Our Life’s Mission
What is your mission? Why are you on the earth? Does your life count? My mom sent me this quote the other day by George Q. Cannon about our life’s mission. Each of us has something that we were sent here to do, all of us have a purpose. It is our privilege, right and duty to receive personal revelation for direction regarding mission.
“I feel to speak these words of encouragement to my brethren and sisters, many of whom feel probably that their obscure lives and struggles, their contest with poverty, their humble and eventful histories are sometimes of so little value that they are comparatively worthless in the earth. I say to the humble struggler, to the man or woman who may be content with poverty, whose life may be uneventful in his own estimation, who may be hidden from the popular sight and may not figure on the world’s stage, I say to every such person, as a Latter-day Saint, You have a great and important mission to perform, and if you perform the duties devolving upon you properly, your influence will be felt; and in the days to come, in that great day of God Almighty, your worth will be fully recognized, and you will shine as a jewel in the kingdom of our Redeemer.
There is one thing that every parent can do. He can endeavor to make his sons and daughters better qualified, better equipped for the great struggle of life and better able to perform their part in this glorious work that God has established, than himself; that is one thing the parents of the rising generation of these mountains can do. I have never felt as I do to-day, and as I have recently, of the great importance of our training and educating our children to the greatest and best advantage, that nothing shall be left undone on our part to prepare them for the great work which they have to perform. This is a labor that we can accomplish.
It does not depend so much upon the knowledge of books; a great many people imagine that only books are necessary for education; but the man is best educated, in my opinion, who has thought the most, and that correctly. So far as theology is concerned, we have been able, by the blessing of God, the light of the Holy Ghost, and the power of truth, to go forth unlearned, illiterate, and unprepared, so far as worldly education is concerned, and by virtue of the knowledge that comes down from above, the elders of this Church have gone forth and met the world of Christendom. I do not speak in vanity, nor in the spirit of boasting when I say they have never been vanquished. The learned, the educated, the professed theologians when they have met the elders of this Church with the Bible in their hands, have been compelled to retreat before the power of truth proclaimed by uneducated but inspired men. Is our mission accomplished by having done this?
I feel that we as a people are only on the threshold of the great work that lies before us. We have an immense field of labor stretched out before us. When you look ahead and try to see its limits, the field of usefulness, which stretches out before this people called Latter-day Saints, is beyond the reach of human vision; it is illimitable, stretching out in the far distant future. Is there a wrong upon the earth to be righted? If so, it is our bounden duty to attempt its correction. Is there a false principle extant? It is our bounden duty to seek its eradication. Is there tyranny in the world, tyranny of the body, tyranny of the mind, physical or mental tyranny? It devolves upon us as Latter-day Saints to overthrow it. Are there social problems to be solved? Who shall solve them? Who can do so? Remove the Latter-day Saints from the field, and who can solve these problems which are pressing themselves upon the attention of all thinking people?
The whole earth is full of violence, wrong, oppression, misgovernment, and a thousand other evils which I cannot now enumerate. It devolves upon us, as fast as we can reach these things, to correct them, to remove them. In the first place we have got to correct and remove them from our own midst. . . . the great labor that devolves upon us is to educate ourselves, and then we can soon educate the rest of mankind, for as I have said, our example is felt; the influence of it goes forth and bears its fruit among other people. (George Q. Cannon, Journal of Discourses 20:197-199)