I've been thinking a lot lately about what it really means to center our lives around our Savior Jesus Christ and to become more like Him. I've loved my experience of serving in the Relief Society Building. There is such a wonderful spirit in that building and as I learn the history of it and
am surrounded by the legacy of Relief Society it has brought me closer to my Savior. As you first walk in the front doors, there is a large, original painting by Minerva Teichert, titled "Christ in the Red Robe". It is a stunning painting and it is such a wonderful reminder of how our Church is centered around our
belief in a loving Savior. The General Relief Society Presidency just rewrote our script for our tours and it is more centered about this painting, “ Christ in the Red Robe”. We are to explain that this picture sets the tone for all that they will see in the building. We share our knowledge that throughout His mortal
ministry, the Savior showed special love and concern for women. While little is known about a formal organization of women in the New Testament, evidence suggests that women were vital participants in the Savior’s ministry. The women in the ancient Church were dignified and noble, needed and valued. They
served others, increased in personal holiness, and participated in the great work of saving souls. These patterns have been restored in the latter days through the organization of Relief Society. The Prophet Joseph Smith declared, “The Church was never perfectly organized until the women were thus organized. It
was on March 17, 1842, in Nauvoo, Illinois, the Prophet Joseph called 20 women together and organized them in a divinely inspired and authorized manner. Emma Smith, the Prophet’s wife, was chosen as the first Relief Society president and said on the occasion of the first meeting, “We are going to do something
extraordinary…We expect extraordinary occasions and pressing calls.” In six of the early meetings of the Female Relief Society of Nauvoo (as it was called then), the Prophet instructed the women. He taught principles that helped Relief Society sisters “relieve the poor” and “save souls” – foundational principles
upon which the society was built. President Joseph F. Smith, the sixth President of the Church, urged the women to “lead the world and to lead especially the women of the world, in everything that is praise-worthy, everything that is God-like, everything that is uplifting and that is purifying.” Since the early days
of the Relief Society, women in the Church throughout the world, have applied the purposes of the Relief Society which is to prepare women for the blessings of eternal life, by increasing faith and personal righteousness, strengthening families and homes and seeking out and helping those in need. Relief Society
sisters are part of a great organization, founded by priesthood authority and strengthened by the teachings and declarations of prophets. They are beloved daughters of God with sacred responsibilities.
It is such a great reminder to all of us that as we serve, however we serve, and participate in the gospel plan, we are being valiant disciples of Jesus Christ in the work of salvation. Now, as I've studied the legacy of Relief Society and the importance of serving our neighbor, I've thought about how we may never
know what a kind word or deed may mean for someone. It's made me think of the scripture:
3 Nephi 27:27,And know ye that aye shall be bjudges of this people, according to the judgment which I shall give unto you, which shall be just. Therefore, what cmanner of men ought ye to be? Verily I say unto you, even das I am.
Isn't that a great question? "What manner of men ought ye to be?" and the answer..."even as I am"!
I loved this quote by Robert Millet:
"The quest to become more like our Lord and Savior
- to be more spiritually attentive,
more personally sensitive,
more tender and gracious -
ought to be the righteous desire of every Latter-day Saint.
What, then, can I do?
So, beginning now, let's try even harder to be more like our Savior and be the ones to 'save souls, be more sensitive, more tender and gracious and spiritually attentive'. We have the wonderful gift of the Holy Ghost to lead and guide us in this endeavor and the beautiful plan of the Gospel to carry us onward,
and most important a loving Savior who is our example and comforter.
I love you all...I pray for each of you...I encourage you to pray for each other...I know our prayers are answered and I know you are all loved by a kind Heavenly Father and Savior and they know each of you personally. You are all doing such wonderful things in your lives and you each are pursuing your dreams in
your own unique way. May I just say, as a mother/mother in-law/grandma, it is fascinating to witness!