For the Welfare of Thy Soul – 2 Nephi 32:9

9 But behold, I say unto you that ye must pray always, and not faint; that ye must not perform any thing unto the Lord save in the first place ye shall pray unto the Father in the name of Christ, that he will consecrate thy performance unto thee, that thy performance may be for the welfare of thy soul.

With the beginning of a new school year, I’m studying about goal setting this week.
In the passage above, Nephi teaches us an important principle: before pursuing a goal, we need to pray. We shouldn’t just pray that we will accomplish the goal, but that our efforts will be beneficial to us. I can think of several reasons why that distinction might be important:

  1. It is possible to accomplish the wrong goals. By praying for our welfare, we invite Heavenly Father to refine or redirect our objectives.
  2. We may accomplish a righteous goal in an inappropriate way. Most often, this happens because we are doing the right things for the wrong reasons. If we ask for help, Heavenly Father can help us clarify and purify our motives.
  3. We can be so focused on our goals that we miss important unplanned contributions we can make along the way. Heavenly Father can help us recognize these opportunities as they come along and help us recognize when our priorities need to adjust to take advantage of new circumstances.
Today, I will begin my goal setting process by asking the Lord for guidance. I will pray not only that I will accomplish my goals, but that the Lord will consecrate my performance, so that it will be for the welfare of my soul.

2 thoughts on “For the Welfare of Thy Soul – 2 Nephi 32:9

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  1. This verse makes me think of Mosiah 18:12-13. Before Alma baptized Helam, he prays that the Spirit would be with him and that he could do the work (of baptism) with holiness of heart. The way Nephi phrases his words makes me think there are so many things we can that the Lord will consecrate. It seems like it’s up to us whether or not we will let _____ activity be unto the Lord.

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    1. Thank you for making that connection! Your example reminds me of the words of the Savior to his disciples after he gave them power to give the gift of the Holy Ghost. He instructed them to pray first, and then they would have power. Thank you for the reminder that any of our activities can be consecrated for the welfare of our souls.

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