More effort to know Him.
What does that look like? Not to know of, not even to know about, but to truly know Him? Think about the people and relationships in your life that fall under these three categories or stages. What are some of the key differences between those you know of or about, versus those you can say you know? As I reflected on this, it became apparent to me that most deep relationships do not take root all at once, rather they are established through a million little things. You've spent enough time together that they’ve likely seen you through the good and the bad, the joys and the sorrows, of this life. They are someone you trust and feel comfortable with as you unapologetically show up in your imperfect mess because you know they’re never there to judge. You seek advice from them, aspire to be like them, and feel your greatest potential in reach when you are around them. And even if time passes between conversations, they are just happy to hear from you, picking up right where you left off. In short, they are with you. Every step. Every success. Every failure. Every victory. Every defeat. Can the same be said for our relationship with our Savior?
When their words become our own.
I love when Elder Teh clarifies that this does not mean "copying the words, feelings, and experiences of others as much as it is coming to know for ourselves, in our own unique way..." And we do this by trying them on, by "experimenting upon the word", by borrowing prayers and passages, testimonies and truths. Oftentimes it is in trial and hardship that we find ourselves leaning on the strength and sure foundation of others to bear us up. Then there comes a season when we must know for ourselves—when we are able to trust our own foundation, articulate our own truths, and nourish our own, intimate relationship with the Savior.
Suffered for all, one-by-one.It's that one-by-one part that can be so difficult for our mortal minds to comprehend. And like Elder Teh, we can often forget the personal nature of the Atonement of Jesus Christ when we caught up in the grandeur of it! I so appreciated his vulnerability when he admitted to putting his testimony of the Atonement on display for others, only to realize it was, "meant for me and not for anyone else." It wasn't about the eloquence or elaborateness of his words, it was about the personal conviction that they contained, even in its simplest form. A conviction that continues to take shape, evolve, grow, and progress, just as our relationship with the Savior should.
"We need to recognize that knowing the Savior is the most important pursuit of our lives. It should take priority over anything else."
“The Atonement of Jesus Christ is infinite and eternal and all-encompassing in its breadth and depth but wholly personal and individual in its effects."