Sunday, January 3, 2016

More Holiness

I found a hymn that captures the essence of my 2016 mantra:  "More" that is coalescing each day as I think about it.  Do More.  Be More.  Live More.  That could sum it up.

The hymn is "More Holiness Give Me."  It has a lot of 'more' in it.  Holiness is that special light within us that shines so that others can see The Spirit of Christ whom we follow.

President Monson once told this story:

“‘For behold, the Spirit of Christ is given to every man, that he may know good from evil; wherefore, I show unto you the way to judge; for every thing which inviteth to do good, and to persuade to believe in Christ, is sent forth by the power and gift of Christ; wherefore ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of God.’”  Moroni 7:16
You and I know those who qualify for the Savior’s blessing in accordance with this definition.
Such was Walter Stover of Salt Lake City. Born in Germany, Walter embraced the gospel message and came to America. He established his own business. He gave freely of his time and of his means.
Following World War II, Walter Stover was called to return to his native land. He directed the Church in that nation and blessed the lives of all whom he met and with whom he served. With his own funds, he constructed two chapels in Berlin—a beautiful city that had been so devastated by the conflict. He planned a gathering in Dresden for all the members of the Church from that nation and then chartered a train to bring them from all around the land so they could meet, partake of the sacrament, and bear witness of the goodness of God to them.
At the funeral services for Walter Stover, his son-in-law Thomas C. LeDuc said of him, “He had the ability to see Christ in every face he encountered, and he acted accordingly.”
The poet wrote:
I met a stranger in the night, whose lamp had ceased to shine;
I paused and let him light his lamp from mine.
A tempest sprang up later on, and shook the world about,
And when the wind was gone, my lamp was out.
But back came to me the stranger—his lamp was glowing fine;
He held the precious flame and lighted mine. 10
Perhaps the moral of this poem is simply that if you want to give a light to others, you have to glow yourself.  (General Conference, Apr. 1999,  Thomas S. Monson, First Councelor in the First Presidency) 
For a while I dated a nephew of Walter Stover.  I met the man once for Thanksgiving Dinner that I was invited to at his home.   He and his wife were most gracious hosts. 
Some time later after I moved to Oregon the young man that I dated wrote me telling about how his uncle and he went to Germany to visit with their relatives who lived in East Germany.  They had an American automobile with a large trunk that they filled with garments to take to those that lived behind the Iron Curtain who were endowed in the Temple of the Lord. 

Years passed and I heard on the news that Walter Stover was instrumental in making the arrangements with the East German government for the building of the Freiberg Temple behind the Berlin Wall.  He was truly a remarkable man. 
Let the light of Christ always shine in us, too.


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