What do you want to accomplish in your life? What are your goals and aspirations? If your long-term goal is to enter the celestial kingdom to live with our Heavenly Parents and with loved family members forever, that singular focus will take you farther than you now think is possible. We are promised, “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man [or woman], the things which God hath prepared for them that love him” (1 Corinthians 2:9
We know that God’s “work and glory is to bring to pass the immortality”—which has already been accomplished through the Savior’s Atonement and Resurrection—“and eternal life of man” (Moses 1:39
). His goal is for every single one of us to return to our eternal home, having increased the talents and gifts with which He blesses us through our obedience and perseverance during this mortal life. We know we cannot do this on our own, but through Heavenly Father’s love and the Savior’s grace, we can accomplish all that is required for exaltation.
That thought sustained me when I was called to this responsibility just a few weeks ago. Knowing that I do not have all the wisdom and ability to fulfill what will be required, I nevertheless take comfort and strength from the knowledge that God “has all wisdom, and all power, both in heaven and in earth” (Mosiah 4:9
), and if we just try, just do our best, imperfect as that will be, the Lord will be “on [our] right hand and on [our] left," and "angels [will] bear [us] up” (D&C 84:88
). All He requires is “the heart and a willing mind” (D&C 64:34
), and as we are obedient to His commandments, we will be strengthened to accomplish all that is required in this life as well as for entrance into His kingdom in the life hereafter. That choice to become a disciple of Christ gives us the opportunity to wield a more-than-might-be-expected influence on those around us.
Every one of us has this same promise and potential. It matters not where we live, the makeup of our family, the size of our bank account, whether we are a world-class expert in some field, or how long we have been a member of the Church—we can each be a powerful influence for good. Living with integrity at home and in the community, using a gentle voice and kind words with a challenging child or difficult coworker, demonstrating your standards by your modest way of dressing, reaching out of your comfort zone to become acquainted with those who live around you—there are many simple actions we can do that will influence others to also rise to a higher plane.