Quoting Frank W. Boreham, an English Baptist preacher from the 19th century, Elder Paul V. Johnson began his Tuesday devotional address by revealing one of the ways that God brings about His plans: by sending babies.
“When a wrong wants righting, or a work wants doing, or a truth wants preaching, or a continent wants opening, God sends a baby into the world to do it.”
Elder Johnson, a member of the Presidency of the Seventy for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, continued by telling the audience that the Lord sent them to the earth for specific reasons, and for this specific time.
“You are those beautiful babies who were born not long ago…to make a difference in the world.”
Each child of God has a divine purpose and potential. Elder Johnson promised that as one sets out to accomplish the great work the Lord has in store for them, He will give them the strength they need to accomplish it.
“How will you, the beautiful babies of some years ago, go forward to bless the people of the world? The greatest impact comes as we move forward with faith — keeping our covenants in order to receive His direction and His power, submitting to His will, and letting God prevail. “
Some will make significant differences in the world that are easily recognizable, Elder Johnson said.
“Some in this audience will be leaders in science, medicine, the arts, technology, education, business, government, law and other disciplines.”
However, while most will not be famous or prominent, Elder Johnson is certain that we will all have ample opportunities to make a difference in the world and to be instruments in the Lord’s hands if we turn to Him.
“You are those beautiful babies who were born not long ago and now are ready to right wrongs, do God’s work, preach the truth and make a difference in the world.” #BYU #BYUSpeeches #BYUDevo pic.twitter.com/lwG5xgnBzm— BYU Speeches (@BYUSpeeches) March 14, 2023
“Think about the faithful rank-and-file members of the Church who keep their covenants, follow the Lord’s direction, love others and bless countless lives. Individually they are not widely known in the world, but their influence is immense. This group carries the bulk of the heavy lifting in the mortal part of the Lord’s vast work.”
One of the most important ways to have an influence is by becoming a spouse and a parent and helping prepare your own babies for their important work. Elder Johnson said that many do not have the chance to be born into a gospel-centered home, but we can ensure that we can provide this for our future children.
Elder Johnson reminded the audience that although this life will never be without trials, they don’t need to hinder individuals from their potential to fulfill their divine purpose.
“As we go forward in faith, we will all face challenges. Those challenges are different for each generation, but no matter what is happening around us, we can fulfill our destiny and do the work the Lord wants us to do.”
It can be difficult to trust that everything will eventually work out, and Elder Johnson acknowledged that often life does not go according to one’s thoughts, plans and desires.
Elder Johnson testified that choosing God’s plan over our own will bring blessings in our life and allow us to bless the lives of others. The desire to do God’s will over our own is vital.
“We lay our efforts on the altar and allow the Lord to do what He will with them. As we do, he changes us and helps us fulfill our mission and destiny."
The Savior is the perfect exemplar of aligning His will with Heavenly Father in order to accomplish the mission He was sent to this earth for.
“The Savior came into the world to do the will of the Father, and drinking of the bitter cup that the Father gave Him was His most challenging task. Yet think of the result of his willingness to do this. He made possible all the effects of His atonement for our blessing.”
Elder Johnson testified that as disciples follow Jesus, they will be given strength to “do all the Lord may require.”