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The LDS Daily WOOL© Archive - Richard L. Evans

"There are two things that enter into the life of every man: Those things which we plan for ourselves, and those things which enter into our lives in spite of all our plans. Sometimes, happily, we fare better than we had honestly hoped, and sometimes, unhappily, we find we fall far short of achieving those things for which we have striven. But no matter how well we seem to control those elements which affect our lives, there are always to be considered things unlooked for. Surely it must be better that way. It would be difficult to imagine a more unsatisfactory existence than the life of a man into which nothing unexpected ever came. Furthermore, it is all part of a great plan. The Lord still chasteneth whom he loveth, and all those things which come into our lives in spite of our best laid plans, are part of the education and enriching experience of every child of God who walks the earth. We may think what we would like for ourselves, and then, in the spirit of that resignation born of faith, we must reconcile ourselves at one time or another, to say as in the words of the hymn about to be sung, 'I'll go where you want me to go, dear Lord; I'll be what you want me to be.'" — "Conference Report," October 1938, p. 90

"What a glorious thing faith is! Faith! All of us would like to know a lot of answers we do not know. All of us shall some day. But it was meant that men should live in part by faith. It is a glorious thing to have it, to meet the unanswered questions, to meet the fears of life, to carry us over all difficulties -- the glorious principle of faith, the first of the first principles of the gospel." — "Conference Report," April 1955, p. 113 - 114

"Life is a great search for all of us. We all have unanswered questions, and I am grateful to witness to you this day that in the gospel of Jesus Christ, as restored to earth in this day and dispensation, I have found, in the faith of my fathers, the road that leads to the answers to life's compelling questions -- the road along which the search lies, that gives purpose and meaning to life, a great sense and assurance of the ultimate objectives and of the everlasting continuance of truth and intelligence and personality, and of sweet association with loved ones and all that means the most -- a gospel which gives freedom: freedom for the search, freedom for the seeking of truth, freedom for learning, indeed, not only freedom for it but also a solemn charge to pursue it." — "Conference Report," April 1960, p. 29 - 30

"...I have no fear of learning, of the pursuit of knowledge, for any of our young people, if they will keep in mind diligence and obedience--obedience to the commandments of God, diligence in keeping close to the Church, in keeping active, keeping prayerful, keeping clean, keeping circumspect in their conduct. It isn't learning or the love of learning, or knowledge, or the pursuit of any subject that would take from a man his faith, but it is failure to keep the commandments, the failure of a man to feed all sides of himself..." — "Conference Report," April 1956, p. 44

"An interesting sentence recently read has lodged in my mind: 'What's the use of running when you're on the wrong road?' We had better do our best to be sure we are on the right road before we run in any direction." — "Conference Report," April 1968, p. 87

"There isn't any way to cheat nature, to bypass law, to run away from life. The commandments haven't been repealed; the laws of morality, the spiritual laws, the laws of life are still in force and effect. Oh, don't let others drag you down, and don't drag yourself down. No matter what cynical or immoral or even honestly mistaken people may say, don't let them destroy your faith or your virtue, or lead you to a lower way of life. And when they try to tell you what you're missing, you tell them what they're missing: peace and self-respect and a quiet conscience—happiness—and the assurance of the highest opportunities of everlasting life." — "Conference Report," October 1969, p. 67

"But no matter what everybody does, an error is still an error even though it is multiplied millions of times. So is an evil, and it doesn't matter how popular or how glamorous or how universal evils become, they are still evils. Some evils have been made very glamorous, very appealing and very popular, but we must be aware of the fact that they are still what they are, regardless of who partakes of them or what they are called, or what appearance they assume. History has proved many times over that the opinion of one man who knows and who knows that he knows, the opinion of one man who has the truth and proclaims it, is much more important than the opinions of many millions who don't know." — "Conference Report," October 1948, p. 63

"So I say to these youth of ours: go forth and live your lives with humility, with gratitude, with repentance, keeping the commandments of God and having faith in the future and preparing yourselves for the future, as the Church itself continues its building. There is nothing to lose by having faith in the future, but there is much to lose by not preparing for the future." — "Conference Report," April 1950, p. 105

"He has sent us here, from where we were with him before birth, for a brief period of mortal experience, with our free agency, our right of choice, with principles and commandments, and with his Spirit to light us through life, and has assured us everlasting life with the glorious promise of limitless and eternal progress and possibilities, with all the sweetness of association of family and friends in the peace and protection of his presence-if we will. He has assured us that 'men are, that they might have joy,' (2 Nephi 2:25) and has declared it to be his purpose 'to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.' (Moses 1:39.)" — Richard L. Evans, "We Are Not Alone in Life" "Improvement Era," January, 1955

"Why run against the laws of life? Why run headlong into ill health and unhappiness? Why live contrary to conscience? Think of the heartbreak and waste and regret that could be prevented by living as we ought to live. No one can set aside consequences. As Cecil B. DeMille said: 'We cannot break the... Commandments. We can only break ourselves against them.' O let us think and live and teach the power of prevention. 'If it is not right,' said Marcus Aurelius, 'do not do it; if it is not true, do not say it.'

"But wherein we may have failed in this (and heaven help us not to fail), then let us turn with all our hearts to the power of repentance." - Richard L. Evans, "Where Are You Really Going?" Ensign, June 1971, p. 74

"Perhaps I could begin with an interesting question posed recently and an equally interesting answer. The question was, 'Don't you think the commandments should be rewritten?' The answer was, 'No, they should be reread.'

"This may be a good point from which to take off for consideration of some fundamental facts; namely, the commandments of God are there. They come from a divine source. The experience of the ages has proved the need for them, and has proved what happens if they are ignored.

"So why spend life in the frustration and unhappiness and sorrow and tragedy of trying to rationalize and wave them away?" - Richard L. Evans, "Should the Commandments Be Rewritten?" Ensign, Dec. 1971, p. 57

"No matter how much we may be discouraged or how often we are set back, we must begin again and again, if necessary, and earnestly pursue the purposes of life, full of faith for the future. Enduring to the end is exceedingly important. Pursuing the opportunities and the duties of every day is exceedingly important, and repenting while there is still time to repent is also exceedingly important." - Richard L. Evans, "Conference Report," October 1950, Afternoon Meeting, p.141

"'My life is my message,' said Mahatma Gandhi. It is so with each of us. The impressions of what we are and do and feel and believe and live and teach are carried over to our children. If we depart from principles, may we reasonably expect our children not to depart?" - Richard L. Evans, Conference Report, April 1969, Afternoon Meeting, p.75

"The seasons, the sunshine, the growing of seeds; heat and cold; the life of a child; the harvest we have—these are not theory, and the same authority that runs the universe on such precision also gave us commandments to keep, commandments that are still in force. And I wouldn't know anywhere to turn for a purposeful way to live life, except the way prescribed by the Administrator of heaven and earth. After all, whose little wisdom would we turn to? He has given us no commandment that is not necessary—and I witness to you that the spiritual and moral laws are as much in force as are the physical laws, and each person is going to be what he lives like." - Richard L. Evans, "Conference Report," October 1970, Afternoon Meeting, p.88

"Now, as to faith: Believe me, you can count on all that God has said. More than a hundred thirty-six years ago, to a young prophet he said simply, '... tobacco is not... good for man...." (D&C 89:8.) It has taken medical science more than a century to prove that the Lord knew what he was talking about. When he tells us something, he expects us to believe it. It doesn't take faith to believe the Word of Wisdom any more. It just takes a little common sense." - Richard L. Evans, "Conference Report," October 1969, Afternoon Meeting, p.67 - 68

"May we never let the things we can't have, or don't have, or shouldn't have, spoil our enjoyment of the things we do have and can have. As we value our happiness let us not forget it, for one of the greatest lessons in life is learning to be happy without the things we cannot or should not have."Richard L. Evans (1906-1971), the writer, producer, and announcer of Music and the Spoken Word for forty-one years

"Of course we know that anyone who opposes a profitable evil or anyone who opposes a popular fallacy is certain to be deliberately misunderstood. Nevertheless every generation and every people have produced those straight-thinking minorities who have seen what they have seen and who have felt an obligation to say what they have said; and any man who sees his own generation headed for a precipice at the bottom of which lie tragedy, destruction, sorrow, and misfortune, cannot honorably remain silent. He has an obligation to speak, even though he be misunderstood, and even though false charges be levied against him. This is true at all places in the world at all times." - Richard L. Evans, "Conference Report," April 1945, Second DayMorning Meeting, p.81

“Have faith. Work, study, prepare. Don't let yourself drift into the kind of company where the counsels are evil, or be misled by influences that would downgrade manners and morals. Live so as to have peace and self-respect. Don't give way to the permissive looseness that leads to the quicksand of life.” - Richard L. Evans, “Conference Report,” April 1968, Afternoon Meeting, p. 87

“An eminent analyst has said: ‘I have learned in forecasting economic futures that what is going to happen is already happening.’ It is so in our lives. It is so everlastingly, and all of us ought to determine our ultimate objectives as early as possible and then faithfully pursue them. Life is not limitless here. Time soon passes. Every man takes himself and what he is with him wherever he goes, and he takes himself also into eternity.” - Richard L. Evans, “Conference Report,” April 1962, Third Day—Morning Meeting, p. 98

"Despite all the uncertainties and difficulties, there is a glorious and worthwhile future for all of these young people of ours, if they will set their sights on some permanent, worth-while goal, look a decade or two ahead, pay the price they have to pay to achieve it, accept the interruptions as they come, and have faith, to work, to prepare, to pray, to keep the commandments of God, to pursue their lives with calm, quiet purpose. If they will do this they will be blessed; they will find great, rich treasures in life, of knowledge, and of other things also, they will surmount all the difficulties and discouragements of the day, and all the interruptions, and all else, if they will continue in faith.

"It is, after all, a wonderful world that our Father has given us, in which everything is possible on the basis of repentance and obedience, and on observance of the principles on which the blessings are predicated." - Richard L. Evans, "Conference Report," April 1952, Afternoon Meeting, p. 68

"The Lord expected much of those six people who officially organized the Church in 1830, and I feel sure he was not disappointed. He expected much of the twenty thousand who made up the population of Nauvoo and vicinity about a hundred years ago, and, while some faltered, their total achievement was glorious. I hesitate to think how much more he expects of us today as we stand at the beginning of the second century in this valley." - Richard L. Evans, "Conference Report," April 1947, Afternoon Meeting, p. 94

"Much of my life is lived among those who are not of my faith, men and women of graciousness and sincerity and goodwill, whom I love and respect, worldwide. I have never been embarrassed by the standards of the Church. But I'm sure we would all lose the respect of many men, indeed of all men, if we were not true to our own faith and convictions. We disappoint our friends when we depart from our own principles." - Richard L. Evans, "Conference Report," October 1966, Second Day-Morning Meeting, p. 57

The Lord expects us to use wisdom and common sense and not quibble about what obviously isn't good for the body or mind or spirit or morals of man. And before doing or partaking of anything, stop and ask honestly, "Does this contribute to health? Does it contribute to happiness? Would this please God? Will this bless and benefit me and others, or does it drag me down? Is it good or isn't it? - Richard L. Evans, "Should the Commandments Be Rewritten?," Ensign (CR), December 1971, p. 57

Perhaps I could begin with an interesting question posed recently and an equally interesting answer. The question was, “Don’t you think the commandments should be rewritten?” The answer was, “No, they should be reread.” - Richard L. Evans, “Should the Commandments Be Rewritten?” Ensign (CR) November 1971

Study, learn. Don't drop out. Seek wholesome knowledge. Develop your talents. Increase in competence. Take counsel. There is safety in counsel. Don't stubbornly and rebelliously decide to go it alone in life. Keep your sense of humor. Keep your standards. Love and respect your parents. Keep close to the Church. Be active in it. Love and serve your country, your community. Love and enjoy life. Choose the right. Keep the heritage you have. Seek the guidance of your Father in prayer. Be happy. Have faith: "For the eternal purposes of the Lord shall roll on, until all his promises shall be fulfilled.” - Richard L. Evans, "Conference Report," October 1969, Afternoon Meeting, p.68

People who speak of their private lives as a thing apart from their professions would well remember this sentence from Stanford University's Dr. David Starr Jordan: "There is no real excellence in all this world," he said, "which can be separated from right living." (The University and the Common Man.) -
Richard L. Evans, "Conference Report," April 1969, Afternoon Meeting, p. 74

The mission, the message of the Church is to all mankind, and will bless and lift the lives of all who will be partakers of it. And we come to you with concern for the temporal and eternal salvation of every soul—to the weary, the wandering, the lost and the lonely, the sick and the sorrowing; those discouraged and despondent, those who have lost loved ones, those looking for something to hold to in life. Oh, it is there. May our Father help you find it. - Richard L. Evans, "Conference Report," April 1970, First Day—Morning Meeting, p. 17

Truth is not always convenient. The commandments of God are not always convenient. They do not bend themselves to our convenience. Truth does not adapt itself to what we wish it were. We had better adapt our lives to what it is. We had better adapt our lives to the commandments of God, whether they are convenient or not. - Richard L. Evans, "Conference Report," October 1956, Third Day-Morning Meeting, p.101

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