted last lines: Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, And sorry I could not travel both And be one traveler, long I stood And looked down one as far as I could To where it bent in the undergrowth; Then took the other, as just as…
A friend of mine who was critical of religion once asked me, “What does it really mean if a person behaves righteously because of external rewards and punishments? Every animal will choose reward over punishment.” Elder Maxwell gave a marvelous talk about agency from this podium three weeks ago. I want to reiterate one of the points he made: A central feature of agency is that God doesn’t coerce us.…
Though we are free to choose our actions, we must weigh them against eternal consequences. Agency is a gift from God and we must treasure it.
At times we will go through trials and need to be lifted up. Control, attitude, and faith in divine power will create wind beneath our wings and lift us up.
It is a great pleasure to be with you today in this devotional. I am prayerful that the time we spend together will motivate each of us to consider our lives and to evaluate where we are as we begin this new year. Have you noticed how the seasons of our lives move forward in a never-ending stream? I have been fascinated—sometimes surprised, but almost always invigorated—by the changes I…
Choose to keep God's commandments—always—and stay out of Satan's territory. You are promised safety and peace if you stay on the Lord's side of the line.
An important discussion of controversial topics such as the family, abortion, choice, and diversity, in terms of earthly objectives and eternal goals.
Some of you may be wondering what it would be like to stand here at a podium where prophets, apostles, presidents of the United States, a prime minister of England, Nobel Prize winners, university presidents, and many learned men and women have spoken—particularly some of you who may feel you are not quite as qualified as those who have occupied this place. As the least-qualified devotional speaker in the history…
The atonement, along with our own agency and accountability, work together to comprise the essence of the Plan of Salvation.
Richard G. Scott emplores listeners to resolutely decide to keep the Lord's standards and live so that the Holy Ghost can inspire all to do what is right.
Ruth E. Brasher, director of the BYU Honor Code Office, shares insights into the dangers of separating agency from accountability.
To "get a life," we must use our agency to love God and serve others. Then, no matter our circumstance, we can say "Life can't get any better than this."
In the thirtieth chapter of Deuteronomy we read, “I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life” (19). With these words Moses challenged the children of Israel to renew their covenant with the Lord. We may have heard the same words earnestly addressed to us by parents, teachers, and church leaders. We know what they mean. Or do we? Perhaps we could gain by pondering…
Christlike character is cultivated through our choices, not our circumstances or predispositions. We are always accountable for the outcome of our actions.
God's plan of salvation includes "free agency" - the freedom to choose. That cannot be taken away, but our "freedom," or ability to act on our choices, can.
There is a balance to be found in life between looking to the Lord's hand in all things and using your God-given agency to guide you through life.
Your free agency is a gift from God and can save you from being tied down by procrastination, bad habits, and debilitating excuses.
In life's constant opportunities for giving and getting, let us be more concerned with giving. Nothing worth getting comes without effort and sacrifice.
Using the tagline, "spiritual is as spiritual does," Mary Ellen Edmunds reminds us that spirituality is determined by the steps we take to develop it.
The gift of agency is central to the Plan of Salvation. Using our agency to follow God's commandments gives us true independence and power over our destiny.
Our light will shine and we will influence the world for good as we respect the agency of others and have pure intentions.
God desires all His children to return to Him, but the conflict of life is to choose between eternity's blessings and compromising for worldly things.
Daniel H. Ludlow outlines the conditions necessary for our moral free agency to be effective. In our lives and our country, we must preserve this freedom.
It is our obligation to go to work on our problems and then counsel with the Lord and get the ratifying seal of the Holy Spirit on the conclusions that we’ve reached; and that ratifying seal is the spirit of revelation.
Time is a god-given gift that the wise will cherish and that the foolish will waste or misuse; what we do here will determine what we are in the eternities.
It isn't enough to be doing the right things; we need to make sure we are doing them for the right reasons. Ask yourself, "Are my motives pure?"
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What are you making of the many opportunities you have? Adam S. Bennion counsels students to take advantage of their time devoted to study and improvement.
Your soul is as powerful as the atomic weapons which our age fears. As you discover your divine potential, you will be able to actualize it.
Your personal liberty does not give your the right to flout standards and rules that you have agreed to, nor to ignore when others who do so.
The morality of the world can be no greater than the goodness of its individuals. Use your knowledge and God's guidance to make the world a better place.