Today was ward conference in the Anderson Mill ward in Austin Texas.
The first speaker was Bishop Kelly. He identified to us a mis-interpretation of the scripture from Matthew 13:45-46
45 ¶ Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls:
46 Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.
The bishop said he had believed that this parable identified us as the merchant and that we were to be looking for this “pearl of great price” that we should give up all we have to get this pearl of great price. I too have always thought this was a good explanation, and it still is a good view. However, if we look at verse 45 it says “The kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man”. If Christ is the Kingdom of heaven he is the one that paid the great price and we are the pearl. It makes the scripture even more meaningful. We are pearls, worth a great price to our maker.
The second Speaker was Stake President Dickson.
He started off reading a bit from King Benjamin’s address in Mosiah and exhorted the audience to read the 4 chapters of his message.
He mostly said we need to endure to the end.
One insight that he gave was about President Kimball’s “Lengthen Your stride” motto. President Kimball indicated that we must not go fast and then burn out but use tranquil steady dedication to the gospel during one’s life time.
He also talked about Joseph Smith in Liberty Jail and the Lords admonition “All things shall be for thy good”…”Hold thy way”… “Fear not what man can do”.
While I believe these words didn’t bring much comfort to Joseph at the time. I believe they helped Joseph after the trial realize the importance of the suffering. I too am not too comforted during the trial when I hear “All things shall be for thy good.” Only later will I more clearly realize what I learned. At that time I am grateful for my trial and what I learned.