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Our 'Book of Life' shares qualities with accountants' ledgers, says speaker

Just as accountants keep record books for businesses, a "Bookof Life" is being kept for each one of us, said Kevin D. Stocks, director ofthe School of Accountancy at the Marriott School of Management, duringTuesday's devotional.

"It is important to recognize that we are all, day by day,moment by moment, writing our Book of Life," Stocks said. "Although not writtenon paper, the entries in this book are just as real and will have an eternalimpact."

Stocks' devotional will be rebroadcast Sunday, March 16, onBYU-TV at 8 a.m., 4 and 10 p.m, and on KBYU at 6 and 11 a.m. A free recording of his talk is available at speeches.byu.edu; a printed version will be posted there later.

The Bible Dictionary describes a Book of Life as "the sumtotal of one's thoughts and actions - the record of his life."

"Each one of us has our own unique Book of Life. We need notcompare ourselves with others," Stocks said. "It is not a matter of beingcompared to others; it is a matter of what we do with what we have been given."

Stocks related the parable of the talents found in Matthewto the tendency people have to compare themselves to others. Because of ourdifferent life experiences, everyone's Book of Life will be different.

"As long as we do the best we can with whatever we are givenin this life, it will be accepted by our Heavenly Father," Stocks toldstudents.

The principle of balance is one accounting principle thatapplies to a Book of Life, Stocks said. Because of the atonement of JesusChrist, the debits and credits in our books will always be equal, even when ourtrials seem disproportionate to our obedience.

"Although we may not see it and we experience much pain andsuffering in the process, everything in our Book of Life is, when considered inthe eternal sense, in balance," Stocks explained.

As we write our Book of Life, Stocks said, we must rememberto maintain our spiritual "cash flow" through daily prayer, scripture study,and obedience. We must also review our spiritual income statement. Spiritualrevenues should be greater than spiritual expenses.

Each of us needs to maintain the assets found in the balancesheet of life. These assets include qualities such as faith, hope, charity,virtue, knowledge, and humility, Stocks said. If our book doesn't balance, wecan seek forgiveness through the blessings of the atonement.

"The Lord knows you individually and is watchingover you. He loves you and wants only the best for you," Stocks promisedstudents. "Each of us has a responsibility to live such that our Book of Lifereflects actions taken that permit us to return back to life with Him forever."

Writer: Alexis Plowman

stocks.jpg
Photo by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

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