“Prophets’ Lives Teach Us, President Monson Says,” Ensign, Jan. 1990, 79
Students must not only learn to earn, they must learn to live lives worthy of eternal blessings, President Thomas S. Monson, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, said October 10 at the first Brigham Young University devotional assembly of the school year.
He told the students that the Savior provided the guide to a life worthy of exaltation in his Sermon on the Mount. In the Beatitudes, “He taught his disciples the way to live.”
“Today,” President Monson said, “I would like to suggest some beatitudes that will be helpful to you and helpful to me as we contemplate our purpose here.” He then drew one beatitude from a quality exemplified by each of the Church Presidents with whom he has been associated, from President Heber J. Grant through President Ezra Taft Benson.
From President Heber J. Grant: Be persistent. He cited the well-known story of young Heber Grant’s persistence in practicing baseball until he was prepared to play on a championship team.
From George Albert Smith: Be compassionate. “This great leader had a compassionate heart.”
From David O. McKay: Be considerate. He told of President McKay’s accepting a gift from a woman who thought she had painted a picture of his boyhood home in Huntsville, Utah. Actually, it was a painting of a neighboring home. President McKay hung the painting in his office and enjoyed it, never letting her know of the error.
From President Joseph Fielding Smith: Be studious. “He was not only a student, he was a scholar.”
From President Harold B. Lee: Be in tune. Be responsive to the whisperings of the Spirit. President Monson spoke of some of the visionary accomplishments of President Lee for the Church—in correlation, welfare, and leadership training, for example—which came because President Lee was in tune with the Spirit.
From President Spencer W. Kimball: Be dedicated. President Kimball was “totally, completely, and unequivocally dedicated to the Lord, dedicated to living the gospel,” President Monson said. “Oh, what a determined soul.”
From our current Church leader, President Ezra Taft Benson: Be loving. “This man is one of the most loving, kind, tender individuals I have ever known,” said President Monson. He noted that the children of the Church feel the genuine love President Benson has for them, and from throughout the Church, they return it, in letters that come daily.