I was inspired by Elder Larry R. Lawrence’s talk in the October 2015 General Conference. He spoke about an elevated version of self improvement, inviting the Holy Ghost to give us personalized guidance as we follow the Savior’s command to become “perfect.” (Matt 5:48).
Elder Lawrence provided some very interesting examples, and introduced a spiritual exercise that we can do.
Here’s a recap.
First, we begin with the Biblical story of the rich young man. [Watch this lovely 2 minute portrayal!]
The question the young man asked Jesus, is the same question that all of us can, and should, ask.
“What Lack I Yet?”
(What can I do to improve, and reach my full potential?)
This leads us to the spiritual exercise outlined by Elder Lawrence.
WHAT SHOULD I DO?
I would like to suggest that each of you participate in a spiritual exercise sometime soon, perhaps even tonight while saying your prayers. Humbly ask the Lord the following question:
“What is keeping me from progressing?” In other words: “What lack I yet?”
Then wait quietly for a response. If you are sincere, the answer will soon become clear. It will be revelation intended just for you.
Pray. Ask. Wait.
Of course, getting our answer will not help us unless we are willing to take action, and DO what comes to our mind! So…
The good news is that the Spirit isn’t going to tell us EVERYTHING we need to improve all at once, he works with us at our own speed. “To him, our direction is ever more important than our speed.”
We just need to move forward and take one step at a time.
Elder Lawrence said a cool thing that I’ve underlined twice and then highlighted in my Conference notebook.
The Spirit not only shows us our weaknesses, but also our strengths!
“Sometimes we need to ask what we are doing right so that the Lord can lift and encourage us.”
WHY SHOULD I DO THIS?
Here are some good reasons found in Elder Lawrence’s talk:
#1. It’s a commandment.(Matt 5:48)
“It is our duty to be better today than we were yesterday, and better tomorrow than we are today.”
#2. We don’t want to miss out
“If spiritual growth is not a priority in our lives, if we are not on a course of steady improvement, we will miss out on the important experiences that God wants to give us.”
#3. We will develop a personal relationship with the Holy Spirit & be led the right way
“He is a completely honest companion and tells us things that no one else knows or has the courage to say.”
#4. We will be happy and have peace.
“The possibilities are endless!”
#5. We will gain the ultimate reward
“The Lord pours out more and more light until there is finally power to pierce the heavenly veil… [to] see the Lord’s face, and know that he is”.
#6. We may get a driving lesson from the Holy Ghost
“Be patient when driving; don’t exceed the speed limit. (I’m still working on that last one.)”
WHEN SHOULD I DO THIS?
Every day. At home. In quiet places. Any time!
Elder Lawrence suggested a “perfect time” is when we partake of the sacrament each Sabbath day in church.
I personally put this to the test. I knelt down, prayed, and I asked the Lord what I should do to improve myself.
Then, I waited.
Sure enough, I had an interesting thought come into my mind. My assignment from the Holy Ghost had arrived, and it is – as predicted by Lawrence – a bit surprising. But, I’m going to try it out. I won’t tell you what it is right now. After I put it to the test and learn a few things, I’ll probably report about it in a future blog. I invite you to do try it, too!
Isn’t it a great feeling to know that we are not alone in this journey through life? Our Heavenly Father has given us a personal guide we can always turn to. So, what will your answer be to improve yourself and your life today?
You won’t know until you ask.
The journey of discipleship is not an easy one. It has been called a “course of steady improvement.” As we travel along that strait and narrow path, the Spirit continually challenges us to be better and to climb higher.
Daughter B: “Why is the Holy Ghost wearing a fur coat?”
Me: o_o “Um…. why not?” [in truth, I didn’t notice. I just liked the picture]
Daughter B: “hmmm … The Spirit of God like a fire is burning… Warm fuzzy feelings from the ‘Comforter’? Okay, I’ll roll with it.”
So there you go. 😀 Keep on rolling! – MoSop
Read or watch Elder Larry R. Lawrence’s full talk “What Lack I Yet?”