By Elder José A. Teixeira
President Europe Area
Our Heavenly Father loves us and wants the best for each one of us. His concern for His children is evident, although many, perhaps overwhelmed by the common problems and challenges of this life, fail to see this constant manifestation of love and concern of a loving and kind Father. It only takes a short break for reflection and a careful look around us, to soon realize the love that God has for His children.
Let us think for a few minutes of all the favorable circumstances in which we find ourselves today. I am sure that as we all ponder on this matter we will increase our gratitude for the love that God has for each one of us.
First matter to reflect upon: God continues to reveal His will to His servants the prophets
What a wonderful feeling of security and peace to know that God continues to reveal His will today to His servants the prophets. This is one of the greatest blessings that God gives us, the knowledge of His will!
The Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and of His Church through the Prophet Joseph Smith in this dispensation allows all, who wish for this, to perform the ordinances and covenants that will grant us to one day return and live once again in the presence of our Heavenly Father.
As we treasure up, through study and through faith, the words of the prophets contained in the Holy Scriptures, along with the words of the living prophets, we will be blessed with the desire to continue to keep and live the commandments and thereby have peace and tranquility in our hearts. Because we know that we are on the right track, that our families can be together, and we will have more strength to win the challenges of mortality ... these are priceless blessings.
Today the Lord guides His Church through a living Prophet and twelve Apostles, just like in the ancient times. I testify that President Thomas S. Monson is the prophet for our days and express my gratitude in knowing that God continues to love us by transmitting His will to a prophet by revelation.
God's love will be even more visible in our lives as we put into practice simple steps that will help us guide our lives, such as:
- Read the scriptures daily
- Use the Liahona magazine
- Study the teachings of the General Conference
These habits will allow us to be attentive to the teachings that God has for us when we need them the most.
Second matter to reflect upon: The temple is the House of the Lord where we can find peace and learn the Gospel
The Lord instructed the Prophet Joseph Smith at the beginning of this dispensation, along with all the prophets that followed him, to build temples so that individuals and families can develop a deep and intimate relationship with our Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ, thus learning his will, receiving inspired counsel and making covenants in the house of the Lord.
Our Heavenly Father has not abandoned His children and continues to reveal His will in our days, giving us the security and the confidence that we need, in order to continue on the right path. He gives us the opportunity to perform the ordinances and covenants in His temple that will allow us to live a clean and pure life and to prepare ourselves to return to His presence.
With the increase of temples been built all around the world, today more than ever, the temples of the Lord are more accessible.
In the Lord´s temples we can grow closer to God and to His Son Jesus Christ.
The scriptures are beautiful as they describe the attitude of the people back in the days of King Benjamin. In the Book of Mormon in Mosiah 2: 5 and 6 we read: “And it came to pass that when they came up to the temple, they pitched their tents round about, every man according to his family, consisting of his wife, and his sons, and his daughters, and their sons, and their daughters, from the eldest down to the youngest, every family being separate one from another. And they pitched their tents round about the temple, every man having his tent door towards the temple.'
My challenge is that we can also have a similar attitude, as the people back in the days of King Benjamin, and plan to visit the temple more often. The attitude of those who are facing the Temple begins with the individual and family preparation, in our daily life, by living God's commandments each day.
Without the temple we couldn't seal our families for all eternity. Inside the temple we learn eternal principles. What we learn in the temple helps us in our self-improvement and gives us the direction and guidance we need in life.
There are many other manifestations of God's love all around us, yet today I leave my testimony on these, that are well within our reach: the temples of the Lord and the words of the prophets today!
I testify that God lives and loves us. He has blessed us with these blessings so that we can feel His love towards us. Today is the day to make the relevant decisions that will grant us to also put our tents, our lives, facing Him.