This post is dedicated to my mother. I do not doubt she always knew it (Alma 56:48).
For the past year or so, I have been having a glorious time studying topics and scriptures of personal interest on BYU’s LDS Scripture Citation Index .While I find the online scriptures at lds.org to be a useful partner in quickly finding scriptures by words or phrases I could remember, my overall affections have been transferred to the Citation Index because I find it more informative and much easier to use. Everything is filtered out on this index except the teachings from General Conference, teachings which Latter-day Saints believe to be akin to scripture when they come from prophets and apostles. There, you can also easily study the General Conference teachings of one specific apostle or prophet, and in chronological order, too. My testimony was really struggling when I found the LDS Scripture Citation Index, and I credit this online resource not only with saving it but with strengthening it, and bringing much of the great joy and comfort of the true Gospel back into my life.
Recently, in the midst of researching a specific topic, children of light, I found myself led back into studying some of the teachings of John Taylor again. Perhaps, like the rest of my countrymen, too much popular culture has soaked into my brain, because methought I suddenly heard his words in the very distinct voice of Edna Mode, the unforgettable character from the Disney animated film, The Incredibles. Maybe this happened because, for me, President Taylor’s words ring out like a spiritual 2X4. Maybe this occurred because I need that strong of a reminder in my life just now. After all, I no longer have my mighty battle maiden Mother living with me every day; so again with the absence of the 2×4’s. While I was reading, I also noticed parallels to the 1939 film classic, The Wizard of Oz. So I decided to take the time to share this wonderful quote in my own format, combined with the quirky allusions that perhaps only I am warped enough to think of. The quote comes from John Taylor as recorded in the Journal of Discourses, beginning at 1:372b as found on BYU’s LDS Scripture Citation Index.
Now, remember, read the rest of this post in your best Edna Mode voice. 😀 Cheers!
“… [So] you feel as though some dreadful calamity [has] happened to you?
Have you forgot who you are, and what your object is?
Have you forgot that you profess to be Saints of the Most High God, clothed upon with the Holy Priesthood?
Have you forgot that you are aiming to become Kings and Priests to the Lord, and Queens and Priestesses to Him? (Revelations 1:6)
Have you forgot that you are associated with the Saints of God in Zion,
- where the oracles of truth are revealed and the truths of God are made manifest, and clearly developed;
- where you and your posterity after you can learn the ways of life and salvation;
- where you are placed in a position that you can obtain blessings from the great Elohim, that will rest upon you and your posterity worlds without end?
Have you forgot these things and become blind,… turning like the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire? (2 Peter 2:22)
We ought to reflect sometimes upon these things and understand our true position.
Have you forgot that you came from God, that He is your Father?
Have you forgot that you are aiming to get back to his presence?
If you have forgot all this, your conduct and actions now are fraught with eternal consequences to yourselves, to your progenitors, and to your posterity after you.
Have you forgot that thousands who have possessed the Holy Priesthood here still exist in the eternal world, and look with interest upon your conduct and proceedings?
Have you forgot that God has set his hand again the second time to gather the remnants of his people? (Isaiah 11:11)
Have you forgot that He is preparing a people that shall be pure in heart (Matthew 5:18);
- be blessed with light, life and intelligence;
- with knowledge of things past, present and to come?
Have you forgot that you are standing in the midst of brethren who have gone behind the veil, who are watching your actions and are anxious for your welfare, prosperity and exaltation?
Have you forgot that we are living in the last time, wherein a mighty struggle will have to take place between the powers of darkness that are in the world, and the children of light;
- that it is necessary for us as individuals to gird ourselves with the principles of truth, and to be girt about with righteousness on the right hand and on the left (Ephesians 6:14, [D&C 84:88]) to enable us to stand in the midst of desolation, ruin and misery that are overhanging a devoted earth [Moses 7:26, 48; Genesis 27:46]
- and that as eternal beings we ought to have our eyes open to eternal things and not be dreaming away our existence, forgetful of what we came into the world to accomplish?
Well, here we are, and who are we? We are Saints of the Most High God!