In October 2015, President Nelson gave a landmark talk to women, titled, A Plea to My Sisters.
In it, he prophesied that “attacks against the Church, its doctrine, and our way of life are going to increase.”
Then he named the sort of women needed to withstand these attacks. He said, “we need women who have a bedrock understanding of the doctrine of Christ and who will use that understanding to teach and help raise a sin-resistant generation. We need women who can detect deception in all of its forms. We need women who know how to access the power that God makes available to covenant keepers and who express their beliefs with confidence and charity. We need women who have the courage and vision of our Mother Eve.”
There are five main traits, President Nelson told that women they need to have:
- Women who have a bedrock understanding of the doctrine of Christ and who will use that understanding to teach and help raise a sin-resistant generation.
- Women who can detect deception in all of its forms.
- Women who know how to access the power that God makes available to covenant keepers
- Women who express their beliefs with confidence and charity.
- Women who have the courage and vision of our Mother Eve.
Myself, like many others, have probably asked how. “How can I become that woman?” After some pondering and visits to the temple, these are my initial answers to how we can become the women President Nelson described:
- To become “women who have a bedrock understanding of the doctrine of Christ and who will use that understanding to teach and help raise a sin-resistant generation,” we must read and study the words of the prophets and believe them. There may be many things we read in the scriptures and from the words of the latter-day prophets that won’t gel with our world view. We must choose not to be offended by words of the prophets that don’t fit in with our personal understanding. Instead we need to cultivate the faith necessary to believe and to continue our study. Through faith in the sacred words of the scriptures and the latter-day prophets, the Holy Ghost will reveal to us how all of these words fit into the whole of the gospel and constitute truth.In Helaman 5:12 it says:
And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall.
The rock is revelation. In the most recent First Presidency Message, President Eyring taught: “The servants of God fast and pray to receive the message He has for them to give to those who need revelation and inspiration… to gain the great benefits available from hearing living prophets and apostles, we must pay the price ourselves of receiving revelation.”
- To become “women who can detect deception in all of its forms,” we need to start by paying attention to the words of the temple ordinances. In the temple we are promised the power of discernment and power over Satan. We are given a physical reminder of that and a lot of explanation throughout the initiatory and endowment. We must grow into that power. This power is ours as we continue to keep the commandments that brought us to the temple, and as we willingly keep the covenants made there.
- To become “women who know how to access the power that God makes available to covenant keepers,” we must grow in the Holy Ghost. It is imperative that we learn to listen to His whisperings. In the Sacrament we are promised that as we keep the commandments, we will always have His spirit to be with us. The Holy Ghost will teach us what we need to change to obtain that promise. As we willingly make those changes, we claim the Holy Ghost as our guide, and we claim the power granted to us in the temple through the covenants we have made. We have actual power. We have been blessed with that power through our obedience and can claim that power and make use of it in our everyday lives.
- To become “women who express their beliefs with confidence and charity,” we first should study charity as defined in Moroni 7 and as it fits into the whole chapter. We can memorize verse 45. Memorizing will help us recall it often and increase our understanding of the love of God. The common use of the word charity does not fit in with the scriptures. As we unashamedly stand up for the all the gospel principles–popular and unpopular–the Holy Ghost will grant us confidence, peace, ability, and most importantly charity. Like everything, it takes action, practice, and inspiration to become good at what we are asked to do.
- To become “women who have the courage and vision of our Mother Eve,” we should ponder the endowment. What did Mother Eve do and for what reason? Knowing about Mother Eve will help us to know about our own divine mission. It will help us obtain the courage Mother Eve had.
What are your thoughts on how to become the women President Nelson described?
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