Monday, January 28, 2008

A Man of Wisdom

Gordon B. Hinckley

A great man died last night. He was the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We Mormons consider him to be a prophet of God, like the prophets of the Old Testament.

President Hinckley has been the head of our church for 13 years, counseling all members at least four times a year in General Conferences, women's meetings, and youth meetings, as well as speaking in smaller congregations regularly as he has traveled all over the world. We read his monthly messages in a magazine called The Ensign, so he's left us an abundance of wisdom to reflect on. He has been a beloved leader.

I particularly remember a talk given to women and teenage girls called Rise to the Stature of the Divine Within You. It encouraged me, and I'm listing ten things he said that might encourage you.
  1. "Educate your hands and your minds. Get all the education you can. Train yourselves to make a contribution to the society in which you live. Almost the entire field of human endeavor is now open to women, in contrast with difficult restrictions by society that were felt only a few years ago. Equip yourselves. Whether it is applied to earning a living or not, education is an investment that never ceases to pay dividends of one kind or another."
  2. "Stir within yourselves a greater sensitivity to the beautiful, the artistic, and the cultivation of the talent you possess, be it large or small."
  3. "Enlarge your minds and broaden your understanding through the reading of good books. How marvelous a thing is a good book! How stimulating to read and share with a great writer thoughts that build and strengthen and broaden one's horizon."
  4. "Keep yourselves alive and vivacious in activities which will bring satisfaction into your lives while associating with others who are vigorously pursuing lofty objectives."
  5. "You are not helpless, a victim of fate. You can in large measure master your fate and strengthen your self-worth by reaching out to those who need and will appreciate your talents, contributions--your help."
  6. "There is much of evil in the world and too much of harshness. Do what you can to rise above all this. Stand up. Speak out against evil and brutality, abuse, and oppression."
  7. "To those of you who are married, make of your marriage a partnership. God does not love His daughters less than He loves His sons. A wife walks neither ahead nor behind her husband, but at his side in a true companionship."
  8. "Walk with prayer and faith, with charity and love. Our Father in Heaven has endowed His daughters with a unique and wonderful capacity to reach out to those in distress, to bring comfort and succor, to bind up the wounds and heal the aching heart. Marvelous is the power of women. I think it is part of the divinity within you."
  9. "Mothers, nurture and treasure and train your children. Enjoy their laughter, and thank the Lord for them. Teach them to pray and walk uprightly before the Lord, and to love and serve one another."
  10. "In making these suggestions I do not ask that you reach beyond your capacity. Please don't nag yourself with thoughts of failure. Do not set goals far beyond your capacity to achieve. Simply do what you can do, in the best way you know, and the Lord will accept of your effort."
He was a down-to-earth man with a heaven-sent message. I will miss him.


Stie: My Favorite Things said...

He was so wise. Every time he spoke, I felt like he was talking just to me. I love that talk you quoted, too. Very empowering.

Nancy said...

Here is what our newspaper printed today about President Gordon Hinckley:

Mr. Hinckley was the 15th President of the Church Of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

Since taking over as President and Prophet of the church on March 12,1995,Mr. Hinckley oversaw one of the greatest periods of expansion in Church history.

The number of Temples worldwide
more than doubled from 49 to more than 120 and church membership grew from 9 million to more than 12 million.

You have every reason to be very proud of President Hinckley and his achievements.

Ashlee said...

Thank you for sharing those thoughts with us. I loved his words of wisdom as well as his wonderful sense of humor. He will be missed.

gab said...

I am so happy for him! He endured to the end and lived a great life. We'll miss him so much though.

Granny Annie said...

I could not have told you before today who Gordon Hinkley was. Thank you for giving us this tribute in his own wise words. It also gives much insight into why you are so inspired. More women and girls have needed that speech in their lives. I feel for you loss Marty and the loss of your church.

marta said...

i love that quote too mom.. thanks for the wise words! lovely tribute!

Annie said...

I can just picture him dancing, without his can but with his sweet Marjorie, can't you?

Bridget said...

Wow, I love those quotes you chose. So well said. He will be greatly missed. For as long as he has been in church leadership it will be so strange now that he is gone.

Holly said...

That was a wonderful post. He was such a great man. I will miss him so much!

mama jo said...

that was a really sweet post...

i'm kelly said...

he really was an incredible man. even though we never actually met, i've always felt like i have a personal relationship with him.

Rebecca said...

Wow. Those are wise words for all women to read, regardless of their religion. Far too few women realize their worth.