Book of Mormon Journal:
I wanted to talk about the one. I see often see the world focusing on sweeping actions of kindness and not really taking into account the help that the individual needs. I think of this kind of anesthetic charity work that allows you to do good without really feeling the goodness of it. When the individual is focused on, in a personal and genuine matter, you can’t help but feel the goodness of service. I mean to recall the scene in the Book of Mormon where it says that “the multitude went forth, and thrust their hands into his side, and did feel the prints of the nails in his hands and in his feet; and this they did do, going forth one by one until they had all gone forth, and did see with their eyes and did feel with their hands, and did know of a surety and did bear record, that it was he, of whom it was written by the prophets, that should come.” That is amazing to me. The Savior could have done something more sweeping, like promising them all food for the next hundred years, or providing them with houses to be built and schools to be built in their post-apocolyptic conditions. Let’s think about it. These people don’t have homes. Their whole world was destroyed, and the only thing Christ is doing is letting them look at his hands. The world would have a “politically correct” heyday over this. They would call him insensitive. And this is the point that I mean to make—Christ gets it. And I think that President Monson also gets it. I don’t think he is emphasizing personal and genuine contact with individuals just because he has a good habit of it. I don’t think that he is teaching to care for the one because it makes him feel nice. I think this is the direction and understanding that we need in this age and world. In an age where I can buy a pair of shoes and feel that I have done some good in the world, in an age where I can buy bottled water and feel good about myself, and in an age where I can do this and in the same moment snub every person I come across, we need to do our home teaching and focus on the one. These are the real actions that take the whole heart and not just the mind or body. It requires a lot more from us to be kind on that level. In other words, or in the words of Christ in 3 Nephi 13:16 “be not as hypocrites.” I need to do that.