Inspired by Elder Charles Didier’s Address in October 1983
Today’s inspiration is drawn from “Friend or Foe” by Elder Charles Didier, a powerful reminder of the choices we make in our relationship with God.
Throughout human history, people have often categorized the world into two groups: friends and foes. This division, driven by pride and ambition, has been used to justify power, control, and conflict. But what if we extended this concept beyond our worldly concerns and asked a deeper question: Are we friends or foes of God? Elder Charles Didier’s message in October 1983 urges us to ponder this essential question and understand its eternal implications.
From the battlefields of ancient times to the complexities of our modern world, the question of “friend or foe” has persisted. It’s a question used to quickly identify allies and enemies, often with dire consequences for those misidentified. Elder Didier draws an analogy between this earthly selection process and our quest to find favor with God.
Human history is marred by the creation of artificial divisions and holy wars based on differences in race, religion, culture, and politics. Tragically, these divisions have led to crimes against humanity, all in the name of the divine. In our complex world today, it is crucial to heed Christ’s message: “Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them who despitefully use you and persecute you” (3 Nephi 12:44).
Beyond the external world, the most critical question we face is whether we are friends or foes of God. This question carries eternal weight, as it can lead to either eternal life or spiritual death. James warns us that worldly pursuits driven by lusts and enmity with God can lead to spiritual emptiness and unfulfilled desires.
Scripture makes it clear: the natural man is an enemy to God and has been since the fall of Adam (Mosiah 3:19). But can we shed this carnal nature and our belief that the world is our ultimate resource for sustenance, pleasure, and even gods? Can we, through faith, understand that our Heavenly Father is our eternal source?
President David O. McKay emphasized that true greatness lies in becoming Christlike, and our thoughts about Christ determine our actions. Choosing Jesus Christ as our ideal creates a desire to be like Him and to have fellowship with Him.
Our journey to becoming friends of God is made possible through the Mediator, Jesus Christ, the Son of God. The prophet Benjamin teaches us that by yielding to the enticings of the Holy Spirit and putting off the natural man, we can become saints through the atonement of Christ.
To be friends of God means understanding His divine mission and supporting it. We must qualify to be called Christ’s friends, His disciples, and gain access to the presence of His Father. Through grace, we can approach God in Christ’s name and, in due time, receive His fullness (Doctrine and Covenants 93:19).
Prophets and Apostles consistently bear testimony of the importance of being friends with Christ. President Spencer W. Kimball’s heartfelt testimony reminds us that Jesus Christ is our friend, Savior, Lord, and God. We are encouraged to keep His commandments, have His Spirit with us, and strive for an eternal inheritance.
Abraham was known as the Friend of God (James 2:23), and throughout history, prophets and Apostles have maintained friendships with the divine. As individuals, we also have the opportunity to make and keep covenants with God. Baptism is a covenant that invites us to become friends of God.
Teenagers, as they form friendships in their lives, face choices. They can choose friends who uphold Christlike standards and defend them, rather than conforming to lower moral standards. Mutual friendship should be a way to strengthen their testimony of Christ.
Creating an environment where gospel principles are lived, where prayer, church attendance, and family home evening are regular practices, contributes to building eternal friendships at home, as highlighted in ‘The Message of Elijah: Unlocking the Power of Family Bonds‘.
Our challenge is to choose the right, to declare that we are friends of our Heavenly Father. Baptism is a covenant that enables us to make this declaration. We must treat it with the seriousness it deserves, not only as an act of obedience but as a heartfelt commitment to be friends of God.
Elder Charles Didier’s message reminds us of the profound choice we face: to be friends or foes of God. This decision carries eternal significance and requires our commitment to Christ’s teachings. We can take inspiration from Abraham, the Friend of God, and the prophets and Apostles who have walked in the path of friendship with the divine.
As we ponder the choice before us, let us choose to be friends of God. Embrace the teachings of Christ, seek to understand His mission, and support it with unwavering devotion. By doing so, we not only secure our own spiritual growth but also contribute to making the world a better place through our Christlike example and love for others.
By choosing friendship with God over being foes, we not only enrich our lives but also contribute to a world filled with love, unity, and spiritual growth. It is a choice that leads to eternal blessings and a brighter future for all. Link to original: Friend or Foe
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