On Tuesday at 11:30 a.m. in the BYU-Idaho Center, Karl Karstad, Support Center director, gave a devotional talk that focused on lasting happiness in a family setting by having a better understanding of the plan of salvation.
He began by sharing Lehi’s vision of the tree of life, which can be found in 1 Nephi 8 in the Book of Mormon. He spoke of how Lehi followed the straight and narrow path, held tight to the iron rod and eventually was able to partake of the fruit of the tree of life with his family, which resembles everlasting happiness.
“To be clear about the fruit, it is not a magical mango we pluck and consume at our leisure, enjoying once and never thinking of again,” Karstad said. “The precious fruit we are after is ‘the greatest of all the gifts of God’ and is something we strive for our entire lives.”
Karstad shared an experience when he worked on campus in the summer of 2002 cleaning girls’ dormitories. While it wasn’t his favorite job, he soon realized that as he cleaned several drawers in the dorms, they were much easier to clean when he started with the corners of the drawers. He compared cleaning corners to some of the tasks of members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which according to him, helps members be happy.
“Cleaning the corners of life by praying, studying scriptures, going to church, loving your neighbor and pressing forward as Latter-day Saints is gratifying work that can keep us on the path of righteousness,” Karstad said. “As we attend to our life’s corners, we can all discover that the middle parts of our life are easier to maintain and keep clean.”
In closing, he shared various conference talks, hymns and scriptures highlighting the importance of following the plan of salvation. One of the talks he shared was from President Thomas S. Monson in which he mentioned that living God’s laws is a key way to gaining eternal happiness. Karstad touched on this when he shared his testimony.
“Let us all remember that there is a purpose for strengthening our testimony tower, taking action, learning God’s laws and obtaining saving ordinances,” Karstad said. “The plan of happiness happens as we press forward to obtain that eternal joy that comes from our Savior, Jesus Christ.”