Have you ever heard someone give a talk, or a sermon, or a speech and said, "Man, I want to be that person when I grow up." That's how I feel every time I heard words come out of Elder Jeffrey R. Holland's mouth. He is a powerful orator and I wish that I could teach, preach, and speak with the same power that He does. His talks are electrifying and make you want to be a better person, not because of feeling guilty about the things you are doing wrong, but because of being motivated through love.
I can feel the Savior through Elder Holland which confirms in my mind that Jeffrey R. Holland is an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ who has been called to testify of the Lord. That's a big responsibility and Elder Holland does it very well.
Today I want to share with you one of Elder Holland's talks that he gave at the October 2012 General Conference for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints entitled "The First Great Commandment". Prepare yourselves for an amazing experience...
Then...Why are You Here?
He was there as the Savior was betrayed into the hands of evil men who wanted to kill Him. Peter watched as these men bound the Savior and took Him away (Luke 22:47-53).
He fulfilled the Savior's prophecy when he denied the Savior three times. This caused him to weep bitterly (Luke 22:54-62).
He watched as the Savior, this man whom He loved dearly, was mocked, beaten, and eventually crucified (Luke 23).
He experienced the miracle of the Resurrection and the blessing of being taught by the Resurrected Lord (John 20).
"Peter said to his associates: 'Brethren, it has been a glorious three years. None of us could have imagined such a few short months ago the miracles we have seen and the divinity we have enjoyed. We have talked with, prayed with, and labored with the very Son of God Himself. We have walked with Him and wept with Him, and on the night of that horrible ending, no one wept more bitterly than I. But that is over. He has finished His work, and He has risen from the tomb. He has worked out His salvation and ours. So you ask, 'What do we do now?' I don't know more to tell you than to return to your former life, rejoicing. I intend to 'go a fishing' (John 21:1-3).
The Savior asks Peter three times...Peter, "lovest thou me more than these?" (John 21:15-17). Peter is almost beside himself by the third time. He's thinking, "Lord, what can I do more to tell you that I love you more than these fish?" I turn back to Elder Holland's portrayal of the exchange between Peter and the Lord.
"Then Peter, why are you here? Why are we back on this same shore, by these same nets, having this same conversation? Wasn't it obvious then and isn't it obvious now that if I want fish, I can get fish?
"So, Peter, for the second and presumably last time, I am asking you to leave all this and to go teach and testify, labor and serve loyally until the day in which they will do to you exactly what they did to me."
What Will You Take Away?
What will you do to show the Savior that you are His disciple forever? What will you give up to focus on feeding the Lord's sheep?