President Clark G. Gilbert began planning his devotional address months ago.
“I’m really excited for this devotional because I wrote it as if I was talking to some of our own children — as if this was advice I would give to my son or my daughter or someone who was very, very close to me, as a personal family friend, almost like a child,” President Gilbert said. “This is the counsel I would give them, and that’s what I’m going to try to share with all of the students.”
President Gilbert said his wife, Sister Christine Gilbert, will speak about the value of understanding oneself and how that knowledge changes one’s experience at BYU-Idaho. President Gilbert said he will connect his talk to Sister Gilbert’s as he talks about the remarkable place that BYU-I is.
President Gilbert said that after he expounds on the investment put into the students from the church, the university and the faculty, he will ask the students, “What then is your responsibility? What is your responsibility as a student at this institution to make your time here matter?”
He said he will discuss three principles he feels will help students be effective as students and take personal responsibility for their experience at BYU-I.
“The first one is to be self-reliant,” he said. “Even as you get financial aid, or even as you get help from the tutoring center or even as you get help from the counseling center, there are ways you can do that that make you more self-reliant and take greater personal responsibility.”
President Gilbert said his second point relates to the personal stewardships students have while at BYU-I. He said he will connect this principle with the parable of the talents.
He said his third point is based on helping students find ways to give back for all they have been given.
President Gilbert said if he has any concerns for the students, it would be their failure to recognize the opportunity to become the people the Lord wants them to be.
President Gilbert said his biggest hope for students is, in harmony with the mission of the university, to become disciples of Jesus Christ who are leaders in their families and in the church.
“The mission of the university is what we want for all of our students — to become disciples of Jesus Christ who are leaders in their homes, in the church and their families,” he said. “For that to happen, something has to happen spiritually while they’re here. We hope, Sister Gilbert and I hope, that students will let the university change who they are and become who the Lord wants them to become.”
Students can prepare for devotional by studying Doctrine & Covenants 58:27-28 and Matthew 5:14-15, 19-21 and by watching “Fulfilling the Mission” prior to attending Devotional Tuesday at 2 p.m. in the I-Center.