Feast upon the Word Blog

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“Always Remember…” (YW Lesson 4, Manual 1 – Seeking the Companionship of the Holy Ghost)

Posted by Karen on January 19, 2012

Lately I’ve been thinking more and more about the sacrament prayer’s promise that as we “always remember Him” we can “always have His Spirit” with us. What is it about “remembering” that brings the Spirit? How do we remember? Do we confess His hand in all things? And does that mean that we see everything as His work? As grace? Is it that we always remember His love for us? The “greatness of God, … his goodness and long-suffering towards [us]“?

I did a search for “always remember” in the scriptures at lds.org. Besides references to the sacrament, I found references to several other passages that might open up other ways of thinking about remembering.

The first is from D&C 46, a section detailing and discussing the gifts of the Spirit. The direction in verse 8 is to “seek ye earnestly the best gifts [ie, seek the gifts of the Spirit], always remembering for what they are given.” The promise, from the sacrament prayer, is that as we always remember Him, we will always have His Spirit to be with us. Shouldn’t we then, as D&C 46 suggests, always remember the gifts or ways in which the Spirit can come to us? To be aware of how He is communicating with us, or fulfilling this promise from the sacrament?

Remembering why they are given is important too. Here is a more full quotation of this part of D&C 46:

8 …seek ye earnestly the best gifts, always remembering for what they are given;

9 For verily I say unto you, they are given for the benefit of those who love me and keep all my commandments, and him that seeketh so to do; that all may be benefited that seek or that ask of me, that ask and not for a sign that they may consume it upon their lusts.

10 And again, verily I say unto you, I would that ye should always remember, and always retain in your minds what those gifts are, that are given unto the church.

11 For all have not every gift given unto them; for there are many gifts, and to every man is given a gift by the Spirit of God.

12 To some is given one, and to some is given another, that all may be profited thereby.

I like the idea that to each of us is given a gift, or gifts, so that all are profited. It isn’t just for me, but given to me in order that I might bless others. To some it is given a strong testimony. Why? So that they can testify and others believe on their words. To some it is given the word of wisdom, but to others, the word of knowledge, so that they can teach others to be wise. To some the gift to heal, to others the gift to be healed. To some the give of speaking in tongues, and to others the interpretation of tongues. Not all of the gifts listed have such a strong parallel gift, but they are all given for the same purpose: “that all may be benefited” and that “all may be profited thereby.” The gifts of the Spirit are gifts given to us to then give out to each other.

Perhaps having that view would change the way we pray to God, always remember Him, and seek the Holy Ghost?

The second reference I want to mention is from Helaman 13:22. Here we have a bad example where the people are not remembering God. Samuel says:

22 Ye do not remember the Lord your God in the things with which he hath blessed you, but ye do always remember your riches, not to thank the Lord your God for them; yea, your hearts are not drawn out unto the Lord, but they do swell with great pride, unto boasting, and unto great swelling, envyings, strifes, malice, persecutions, and murders, and all manner of iniquities.

What might we learn from this? Here the Lord had blessed them, but they saw those blessings as the work of their own hands. They saw them as things they had earned, and therefore not as gifts from God. Is this where we see what happens when we don’t “confess his hand in all things?” We then forget to “thank the Lord your God” for everything we have? To see it all as grace?

And if we see it all as grace, a gift, can we apply the same lesson we learned from D&C 46 here too? Are all gifts from God, including riches, peace, security, love, family, education, etc., given “that all may be profited thereby”? This could take a thousand shapes, of course – but I think that there is truth in there. What else does it mean to promise to consecrate all we have and are, if not to see everything as God’s gift and be willing to use it as the Spirit directs? Is that a way we remember God and thank Him and have our “hearts … drawn out unto the Lord” – that we are willing to see every thing in our life as a gift from Him?

Anyway, a few thoughts on remembering. What are yours?

(Note: These lesson notes were originally posted Jan 18 at Beginnings New.)

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