Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Spencer was right!

Many years ago, as an 18-year-old girl, I was asked to teach the 5-year-old Sunday school class. My class consisted of some very energetic, rambunctious little boys. Needless to say, although I planned great lessons about how Heavenly Father loves us and how He made the sun, moon and stars, my lessons usually ended up being about why we don't stand on the chairs or color on the walls.

One Sunday, in "Sharing Time", the teacher asked the whole Primary a simple question, "Why are we here on earth?"

Hands shot up and the older kids were shouting out the usual answers: "To get a body!" "To be tested!" All the right answers; they had been taught well. But then someone taught me something greater.

A little boy in my class named Spencer began to tug on my shirt sleeve. "Teacher! Teacher! I know the answer!"

"Raise your hand Spencer and maybe she'll call on you to give your answer."

He shook his head in embarrassment but continued to tug at my sleeve wanting to share what was bursting from his little heart.

So, I asked him if he would be willing to whisper his answer into my ear. He liked that option so I leaned in closer to him.

I can still feel his little whisper in my ear, "We're here on earth to love Jesus."

My heart melted. With a quiver in my voice I said, "Yes, Spencer, you are right!" as my eyes filled with tears, I realized this little 5-year-old had just taught me more than I could have ever taught him.

The first great commandment, is the first great commandment for a reason."Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind." (Matthew 22:38) The Lord is not selfish or vain, He knows that when we love Him, we will keep His commandments and make it Home to Him.

Keeping the first commandment always leads to keeping the second, because to love the Father and the Son is to serve those They love. In answer to our prayers for guidance, They send the Holy Ghost to tell us how to help others and to feel at least a part of God’s love. So in that service, our love of God increases and the keeping of the second great commandment leads us back to the first, in an ascending circle. In time, our very natures change. We are filled with the love of God, which, even in a world with so much misery and despair, brings us happiness and hope. [Henry B. Eyring, Because He First Loved Us (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2002), ix] 

Spencer was right. We are here to love Jesus because when we do, we will do all of the other things Jesus has asked us to do. We will know that He gives us commandments and guidelines because He sees what we do not see and knows what we do not know. When we love Jesus, we will trust Him and follow Him and long to be with Him again. We will not worry about what others think or if they agree with us because our hearts will belong to the one who loves us most. When we love Jesus, we will find peace in this life despite the chaos and heartache that may be going on around us. We will have the courage to do what is hard no matter what. When we love Jesus we will know that He will help us overcome ALL things in our life and that we will never, ever be alone.

Even with all of those good reasons to love Jesus, the simplest reason is that, "We love him, because he first loved us." (1 John 4:19)


...and He always will.


  1. THANK YOU! It's always great to have reminders like these.

  2. Thanks Marsha! I needed the reminder that day too. :)


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