Sister Becky Craven, Second Counselor in the Young Women General Presidency, delivered Tuesday’s devotional address. She spoke on how we can improve the dignity and demeanor of our discipleship.
“Knowing our identity fortifies us against our culture of comparing, complaining and criticizing,” explained Sister Craven. With this understanding, "we will be blessed with an abundance of the Spirit, personal revelation and an increased love of God and our neighbors.”
What’s the first step to adopting the dignity and demeanor of discipleship? Sister Craven said that our actions must stem from a deep knowledge of our divine and royal heritage.
“Dignity and demeanor in our discipleship begins with understanding who we are.”
Viewing ourselves as the “son[s] of man” instead as of children of God will negatively impact our spiritual trajectory. “How we label ourselves often dictates how we treat and respond to others. Remembering our celestial parentage gives us courage and confidence to stand against dangerous decoys that may lead us to think less about ourselves or those around us,” stated Sister Craven.
Language of discipleship Sister Craven shared examples of language and integrity to help us visualize what the demeanor of a true disciple of Christ looks like.
Sister Craven stated that true disciples of Christ use language free of profanity, lewdness and cruelty. Her belief on the importance of clean language and respecting the Lord’s name stems from her love for the Savior.
“Considering the magnitude of His love and His sacrifice for us,” she explained, “I cannot fathom speaking His name with anything but reverence. The Lord Himself declared His holy identity and warns how His name should be used.”
Our dialogue affects our spiritual self-perception as well as the confidence of others. Sister Craven urged us to use words that build, not tear down, our neighbors.
“As covenant-making disciples of Jesus Christ, we are in the spiritual business of building. Building character. Building each other up. Building a Zion society with the desire to love God and our neighbor.”
Integrity in discipleship When presenting ourselves through the internet and social media, it can be easier to conceal our intentions, exaggerate ourselves or even abandon our standards. However, Sister Craven encouraged listeners to “place the integrity of their covenants above the pressure to conform to worldly standards.”
A way we frequently unconsciously conform to worldly expectations is when we “start making exceptions, or saying ‘but’ to the promise of being a witness.”
“The pressure to fit in with the rest of the world can cause us to compromise our standards, or even to break precious covenants.”
This little conjunction may seem insignificant to some. But, as we avoid justifications of sin, Sister Craven promised that we will become more in tune with the Spirit. “And in a world filled with alternant voices, we need the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost to help us distinguish between truth and error.”
As we monitor our language and uphold our integrity, Sister Craven promised that “as we consistently strive for refinement in our dignity and demeanor as disciples of Jesus Christ, our confidence will wax strong in the presence of God.”
Next Forum Reverend Dr. Andrew Teal, chaplain and Fellow at Pembroke College, will deliver the next forum address on Tuesday, October 26, at 11:05 a.m. in the Marriott Center.
Teal’s remarks will also be broadcast live on BYUtv, BYUtv.org, KBYU-TV 11, Classical 89 FM, BYUradio 107.9 FM and SiriusXM 143.