The First Great Commandment

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In the October 2012 general conference, Elder Holland gave a great talk titled, “The First Great Commandment.” That was the talk we discussed in Relief Society this past week. It was a great reminder that we can all be doing more to love God.

What really impacted me was the following interpretation by Elder Holland regarding Peter’s exchange with the Lord, who asked him three times, “Lovest Thou Me?” When Peter responded in the affirmative the third time, Elder Holland says,

“To which Jesus responded (and here again I acknowledge my nonscriptural elaboration), perhaps saying something like: “Then Peter, why are you here? Why are we back on this same shore, by these same nets, having this same conversation? Wasn’t it obvious then and isn’t it obvious now that if I want fish, I can get fish? What I need, Peter, are disciples—and I need them forever. I need someone to feed my sheep and save my lambs. I need someone to preach my gospel and defend my faith. I need someone who loves me, truly, truly loves me, and loves what our Father in Heaven has commissioned me to do. Ours is not a feeble message. It is not a fleeting task. It is not hapless; it is not hopeless; it is not to be consigned to the ash heap of history. It is the work of Almighty God, and it is to change the world. So, Peter, for the second and presumably the last time, I am asking you to leave all this and to go teach and testify, labor and serve loyally until the day in which they will do to you exactly what they did to me.”

If we need “fish” (or temporal and spiritual blessings) in our lives, the Lord can give us those. It is our responsibility to have faith, believe in Him, and show that we love Him. As I thought about my own life, I realize that we can never do enough to serve. But, it is more than serving others. It is more than sharing the gospel. It is about dedicating our lives to Him by great and simple things. It is about loving our families more and treating them with kindness. It is about turning off the TV and picking up the scriptures instead. It is about praying often so that we have a personal relationship with our Savior. It is about treating everyone like a neighbor. It is about never looking back to the lives we had before we knew Christ. It is about becoming a true disciple of Him that works tirelessly to do His work.

Elder Holland states, “After an encounter with the living Son of the living God, nothing is ever again to be as it was before.” I know I can do more. Can you?

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About Meredith

Meredith is a native Texan who is currently living in Salt Lake City, UT. She graduated from the University of Utah in 2002 with a B.A. degree in Psychology and a minor in Human Development and Family Studies. She has been married for almost 10 years and has three beautiful children who consume most of her time. However, she started blogging in 2007 and has fallen in love with the idea of becoming a writer. She started scrapbooking over 10 years ago, and has become obsessed with that as well. She also dreams of the day when someone will pay her to scrapbook for them! When she is not scrapbooking, or blogging, she loves to people watch, and analyze what makes people tick. Meredith is proud to be a Mormon, and even served a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints where she fell in love with the Latin culture and learned to speak Spanish. Visit Meredith on her personal blog at