Thursday, May 11, 2017

More Thoughts on the Gifts of the Spirit

Last month I attended a Sunday School class which I'm sure was to be Gospel Doctrine Lesson #15.  I was surprised that section 46 wasn't mentioned at all, since we're supposedly studying the Doctrine and Covenants churchwide. However, I have no responsibilities for that ward, so I'm not even worrying about it. Besides, we did read other scriptures and I learned some things.

When we had this lesson years ago, I recorded a favorite quote from Elder Ashton. That one was not mentioned this time, but I wanted to record a quote that was. (Among other places, it can be found in the April 2016 Ensign.)

If any of us are imperfect, it is our duty to pray for the gift that will make us perfect. Have I imperfections? I am full of them. What is my duty? To pray to God to give me the gifts that will correct these imperfections. If I am an angry man, it is my duty to pray for charity, which suffereth long and is kind. Am I an envious man? It is my duty to seek for charity, which envieth not. So with all the gifts of the gospel. They are intended for this purpose. No man ought to say, “Oh, I cannot help this; it is my nature.” He is not justified in it, for the reason that God has promised to give strength to correct these things, and to give gifts that will eradicate them. If a man lack wisdom, it is his duty to ask God for wisdom. The same with everything else. That is the design of God concerning His Church. He wants His Saints to be perfected in the truth. For this purpose He gives these gifts and bestows them upon those who seek after them, in order that they may be a perfect people upon the face of the earth, notwithstanding their many weaknesses, because God has promised to give the gifts that are necessary for their perfection. - Elder George Q. Cannon

The teacher shared a little scripture chain with us to show how the scriptures support this principle.

Ether 12:27 - We all have weaknesses and imperfections. If we approach the Lord in humility he will help us identify them so that we can overcome them and turn them into strengths.

Moroni 10:30 - We do that by figuring out which gift is the "antidote" to our weakness, as Elder Cannon suggested, and then pray and work to receive that gift from the Lord. I thought it was interesting that charity helps eradicate most, if not all, of our "natural man" tendencies.

Moroni 10:32 - Through the combination of our faith and works, along with the Savior's grace, we eventually can overcome our weakness and become perfect. What a beautiful promise!

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