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CES Commissioner Address

This is a special day for each you. We celebrate your accomplishments and thank those who helped you achieve what you are achieving today. We know something of the sacrifice of your families and of the dedication of individuals here at the university that have personally helped you come to this point in your life. We know this day represents thousands of days of study and work on your part to make it possible for you to be seated here today clad in your caps and gowns.

On this wonderful day when you receive your diplomas you will also be given something extremely important, if you choose to accept it. And I know you will. You will be given a message from President Henry B. Eyring. As you know, in General Conference we sustain the counselors in the First Presidency as prophets, seers, and revelators. The things President Eyring will say, if followed, will help set the course for your life. ln all the excitement, joy and celebration of this day, please hold tight to both the words of President Eyring and to the promptings of the Holy Ghost that will accompany his remarks today.

One of the reasons I feel so strongly about this goes back to a time when I was about your age and came to hear the prophet speak. My wife and I had been married for just a few weeks when President Spencer W. Kimball spoke at a devotional I attended at BYU. The title of his speech was "Marriage and Divorce." We were at a most important juncture in our lives, having just been married. The prophet's words helped us set some patterns in our marriage that have brought us abundant joy, and I have been grateful through the years to receive that counsel at that particular time in our lives.

Now you sit at the feet of a prophet, seer, and revelator at an important juncture in your life. Think of the uniqueness of this commencement. There is a member of the First Presidency here today. President Eyring has all the qualities the world would look for in a commencement speaker. He is very accomplished in education, has been successful in business, is highly respected, is brilliant and is a very engaging speaker. But there are other things about President Eyring that mean something to you that might be overlooked by others in the world. He has a great family. He loves the Lord. He loves people He is sensitive to and follows the Spirit. He submits his will to the will of God. This second set of attributes has more value to us than those things that would be noticed by the world.

One of the reasons President Eyring is such a powerful servant is his willingness to be submissive to the will of God. One example happened earlier in his life. He was a tenured professor at Stanford, a very prestigious position in the world of academia. Based on some spiritual promptings to his wife and himself he was willing to walk away from his position to follow the path the Lord had in mind for him. His willingness to follow that path at each fork in the road has made him the kind of servant he is.

Our paths are not the same as President Eyring's, but the Lord will help us along our own individual paths if we are also submissive to the His will and sensitive to the His direction. We can also become powerful servants. We will not be members of the First Presidency, but we can be powerful servants in our wards, our communities and, most importantly, in our families.

Now as you face the future — a future that is bright — l pray that you will listen closely to the words of a prophet, seer, and revelator, and determine to learn from them and to follow them. That will bring you more joy than you can now envision.

I testify that God lives and loves us. His son, Jesus Christ, atoned for us and that atonement is very real. I know that we are led by living prophets today.