You Can't Explain to the Ocean

Modern Prophets Speak, Volume I, No. 29 , Cook

Excerpt from Elder Quentin L. Cook’s October 2009 General Conference address, Stewardship a Sacred Trust.

quentin l cookAs servants of the Lord Jesus Christ, it is our sacred responsibility to teach His standard of morality, which is the same for all of His children. When our thoughts or our actions are impure, we violate His standard. The Lord has said, “I . . . cannot look upon sin with the least degree of allowance.”8 Some attempt to rationalize away their conduct.

In a poem by John Holmes titled “Talk,” an old, deaf New England shipbuilder teaches a young man about rationalization. In describing one of the lessons he learned, the youth explains, “I wouldn’t have known that however you build it, the ship must sail; you can’t explain to the ocean.”9

It has been suggested that what happens in a certain city stays in a certain city. I like the sign posted in Sevier County, Utah, which states, “What happens in Sevier County . . . you can share with your friends!!!” When we realize that we are accountable to God, we see how foolish rationalizations can be. Those who rationalize remind us of little children who cover their eyes, convinced that if they can’t see us, we can’t see them. I would suggest that if we think about giving an accounting of our actions to the Savior, our rationalizations will be seen in their true light.

Quentin L. Cook is a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Read the full text of his excellent talk here, or listen in here, or view it in windows media player here, in QuickTime here, or in American Sign Language (QuickTime) here.

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