In President Russell M. Nelson’s concluding remarks at the October 2021 General Conference titled “Make Time for the Lord”, he discusses how we can fix our focus on Jesus Christ. That by doing so we can “make [our] own spiritual foundation firm and able to stand the test of time”. How can we fix our focus on Christ?
President Nelson’s Advice
“Nothing invites the Spirit more than fixing your focus on Jesus Christ. Talk of Christ, rejoice in Christ, feast upon the words of Christ, and press forward with steadfastness in Christ. Make your Sabbath a delight as you worship Him, partake of the sacrament, and keep His day holy.”
In the quote above President Nelson identifies seven ways to fix our focus on Christ:
- Talk of Christ – have discussions about Christ with others
- Rejoice in Christ – celebrate all that our Savior and Redeemer has done for us
- Feast upon Christ’s words – learn of and about Him through the scriptures and other works
- Press forward with a steadfastness in Christ – have faith, even when times get tough, that He will be and is always there
- Make the Sabbath a delight through worshipping Christ – The Sabbath is the Lord’s day, worshipping Christ is not a burden but a way to draw closer to Him
- Partake of the sacrament – Remember His Atonement and what it does for each of us as we repent and try to be better
- Keep His day holy – It’s one day of the week, it’s His day, we should honor it as such
Keeping Jesus at Our Center
I was listening to the Leading Saints podcast episode with John Hilton III on keeping Jesus as the center of leadership. John discussed how by looking at the things we do with a lens of “where is Jesus” we can see how Christ is in our lives and how everything points to Him. How much better would our church class experiences be if we participated with the goal of finding Jesus in the lesson? How much better would our instruction be if we prepared with the goal of showing where Jesus is in the lesson?
If we keep Jesus at our center, how much better will we be prepared for what life throws at us? We will love our neighbors as ourselves. We will understand that trials strengthen us and that Jesus is there to help us through. We will be better mothers, fathers, daughters, sons, wives, husbands, grandparents, aunts and uncles, friends. We will know what it means to be a servant-leader. Why? because when Jesus is at our center, the Holy Ghost will be our constant companion. The Holy Ghost will inspire us and reveal the things that God wants us to know.
Temples and Focusing On Christ
Normally at the end of the concluding remarks of the conference, the prophet announces new temples. President Nelson did not disappoint announcing thirteen new temples across the world.
Temples help us focus on Christ through the performing of essential ordinances and the making of covenants. Each ordinance and covenant in the temple is made possible because of Christ’s Atonement. If we will go into the temple and focus on how Christ has made these things possible, we will have a richer experience and obtain a deeper understanding of what those ordinances and covenants mean in our lives.
On the topic of temples, I would be remiss if I didn’t bring up one of the temples announced by President Nelson. The Santiago West, Chile temple was announced. If you’ve read my previous posts you know that I served in the Chile Santiago South Mission. When I was there only one temple existed, the Santiago Chile Temple pictured above. It was only six years old when I arrived in Chile and I’m sure the members there wondered how long it would be before they were blessed with a second temple.
Today, there are two temples in operation in Chile, the aforementioned Santiago temple and the Concepcion Chile temple (pictured below). In 1918, President Nelson announced the Antofagasta Chile temple (also pictured below) which is currently under construction. I saw first-hand the faith of the members of the church in Chile. I heard the stories of others who served in various missions in Chile after my return. The Chilean people have been receptive to the gospel and the membership has strengthened. To have four temples announced/built in the space of 40 years in that small country is a miracle and a blessing from God. I hope to one day return to Chile and visit all the temples of the Lord in that land.
Fixing our focus on Christ will lead us to draw closer to Him. It will allow us to be “even as [He] is” (3 Nephi 27:27). Following the advice of President Nelson, we can have a focus on Christ in all aspects of our lives. Through temple worship, we can keep Jesus at our center. This will eventually lead us back to our home with Heavenly Father and our Savior, Jesus Christ.