When we talk about the Second Coming and The Last Days and The Hastening and The Dispensation of the Fulness of Times it can be very exciting. And perhaps we anxiously await changes, announcements, and excitement to be poured out over the pulpit during general church meetings. The announcements to the people do come from time to time, but I have come to realize that the Lord, through His Spirit, is preparing people long before He can prepare THE people. In other words, General Conference can become a confirmation of things that we are already doing instead of a revelation of things that we should be doing. In the haunting tale of the Ten Virgins, we find a concealed truth about our fellow saints-half of us will be prepared for the exciting events of the Last Days and half of us will not. Neal A. Maxwell brought it to us this way: those who are living in Zion but keeping a summer cottage in Babylon might be caught in their cottage when it all comes down. We cannot risk not being prepared…or not being home in Zion. The Spirit is trying to prepare us well beforehand so that we are not caught at the last minute trying to find our testimony.
I was talking to one of my sons this morning about this very thing and the Spirit reminded me of the Nephites at the time of His First Coming. (3 Nephi) After all of the upheaval, darkness, death, and fear a bright morning dawned. Those who were in tune with the Spirit, who moved upon personal revelation, who were prepared to receive the message, went to the temple that morning. And there they received the most intense, powerful, joyful moment of their lives as the Savior descended among them and they met him face to face. These are the ones who came forth one by one to feel the Savior’s wounds. These are the ones that had the privilege of going and inviting others to come and meet Him. So, there were others. Others who were good. Others who survived. Others who knew God. They were allowed to come and meet the Savior too. He healed them. He loved them. He taught them. But, they did miss out on that first day, that first moment, that first appearance. A privilege lost because they were not quite prepared…or they weren’t listening.
I bear a strong personal witness that the Lord is trying to prepare us as individuals right now, today, so that we can live up to our privileges of being with Him when the time comes. Listen to the Spirit, strengthen your borders, clean the inner vessel, turn your back on Babylon. I look around me and I can see how the Lord is moving in the lives of so, so many of my friends and family. This is really happening. Individuals truly are being prepared. This undeniable work of the Spirit is preparing people. And they will constitute THE PEOPLE who will greet our Savior at his Second Coming. I bear this witness in the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ.