Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Agency/Free Will

Elder Robert D Hales, “Come, Follow Me” by Practicing Christian Love and Service, October 2016 General Conference
Some parents who have loved and taught their children also weep when their grown children choose not to follow the Lord’s plan. What can parents do? We cannot pray away another’s agency. 

Doctrine and Covenants 37:4
Behold, here is wisdom, and let every man choose for himself until I come. Even so. Amen.

Larry Y Wilson, Only upon the Principles of Righteousness, General Conference April 2012
“This scripture says we must lead by “principles of righteousness.” Such principles apply to all leaders in the Church as well as to all fathers and mothers in their homes. 3 We lose our right to the Lord’s Spirit and to whatever authority we have from God when we exercise control over another person in an unrighteous manner. 4 We may think such methods are for the good of the one being “controlled.” But anytime we try to compel someone to righteousness who can and should be exercising his or her own moral agency, we are acting unrighteously. When setting firm limits for another person is in order, those limits should always be administered with loving patience and in a way that teaches eternal principles.
“We simply cannot force others to do the right thing. “ 

Our children are in our homes for a limited time. If we wait until they walk out the door to turn over to them the reins of their moral agency, we have waited too long. They will not suddenly develop the ability to make wise decisions if they have never been free to make any important decisions while in our homes. Such children often either rebel against this compulsion or are crippled by an inability to make any decisions on their own.
Wise parents prepare their children to get along without them. They provide opportunities for growth as children acquire the spiritual maturity to exercise their agency properly. And yes, this means children will sometimes make mistakes and learn from them.”

President Boyd K Packer, “How to Survive in Enemy Territory”,Seminary Centennial Broadcast

“The first gift that Adam and Eve received was agency: ‘Thou mayest choose for thyself, for it is given unto thee.’ (Genesis 2:17)“ ... “It is natural to resist restraints of any kind.”

Neal A. Maxwell, “According to the Desire of [Our] Hearts,” Ensign, Nov. 1996, 22, 21
“When people are described as ‘having lost their desire for sin,’ it is they, and they only, who deliberately decided to lose those wrong desires by being willing to ‘give away all [their] sins’ in order to know God.”

“Therefore, what we insistently desire, over time, is what we will eventually become and what we will receive in eternity.”

Elder Randall K. Bennett, Of the Seventy, Choose Eternal Life, General Conference October 2011
"My dear brothers and sisters, your eternal destiny will not be the result of chance but of choice. It is never too late to begin to choose eternal life!”

Thomas S. Monson, “Decisions Determine Destiny” (Church Educational System fireside for young adults, Nov. 6, 2005)‘I can’t stress too strongly that decisions determine destiny. You can’t make eternal decisions without eternal consequences.

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