Question: Can we find peace in today’s world of turmoil?
Answer: When we encounter conflicting opinions about gospel truths, it is good to remember that “God is not the author of confusion, but of peace” (1 Corinthians 14:33). Listening to the Lord’s appointed servants, and holding to the simple truths they repeatedly teach, can help us find peace in today’s world.
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1 Corinthians 14:33
33 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches (Wards, Branches) of the saints. (In other words, God’s true Church is run under the direction of presiding priesthood authorities in each Ward, Branch, Stake, etc. which provides an atmosphere of confidence. Faith in Jesus Christ and His atoning sacrifice is the foundation upon which our hope for peace is built.)
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Bishop W. Christopher Waddell, Second Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric:
...Peace of mind, peace of conscience, and peace of heart are not determined by our ability to avoid trials, sorrow, or heartache. Despite our sincere pleas, not every storm will change course, not every infirmity will be healed, and we may not fully understand every doctrine, principle, or practice taught by prophets, seers, and revelators. Nevertheless, we have been promised peace—with a condition attached.
In the Gospel of John, the Savior taught that despite the tribulations of life, we can be of good cheer, we can be of good hope, and we need not fear, because He declared, “In me ye might have peace.” Faith in Jesus Christ and His atoning sacrifice is, and forever will be, the first principle of the gospel and the foundation upon which our hope for “peace in this world, and eternal life in the world to come” is built.
In our search for peace amidst the daily challenges of life, we’ve been given a simple pattern to keep our thoughts focused on the Savior, who said: “Learn of me, and listen to my words; walk in the meekness of my Spirit, and you shall have peace in me. I am Jesus Christ.”
Learn, listen, and walk—three steps with a promise.
First Step: “Learn of Me”
In Isaiah we read, “And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways.” In the ever- increasing number of temples dotting the earth, we learn of Jesus Christ and His role in the Father’s plan as the Creator of this world, as our Savior and Redeemer, and as the source of our peace.
President Thomas S. Monson has taught: “The world can be a challenging and difficult place in which to live. … As you and I go to the holy houses of God, as we remember the covenants we make within, we will be more able to bear every trial and to overcome each temptation. In this sacred sanctuary we will find peace.”...
Each time we attend the temple—in all that we hear, do, and say; in every ordinance in which we participate; and in every covenant that we make—we are pointed to Jesus Christ. We feel peace as we hear His words and learn from His example. President Gordon B. Hinckley taught, “Go to the house of the Lord and there feel of His Spirit and commune with Him and you will know a peace that you will find nowhere else.”
Second Step: “Listen to My Words”
In the Doctrine and Covenants we read, “Whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is the same.” From the days of Adam and down through the ages to our current prophet, Thomas Spencer Monson, the Lord has spoken through His authorized representatives. Those who choose to listen and give heed to the words of the Lord, as delivered through His prophets, will find safety and peace...
The adversary offers counterfeit solutions that may appear to provide answers but take us even further from the peace we seek. He offers a mirage that has the appearance of legitimacy and safety but ultimately, like the great and spacious building, will collapse, destroying all who seek peace within its walls. Truth is found in the simplicity of a Primary song: “Words of a prophet: Keep the commandments. In this there is safety and peace.”
Third Step: “Walk in the Meekness of My Spirit”
However far we may wander from the path, the Savior invites us to return and walk with Him. This invitation to walk with Jesus Christ is an invitation to accompany Him to Gethsemane and from Gethsemane to Calvary and from Calvary to the Garden Tomb. It is an invitation to observe and apply His great atoning sacrifice, whose reach is as individual as it is infinite. It is an invitation to repent, to draw upon His cleansing power, and to grasp His loving, outstretched arms. It is an invitation to be at peace.
We have all felt, at some time in our lives, the pain and heartache associated with sin and transgression, for “if we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” ...Though we have been weighed down with guilt, we shall obtain peace...
The peace we all seek requires more than a desire. It requires us to act—by learning of Him, by listening to His words, and by walking with Him. We may not have the ability to control all that happens around us, but we can control how we apply the pattern for peace that the Lord has provided—a pattern that makes it easy to think often about Jesus.
I testify that Jesus Christ is “the way, the truth, and the life” and that only through Him can we obtain true peace in this life and eternal life in the world to come. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
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Sources: Come, Follow Me–For Individuals and Families, p. 138; The New Testament Made Easier, Part 2, Volume 3, by David J. Ridges, 177; Excerpts from General Conference, April 2017, “A Pattern for Peace,” By Bishop W. Christopher Waddell, Second Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric.