Loving others is an essential part of this life, but we cannot forget the first great commandment.
In our efforts to please or impress others, we sometimes give in to peer pressure. But the first of the Ten Commandments is to love God wholly and sincerely—not to impress man.
Forgetting which way we face may happen in moments when we are more concerned with our peers’ opinions of us than with Heavenly Father’s opinion of the way we live our lives. When we try to save face with man, we may find ourselves unintentionally showing greater love for man than for God. Consequently, we lose face with God.
Elder Robbins recalls well-known accounts that illustrate the importance of remembering which way we face. He shares the story of Daniel and the lion’s den, in which Daniel has the courage to pray, even when it could cost him his life. He also tells the account of Joseph Smith and the 116 lost manuscript pages. Joseph temporarily (if inadvertently) forgot which way he faced when he lent Martin Harris the pages—and the manuscript pages were subsequently lost.
No matter our position in life or in the Church, it is vital that we know which way we face. We should always put God first. “Decisions of character,” Elder Robbins says, “are made by remembering the right order of the first and second great commandments.”
Read or watch Elder Robbins’s talk “Which Way Do You Face?”
Source: LDS General Conference
—Krista Nettgen, Mormon Insights
feature image by midiman / jesus christ—christus statue / cc by 2.0 / photo altered
Find more insights
Read or watch Elder Jeffrey R. Holland’s message, “The First Great Commandment.”
Explore self-reflective questions in “Putting God First.”