Your Fringe Benefits by LeGrand Richards

Your first priority at BYU is education. However, there are some fringe benefits you should take advantage of, including who you choose to associate with as well as your study of the gospel.

"I imagine that when your parents helped you decide to come here they were not only interested in your academic achievements and accomplishments (although President Oaks has pointed out that your first responsibility is to get an education). But your parents wanted you to associate with other young men and women of your own standards, your own faith. This group here today represents some of the choice young people of the Church from all over the entire world.

Then there are other fringe benefits you get by attending here that will help to change your life. One of them, of course, is that many of you will find your mates here at this school. That isn’t what you came for, of course, but that will be one of the natural fringe benefits. [...]

We can do a lot if we will just make sure that we build upon the right kind of foundation, lay the right kind of foundation to build our lives on. I’ve always liked the little story about when they built that Salt Lake Temple up there. We’re told that the foundations are sixteen feet wide, and one day President Brigham Young came and saw the workman throwing in chipped granite. He made them take it out and put in those great granite blocks with this explanation: “We’re building this temple to stand through the Millennium.” Now you young people are going to build your homes to stand through the Millennium. That’s a long, long time. [...]

Another benefit of BYU is that it will help you to understand the gospel: why you’re here, where you came from, and where you’re going. As Jesus said, “For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” (Mark 8:36). The whole world is a lot, isn’t it? But the soul is what lives on for these thirty-five million years, and so blessings that will give us a preferred place through that long period are the most important things in our lives. [...]

Now, God bless you and keep you young people within the hollow of his hands from all the wickedness of the world and the false philosophies of men. I pray that you may learn what life really is for and that you’ll be mighty instruments in his hands in helping to establish his kingdom." - Elder LeGrand Richards

LeGrand Richards was a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints when this devotional address was given at Brigham Young University on 16 September 1975.

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