What does it mean to live?
In biology, life is “the condition that distinguishes animals and plants from inorganic matter,” according to the Oxford Dictionary.
Living things have the capacity for growth, change, and can act upon their environment.
To live is more than mere biology, though. Shakespeare reflected on the profound in Hamlet, with the famous soliloquy:
To be, or not to be: that is the question:
Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep;
The question considers whether the unknown of death is preferable to a life of sorrow and frustration.
The gospel of Jesus Christ holds the answer. Ultimately, through the Atonement, all men will find peace in the next life. Yet, living the gospel promises much more, even though this life will always send us slings and arrows.
As Elder Holland taught in this most recent general conference,
Faith means trusting God in good times and bad. Even if that includes some suffering until we see his arm revealed in our behalf. That can be difficult in our modern world when many have come to believe that the highest good in life is to avoid all suffering. That no one should ever anguish over anything. But that belief will never lead us to the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.
Living the gospel of Jesus Christ, this month’s theme and a pillar of the Work of Salvation and Exaltation, means that we are active. That we show a capacity for growth and change. And that we consider, deeply, all the complications and contradictions of our existence.
During difficult times, to live, in the fullest sense of the word, is the antidote. The Apostle Paul reminds us that “in Christ shall all be made alive” (1 Corinthians 15:22).
Armed with the blessings of the gospel, as you live it you will grow. You will be strengthened.
And you will be happy.
May you all live powerfully and nobly.