"Make no small plans: This is the vision I have for the South. I believe that one day the South will baptize more people into the church than all other English speaking missions in the world together....We will see the time when we will baptize hundreds, thousands, tens of thousands...In your day you will see a million members of the church in the South. There will be temples plural in the Southern States. What a great call you have to serve with these marvelous people." President Spencer W. Kimball

Sunday, January 12, 2014

From President Wall, Repentance

Sent Date: Sunday, January 12, 2014

Repentance has to be a lifetime process. You can think of repentance like a diet. (Or at least I do) Well any good dieter, or healthy individual doesn't call it a diet, they call it a "life style change". And in this life style change you make choices to change the things about yourself you don't like. Be that you are eating things that are making you sick, or unhealthy and you want to feel better about yourself. So you make the necessary changes to your Diet. You may also decide to exercise more. Now if it is a real "life style change" It cannot be for just a few days, or for any set amount of time. It has to be for forever. Because if you start eating unhealthy foods again, and stop exercising, you will gain all your weight back, plus some. SO, you can compare that EXACTLY to repentance. Repentance has to be a life-style change. (I have also realized that with the 40-day fast). What good is it repenting and becoming a better person while you are on your mission, only to go right back to where you were before you left? So you have to sit down and decide, "This is who I want to be". And decide what you need to stop, what you need to start, etc. And then you must fix your determination on that. You cannot begin the process of repentance with the idea that it will be easy, or temporary. Or it's not repentance. You must completely surrender yourself over to who you want to become. Which is, like Christ. And then you must work on that and keep that for the rest of your life. Does that mean you are going to be perfect? No. You are going to mess up. Just like on a diet there are days when you end up eating a ton of ice cream and you are ashamed and start over. 

Repentance is the same. It is a life-long goal of working to become like our Savior. We are going to have days, or maybe weeks or years where we have done something dumb, and we need to intensify our repentance process to make up for it. BUT through the help of the Savior, and by his grace and his mercy, and by our agency, we can repent. We can change and become different people. A quote I really like by Jeffrey R. Holland is, "The Past is to be learned from not lived in." If we are dwelling on that day when we ate a ton of ice cream and now we hate ourselves for it, we cannot change or become better, because we will not have the ability to see what we can be. And because it is a sign that we are not trusting in the Atonement of our Heavenly Father. This goes along with a scripture that I read today. In Helaman 5:10-11, it talks about the redeeming power of the atonement. It says "he did not come to redeem them IN their sins, but to redeem them FROM their sins." What an essential, powerful scripture. He cannot save us or help us if we are not trying. This daily, hourly, minutely task of repenting cannot stop. But as we endure it well, and give it our all, we can be saved and forgiven.

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