In October 2018, President Russell M. Nelson announced come, follow me for home, Sunday school and primary, I knew that it was the mind and will of the Lord, revealed to his prophet for the benefit of His children on earth. We read, “Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.” 1 But the question to ponder is, are we listening to the prophet’s voice? Do we take time to study the scriptures and apply the principles “that it might be for our profit and learning.” 2
The phrase “Come follow me” is an invitation by Jesus to follow him to be his disciples to accomplish His work “to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.” 3 When Jesus extended this invitation to Peter and Andrew, they left their nets and followed him. John and James left the ship and their father. 4 Luke recorded that they forsook all and followed him.
5. Elder Dallin H. Oaks Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said, “We have to forego some good things in order to choose others that are better or best because they develop faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and strengthen our families. In choosing how we spend time as a family, we should be careful not to exhaust our available time on things that are merely good and leave little time for that which is better or best.” 6. As we study, come follow me New Testament 2023 this year, we could identify, understand and apply this principle in our lives.
Our focus and priorities
In the gospel of Luke, we read, Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house.
And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his word.
But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, “Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.
And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things:
But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.” 7
Serving is good but it is better or even best to sit at Jesus’ feet and hear his words.
Sister Carol F. McConkie taught: “If we would be holy, we must learn to sit at the feet of the Holy One of Israel and give time to holiness. Do we set aside the phone, the never-ending to-do list, and the cares of worldliness? Prayer, study, and heeding the word of God invite His cleansing and healing love into our souls. Let us take time to be holy, that we may be filled with His sacred and sanctifying Spirit.” 8
God says through the prophet Haggai, 'Is it time for you, O ye, to dwell in your ceiled houses, and this house lie waste?” 9 Having a house—even a very nice house—is not the problem. God's rebuke comes in response to misplaced priorities. Because they chose not to build the Lord’s house but theirs.
The rich young ruler denied Jesus’ invitation to follow him and went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions. 10 What a poor choice he made and declined the Lord’s invitation!
In the Parable of the Rich Fool, Jesus describes a man caught up in the affairs of this life, enjoying the fruit of his labours, and telling himself to 'take thine ease; eat, drink, and be merry'. God's response? 'Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?” 11 This man was entirely focused on the present, without any thought of preparation for the next life—or how long he had to live the present one.
For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? 12 How blessed we are to live on the earth in this last dispensation to become His chosen servants to assist him in his work. The Lord’s invitation “seek to bring forth and establish the cause of Zion” 13 to the pioneer leaders of the church is still applicable to all of us. It means personal purity, strengthening family and church should be our priorities over other things in our lives.
Our priorities determine what we seek in life. Jesus taught about priorities when He said, “Seek not the things of this world but seek ye first to build up the kingdom of God, and to establish his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you”. 14 Let us pray to our Father in Heaven to bless us with the desire to always seek heavenly things prior to our earthly needs. He has promised, “Search diligently, pray always, and be believing, and all things shall work together for your good, if ye walk uprightly.” 15
I testify that God lives and Jesus Christ is the Son of God. As we live worthily, the Holy Ghost will be our constant companion to help us make the right choices in our lives. President Russell M. Nelson is a mouthpiece of God. I so testify in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
- Amos 3:7
- 1 Nephi 19:23
- Moses 1:39
- Mathew 4:18-22
- Luke 5:11
- Elder Dallin.H.Oaks, “Good, Better, Best” General Conference, October 2007
- The Beauty of Holiness,” Ensign or Liahona, May 2017, 11
- Haggai 1:4
- Luke 19:22
- Luke 12:16-21
- Mark 8:36,37
- D&C 6:6
- JST, Matthew 6:38
- D&C 90:24