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Always Look Up, Brother Beau McCraney, November 20th, 2022

Last Wednesday (my birthday), I decided to be a good boy and go to the

temple. I didn’t make reservations, because I was instructed by my

Elders Quorum President that I didn’t need to make reservations, “Just

show up.” So this is all your fault President Barlow! As I drove to the

temple, I was feeling quite good about myself—being all righteous and

stuff. I arrived early hoping that they would fit me into any type of

temple service. As I walked to the entrance I noticed a friend—

Brother Clark (former member of our ward) dressed in all white. The

sun was shining brightly, and he was literally glowing! I saw other

temple workers/angels dressed in white exiting the temple as it was the

end of their shift. I anticipated that the rest of the temple experience

would be just as uplifting! I opened the doors and noticed two temple

workers at the front desk clothed in white taking recommends from a

couple that was ahead of me. Suddenly, one of the workers looked up

and past the couple he was helping and directly at me and declared,

“Hello Sinner!” I was completely taken aback! I didn’t know this man! I

had never seen him before in my life! I thought, “Should I be offended

by this?” “Should I call him out?” “Is it okay to fight in the temple?” “He

must know something about me that I don’t know about myself,” “Do I

need to confess something to the Bishop?” “Perhaps he was inspired to

shame and embarrass me.” “Maybe he thought he knew me and was

making a joke!” I finally concluded that maybe he didn’t say what I

thought he said. He took my recommend and I entered past the front

desk and deeper into the temple. The first thing I noticed was a picture

to the left of me of the Savior holding a little lamb which appeared to

have been lost but was found by the Savior. I thought, “That lamb

could be me.” I looked to the right, and saw the baptismal font and

thought, “That is where sinners go to be washed clean through the

Atonement of Jesus Christ.” I then concluded, “Who am I to expect to

be called anything other than a sinner?” This is my relationship with

the Savior. I am a sinner. This is why I am here! And He is my Savior,

and he is mighty to save me!

In the October 2011 General Conference, Elder Carl B. Cook spoke

about a life changing event that took place in his life stating,

“At the end of a particularly tiring day toward the end of my first

week as a General Authority, my briefcase was overloaded and my

mind was preoccupied with the question “How can I possibly do this?”

I left the office of the Seventy and entered the elevator of the Church

Administration Building. As the elevator descended, my head was

down and I stared blankly at the floor.

The door opened and someone entered, but I didn’t look up. As the

door closed, I heard someone ask, “What are you looking at down

there?” I recognized that voice—it was President Thomas S. Monson.

I quickly looked up and responded, “Oh, nothing.”

But he had seen my subdued countenance and my heavy briefcase.

He smiled and lovingly suggested, while pointing heavenward, “It is

better to look up!” As we traveled down one more level, he

cheerfully explained that he was on his way to the temple. When he

bid me farewell, his parting glance spoke again to my heart, “Now,

remember, it is better to look up.”

Two suggestions from a Prophet of God

1) “Look up!” and

2) “Get to

the temple!”

In the April 2017 General Conference, Elder Yoon Hwan Choi of the

Seventy stated, One day, a few months after my baptism, I heard some members

criticizing each other in church. I was very disappointed. I went home

and told my father that maybe I should not go to church anymore. It

was difficult to see members criticize others like that. After listening,

my father taught me that the gospel had been restored and it is

perfect but members are not yet, neither himself nor me. He firmly

said, “Do not lose your faith because of the people around you, but

build a strong relationship with Jesus Christ. Don’t look around, look


Look up to Jesus Christ—the wise advice of my father—strengthens

my faith whenever I face challenges in life. He taught me how to apply

the teachings of Christ, as in these words: “Look unto me in every

thought; doubt not, fear not.” 4

Don’t look around, look up!

In the October 2020 General Conference, Our Current Prophet Russel

M. Nelson spoke about his granddaughter-in-law stating,

“Not long ago, the wife of one of our grandsons was struggling

spiritually. I will call her “Jill.” Despite fasting, prayer, and priesthood

blessings, Jill’s father was dying. She was gripped with fear that she

would lose both her dad and her testimony.

Late one evening, my wife, Sister Wendy Nelson, told me of Jill’s

situation. The next morning Wendy felt impressed to share with Jill

that my response to her spiritual wrestle was one word! The word

was myopic.

Jill later admitted to Wendy that initially she was devastated by my

response. She said, “I was hoping for Grandfather to promise me a

miracle for my dad. I kept wondering why the word myopic was the

one he felt compelled to say.”