Elder David A. Bednar, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, along with his wife, Sister Susan Bednar, delivered Tuesday's devotional address.
Sister Bednar began by reflecting on the great impact her patriarchal blessing had when she was a young college student. By studying and prayerfully pondering it, she was led to the development of many of her unique talents and to her choice to marry Elder Bednar.
“If you don’t have a patriarchal blessing, I invite you to prepare to receive one. If you have one, I encourage you to prayerfully read, ponder and study it often. This blessing can help you better understand your relationship with our Heavenly Father and his Beloved Son and connect you to the ancient prophets.”
As a student at BYU, Sister Bednar also learned the importance of temple attendance and covenant keeping. She testified of the great power that comes into our lives as we honor our temple covenants.
“Through our covenant connection with Christ, we can experience amazing joy and happiness and also have access to His strengthening power, comfort and peace when difficulties and disappointments arise.”
Elder Bednar explored the significant theme of "work" in the standard works, where the word appears over 1,100 times in various contexts. Reflecting on his personal gospel study, he emphasized the frequent use of this word in familiar scriptures, highlighting its enduring importance.
“Sometimes the word “work” is used to describe the specific actions and activities that are necessary to do or make something,” he said. “Other times, the word work refers to God’s overarching purpose, or to a result or goal to be accomplished.”
According to Elder Bednar, one of the most familiar scriptures highlighting the significance of God's work is Moses 1:39. In his reading of the verse, Elder Bednar explained that it describes the overarching purpose of the Eternal Father: "For behold, this is my work and my glory — to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man."
“God’s work is focused upon the progression and exaltation of His children,” Elder Bednar said. “Our work as God’s sons and daughters is to love Him and keep His commandments.”
Elder Bednar taught that as disciples of Jesus Christ, we are all universally "called to the work" at different times to fulfill various purposes. Through acts of selfless service, we deepen our connection with the Savior and ultimately draw closer to Him.
“Work is love made manifest. Doing God’s holy work by the power of His Spirit changes our hearts and minds in remarkable ways,” Elder Bednar said. “As we each labor in mortality to accomplish God’s purposes, we are proved, polished and prepared for eternal blessings.”
"Work is essential for our spiritual progression," emphasized Elder Bednar. He explained that devoted disciples consistently act as agents in both temporal and spiritual aspects, contributing to their lives and serving others. This ongoing pattern of spiritual work expresses reliance on the Savior.”
“Inaction negates the gift and blessing of moral agency; it is the antithesis of faith. Idleness, laziness, slothfulness, fear, apathy and procrastination are the opposites of true faith in the Savior.”
Elder Bednar continued by explaining that engaging in God's work enables individuals to recognize and appreciate their dependence on Him. Quoting President Lorenzo Snow he said “In and of ourselves we cannot possibly comply with all the commandments that God has given unto us.”
“Our limited mortal capacity is completely insufficient to ever realize our eternal possibilities; we need and depend upon the grace, strength, inspiration and means that only the Lord can provide.”
Expressing gratitude for living in the final dispensation with the global spread of the gospel of Jesus Christ, Elder Bednar highlighted the transformative impact of the sacred work undertaken by members. This work stretches, strengthens, enlightens and purifies individuals across the Earth.
“All of us have a work to do,” he said. “Always remember that ongoing conversion unto the Lord requires focused and sustained work. We must strive to become agents who exercise faith in the Savior and act and shun becoming objects that merely are acted upon.”