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Intellect

Elder Hafen coaches BYU audience on life's journey

Everyone should strive to become like God along the journey of life, said Elder Bruce C. Hafen of the First Quorum of the Seventy at the university devotional Tuesday.

"If we do our part, Christ makes us 'at one' with God, overcoming whatever separates us from Him. He is with me, with you, not only at the end of our lives, but each day of our lives," Elder Hafen said.

Elder Hafen's talk will be rebroadcast Saturday, Feb. 17, at 8 a.m. and 4 and 10 p.m. on BYU Television, and at 6 and 11 a.m. on KBYU-TV.

Each person travels a journey throughout life that can bring them closer to God, Elder Hafen said. There are eight steps a person should take to become like God.

The first step is initiation. "As an act of will, we must take the first step that initiates our journey," he said. "God himself cannot and would not force us to take that first step."

After we begin to move forward opposition from Satan will come. However, Elder Hafen said, if we will cling to the Lord, we will resist Satan's temptations.

The third step in the journey is sacrifice, which is followed by repentance, forgiveness, baptism and the gift of the Holy Ghost.

"The Holy Ghost leads us along the 'strait and narrow' path of becoming sanctified disciples -- not as passive spectators, but by straining every spiritual muscle, drinking in the power of temple ordinances and feasting actively on Christ's words to nourish us in becoming ever more holy," Elder Hafen said. "And the long term goal of that journey is to become like Him."

After baptism and receiving the Holy Ghost, we must continue along the journey with an "eye single to the glory of God." Elder Hafen warned against the danger of "double-mindedness," the act of "keeping one hand on the wall of the temple and one foot on the dance floor at club Babylon."

The temple endowment represents a second sacrifice, the next step along the way. "The first sacrifice was about giving up mostly temporal things," Elder Hafen told students. "The second one is about consecrating ourselves, spiritually, holding back nothing."

Following sacrifice comes a "divine tutorial," when Christ will show us our weaknesses for our improvement, Elder Hafen said. "Like a good coach, a good tutor will always helps his students see and correct their mistakes," he explained.

Finally, after we go through each of these steps, comes the final step -- sanctification.

"Sanctification is the stage when, finally, we are not only with God, but like God -- for only those who have become like Him can be with him," Elder Hafen said. "This state of being is the hope, the vision, and the heart of a disciple's journey."

Writer: Marissa Ballantyne

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