Henry B. Eyring states that he has known a few prophets and acknowledges that they have failures and weaknesses "because they're not perfect."

Henry B. Eyring

Henry B. Eyring, To Draw Closer to God: A Collection of Discourses (Salt Lake City, Deseret Book, 1997), 108–10

Deseret Book
Henry B. Eyring
Reading Public

I've known a few prophets. You'll hear them criticized and attacked, and people will sometimes talk about their failures or their weaknesses, because they're not perfect. But I'll tell you this: Each time I'm with any of those whom you sustain as prophets, seers, and revelators, I'm struck with how the atonement of Jesus Christ has worked in their lives. There is a kindness, a desire to give their all and to do what the Lord would want, to bless and help and care about people that is beyond what they could have done by just wanting to change or resolving to change. The Atonement is real, it works in people's lives, and you don't have to be an Apostle or a prophet to have it work. If you will begin to do the things he would have you do, you really will find that your desire to do evil will decrease. I testify that you don't need to be afraid or discouraged. The Atonement is real. As you steadily do the things the Lord would have you do, a change will occur in you, and Satan's ability to lead you into the things that will destroy you and bring misery to you will become lessened.

Now, the key in all of this is to have a soft heart. A soft heart has nothing to do with being a coward. In fact, the bravest people I've ever known have had the softest hearts. I've known of situations in which the Lord's servants have put their lives in jeopardy because of their love for God and his children. When people love enough, and their hearts are softened enough, there's nothing they wouldn't do in the service of the Lord Jesus Christ. A Latter-day Saint with a soft heart is courageous, strong, and able to do far more than those who think of themselves as tough. This is what the Savior said about a soft heart: "And ye shall offer for a sacrifice unto me a broken heart and a contrite spirit. And whoso cometh unto me with a broken heart and a contrite spirit, him will I baptize with fire and with the Holy Ghost. . . . Behold, I have come unto the world to bring redemption unto the world, to save the world from sin. Therefore, whoso repenteth and cometh unto me as a little child, him will I receive, for of such is the kingdom of God. Behold, for such I have laid down my life, and have taken it up again; therefore repent, and come unto me ye ends of the earth, and be saved." (3 Nephi 9:20-22.)

What are some things you could do to have a soft heart? First of all, don't think of repentance as something you do after you've made a very serious mistake. Think of repentance as what you do every day. Find a moment each day to review in your mind those things that might have disappointed your Heavenly Father and your Savior, and then go and humbly plead for forgiveness. I would suggest that you do that especially on Sundays when you take the sacrament. Submit yourself to the sacramental ordinance. Don't simply be there, but say to yourself, "I really want to renew my covenants, and I need to have the Lord's forgiveness." Plead with him for his forgiveness. If you'll do that, you'll find that sacrament meetings will take on a greater meaning to you than you've known in the past. You'll come away refreshed and strengthened.

Another way to obtain a soft heart is to make sure you don't focus too much on yourself or your personal problems and struggles. Instead of thinking of yourself primarily as someone who is seeking purification, think of yourself as someone who is trying to find out who around you needs your help. Pray that way and then reach out. When you act under such inspiration, it will have a sanctifying effect on you.

BHR Staff Commentary

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