3 Nephi 2:16
Family, Children, Responsibilities toward
the children became exceedingly fair because they reflected the light of Christ. When we follow him our countenances become lighter and more fair.
APRIL 1978 | “Trust in the Lord”
L. Tom Perry Assistant to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
“And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgment, as the noonday.” (Ps. 37:3–6.)
The scriptures have always seemed to equate righteous living with a special light, spirit, joy, and happiness in the lives of those who so live.
Many years ago when I was a retail executive, we had a night watchman in one of our stores whose teenage daughter had just joined our church. He would often comment on the change that had occurred in the life of his daughter. Her baptism had brought a new spirit into their home. I was attempting to use this event as a base to teach him the gospel.
One evening as I was leaving the store, he was by the exit checking out the late customers who had completed their purchases after the store had closed. I stopped for a minute to visit with him. He immediately commenced to tell me about his daughter. He said, “You know, she just radiates since she joined your church.”
I proceeded to tell him that having a trust in the Lord and conforming our life to the gospel plan does make a change, even in our countenance. Just at that time I noticed two ladies approaching the door with several other customers. They were neatly dressed, and their faces reflected a special glow. As if my eyes were directed, I immediately noticed a “Duty to God” pin on one of the lady’s dresses, which many of our fine young men present to their mothers after achieving this special award. I turned to my friend and said, “Look at those two ladies coming towards the door. They have a different look. They, too, are members of our church.”
He was so caught up in my remark that he rushed over to them and asked, “Are you Mormons?” After confirming this fact, he returned to me shaking his head and saying, “You know, you can tell the difference.” I agree with him. There is a difference in those “who trust in the Lord and do good.”
When one follows the course marked by the road signs of the gospel of Jesus Christ and places his trust in the Lord, its influence is such that it is manifest not only in action and deed but by a marked and visible change in his very being. There is a special light and a spirit which radiates from his eternal soul. It can be described in words like brightness, light, joy, happiness, peace, purity, contentment, spirit, enthusiasm, etc.
“Where is happiness, real happiness? Nowhere but in God. By possessing the spirit of our holy religion, we are happy in the morning, we are happy at noon, we are happy in the evening; for the spirit of love and union is with us, and we rejoice in the spirit because it is of God, and we rejoice in God, for he is the giver of every good thing. Every Latter-day Saint, who has experienced the love of God in his heart, after having received the remission of his sins, through baptism, and the laying on of hands, realizes that he is filled with joy, and happiness, and consolation. He may be in pain, in error, in poverty, or in prison, if necessity demands, still, he is joyful. This is our experience, and each and every Latter-day Saint can bear witness to it.
“Truly happy is that man or woman, or that people, who enjoys the privileges of the Gospel of the Son of God, and who know how to appreciate his blessings.” (Discourses of Brigham Young, sel. John A. Widtsoe, Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1941, pp. 235–36.)
APRIL 2010 | Remember Who You Are!
Elaine S. Dalton Young Women General President
There is no more beautiful sight than a young woman who glows with the light of the Spirit, who is confident and courageous because she is virtuous.
We are daughters of our Heavenly Father. He loves us, and we love Him.1 I am humbled and grateful to be in your presence. The Lord has blessed me with a very clear understanding of who you are and why you are here on the earth at this time. The Lord loves you, and I know you love Him. It shows in your countenance, in your modesty, in your desire to choose the right, and in your commitment to remain virtuous and pure.
Together we have shared many choice spiritual moments. We have borne testimony in camps around campfires, in chapels, and in firesides. We have been warmed by the fire of our faith. We have climbed mountains and unfurled golden banners—from Brazil to Bountiful—signifying the commitment deep within our hearts to remain virtuous and to always be worthy to enter the temple. We have prayed, read the Book of Mormon, and smiled every day, and together with our mothers, grandmothers, and leaders, we are working on our Personal Progress. And we have only just begun!
Young women of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, remember who you are! You are elect. You are daughters of God. You cannot be a generation of young women who are content to fit in. You must have the courage to stand out, to “arise and shine forth, that thy light may be a standard for the nations.”10 The world would have you believe that you are not significant—that you are out of fashion and out of touch. The world calls to you with unrelenting, noisy voices to “live it up,” “try everything,” “experiment and be happy.” Conversely, the Holy Ghost whispers and the Lord invites you to “walk in the paths of virtue,” “lay aside the things of this world,” “and cleave unto [your] covenants.”11
When I was attending Brigham Young University, I learned what it truly means to be a queen. I was given a unique opportunity, along with a small group of other students, to meet the prophet, President David O. McKay. I was told to wear my best dress and to be ready to travel early the next morning to Huntsville, Utah, to the home of the prophet. I will never forget the experience I had. As soon as we entered the home, I felt the spirit which filled that home. We were seated in the prophet’s living room, surrounding him. President McKay had on a white suit, and seated next to him was his wife. He asked for each of us to come forward and tell him about ourselves. As I went forward, he held out his hand and held mine, and as I told him about my life and my family, he looked deeply into my eyes.
After we had finished, he leaned back in his chair and reached for his wife’s hand and said, “Now, young women, I would like you to meet my queen.” There seated next to him was his wife, Emma Ray McKay. Although she did not wear a crown of sparkling diamonds, nor was she seated on a throne, I knew she was a true queen. Her white hair was her crown, and her pure eyes sparkled like jewels. As President and Sister McKay spoke of their family and their life together, their intertwined hands spoke volumes about their love. Joy radiated from their faces. Hers was a beauty that cannot be purchased. It came from years of seeking the best gifts, becoming well educated, seeking knowledge by study and also by faith. It came from years of hard work, of faithfully enduring trials with optimism, trust, strength, and courage. It came from her unwavering devotion and fidelity to her husband, her family, and the Lord.
On that fall day in Huntsville, Utah, I was reminded of my divine identity, and I learned about what I now call “deep beauty”—the kind of beauty that shines from the inside out. It is the kind of beauty that cannot be painted on, surgically created, or purchased. It is the kind of beauty that doesn’t wash off. It is spiritual attractiveness. Deep beauty springs from virtue. It is the beauty of being chaste and morally clean. It is the kind of beauty that you see in the eyes of virtuous women like your mother and grandmother. It is a beauty that is earned through faith, repentance, and honoring covenants.
The world places so much emphasis on physical attractiveness and would have you believe that you are to look like the elusive model on the cover of a magazine. The Lord would tell you that you are each uniquely beautiful. When you are virtuous, chaste, and morally clean, your inner beauty glows in your eyes and in your face. My grandfather used to say, “If you live close to God and His infinite grace—you won’t have to tell, it will show in your face.”14 When you are worthy of the companionship of the Holy Ghost, you are confident and your inner beauty shines brightly. And so “let virtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly; then shall thy confidence wax strong in the presence of God; and … the Holy Ghost shall be thy constant companion.”15
Alma asks a penetrating question for each of us to consider: “Have [you] received his image in your countenances?”17Remember, you are daughters of our Heavenly Father. He loves you so much that He sent His Son to show you the way to live, so that you could return to Him someday. I testify that as you draw close to the Savior, His infinite Atonement makes it possible for you to repent, to change, to be pure, and to receive His image in your countenance. His Atonement will enable you to be strong and courageous as you continue to raise your banner for virtue. You are golden. You are the banner!
And so I conclude with the Lord’s words to each of us, His precious daughters: “Behold, … thou art an elect lady, whom I have called.”19“Walk in the paths of virtue. … Lay aside the things of [the] world. … Cleave unto the covenants which thou hast made. … Keep my commandments continually, and a crown of righteousness thou shalt receive.”20 Of this I bear my witness in the holy name of our Savior, Jesus Christ, amen.
I love these words of Sister Dalton-”Young women, look into the mirror of eternity. Remember who you are! See yourself as our Heavenly Father sees you. You are elect. You are of noble birth. Don’t compromise your divine inheritance. You were born to be a queen. Live so you are worthy to enter the temple and there receive “all that [the] Father hath.”18 Develop deep beauty. There is no more beautiful sight than a young woman who glows with the light of the Spirit, who is confident and courageous because she is virtuous. “
305- The Light Divine