Sister Bonnie H. Cordon speaking at all employee meeting

BYU-Idaho employees have been challenged to approach their work with a “beginner’s heart” by Sister Bonnie H. Cordon, Young Women General President and member of the Church Board of Education and Board of Trustees. She issued the challenge at this fall’s all-employee meeting, held on September 11, 2018.

To begin her remarks, Sister Cordon recalled a story when she and her husband were serving over the Brazil Curitiba Mission. They would ask each departing missionary to write two miracles they saw during their mission.

“I noticed a consistent theme as I would read their letters. Of all the miracles that they saw, the two they wanted to share had something to do with the beginning…. I believe wholeheartedly that the Lord loves beginners,” Cordon said.

Her definition of a beginner describes being someone “who relies on the Lord, who trusts in the Lord, who counsels with our Savior, and who allows the Spirit to guide…. Beginners are prepared, have great faith, are teachable, and are humble.”

Cordon taught that preparation is key to receiving additional help from the Lord—not personal preparation alone, but also acknowledging how the Lord’s hand is in that preparation.

“The more we are prepared,” Cordon said, “the more the Lord can use us. He will widen our influence the more we are prepared.”

Cordon asked employees to take seriously, the small tasks they are asked to do, and reminded them that even small, mundane things have a purpose.

“We never know what we are being prepared to do,” Cordon said.

Cordon recalled a story of struggling Saints heading from New York to Kirtland, and how Lucy Mac Smith (who was serving as the company captain) exemplified great faith while in tribulation. She too was a beginner, but became the faithful vessel through which the Lord could provide a great miracle for the Saints. 

She then taught that when beginners are teachable and willing to allow the Spirit to give instruction on how to change, they will experience the life the Lord intended them to live.

“If we will see with ‘beginner eyes,’ the Spirit will whisper in a quiet moment what needs to be tweaked so that we can have success,” Cordon said.

Lastly, Sister Cordon taught, “A new beginning is always associated with change, and at the root of change is humility. Real humility is the driving catalyst for change.”

She closed by reminding employees of two questions posed by President Kim B. Clark: “What am I doing that I should stop doing?” and “What am I not doing, that I should start doing?” It is her wish that the prayerful answers to these questions will bring the Lord’s specific guidance, if viewed with “beginner’s eyes.”