In the epistles Paul wrote to his friends and associates in God’s work, we see a man who is deeply converted to Christ and His gospel. We also see in Paul remarkable courage and conviction as he encouraged and rallied his faithful friends and Church leaders in 2 Timothy Chapter 1:
“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind” (vs 7)
“Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God” (vs 8)
“Nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed” (vs 12)
“Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus” (vs 13)
Paul’s counsel to his friends is perhaps even more applicable for us today, especially as we teach the rising generation to “be not ashamed” about the doctrines taught in “The Family: A Proclamation to the World.”
As Young Women General President Bonnie Oscarson taught:
Our youth are being exposed to difficult questions on a daily basis, and many of us have loved ones who are struggling to find answers. The good news is that there are answers to the questions being asked. … But I worry that we live in such an atmosphere of avoiding offense that we sometimes altogether avoid teaching correct principles. …
Certainly, sisters, we need to use sensitivity, but let us also use our common sense and our understanding of the plan of salvation to be bold and straightforward when it comes to teaching our children and youth the essential gospel principles they must understand to navigate the world in which they live. If we don’t teach our children and youth true doctrine—and teach it clearly—the world will teach them Satan’s lies.
We will need courage to teach our children and youth to “hold fast the form of sound words” such as “marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God” and “Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose.” But with Paul’s example, we know that we can do all things in Christ who strengthens us and our abilities.
Art: Annie Henrie