Sister Lisa L. Harkness: ‘Honoring His Name’

First counselor in the Primary general presidency

Notable quotes:

"Our covenant remembering quiets worldly worries, turns self-doubt into courage, and gives hope in times of trial."

"Our willingness to take upon us the name of Christ is more than a formal exchange of words. It is not a rite of passage or a name tag that we wear. It is not a saying that we simply place on a shelf or hang on a wall. His is a name that is ‘put on,’ written in our hearts, and ‘engraven upon (our) countenances."

"Like the carefully chosen names of Nephi and Lehi, can it be said and written of us that we are true disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ? Do we honor the name of Jesus Christ that we have willingly taken upon ourselves? Are we both ‘a minister and a witness’ (Acts 26:16) of His loving kindness and His redeeming power?"

Summary points:

  •  At baptism, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints pledge to taken upon themselves the name of Christ.
  •  The promise to always remember the Savior gives individuals the strength to stand for truth and righteousness. “With our eyes on the Savior, we see ourselves for who we really are — a cherished child of God.”
  • The Savior’s atoning sacrifice should be remembered through thoughts, actions and interactions with others. “Not only does He remember our names, but He remembers us always.”

Talk summary:

The prophet Helaman gave his sons — Nephi and Lehi — names that would help them remember their ancestors’ good works and encourage them to do good as well. “Sisters, no matter where we live, what language we speak, or whether we are 8 years old or 108, we all share a special name that has these same purposes.”

Those who have been baptized “have put on Christ … For [we] are all one in Christ Jesus” (Galatians 3:27-28). Through the covenant of baptism, “we promised to always remember Him, keep His commandments, and serve others. Our willingness to keep this covenant is renewed each Sabbath day when we partake of the sacrament and rejoice once again in the blessing of ‘walking in newness of life’” (Romans 6:4).

The promise to remember the Savior “gives us strength to stand for truth and righteousness — whether we are in a large crowd or in our solitary places, where no one knows our actions except for God. When we remember Him and His name we bear, we have no place for self-degrading comparisons or overbearing judgments. With our eyes on the Savior, we see ourselves for who we really are — a cherished child of God.”

Those who stumble in their progression on the covenant path have only to remember His name and loving kindness. “Surely, there is no sweeter sound than the name of Jesus to all those, who, with a broken heart and contrite spirit, seek ‘to do better and be better.’”

The Savior’s atoning sacrifice should always be remembered. “Not only does He remember our names, but He remembers us always.”

In the news:

  • Almost a year after President Russell M. Nelson addressed members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from Safeco Field in Seattle, Washington, Sister Harkness joined with Sister Sharon Eubank of the Relief Society general presidency and Sister Bonnie H. Cordon, Young Women general president, in a weekend visit to minister to Latter-day Saints in the Pacific Northwest.
  • Returning from a 12-day trip to the Africa Southeast Area, Sister Cordon and Sister Harkness shared details of their trip and why they think women are a powerful force for change in their communities.
  • The Primary general presidency taught that the legacy of history-making women in the Church continues even to this day at BYU Women's Conference in May 2019.

About the speaker:

  • Sister Lisa L. Harkness was called to serve as the first counselor in the Primary general presidency on March 31, 2018.
  • She has also served as a Primary general board member, stake Young Women president, ward Relief Society president, counselor in a ward Young Women presidency, Mia Maid advisor, Young Women camp director, stake family history director, ward family history consultant and gospel doctrine teacher.
  • She married David S. Harkness on April 22, 1988, in the Salt Lake Temple, and they have five children and two grandchildren.

Recently on Social:

  • In an August 18 Facebook post, Sister Harkness shared her love for the Saints in Africa. “When we get together, our differences melt away,” she said. “We are all Heavenly Father’s children, and the same precious blood was spilled to bring us all to our heavenly home.”

  • While ministering in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Sister Harkness shared a photo of herself with Primary children and teachers in Kinshasa on Facebook on July 16. She noted that even though the Church is relatively young in that country, Primary children are being taught with power.

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