This is the text of a talk I will deliver at the Highland Care Center tomorrow, September 21, 2014:
Brethren and Sisters, I love you.
Today, I want to introduce you to my friend. I asked him to join us today. He promised to be here. Perhaps you can see him, perhaps not, but I assure you he is here with us today because He always keeps His promises. His name is Jesus. He loves you, too. He wanted me to be sure and tell you that.
To many, my friend is known as the Christ, the savior of the world. While he is those things, to me he is even more than that. He is my confidante, my teacher, my example.
How do I know He is my friend? Well, He told me – just last week. You see, sometimes when I pray, I find myself talking to Him. I’ve learned to cherish those times, because the things He tells me are always so comforting. It’s like he truly wants me to know how much He loves me and how wonderful He thinks I am. It’s like He wants me to know Him.
Yes, just last week He told me that I was His friend. But I think I knew it even before He told me. I knew it because:
- Although I kind of knew Him when I was young, I went away for many years. I was being very selfish. Perhaps I was looking for new friends. I found some, but none like Him. Nevertheless, when I realized again how much I needed Him, he was there. He didn’t really even ask any questions. He just said, “It’s so nice to see you again. I missed you!”
- He has always kept every one of his promises. He likes making promises – and they’re always 2-way promises. I do my part, and He does His. It never fails. He’s so reliable that way. Keeping promises together always make the bond – the bond between friends – stronger. He’s really smart that way.
- He’s very quick to tell me He loves me. He does that in many ways – through the scriptures, through blessings that are showered upon me, sometimes even by talking to me. He never hesitates to take an opportunity, any time I will listen, to tell me how much He loves me.
- Every time I go to the temple, He goes with me.
- He’s always helping me learn how to be a better person – to become more like Him, and He’s so gentle. He never shouts – His voice is always quiet and piercing – and somehow he always knows how it is that I learn best.
Yes, Jesus – the Christ – the Creator and Savior of the world, is my friend. How amazing is that?!!!
I mentioned the promises He makes. There are many of them. There are promises that apply to all of us – because, of course, He is your friend, too. These particular promises are given in the scriptures, and we need only to read and study them to understand all that He offers us, and what we need to do to receive the blessings that He wants to give.
There are also promises that He makes to us as individuals. These promises are usually made during those quiet moments when we are on our knees in prayer – when we pray, metaphorically, in our closets. These promises are just as sure and real as the ones in the scriptures. Of all of these promises, the one I look forward to the most is one of the scriptural promises He has made to all of us. This one also qualifies as one of those personal promises, because He has told me personally that it is my promise.
This promise is given in the scriptures, in D&C section 93, verse 1. In this verse, the Lord tells us:
Verily, thus saith the Lord: It shall come to pass that every soul who forsaketh his sins and cometh unto me, and calleth on my name, and obeyeth my voice, and keepeth my commandments, shall see my face and know that I am;
What a glorious promise this is! I so look forward to the day when I am able to see His face. I already know that He is, but I want to feel the fullness of His love. I want to receive a huge hug. I want to look upon His face and see the love in His eyes. I want to hear Him say, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant”.
Jesus is my friend. He is your friend, too. He always keeps his promises – all of them. This promise is no different. For some, this may not happen until we pass to the other side. For others, perhaps even for some in this room, it will be fulfilled, or has already been fulfilled, before we pass. Either way, the promise is sure. The temple testifies of it. The scriptures testify of it. Hopefully, our lives testify of it. It is my prayer that we will, each and every one of us, experience that moment when we stand before the Savior, look into His eyes, receive a huge hug, and hear Him say the words, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant”.
I testify that these things are true, and I do so in the name of my Lord, my Savior…my friend, Jesus Christ. Amen.