Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The Law of Consecration

We had this fantastic lesson in Sunday School on the Law of Consecration. We talked about the United Order and why we don’t/can’t live the Law of Consecration that way right now. We talked about what will be expected of us in the Celestial Kingdom, we talked about specific ways we will need to change in order to live that Celestial law. We talked about Christ-like Love, the belief that wordly possessions are not necessary and certainly not a priority. We talked about how we currently live the Law of Consecration and that we aren’t exempt because of our imperfect state.  We talked about tithing and fast offerings and how that’s the way we apply the Law of Consecration today.
As Josh and I talked about the lesson on our way to Lindon yesterday, he brought up an interesting point. He said that “back in the day” (i.e. during the time of the United Order) The Church was the steward of all stuff. Members would give all they have (time, talents, possessions) to The Church and then receive back what they needed.  Today, we are still commanded to live the Law of Consecration. However, instead of The Church acting as steward of all stuff, we are each responsible to act as stewards of our own stuff. As members who have gone through the temple, we have covenanted with our Heavenly Father to give all of our time, talents, & possessions to the church for the building up of the Kingdom and to serve each other. But, instead of the Church being responsible to make sure we are doing what we should with what we have, the responsibility lies on us, as members.
Josh’s example was a simple one. I have a truck, it’s not mine, it’s the Lord’s. As an agent of the Lord I should be using it in his service. If somebody in the ward needs help moving, it’s my job to offer all of my time, talents, and possessions to help that happen. The Lord would be willing to help, and if I’m gonna use his “stuff” I need to be responsible to use it as he would. Done. I will be there on Saturday morning. (He doesn’t really have a truck, so please don’t ask him to help you move….)
The concept applies to all that we have. Are we willing to accept callings that we might not want? Are we willing to help Sister _____ weed her yard? Are we willing to donate our canned food for the Bishop’s storehouse? Are we giving our excess funds in Fast Offering? Are we hoarding what “we” have? Or are we recognizing that all we have comes from God, and that it’s not our right to use/spend it on things he wouldn’t use it for?
The attitude adjustments that seem necessary and really struck me during our discussion were these:
  1. If we truly loved each other as brothers & sisters it wouldn’t be hard to give all we have for the good of someone else.
    It seems that most families live the Law of Consecration within their own families. One (or two) parents work, and bring home money in order to provide for their children. Most Dads don’t go to work every day thinking “I can’t believe that I’m working this hard, and I don’t get to keep all this. I have to donate it to these bums (wife and/or children) who don’t earn any money at all.” Most Dads just recognize their stewardship over their family and because they love them, gladly work to provide for their needs. Imagine loving all of your neighbors that same way. Imagine not batting an eye at the thought that instead of going to Disneyland this year you considered that money “excess” and gave it to someone who hasn’t been able to pay their bills. That is a world where Christ-like love wins.
  2. We can really think of all that “we” have as things that have been trusted to us by the Lord for HIS use and HIS purposes.
    When we stop looking at our stuff as ours, and realize that we’re just using it in the Lord’s service, it’s not annoying when someone asks you to help them move. It’s not annoying when someone wants to you serve in a calling you’ve had for the past 10 years.  You don’t feel like you’re giving up something special to you when someone asks for your donated food items when you still want them. None of those things are personal to us anymore because none of it is ours anyway. And if you are living close to the spirit, you know how the Lord would have you use what you have. So, if we don’t think of it as “ours” it doesn’t hurt to give it up. It feels good.
  3. If we recognized how little material things mean in eternal perspective, it wouldn’t bother us to donate.
    It’s not hard to give things up that don’t matter to you, but when you become attached to a nice car, home, or toy, it’s harder to give that up. When we remember that what we have in this life is only for this life, and that it is not necessary for our happiness, it suddenly becomes easy to give what we have.

So, bottom line, it’s not that hard to live the Law of Consecration FULLY. Also it’s not a guilt trip that we don’t live the United Order, because we can (and should) still live the Law of Consecration. Trying to develop Christ-like love for the people around us, recognizing that what “we” have isn’t ours, and putting “stuff” in its proper place will prepare us to live the Law of Consecration in any application we’re asked to. 
Aren't you jealous that your ward isn't as good as mine? 


  1. I liked this post, nice reminder :)

  2. Thank you for this! I've actually been thinking about this myself lately! You summed it up beautifully!

  3. This was really good to read. I have much to think about now. THANKS!

  4. Jealous? I'm just completely happy for you dear brothers and sisters to have had such a fantastic lesson ; ) In fact, I think my next step should be to move into your ward and mooch off of all you law of consecration livers. j/k Seriously, thanks for sharing. Those were some good points.

  5. When I grow up, can I be you? I can't believe I have such amazing, faithful friends. Thanks for the uplifting thoughts!

  6. "I have a truck, it’s not mine, it’s the Lord’s." -- Are you freakin' kidding me? The truck belongs to the lord? Does he make your payments? Does he fill it with gas? Pay the insurance? Work a job to pay for it? Open your eyes, fools, before you follow the rest of your herd off the edge of a cliff!


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