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Posts Tagged ‘general conference’

This past weekend we had General Conference, and I had a very interesting experience. I went into it with a very specific question I was hoping to hear an answer to (or more precisely, I was hoping I would hear a speaker say something, and the Spirit would impress me powerfully with an answer, as it has done many times before). And in fact, because of something my patriarchal blessing said (along the lines that I should listen closely to the words of the prophet), I had specifically prayed that President Monson would say something that would help me know what I needed to do.

Neither his Priesthood talk nor his Sunday morning talk said anything about what I was hoping to hear. Elder Oaks’ talk yesterday, however, strongly impressed me that I must never put my own selfish needs above the needs of my children. It wasn’t a direct answer to anything, but it was a strong impression about priorities. Then today, I was deeply touched by Pres. Eyring’s talk, and especially the story about his daughter-in-law who prayed for years to have another child. And only when she prayed instead, “Lord, give me an errand,” did He respond with a feeling of peace. Then she had two more children, which is exactly what she was hoping for. Again, it wasn’t the direct answer I was hoping for, but I felt that perhaps I was asking the wrong question. I was asking for the Lord to tell me something I wanted to know (for what I felt were very good reasons), instead of what He needed me to know.

Then I started feeling like, “Maybe this is a silly thing to stress over so much. Maybe the answer is the Lord just doesn’t care. It’s not important.” President Monson’s talk did not give me the direct answer I sought, but I was powerfully impressed with his statement, “The Lord is in the details of your life.” It made me think about my own little son. He was so frustrated the other day by a balance game on the Wii. He was crying because he could never get the giant yellow bead with his face on it in the yellow bucket. It wasn’t a serious problem in the scheme of life. But I was so happy to help him do it because it mattered to him. It pained me to see him so distressed—even over something I knew didn’t matter—and it truly lifted my heart to see him get so excited when that silly yellow bead went in the yellow bucket.

In the eternal scheme, my distress over this question is about as important as getting a yellow bead in the right bucket. But I realized it was important to God because it’s important to me. He chose not to directly give me the answer I was seeking, but I think He gave me enough to know that there is an answer I can find, and that He really does care that I find it. It’s important to Him because it’s important to me, even if I look to him like a 5-year-old crying tears of frustration over a yellow bead.

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Elder David A. Bednar was called to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in October Conference of 2004, filling one of the two places vacated when Elders Neal A. Maxwell and David B. Haight passed away. Elder Bednar’s powerful and eloquent speaking style made him a favorite among Church members. And at the April 2005 Conference, Elder Bednar gave a talk titled “The Tender Mercies of the Lord,” that became an instant classic.

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Like many members of the Church, I miss Pres. Gordon B. Hinckley greatly. He is, I think, one who will be remembered as great, even among prophets. He carried the Church through periods of tremendous change, opened its message up to more of the world, and confronted directly those critics who would deride the Church without understanding it. So I was sad that he was no longer there to give us counsel (I think, perhaps, that he was less sad, being reunited as he was with his beloved wife).

But I did not doubt Pres. Monson’s calling. I did not doubt that he was the man the Lord had chosen to lead His Church in perhaps even darker times than those we have seen. Who better to lead in the darkness than that man who is himself as a bright ray of sunshine, constantly cheerful, always stooping to lift the weak and weary, bringing joy to all those around him.

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I had started part II of my post on “Souls, Symbols and Sacraments,” then didn’t finish it, and then we had General Conference, and there were so many good talks, I think I need to take a post here in between to mention it. (more…)

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Come Thou Fount of Ev’ry Blessing
(As Sung by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir)

1. Come, Thou Fount of every blessing,
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace;
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
Call for songs of loudest praise.
Teach me some melodious sonnet,
Sung by flaming tongues above.
Praise the mount! I’m fixed upon it,
Mount of Thy redeeming love. (more…)

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The April 2006 General Conference was a tremendous experience for me. One of the things that’s been difficult for me is I feel like GID is not addressed head-on in the Church much. It’s like same-gender attraction gets all the attention (and to be fair, it’s much more common, as far as I can tell). But in April 2006 conference, “gender identity” was specifically spoken of twice, in two separate talks. (more…)

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