Sunday, August 16, 2015



Sunday, August 16, 2015
I end the introspection of my discipleship by examining what seems to be a tremendously important part of the life of one who professes to be a follower of a discipline.

During the years Kathleen and I were involved in my post graduate schooling, I was introduced to the principle of valuing and its importance in the educational process. Since I have previously written a Thought on this subject I will skip to the final measurable way we are able to determine if a person truly values a principle or belief. It is discussed under a very broad definition which we can call proselyting. This, simply stated, means that one really knows they value a concept when they have a burning desire and are willing to pay whatever price is necessary to convince others of its truthfulness.

The scriptural recognition of valuing as it pertains to proselyting can be found in the following verses:

…but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
(Matthew 5:19)

Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. (Matthew 28:19)

…go ye unto all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. (Mark 16:15)

…and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren. (Luke 22:32)

…I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain. (John 15:16)

Although I could add many more admonitions I will end with my favorite which comes from the prophet Isaiah in the Old Testament:

How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth. (Isaiah 52:7)

I think the reason this last scripture sings so loudly to my heart, is that the culmination of my life’s work has led me to know that the Gospel my Lord and Savior taught throughout all generations was the Good News.

Joseph Smith emphasized this as a major tenet of which I have become a disciple in the 13th Article of Faith; We believe in being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and in doing good to all men; indeed, we may say that we follow the admonition of Paul—We believe all things, we hope all things, we hope to endure many things, and hope to be able to endure all things. If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things.

Unless there is an addendum somewhere where bashing, demeaning, degrading, criticizing and belittling have been added, I cannot find any indication that my discipleship and my responsibility to preach the gospel unto the world, includes in any way the right to bring down my brothers and sisters. Contrarily, there are numerous references to my duty to build, strengthen and edify.

Another article given to me by the Prophet Joseph Smith indicates that in my dealings with my brothers and sisters, although I have the obligation to demonstrate the value I have in my discipleship through teaching to all I encounter, I must never lose sight of their agency and their right to walk on whatever path they have chosen.

We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may. (Article of Faith 11)

After 55 years of spending a major part of my life publishing peace, love, benevolence, virtue and all things of the Good News, I have only begun to come near to the point of exhausting the voluminous concepts of the Infinite being of whom I am striving to become a disciple. I guess since the Good News is so inexhaustible I should catch the vision that I don't really have a lot of time to spend tearing down what my neighbor has chosen to follow or be.

Grade – have done well, but don't be content to rest on your past deeds – there is still a lot of teaching which needs to be done to bring your brothers and sisters to understand and be consumed with the desire to live and teach the Good News – thereby becoming another disciple of Jesus the Christ.

Well there you have it. I know it won't be the last time I plow this field, nor will it be the deepest I send my furrow, but it was helpful and hopefully it will help me to try a little harder to be found guilty of being a Christian and a true disciple of Jesus the Christ.



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