Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Let Your Light So Shine

We, each of us, carry with us the light of Christ. The way we, as Latter-day Saints, live our lives give us the wonderful blessing of carrying the Holy Ghost, the testifier of the Lord, with us everywhere we go. The “light in our eyes” is not merely a product of being a member of the Church but of following the standards that we are given. Keeping the spirit with us takes obedience and constant reminders of truth. Studying scriptures and other spiritually uplifting works and activities will keep that light fresh and easy to see and share.

We as members of the church should be doing all we can to “let [our] light so shine before men, that they may see [our] good works, and glorify [our] Father which is in heaven (Mathew 5:16).” This includes things such as following the promptings of the spirit, serving those in need, keeping the Savior in the forefront of our minds, being good examples and doing all we can to be like Christ. 

In an address given at Brigham Young University, President David O. Mckay said this,
“Every man has an atmosphere which is affecting every other. Man cannot escape for one moment from this radiation of his character. This constantly weakening of strengthening of others. He cannot evade the responsibility by saying it is an unconscious influence. He can select the qualities he would permit to be radiated. He can cultivate sweetness, calmness, trust, generosity, truth, justice, loyalty, nobility, and make them vitally active in his character. By these qualities he will constantly affect the world. This radiation to which I refer comes from what a person really is, not from what he pretends to be. Every man by his mere living is radiating sympathy, sorrow, or morbidness, cynicism, or happiness or hope, or any other hundred qualities. Life is a state of radiation and absorption. To exist is to radiate. To exist is to be the recipient of radiation.”(The Mission of Brigham Young University)
I love this quote and it image it creates and also, the responsibility it places on us to make our light worth of radiating. I personally have witnessed the power of the light of Christ. I also have, unfortunately, witnessed the loss of it. Someone to whom I am very close has chosen to lead a life different than that which the church councils. Slowly but surely, year by year, I watched their countenance change from that of a worthy and righteous individual that shined as an example to those around them to instead an uncertain and undirected being that merely floated from one choice to another, having lost influence and even presence. Even certain responsibilities in the family could no longer be handled by them. Eventually, the light was replaced by their decisions and lifestyle and their countenance had truly changed, presenting to me and others a different person completely. A person that I still love deeply, but a different person none the less. I have promised myself that I will strive daily to prevent this from happening in my life and that I will do my best love and support those around me to prevent it from happening to them.

I leave you with this council from Alma, “And now behold, I ask of you, my brethren of the church, have ye spiritually been born of God? Have ye received his image in your countenances? Have ye experienced this mighty change in your hearts?
…I say unto you, can ye look up to God at that day with a pure heart and clean hands? I say unto you, can you look up, having the image of God engraven upon your countenances?” (Alma 5:16,19) I know that as I look at these questions there are things I can be doing to improve on a daily basis. But, I also know that the Lord will help me if I ask in prayer and humility. I challenge you to gain and cultivate that light for yourselves.

I know the gospel effects every aspect of my life and that, as I walk with my intentions focused toward the Lord, he will be reflected on my countenance.


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