Orson Scott Card’s Short Story on the Law of Consecration
I don’t know how I missed this until now. Orson Scott Card published a fantastic short story/essay on the law of consecration back in 1993 entitled “Consecration: A Law We Can Live With.” In it he eloquently writes a parable of a man who envisions some scriptures as a Book of Mormon figure might have written them if they had lived in our day, together with the man’s own life experiences in consecrating. It is a well written, unique and profound piece, one that gets to the heart of what consecration should mean to us today.
Too often I perceive we think that once our 10% of tithing is paid, and perhaps some token offerings, the rest is ours to keep. We’ve done our duty. Indeed, we can personally take in our millions, as long as 10% is skimmed off the top like cream off milk. What’s left, however, is a fat-free diet of the gospel of Jesus Christ, which doesn’t nourish the soul, nor feed the spirit. Ten percent is a far cry from consecration, of any amount. As Elder Neal A. Maxwell taught:
God seeks to have us become more consecrated by giving everything. Then, when we come home to Him, He will generously give us ‘all that [He] hath’ (D&C 84:38). (“Swallowed Up in the Will of the Father,” emphasis added.)
Of course we can, and should, consecrate much more than our monetary means. Elder Jeffrey R. Holland echoed Elder Maxwell’s thoughts:
We must be willing to place all that we have—not just our possessions (they may be the easiest things of all to give up), but also our ambition and pride and stubbornness and vanity—we must place it all on the altar of God, kneel there in silent submission, and willingly walk away. (“The Will of the Father in All Things,” emphasis added.)
And Hugh Nibley was never at a loss of words on this topic:
There is quite a difference between consecrating 10 percent of your net gain to the building up of the kingdom and consecrating your time, talents, and everything you have been blessed with up to this time to the building up of the kingdom of God. (“Law of Consecration,” emphasis added.)