“Without the Redeemer, … repentance becomes simply miserable behavior modification.”
“The gift of the Holy Ghost … quickens all the intellectual faculties, increases, enlarges, expands and purifies all the natural passions and affections; and adapts them, by the gift of wisdom, to their lawful use. It inspires, develops, cultivates and matures all the fine-toned sympathies, joys, tastes, kindred feelings, and affections of our nature. It inspires virtue, kindness, goodness, tenderness, gentleness, and charity. It develops beauty of person, form and features. It tends to health, vigor, animation, and social feeling. It invigorates all the faculties of the physical and intellectual man. It strengthens, and gives tone to the nerves. In short, it is, as it were, marrow to the bone, joy to the heart, light to the eyes, music to the ears, and life to the whole being”
“The gospel causes men and women to reveal that which would have slept in their disposition until they dropped into their graves. The plan by which the Lord leads this people makes them reveal their thoughts and intents, and brings out every trait of disposition lurking in their beings.”
“I came to the understanding that if I employed the same qualifications I was using to think about my testimony of the church as to think about my relationship with my wife, our relationship would fizzle. Like the church, my wife has changed over the years. She is not the same woman I married and, frankly, I would be bored and unfulfilled if she were. I certainly don’t feel that she deceived me because I didn’t know everything about her when I married her, and I have never felt betrayed when I discovered more about her. It has never bothered me that my understanding of her continues to evolve. So should I feel betrayed when I discover new things about the church or start to understand how it has evolved?”
“We need to come to terms with our desire to reach perfection and with our frustration when our accomplishments or our behaviors are less than perfect. I feel that one of the great myths we would do well to dispel is that we’ve come to earth to perfect ourselves, and nothing short of that will do. If I understand the teachings of the prophets of this dispensation correctly, we will not become perfect in this life, though we can make significant strides toward that goal. . . .I am also convinced of the fact that the speed with which we head along the straight and narrow path isn’t as important as the direction in which we are traveling. That direction, if it is leading toward eternal goals, is the all-important factor.”
“We become like those things we habitually love and admire. And thus, as we study Christ’s life and live his teachings, we become more like him.”
“The vocabulary of sin and guilt and damnation has too often overwhelmed the restored gospel’s message of absolute love and powerfully grounded hopefulness. As Elder Neal A. Maxwell said, summarizing the almost universal misapprehension of overanxious Saints among us, we must learn to ‘distinguish more clearly between divine discontent and the devil’s dissonance, between dissatisfaction with self and disdain for self. We need the first and must shun the second. When conscience calls to us from the next ridge,’ he wrote, her purpose is to beckon not to scold.
“Rather than continuing to frame our lives in terms of deficiency and inadequacy, we would benefit from the perspective of Irenaeus, who emphasized the forward-looking process in which we should be engaged: becoming ‘perfected after the image and likeness of God.'”