One of the things that critics of the Church often complain about is that we blindly follow our leaders. Iif you’ve ever been to a regular ward or branch, you know that just isn’t true. There are squabbles and disagreements just like any other organization. But when it comes to important things, we rally together and try to be united. As you move further up the hierarchy in the Church, I would say that the average member follows those leaders more. That kind of makes sense. Generally speaking, those who are called to “higher” positions have obviously demonstrated their righteousness and faithfulness to the Church. That helps us to trust them more and have greater faith that they are called of God.
Regardless of how you look at it, following someone you respect and love (whether it be a bishop or the President of the Church), does not make you blind. It shows the love and trust that you have in that person. President Packer said it simply in this way:
Those who talk of blind obedience may appear to know many things, but they do not understand the doctrines of the gospel. There is an obedience that comes from a knowledge of the truth that transcends any external form of control. We are not obedient because we are blind, we are obedient because we can see.
Boyd K Packer, Ensign, May 1983, p66
Posted in General Religion and Spirituality, Mormon Church Doctrine and Teachings
Tagged blind obedience, Boyd K. Packer, doctrines, ensign, faithfulness, god, hierarchy, love, righteousness, truth
For a short spring semester of Institute we are doing “The Gospel and the Productive Life” course. There are 15 lessons and we are only doing it for 8 weeks, so we need to do 2 a week. This past Wednesday we covered The Plan of Salvation for Heavenly Father’s Children and The Guidance of the Spirit. There is nothing “new” in these lessons, but it is nice to have a good discussion about some of these important principles/doctrines.
My favourite quote from this week was one from President Faust about the Holy Ghost:
“The Spirit of the Holy Ghost is the greatest guarantor of inward peace in our unstable world. It can be more mind-expanding and can make us have a better sense of well-being than any chemical or other earthly substance. It will calm nerves; it will breathe peace to our souls. This Comforter can be with us as we seek to improve. It can function as a source of revelation to warn us of impending danger and also help keep us from making mistakes. It can enhance our natural senses so that we can see more clearly, hear more keenly, and remember what we should remember. It is a way of maximizing our happiness”
James E. Faust in Conference Report, Apr. 1989, 41; or Ensign, May 1989, 32–33
What a powerful statement! I haven’t wasted my life in “riotous living”, but I certainly can tell the difference between having the Spirit with me and being left alone. I can definitely testify that the Holy Ghost is indeed the greatest guarantor of inward peace. The enlightenment and pure intelligence it bestows are worth any sacrifice it takes to live worthy of His companionship.