Based on the talk, “Only Upon the Principles of Righteousness,” by Elder Larry Y. Wilson, spring, 2012 General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints,
On Sunday, 1 July, I was asked by the First Counselor of my Bishopric to select a talk from the church’s General Conference, and do a 15-minute presentation on it. I got my copy of The Ensign magazine and started looking at talks. I read a dozen or more, but was drawn repeatedly to the one by Elder Larry Y. Wilson. At first, it didn’t interest me, and it seemed that the title didn’t really represent what was in the talk. By Wednesday, however, I had firmly selected this talk as the basis for my own. Over the next three days, I read Elder Wilson’s talk several more times, along with the referenced Scriptures. The more I studied, the more strongly I felt that I’d made the right decision. This is the script from which I spoke, but there were a few departures, mostly 1-off or collateral connections I made at the time.
Elder Wilson’s talk had two main themes: the fallacy of pretending that the priesthood confers any authority or power over others, and that the exercise of dominion over others can be very harmful to them.
Christ has given us the chance to make good on our probation through the use of our agency, but he has also stepped between us and the consequences of our actions. As we teach our children about accountability and responsibility, we must leaven those lessons with the understanding that we are all flawed and unworthy, but we have within our grasp the most amazing, incredible gift – a gift that literally blots out all of those foolish things we will do in our lives. The lesson of standing tall and accepting consequences should never exclude this fact of supreme mercy, lest they live in terror of making a mistake, and that terror dull or dampen the joy they should take in this mortal life.