Dear 100 Hour Board,
If all priesthood ordinances are to be performed under the direction of someone that has keys, is not my priesthood basically meaningless then? I feel like I am just a proxy for that person that has keys, and without them, my priesthood has no meaning. Can you help me find the meaning in my own priesthood when I can't really make any unilateral priesthood decisions by communing with God myself and determining His will? It seems like the priesthood isn't "The Power And Authority Of God", but rather "The Right To Be A Proxy For The Presiding Authority's Power And Authority Of God."
Dear Priesthood Holder,
There is an order to the structure of priesthood service here on earth. Everyone who holds the priesthood reports to another individual on the completion of their duties. Everything about priesthood service is about acting in proxy. When we fulfill our priesthood duties, we are representing the Savior Jesus Christ. Having an intermediary to help organize those efforts doesn't diminish the responsibility we've been given. Everyone who has the priesthood reports to someone else. Even the prophet is bound to obey God in the course of his priesthood service. (And that doesn't necessarily make obedience any easier - remember Jonah?)
Having another priesthood leader who presides over the work of the priesthood in a particular setting doesn't diminish our responsibility to receive personal revelation. A missionary is not released from his responsibility to seek inspiration regarding an investigator merely because he has a mission president. A Melchizedek Priesthood holder isn't exempted from his obligation turn to the Lord to know what to say as he gives a blessing simply because he has a bishop. We still must seek the Lord as we fulfill our duties.
Finally, keep in mind that priesthood service isn't limited to preforming ordinances. We exercise the priesthood when we fulfill our callings, when we preside over our stewardship in righteousness, and when we serve others. Ultimately, the work the priesthood is to assist God in bringing to pass the immortality and eternal life of man. Having an ordained, authorized intermediary to help us organize our efforts doesn't diminish that great call.