1. Understanding Responsibility
· Synonyms: __________________, __________________, __________________.
· What article of faith talks about responsibility for our own actions?
· What %?
· Surveys show that most people take credit for success for themselves, but blame failures on external forces.
i. Why do people want choice but avoid responsibility? __________________.
· What are some of the things people say or do to try to avoid responsibility?
· Famous excuses:
i. 1 Samuel 15:13-15,20-22,24: (Who did he blame?) __________________.
ii. Other excuses: __________________, __________________.
· Excuses do not correct mistakes. They do not = __________________.
· What is the difference between an excuse and a reason? __________________
i. 1 Nephi 19:6 (Nephi)
ii. Moses 4: 17-20 (Adam & Eve)
2. The power of Responsibility
· Responsibility is a willingness to confront fears, guilt and embarrassment
i. It is a willingness to see and accept yourself as the one in control of your life, then to seize control of the conditions that produce your success and happiness and allow dreams (faith & hope) to be realized.
ii. Three traits necessary for high effectiveness:
1. Confidence: Hebrews 10: 35-39, D&C 121: 45, 1 John 3: 18-22 (Cognitive Dissonance). Segue—Faith and Humility— Helaman 3: 35
2. Humility: 2 Nephi 9: 42, Ether 12: 39 (Humility of Christ), Culture—People of Limhi (Mosiah 21) vs. People of Alma (Mosiah 24), Proverbs 18: 12
3. Impulse Control: Mosiah 3:19 (Natural Man); Ether 12: 27, Jacob 4: 7, Stanford and Rochester Marshmallow Tests
iii. Power to turn the other cheek & Forgive
iv. Power to seek guidance
v. Power to confess and repent
3. Being Responsible / Taking control “If it is to be, It’s up to me.”
· Assuming responsibility increases our __________________ & __________________, while blaming, making excuses, self-justifying, and self-pity limit our options and control. If others are at fault and have to change before further progress is made then others are in __________________ of the outcome or desired results.
· Agency and responsibility are inseparable and interdependent principles—you cannot avoid one without also __________________ the other.
· “The Courageous man finds a way, the other man finds an excuse.” Elder David B. Haight. (1 Nephi 3: 13-15 — Nephi vs. Laman & Lemuel).
· “Acknowledging that you are responsible for messing up your own life gives you the power to change things.” (How Could You Do That: The Abdication of Character, Courage, and Conscience, Dr. Laura Schlessinger)
4. Responsibility and repentance—primary gifts & keys
· Primary Gifts of the Gospel—Agency & Responsibility
· Primary Keys of the Gospel—Remember (Faith) & Repent
i. Keys unlock the power of the Gospel and open opportunities for growth.
“Next to the bestowal of life itself, the right to direct that life is God’s greatest gift to man. … Freedom of choice is more to be treasured than any possession earth can give” (David O. McKay; in Conference Report, Apr. 1950, p. 32).
· Can the lord look upon sin with any degree of allowance? (Alma 45: 16)
· Which of God’s Laws demands 100% responsibility for sin? (Alma 42: 25)
i. Justice requires that we take 100% responsibility.
1. Does the atonement absolve us of responsibility for our sins? __________________.
2. Is this absolution free/unconditional/automatic? __________________.
3. What is our responsibility? __________________.
ii. Mercy allows us the opportunity to progress by providing us a mechanism to correct mistakes and address weaknesses.
iii. Faith is the dynamic driving force of recognition, correction, and progression. Avoid obvious, large sins through obedience and correct small sins/transgressions through repentance.
“In order to have success, you must increase your failure rate.” – Thomas Watson, Founder of IBM
· Faith requires that our desire for success is greater than our fear of failure—never let fear dominate our decisions or actions. (Life Choices—Anxiety and confidence).
· What is the first step in the repentance process? __________________
· What does responsibility have to do with this first step? __________________
· Is spiritual growth possible without recognizing sin in our life? __________________
“The greatest of all faults is to be conscious of none. – Thomas Carlyle, quoted in The Miracle of Forgiveness Ch. 3
· What does the Gift of Confession have to do with 100% responsibility? __________________
The Anti-Christ Doctrine: men are not responsible for their own actions.
Alma 1: 4 Nehor – Save by grace alone, not responsible for our desires/actions.
Alma 18: 5 Lamoni – Tradition/nurture, they could do no wrong
2 Nephi 28: 8-9– “justify us in committing a little sin; yea, lie a little…”
D&C 93: 39 – 2 ways of the adversary: 1) Disobedience, 2) Cultural Tradition
· Self – Justification
Trying to pay the law of Justice with an excuse (rationalization)
Trying to become our own savior with an excuse
“The Enemy of Repentance is self-justification” Spencer W. Kimball
What is the consequence of Self-justification? (D&C 121: 37) __________________
Justification: to receive a remission of sins and be declared free of the responsibility of sin.
Man becomes justified through the grace of the Savior as a result of faith exercised in Him. That faith is demonstrated through repentance and obedience to the commandments and ordinances of the gospel. The atonement of Jesus Christ makes repentance and justification possible for all mankind. Thus justified, he is forgiven the consequences that he would otherwise receive.
If we take 100% responsibility, the Savior with pay for our sins.
· When we excuse, procrastinate, hide, or blame our sins on outside forces, what are we denying? (Alma 42: 30). __________________
Why does the Lord Chasten us? (D&C 95: 1) __________________
When we aren’t responsible to God, we lose control to Satan
6. How does our father in heaven feel about personal responsibilty?
· What about those who are lukewarm? __________________
· What about those who are not lazy and say they have a willing heart, but are too busy, or they don’t have the time? Where are they in the spectrum? __________________
7. Responsibility for / to others (Am I my brother’s keeper?)
Love our Spouse and Family:
· It is a commandment: “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself,” [Matt. 22:37, 39]. This is a command that requires a decision.
· “Ye will teach them [your children] to love one another, and to serve one another” (Mosiah 4:15). How can something be taught that cannot be learned? __________________
· Command to love our spouse: “Thou shalt love thy wife with all thy heart, and shalt cleave unto her and none else” (D&C 42:22).
· “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another” (John 13:34; emphasis added). Loving as He loved is a higher form of love than loving “as thyself.” It is a pure love that puts another higher than self.
· This pure love is the same love that should exist between husbands and wives. In Ephesians. 5:25, the Apostle Paul exhorts, “Husbands, love your wives, [How?] even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it.” How, then, did Christ love the Church? __________________
Acknowledgement: Parts of this lesson owe much of their material that was derived from articles, and talks given by Stephen Covey and Elder Lynn G. Robbins.