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Be Honest With Yourself: It’s Smart to Take Part

By: Ardis E. Parshall - October 03, 2011

(See here for background)

From 1958 —

It’s Smart to Take Part

Belonging to the Church is important. It opens the way for us to work out our salvation, but it’s only the first step on the road to happiness on earth and eternal progress in heaven. The rest comes through obedience and performance every day of our lives.

This is one of the reasons the Church offers so many opportunities for daily participation. The degree to which we take part in these spiritual, intellectual, physical, social exercises will determine the degree to which we are eventually saved.

Let’s take some examples:

A boy or a girl takes part regularly in class instruction, and he learns, in the process, priceless truths. And “we are saved no faster than we gain knowledge.”

We join the Church-sponsored scout troop, a young people’s chorus, a singing quartet, or we “try out” for a part in a dramatic skit. That’s experience, progress.

We take our turn to speak on principles of the gospel in our young people’s improvement meetings or in Sunday worship services. Again, we’re taking part – going ahead.

We participate in Church league basketball, softball, volley ball – and in the process we build the physical body, practice teamwork, and learn the value of putting good sportsmanship into our play and work.

Going to “socials” in the attractive and wholesome atmosphere of our Church recreational halls helps us to develop our social graces and meet and associate with young men and young women of our own kind – the kind we’d like to have for our friends and, eventually, for our mates in marriage.

As we get older we become scout leaders, Sunday School teachers, and many of us go on preaching missions.

All this is “taking part.” It is the day-by-day way to happiness and eternal progression. It is part – an important life-long part – in living our religion for our own good and for the greater good of others.

So – young men, young women of the Church – don’t be satisfied with just belonging. Start today to take part because it’s smart. In other words –

BE HONEST WITH YOURSELF



6 Comments »

  1. And when you twitter and bear your testimony on facebook, you’re taking part in missionary work. (They forgot to mention that part.)

    Comment by Carol — October 3, 2011 @ 9:19 am

  2. I’m having a bit of a problem with the statement, “The degree to which we take part in these spiritual, intellectual, physical, social exercises will determine the degree to which we are eventually saved,” and probably particularly because the examples given are going to classes, scouts, choir, dramatic skits, speaking in MIA and Sunday meetings, church sports, and “socials.”

    I realize that there is a community aspect to salvation — we’re not saved without our dead, we should be sealed to our families, baptism includes the agreement to bear one another’s burdens, mourn with those that mourn, comfort those that stand in need of comfort, and stand as witnesses of God, etc., etc., but there’s still something funny about this text.

    Participating in a church dance will ensure the highest degree of salvation? Really?

    Comment by Researcher — October 3, 2011 @ 9:27 am

  3. I suppose that’s literally what it says, Researcher, and is a little clumsy. I think the intended message, though, is to take part in life, and to take part in church — not to be “too cool for school” but to be involved, and the listed activities are both examples and justifications for being involved.

    Aside from the awkwardness of the wording that implies church dance –> exaltation, I think it’s interesting to have the justifications for the various activities laid out, to say that there really were gospel purposes behind the old MIA activities, and that they weren’t merely ways to keep people busy, or simply nice things to do, that were jettisoned because they got too cumbersome. I wonder what the gospel purpose could be claimed for most of our ward activities today, which involve only food and small talk.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — October 3, 2011 @ 9:57 am

  4. I think it’s interesting to have the justifications for the various activities laid out, to say that there really were gospel purposes behind the old MIA activities

    And so should activities today have a gospel purpose. (Not saying they always do, but they should.)

    Comment by Paul — October 3, 2011 @ 10:35 am

  5. So many of the activities our ward plans (or the youth plan for themselves) lack a higher gospel purpose. They don’t feel the same obligation to go to all the weekly activities as I did (was it a family thing or generational? I don’t know.)

    Whether the pick-and-choose mentality of our ward youth is somehow connected to the lack or spiritually-enriching activities, I don’t know either. But I find the corolation intriguing.

    Comment by The Other Clark — October 3, 2011 @ 11:14 am

  6. I haven’t seen much in the way of social graces being learned at church dances. According to my daughter, everybody just stands around and bellows over the music, while only a few actually even move to the music. The art of “asking a girl to dance,” which caused me to quake in my church shoes as a teen, has been totally lost, as the youth stand in their groups and hang out.

    Comment by iguacufalls — October 3, 2011 @ 11:22 am

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