Elder Richard J. Maynes encourages students to live a life of service

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BYU Universe
Elder Richard J. Maynes urges students to look for ways to serve their fellow man. (Hannah Gasinski)

Elder Richard J. Maynes of the Presidency of the Seventy encouraged students to remember the school’s slogan, “Enter to learn; go forth to serve” in his BYU devotional address.

The slogan was adapted by former BYU president Ernest L. Wilkinson in 1966, and for over 50 years now, the slogan has greeted students and faculty, parents and visitors, ambassadors and dignitaries from across the globe.

“Not only is this one of the first sights most people see when they arrive on campus, but I think it is also one of the last sights they see, as it has become the backdrop for many a picture as students celebrate their graduation day with loved ones,” said Elder Maynes, referring to the large sign on the west edge of campus.

Elder Maynes urged students to remember that being the best in their professions was not what would make them good people. Rather, it was how they spent their time each day helping others that would truly make them into the kind of person God wanted them to be.

With so many modern day distractions like social media, music and Netflix, it can be easy to lose sight of what truly matters to God, which is doing “the works of righteousness,” Elder Maynes said.

“’What should I major in? Should I go on to graduate school? Where will I work?’ These questions all relate to important aspects of your lives, but they are all secondary to the most important questions that relate to your spiritual lives, such as, ‘Is there someone I can help today?'” said Elder Maynes.

Elder Maynes shared an example of the life of the Savior found in Luke 18:35–43, when Jesus healed a blind man on the way to Jericho. As the party passed by, a blind man asked who it was before him. Those traveling with the Savior told the man it was Jesus of Nazareth. The blind man jumped up and shouted for the Savior to come and heal him, but the followers of Christ “rebuked him, that he should hold his peace.” But Christ understood what was truly important, and despite the extra time it took, he had the man brought near to him, and healed him.

Elder Maynes said we as disciples are often blinded by our day-to-day tasks, but when we take a moment to serve our fellow man, we can truly become more Christlike. To help promote this type of Christlike service, the church has introduced a new initiative called JustServe.

“JustServe is a community service initiative to help Church members follow the Savior’s
admonition to ‘love thy neighbor as thyself’ by providing a platform where
members and missionaries can find. . .opportunities to relieve suffering, care for the poor and needy, and enhance the quality of life in the community,” Elder Maynes said.

The initiative also includes a JustServe app, which Elder Maynes encouraged all BYU students to download. He assured students they won’t be alone in using JustServe.org or the JustServe app, as over 300,000 volunteers have signed up and over 45,000 projects have been posted since its inception in just the US and Canada.

Elder Maynes concluded his talk with his testimony.

“I bear my testimony and my witness of the importance of understanding, internalizing, and living the doctrine of charity in our personal lives. Let us all shape our lives through service to others,” Elder Maynes said.

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