Saturday, November 7, 2009

Elder David A. Bednar "Tender Mercies"

I testify that the tender mercies of the Lord are available to all of us and that the Redeemer of Israel is eager to bestow such gifts upon us.

Who Are They Whom the Lord Has Chosen to Receive His Tender Mercies?
The word chosen in 1 Nephi 1:20 [ 1 Ne. 1:20] is central to understanding the concept of the Lord’s tender mercies. The dictionary indicates that chosen suggests one who is selected, taken by preference, or picked out. It also can be used to refer to the elect or chosen of God (Oxford English Dictionary Online, second ed. [1989], “Chosen”).

Some individuals who hear or read this message erroneously may discount or dismiss in their personal lives the availability of the tender mercies of the Lord, believing that “I certainly am not one who has been or ever will be chosen.” We may falsely think that such blessings and gifts are reserved for other people who appear to be more righteous or who serve in visible Church callings. I testify that the tender mercies of the Lord are available to all of us and that the Redeemer of Israel is eager to bestow such gifts upon us.

To be or to become chosen is not an exclusive status conferred upon us. Rather, you and I ultimately determine if we are chosen. Please now note the use of the word chosen in the following verses from the Doctrine and Covenants:

“Behold, there are many called, but few are chosen. And why are they not chosen?

“Because their hearts are set so much upon the things of this world, and aspire to the honors of men” ( D&C 121:34–35; emphasis added).

I believe the implication of these verses is quite straightforward. God does not have a list of favorites to which we must hope our names will someday be added. He does not limit “the chosen” to a restricted few. Rather, it is our hearts and our aspirations and our obedience which definitively determine whether we are counted as one of God’s chosen.
David A. Bednar, “The Tender Mercies of the Lord,” Ensign, May 2005, 99


Reflections Over Daily Ponderings ~ "B.O.M. Blog" (JCC) said...

This has been so many people's fav talk! It truly is a wonderful insight, isn't it, into Nephi's writings? I don't think very many thought of these things before his talk. I have had so many tender mercies in my life, but had not labeled them a such. I'm now on my 96th journal & have written down literally 100's, if not 1000's of them. Signs truly do follow the faithful. And I am so grateful the Lord cares to comfort me in this way, & build my testimony in such a marvelous, wonderful way!

Reflections Over Daily Ponderings ~ "B.O.M. Blog" (JCC) said...

Btw, Elder Bednar's wife's bro, it turns out is in my ward & our Stake Ex Sec. Our Bishop recently recounted how Elder Bednar paid a surprise visit to a Stake Bishopric Mtg when he came to eat dinner w/ his bro-in-law. Our Bishop talked about the tender way Elder Bednar's wife interacted w/ her brother as well as the descriptions he gave of the Savior. Sacred experience I actually have on DVD as we have recorded our Rel. Soc. lessons for the elderly.

Reflections Over Daily Ponderings ~ "B.O.M. Blog" (JCC) said...

Elder Bednar has kind of taken the place of Elder Maxwell, whose talks I ALWAYS couldn't wait for! No one could express things like Neal A. Maxwell w/ such detail & well thought-out insight & humility!