Saturday, March 23, 2013


...priestcrafts are that men preach and set themselves up for a light unto the world, that they may get gain and praise of the world; (2 Nephi 26:29 in the Book of Mormon)
At work, I spend time reading about new developments in technology (especially in security and web-related things).  As with anything, people have differing opinions.  And there are several people with a lot of clout, whose opinions are widely accepted and defended by others just because of who they are.  Those with clout also tend to receive more coverage (their stuff is shared more).  As a result, they have the ability to shape public opinion to some degree.

This week, after reading an article written by one of these influentials about the novel idea of taking a break from work (I think it is referred to as vacation in some circles), and after reading the comments in support of this breakthrough, I realized something:

Priestcraft doesn't usually start because someone promotes themselves as a light.  Priestcraft grows from others promoting someone as a light.

Its beginnings are benign: a sincere compliment; a "you should see the great thing they did" to a friend; sharing and praise.  And it is then that the person being lifted up makes the choice to remain humble or become self-serving.

From this, I learn two things:

1. As an other I need to be careful how, who and what I praise.

2. As the lifted I need to choose to be humble despite praise.


Heidi said...

Nice post, Matt. I was reading a conference talk on this topic last week from Pres. Uchtdorf, Oct 2010. Here is my favorite part:

When I was called as a General Authority, I was blessed to be tutored by many of the senior Brethren in the Church. One day I had the opportunity to drive President James E. Faust to a stake conference. During the hours we spent in the car, President Faust took the time to teach me some important principles about my assignment. He explained also how gracious the members of the Church are, especially to General Authorities. He said, “They will treat you very kindly. They will say nice things about you.” He laughed a little and then said, “Dieter, be thankful for this. But don’t you ever inhale it.”

Heidi said...

Oh and I think you're a great person and nephew. You have many, many talents and are thoughtful and observant of lots of people. I feel comfortable sharing that praise with you. :)